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Paradise Palms 1962 Brochures and Newsletters
I said â€œBut, waitâ€“ thereâ€™s moreâ€, and here it is.
Itâ€™s theÂ hand drawnÂ renderingÂ of Paradise Palms from 1963. It was also handed out at the sales office, which I now know had a Desert Inn Address, though it was the lastÂ lot at the end of Dakota Circle. Was it in the house thatâ€™s there now? A trailer?Â AÂ different building that was replaced with house?
Having stared at this mapÂ for hours over the last few weeks, itâ€™s alsoÂ created all kinds of new questions. Iâ€™mÂ trying to put together all the pieces of the puzzle. Iâ€™ve had to go back into the county records to discover that the unlabeled segment containing Aztec and Cayuga are really â€œunit 2â€. The west half of Sombrero, Raindance and Scout Street (which doesnâ€™t exist, and is called Raindance now) are really unit 15. Sombrero Avenue goes straight thru from east to west from La Canada to Eastern. Whereâ€™s La Canada?
Obviously, this wasnâ€™t the final version of the map. The Unit 15 homes were built in â€˜64 and â€˜65. Theyâ€™re mostly ranch styled mid modâ€™s. Someday Iâ€™ll figure out the whole puzzle. If anyone has any cluesâ€¦..please send them my way.
The map does help us see where the park once was. And you can see in the bottom left hand corner, that there was another whole group of homes that never materialized. That area is nowÂ apartments.
Unfortunately,Â the mapÂ was printed on 11×17 paper which didnâ€™t fit in my scanner, so I did it in 2 parts. In retrospect, I should have taken it somewhere with a bigger scanner. Maybe someone with some photo shop skills will do us a favor and put it back together as one full map.
I hope youâ€™ve enjoyed seeing the 1963 brochures and newsletters as much as I have. Now itâ€™s time for some coverage of some other neighborhoodsâ€¦..and some Mystery Pictures.
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March 14th, 2010 Categories: Paradise Palms 1962 Brochures and Newsletters
Today we find babies, children, a Jackie K hairdo, and a very fabulous dinette set.
I’ve also picked up another clue as to the which were the Secrest Construction Company “Americana Series” homes that were mentioned in the first edition that we published. In that February 63 newsletter, the unit 12 Americana Series was erroneously described as Tioga, Cochise and Geronimo, west of Spencer. Those streets are East of Spencer, and are actually Unit 10, The Tioga finger which runs westward from Eastern. Yes, I was confused by their error, and the swimming pool picture below helped to clear that up.
There’s one more piece of Ephemera that came in this collection, but you’ll have to wait for tomorrow!
“Giovannella”. Anyone have any clue about her later years? Nothing on Google under Giovannella, but searching “Joan Marks” got to me to a 1957 article in Time Magazine, as well as a 1957 article from the Sarasota Herald Tribune.
How about it art history guys/gals. Who can did up some more?
(UPDATE: 10 minutes after publishing this last newsletter, new Paradise Palms resident Clay put this link into the comments section. A 1970’s painting by Giovannella of Linus Pauling. Thanks, Clay!
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Iâ€™m just intelligently guessing that about 300 of the 1044 homes in Paradise Palms were Krisel designs. Irwin Molaskyâ€™s Paradise Development Company developed the entire master planned community, and directly built the Krisel homes. There were other construction companies that built some of the â€œunitsâ€ of Paradise Palms.
For example, in the first of the newsletters, we learned that the whole section north of Desert Inn, betweenÂ Camelback RoadÂ andÂ Eastern Ave.Â were built by Miranti Homes. These 83 homes in Unit 11 were concrete block, ranch style homes with pitched roofs or flat roofs, and sunken living rooms.
The same article told us that â€œUnit 10â€ (which is the Tioga finger into the golf course), and â€œUnit 12â€ (the first few homes on the streets west of Spencer) were the work of Secrest Construction, who dubbed a group of 77 homes as the Americana Series. I think these were the ranch housesÂ west of Spencer. Â
I have no clue if Irwin Molaskyâ€™s Paradise Homes actually built the rest of the homes in his development. If anyone else has a clue or some history for me, please email or call me.
Plan 8 was the largest of the Bill Krisel Designs. It was 1900 square feet. The fireplace was the centerpiece of the home as it was an island which served as a divider between the family living room and the dining room. The other distinctive feature was the screened front courtyard in front of the kitchen window, whichÂ stretched over to the carport.
Almost all of the model 8â€™s have had the carport converted to garage. Unfortunately, many of them have had theÂ screen walls removed.Â
A good (bad â€“ fixer upper) example of the Model 8C just sold as a foreclosure at 3419 Seneca, and a terrific well kept and beautifully painted example of the model 8B can be found at 3522 Pueblo Way,Â which is 3 or four houses west of the â€œRevision Houseâ€. Â
I donâ€™t recognize the 8A at all. I donâ€™t recall any that have an extended facia providing shade to the bedroom windows. Nor doÂ I recognize the shadow block design on the left front of the house. Am I wrong?
