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Ocotillo Lodge Residence

Palm Springs, California


The Ocotillo Lodge in Palm Springs is an iconic example of midcentury desert architecture.  A complex of predominantly one-story condominiums situated around a clubhouse and pool, the project was designed by architect William Krisel, and opened originally as a hotel in 1957.


The small 520SF, one-bedroom unit had been partitioned and altered significantly, undermining the original intent of the design as an open space with an expansive glass wall toward a narrow patio, with panoramic views of surrounding mountains and palm tree crowns.  I wished to restore this unit back to Krisel’s vision, while adding a level of functionality, aesthetic refinement and detail. 


The interior is perceived as a simple, calming shelter or receptor, from which to enjoy views of the mountains and palms.  The patio is essentially an extension of the interior space, and serves as a flexible area for outdoor dining.


In addition to removing a partition between the sleeping and living areas to restore uninterrupted space and diagonal views through the glass wall across all structural bays, the small original kitchen was replaced and reconfigured to enhance efficiency, and to allow for modern appliances.   Wood panels matching the kitchen cabinet doors were applied to the dining wall, to integrate this corner of the space, and to allow for aesthetic integration of an existing door to the bathroom.   HVAC grilles were custom fabricated for integration into the panel module.


The bathroom was also thoroughly renovated with new components, and an existing lensed skylight was opened up as a lightwell.


David Blank

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