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This story was published before Summer 2021, when we launched our new digital experience.

The Famed 'Desert Wave' House Is a Mid-Century Modern Masterpiece—And It's Now Available to Rent

The architectural masterpiece was unveiled during Modernism Week in Palm Springs earlier this year.


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The Miles C. Bates “Wave" House has long captured the attention of architecture fans. Built in 1955 by Walter S. White, the one-bedroom abode was known for its curved roof that mimicked the shape of the desert mountains behind it. But for decades people could only look at it from afar. That is until now. After a full restoration by Stayner Architects the home will be available for renting starting in July.

Related: What to Know When Planning a Luxury Palm Springs Vacation

Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the mid-century house is a mix of new and old. The Stayners cross-referenced archives from the University of California, Santa Barbara and local Palm Desert city plans to carefully restore White's designs.

Christian Stayner, the founder of Stayner Architects viewed the project more as “a dialogue between two architects set decades apart.” They blended period pieces with designs from African-American artists from the same design era, and inside there’s a sweeping color palette of bright teal and orange.

Practically speaking, you get to enjoy an outdoor cedar soaking tub, king-size bed outfitted with Frette Italian linens, and two bathrooms with rain showers. Step back in time by listening to curated vintage records while mixing a drink at the whiskey and amaro bar. Or, wander through the private gardens while taking in views of the Santa Rosa Mountains. Bicycles and hiking maps are also provided as well as a fully-stocked kitchen.

Related: A Design Lover’s Guide to Palm Springs

Though the house opened to the public in February 2020 during Modernism Week in Palm Springs, it quickly shut down due to the spread of COVID-19. But as California cautiously emerges from the restrictions, the Stayners wanted to provide a safe destination for nearby residents looking to get away for the weekend.

To do that, they've adjusted protocols to provide a highly sanitized and safe experience for their future guests. The home is open for one group per weekend (Thursday through Sunday), and it sits empty for 72 hours prior to guest arrival. It is thoroughly sanitized following the strictest health and safety protocols and the kitchen is stocked with sealed and sanitized treats.


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