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The Chalet Palms Experience, Barry Berkus' Vision for Community Living

On tour for the first time, a time capsule of midcentury architecture, Chalet Palms in Rancho Mirage invites you to send a Valentine to Barry Berkus! $50 (1 hr)


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Full Details

This striking experiment in seasonal desert living has never before been open to the public. Architect Barry Berkus envisioned a small condo community that guarded privacy while celebrating communal living. Boulders and tall palm trees create a wild natural setting for these eight 4-unit buildings built by developer Basil Collier in 1965 as Rancho Mirage became the preferred place to stay “Down Valley.” 

This marks the 55th anniversary of Barry Berkus’ visionary plan for elegant, community, living in the desert. The walled neighborhood was designed early in his career and a recent discovery of Preservation Mirage and “Mod Mirage” enthusiasts like author Melissa Riche. A-line roofs cover front patios and mimic the mountain range beyond. Interior floor plans open onto pools, patios and lush landscaping. Exterior spaces invert against neighbors but offer easy access for visiting.  

On this tour you will be transported back in time as you tour prime examples of Hollywood Regency, Asian infused, Danish contemporary, sleek contemporary modern, and true retro 60's.

Tour guests can mingle by the pool with models in period swimwear and chat with builder/developer, Basil Collier who hired the young Barry Berkus, still in his 20s, to design a new concept in gracious desert living.

Guests of this special "Valentine to Barry Barkus" tour will have the opportunity to select a vintage Valentine which they can then enter it into a raffle drawing for a romantic dinner for two. Also, each guest receives a 60s retro box of Valentine's Day candy. Our “WHAT WOULD YOU DO?” contest challenges guests to present their concept of renovating a Chalet Palms unit to builder/developer, Basil Collier, who hired the young Barry Berkus, still in his 20s, to design a new concept in gracious desert living. Basil will be poolside to judge the winning concept and present another romantic dinner for two to the winning designer/architect. Contests winners need not be present, drawings will take place poolside @ 11:45 a.m. Guests are invited to mingle by the pool with models in period swimwear and chat with Basil.

$50

Things to Know

Please arrive 15 minutes before tour time to check in.
Check-in opens at 9:00 am and closes at 12 Noon.
This tour is for ages 12 and older.
There is ample street parking.
Photography is at the discretion of the homeowner.
Private homes are not wheelchair accessible.
There are some interior and exterior steps.
Please no pets, food or smoking allowed in homes.
Bathrooms in homes are not available, but are available at The River.
The organizer of this event is The Chalet Palms HOA Architectural Committee.

Event Check-in Location

71653 Sahara Rd, Rancho Mirage, CA 92270

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Photo Credits: Photo 1 - Gina Graves, Photo 2 - Gina Graves, Photo 3 - Gina Graves, Photo 4 - Gina Graves, Photo 5 - James Butchart

 

 

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