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An Elegant Evening at the Historic O’Donnell House Estate 'Ojo del Desierto'

Set high above Palm Springs, this elegant 1925 estate is the romantic setting to celebrate the Spanish Colonial Revival architecture of Palm Springs, sumptuously catered by Le Vallauris Restaurant.

$295 (3 hrs)

Category: @Palm Springs, Cocktail Party, Hors d'oeuvres, Outdoors, Reception, Tour (Exterior), Tour (Interior)

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Full Details

Modernism Week honors the Spanish Colonial Revival architectural legacy of Palm Springs with a series of home tours, events, and presentations.  This opulent estate is the perfect location to celebrate that legacy.

The Thomas O’Donnell House, Ojo del Desierto (Eye of the Desert), is a stunning example of  Mediterranean Revival-Monterey style. Completed in 1925, this 4,200 sq. ft. residence was the winter home of wealthy oilman Thomas O’Donnell and his wife, Dr. Winnifred Willis Jenney, and designed by William Charles Tanner (1876-1960), who designed many Spanish, Monterey and Mediterranean Revival structures in Palm Springs.

Until the 1960’s, this was the highest mountainside home constructed in Palm Springs.  The setting is extraordinary -- sited on the sheer mountainside with views across the entire valley.  The home is exquisitely restored to its 1925 Casa Romantica glory and is a Palm Springs Class 1 historic structure and listed in the National Register of Historic Places.  

Departing from the entrance to the O’Donnell Golf Course, guests will ascend the mountainside via scenic shuttle, past trailing bougainvillea, picturesque rock walls and cactus, through intricate wrought-iron gates and onto an expansive cliffside terrace, which seems to float above the desert floor.  As darkness falls, the lights of Palm Springs and across the valley below begin to glow and glitter, further enhancing this magical experience. 

Enjoy cocktails, wine, and savor delicious hors d’oeuvres created by the chefs at the legendary French restaurant, Le Vallauris. Notably, the restaurant itself occupies the historic 1925 George Roberson Residence, also designed by Charles Tanner, situated below the O’Donnell House.   

Take time to explore the interior of the home, featuring original and rare art tile floors and bathrooms from Batchelder, Malibu, Taylor, S&S and Gladding McBean.  The house boasts redwood ceilings, antique furnishings, and gorgeous period appointments. The home’s second floor features a sweeping veranda, from which you can watch the scene below unfold and enjoy a few moments to appreciate how very special Ojo del Desierto is to experience.

Thank you to Soho House for their generous support to help underwrite this event. 


Things to Know
This event is for ages 21 and older.
Complimentary valet service provided; please follow signs. 
All guests must use the shuttles up to the house and for the return below.
It is not allowed to drive directly to the house or to walk to/from the house.
Shuttles will run regularly back and forth.
Shuttles depart from the NW corner of Palm Springs Art Museum's North parking lot, at the entrance to the O’Donnell Golf Club.
Share ride drop offs are allowed where the shuttles depart but are not allowed up to/at the house
Wheelchair access is limited.
The organizer of this event is Modernism Week.

Event Check-in Location 
Palm Springs Art Museum, North Parking Lot, 101 N. Museum Dr., Palm Springs, CA 92262
View Map

Photo Credits: Soho House  

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