Home Of The Week
2175 Southridge Drive
“Give me what you think I should have on this lot,” said interior designer Arthur Elrod to architect John Lautner in 1968 as you walked the parcel perched on the northern tip of Southridge in Palm Springs. From that moment on, Lautner harnessed all creative control of the project, executing a vision that defied the conventions of his contemporaries. Prior to construction, the mid-century modern architect excavated down eight feet to expose the very bedrock that proved to play an integral role in the home’s design.
Known today as the Elrod House, the hallmark property has more than stood the test of time—it has surpassed it, praised for its relationship to the nature and sense of drama. An unsuspecting entrance opens to reveal a 60-foot-wide, circular living room with a conical dome fanning out in nine petals between nine clearstories angled up to bring in light. Retractable curved glass walls open the living room and indoor-outdoor pool to panoramic views of Mt. San Jacinto, Mt. San Gorgonio, the full sweep of the valley below and mountain ranges beyond. The roof is designed to shield the home from the intense desert sun.
“Organic shapes, monumental construction and world-class design create an extraordinary experience of space that Lautner himself described as ‘timeless architecture’,” said listing REALTOR® John Nelson, who listed the property with Nelson-Moe Properties partner REALTOR® Cat Moe. “The property is an architectural masterpiece and meticulously incorporates many of Lautner’s trademark features such as maximizing the blend between the site and home, and seamless flow connecting indoor and outdoor spaces.”
A statement in its own right, the Elrod House has also gained notoriety as the winter lair of billionaire Willard Whyte in the 1971 Bond film, Diamonds are Forever. The living room and infinity-edge pool were both the stage for the epic battle scene that took place between a coolly-suited agent 007 (Sean Connery) and the bikini donning Bambi and Thumper. This was the beginning of Hollywood’s love affair with Lautner’s futuristic masterpieces, as many have been featured in major productions including Iron Man, Die Hard, and Charlie’s Angels to name a few.
With iconic space-age architecture and ties to James Bond, nothing says legendary cool quite like the Elrod House.