Thereâ€™s at least 3 people/couples that I know of who have been driving around Paradise Palms with these brochures trying to identify all the houses of each model. I wish I had the time to do it lesiurly as well. Perhaps one of them will spot an 8A that Iâ€™m not remembering.
The prices, which were rubber stamped onto the back of the brochures is a little harder to read on the the model 8, but they were:
Lot B $31,900 and
Lot C $34,500
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Our Paradise Palms 1963 series is coming to an end soon. Thereâ€™s only one more floor plan brochure, an after this, the August 1963 edition of the Paradise Palms Desert News, thereâ€™s only September left to show you.
I was hoping someone else would surface that had other editions stashed away, but, alas, it hasnâ€™t happened.
Weâ€™ll continue withÂ some more 1960â€™s fun with a new series of photographs from our secret historian. He just delivered a whole cache of 1960â€™sÂ pictures, and weâ€™ll need your help figuring out whereÂ they are.
Todayâ€™s edition of the Paradise Palms Desert News features smuggled art, more hair, a new gas station, and lots of furniture that weâ€™d all love to have now.
My mother used to â€œletâ€ me lick the S & H Green Stamps. Thereâ€™s actually 3 full books of them in a box in her store room. All that licking, and they never got turned in for valuable merchandise.
Anyone know when the â€œflying Aâ€ got torn down?
In the early 70â€™s, the Paradise Palms Community voted to abolish the homeownerâ€™s association. Iâ€™ve been told that itÂ happened both inÂ 73 and 74.
With the HOA defunt, the community park was closed and the land wasÂ re-developed for the last homes to be built in Paradise Palms. ThoseÂ homes are distinctlyÂ different and have theÂ feel of the 70â€™s andÂ 80â€™s. You can find them on the south side of Nakona, just west of Spencer.Â Â
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Where was I before the last week got lost?
Itâ€™s time for another volume â€“ July 1963 â€“ of the Paradise Palms Newsletters. This one contains a special treat, which weâ€™ll get to on page 3. Thereâ€™s also a lot of great hair, 2 tone shoes to match the dogs, and a real â€œleave it to beaverâ€ moment!
Â (UPDATE: regular VVV reader and client Anya just discovered that thatâ€™s her house in the bottom right photo of the Welcome Mat. She vows to not only do over the house, but to get the same haircut as Naida Ormond!)
Hereâ€™s our special treat. Old time readers will remember that weâ€™ve been championing the cause of getting a school named after Walter Zick, the prolific modernist architect of Las Vegas.
Walter Zick is responsible for the Mint, and the â€œPod Schoolsâ€. He designedÂ UNLVâ€™s Maude Frazier Hall, and Flora Dungan Humanities Building; as well as Clark and Valley High Schools. Â We still have numerous banks, office buildings,Â a dozen or soÂ houses. Walter Zick was the preeminent architect ofÂ 1950â€™s and 60â€™s. The body of work that still remains are some of the best examples of modernism in what we now call Vintage Vegas.
We did a bus tour of the Zick buildings last October, and a panel discussion with Alan Hess and Walterâ€™s daughters Claire and Karen.
Walter and his family moved from Washington and Decatur to a new home in Paradise Palms in 1963.
Claire told us at the panel discussion that people always asked her father why they lived in a tract house when he was an architect. He told them there was nothing he could build that was better than the Bill Krisel designed home in Paradise Palms.
Turns out that Irwin Molasky, the developer of Paradise Palms (or at least his staff) had a lot of respect for Walter Zick, and gave him not only the article on page 4, but a full page of photos. Maybe we should re-think full wall, floor to ceiling draperies!
The house is aÂ Bill Krisel design, Plan 8 which weâ€™ll show you in a couple of days.
The article in the Paradise Palms Newsletter about Walter Zick is here on page four.
For the sake of the search enginesâ€¦Iâ€™m re-typing the article,Â (syntax,Â grammar, punctuation, typoâ€™s and all)Â though it can clearly be read in the scan to the left, which is aÂ clickable thumbnail if youâ€™d like to see it full sized at 8.5 x 11.
Walter Zick, a partner in the firm of Zick & Sharp, outstanding architects in Nevada, threw open the doors of his beautiful home to the staff of your community Newspaper, the Desert News.
The Zick home at 3614 Ottawa Circle is the object of many sparkling eyes, particularly those playing the Stardust Golf Course adjoining the home. Its beauty and landscaping blends rounding homes.
