2022 RDAA | Custom Outdoor Living Design | Desert Palisades | Woods + Dangaran

“The desert always wins” is the certainty that guided Brett Woods’ design of his own family retreat in the hills above Palm Springs. “It can be 50 degrees at night and 112 the next day. That fluctuation takes a toll on people, cars, objects, and houses,” he says. This Miesian pavilion takes the harsh environment in stride with an exterior volume bookended by burnished CMU block. Custom created to match the earth, it slips into the living room and primary bedroom at opposite ends of the house. On the house’s long side, an 8-by-10-foot grid of patinaed brass panels also expresses the desert elements. “The panels take the heat differently,” he says. “Some look homogenous, others like a patchwork quilt on the elevation.”

The dreamlike desertscape is ever-present inside the house. It spans a natural arroyo, allowing seasonal water to run under the house. There, a glass-enclosed bridge connects the two wings across a trellised atrium that can be viewed from nearly every room. Glass great room walls dematerialize, creating a seamless transition to an outdoor dining area, deck, pool, spa, fireplace, and lounge.

No mere afterthought, the sensitively designed gardens are integral to household life. “There’s a consistent, interesting engagement with the landscape,” a judge said. “Within that desert landscape, they were able to create a magical, habitable outdoor space.”


Custom Outdoor Living

Woods + Dangaran

Desert Palisades

Palm Springs, California

Project Credits

Architect/Interior Designer/
Lighting Designer: Woods + Dangaran, Los Angeles

Builder: HJH Construction, Palm Desert, California

Civil and structural engineer:
Labib Funk + Associates, El Segundo, California

Plumbing engineer: California Energy Designs, Burbank, California

Project size: 3,800 square feet

Site size: 0.49 acre

Construction cost: Withheld

Photography: Joe Fletcher

Key Products

Cooktop/Vent Hood/Ovens/Dishwasher/Refrigerator: Miele

Countertops: Caesarstone, Ceppo, white onyx, silver travertine

Entry doors: Otiima

Faucets: California Faucets

Fire sprinklers: AFP Systems

Flooring: Eco Outdoor

Lighting control systems: Meljac

Sinks: Blanco, Kohler

Surfacing: Ann Sacks (kitchen backsplash)

Toilets: TOTO

Tub: Hydro Systems

Washer/dryer: Whirlpool

Wine refrigerator: Sub-Zero