Thursday, June 29, 2006

The Ranch

Most of my energies are devoted to BBARH Ranch Estates. These homes are located between Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs on the grounds of the old B-Bar-H Ranch, a celebrity retreat prior to World War II. Stars like Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Joan Crawford, Gary Cooper, Marlene Dietrich, Tyrone Power, biggies like that from way back when would come to unwind , ride horses, do the whole camping and dude ranch thing. At night there would be swanky parties with dancing and what not. The developer was a producer named Lucien Hubbard, was involved with the film "Wings", the first best picture winner at the Oscars. Later he would have former Wright Apprentice John Lautner design a motel a few miles north, a motel that still stands. Building Modern here is a way to tap into both the celebrity connection as well as the Modern Architecture pedigree. You might say we are picking up a time tested method of building in the desert. Which frankly I think is a valid approach. There is a quiet restfullness to the stark setting here, the mountain panorama is striking, and at night the stars shine brightly as the developed areas are farther away here. It really is a wonderful combination of the Martini Modern lifestyle crossed with a zen-like setting.

The homes are set among existing non-modern residences, and the project calls for some 70 plus houses. We even have inspired two copycat builders building lookalikes here. The moderns sell better here though. Why build here? This is the most often asked question, why not in Palm Springs? The builders have built these homes in Palm Springs, but they wanted to do more than tap into the modern aesthetic, at the heart of building these homes out near Desert Hot Springs was the desire to make the houses affordable. Attainable Modernism is what it is all about, and the mix of buyers has proved this a correct move. Here you will find middle class full time residents alongside with more affluent weekenders, wanting a getaway but not a budget buster.

Friday, June 23, 2006

An Introduction

Who am I? Why should you care about anything I have to say? I can only answer one of those questions. And you should care about what I say because... my name is Scott , Scott Kirk Cueto to be precise, and you must not forget the Kirk Cueto because like assasins all great Architects have three names. I have been urged by a close friend to blog, and I have resisted to do so for several reasons, but things change and now seems as good a time, probably the best time atleast for me to start.

Since the beginning of 2006 I have worked for a wonderful company that specializes in modern homes near Palm Springs. I act as a design coordinator making sure the houses are built to the spirit of Mid-Century Modernism, I'll talk more about that later. This isn't meant as a sales tool, and of course these are my opinions solely and in no way represent those of Modern Living Spaces or any of it's subsidiaries(now that is over with) it is just a way to chart the architectural journey I am on here as I design interiors of houses that I did not design and work on all new designs . I suppose I'll chart the progress of that here as well.

The title of my blog refers to a career guidance book I inherited from a library purge when I was in Junior High School. I went to a school built in 1967 and so everything in the library was state of the art to that year, by the time I came along in the early 90's this jewel stared at me from across the room, here you could draw all day, and make models all night, which frankly is what college was somewhat like. Of course the reality was a little bit different from the circa 67 book, and now everything is done on computers, but I continue to stand tall with my dixie cup ready to collect the water gushing through the dam as i remain committed to pencil, pen and t-square. This book extolled the virtues of the profession at the period in which I found myslf most drawn. I pursued other period books and became versed in Architecture at mid-20th century. My High School was built in 1959, and so of course all of the books there were state of the art 1959 . I found a book on Frank Lloyd Wright and that sealed the deal. It wasn't until 2006 that my passion for Mid-century combined with a client wanting the very same thing. So now armed with a passion for my work I can write about it. Although I'll warn that Architects are notoriously clunky writers and for that I apologize in advance, but hey I'll bet most writers would be hard pressed to design a house.