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VOLA Featured in Miles C Bates House, Palm Springs, CA

August 11, 2020

VOLA Featured in Miles C Bates House, Palm Springs, CA

Wave House Project

Restoration: Stayner Architects
Photos: Tim Hirschmann

The word iconic is frequently used when talking about product design. Having been designed in 1968 by renowned architect and product designer Arne Jacobsen, the VOLA faucet has rightly been described as iconic, and we think the moniker fits. When a design stands the test of time and remains an industry standard, attention should be given to what it represents. There is no question that along with Arne Jacobsen’s many other products still in production today, the faucet he designed in 1968 remains a classic. Today, VOLA’s products are used in contemporary projects as well as restorations of mid-century modern homes, and VOLA was recently used in a home that absolutely deserves attention – the Miles C. Bates House, aka The Wave House.

The Miles C. Bates House — known as the “Wave House” for its curving roof that mimics the San Jacinto Mountains behind it — was opened to the public in February, 2020 for the first time since its restoration by Stayner Architects. It was designed by Walter S. White, a Southern California-born architect and inventor who worked for Rudolph Schindler, Albert Frey, and Douglas Aircraft. White’s designs and inventive construction techniques, including the Bates House’s patented roller-coaster roof, were influential to the later development of mid-century modern architecture adapted for the desert environment of the Coachella Valley.

The house was built in 1955 as a sculptor’s studio for Miles C. Bates, an artist known for the Gullwing Mercedes convertible he drove along the dusty desert roads of a sparsely-populated Palm Desert. During Bates’s ownership, the small house became a hub of social and artistic activity for the Coachella Valley. However, a series of additions by later owners and a number of unoccupied years threatened its structural and material integrity. In 2018, it was listed on the United States National Register of Historic Places. That same year, Stayner Architects purchased the property and began work to restore the innovative roof system and emblematic mid-century structure, and re-activate the property as a publicly accessible amenity.

Today the Wave House has been re-imagined as not only an homage to mid-century modern design, but the house is actually available for rent. The one bedroom, two bath home is fully fitted with both vintage pieces and modern amenities (WiFi, of course.) The Wave House is featured on home tours during Modernism Week and VOLA is proud to have been the fixtures chosen for both the kitchen and bathrooms.