Zick first came to Las Vegas in 1945 as an associate architect for the Flamingo Hotel. Although scheduled to remain only for one year, he fell in love with the Las Vegas Valley and decided to make it his home. In 1948, he joined with Harris Sharp to form the firm that now bears the name, Zick & Sharp. Many of the finest homes and buildings in the area are the results of their creation. The Zick home decor is styled in contemporary with oriental influence. Pictures of the home and the furnishings are presented on page 3 of this issue.
The Zicks â€“ Walter and Mildred â€“ have two daughters, Karen and Claire, both of whom attended Las Vegas High School. They are avid and ardent horse women. Their room in the home is the only one with a western atmosphere, completely dominated with ribbons won as contestants, and statuettes of horses too numerous to count.
Zickâ€™s partner, Harris Sharp, also is a resident of Paradise Palms., and is in the midst of decorating and furnishing his home at th present time.
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Â â€œNew concepts in the use of space and frontage design, based on architectural studies, create a feeling of activity which is essential to bringing traffic to a shopping area.â€
The â€œWelcome Matâ€ introduces us to Sam Melchionne and his family. Samâ€™s the band leader at the Desert Inn Sky Room.
A great piece of Las Vegas History in the tribute website. Thereâ€™s some terrific pictures buried in it.
Lynn Zook at Classic Las Vegas also has a picture of Sam Mechionne with Robert Goulet in this postÂ
I want that Sunburst Clock!
Itâ€™s all about the â€œladiesâ€! And the HAIR!
Watch your speed. Sometimes I think they really struggled to fill the page. In retrospect, itâ€™s still a fun read, though.
Paradise Palms was the first Master Planned community in Las Vegas. Itâ€™s filled with what we now call Mid Century Modern homes. They deserve to be restored and collected.
Paradise Palms can be located on both sides of Desert Inn Road, between Maryland Parkway and Eastern Avenue. Some of the homes are on whatâ€™s now the â€œNational Golf Courseâ€. When the community was built, the course was the â€œStardust Golf Courseâ€.
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Hereâ€™s Volume 2 Number 5, the May 1963 newsletter of Paradise Palms.
This is how people networked back in 1963. Today, theyâ€™d just have a facebook fan page. Oh, they do! New fans welcome. New content welcome as well.
Of course, if itâ€™s a real scoop, as these newsletters are, you should give it to meÂ to publish first!Â
The Welcome Mat introduces us to saxaphone legend Vido Musso, and lots of grass and a pine cone lamp.
We also meet The vice president of the Flamingo, a pair of pedal-pushers, and 2 pairs of flood pants.
Any of these names recognizable?
Another plug for Vido Musso
Babette DeCastro of the DeCastro sisters.
Jack Nicklaus â€“ you know who he is, so I didnâ€™t link it.
Iâ€™m hoping someone will uncover more of these newsletters.
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This oneâ€™s for you, Clay.
Thereâ€™s no mistaking the Tri-Level design. They were only built South of Desert Inn,Â in Paradise Palmsâ€“ theÂ firstÂ Mid Century Modern Neighborhood of Las Vegas. You canâ€™t miss them. Thereâ€™s about a dozen or so of them all together spread out through the neighborhood. Thereâ€™s still 3 or 4 of them that havenâ€™t had additions or severe modifications or havenâ€™tÂ been stuccoâ€™d over.
Find the one on Pawnee Circle. Itâ€™s the best original.
They have some of the largest of the â€œStone Screenâ€ or â€œSun Screenâ€ privacy walls made out of the decorative concrete block that Iâ€™m so fond of. (that link will take you to the entire series that we spent all of last year on)
Youâ€™ll also note that they came with a zig zag of concrete panels that made up the steps from the street to the front door.
The line of shadow block in the chimney has always been inspirational.
The rubber stamped pricing isnâ€™t very legible but the builder price is starting to really get up there in 1963.
Lot A = $27,950
Lot B = $25,950
Lot C = $31,550
A few (many) of you have been actually reading the amenities list. A few of them that have amused me, or caught my eye:
â€œilsa imported Italian tile or glass tile walls around tubâ€
â€œExtra large Superamic tile counter top and splashâ€
â€œWall to Wall Carpetingâ€Â and a â€œBuilt-In TV outletâ€
â€œfull luminous ceiling with fluorescent tubingâ€
â€œ6 foot built-in sloped mirrored medicine cabinetâ€
â€œDecorative block screen wall across entire lower levelâ€
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Someone â€“ quite wrongfully â€“ suggested that Iâ€™m focusing too much attention on Paradise Palms. They asked me why I havenâ€™t done anything on downtown latelyâ€¦.or McNeil or McWhatnot.
Iâ€™m just very happy to be back to consistent and regular blogging, and the â€œRevision Houseâ€, as well as these Paradise Palms newsletters and brochures from 1963 were just the thing to get me jump-started.
Another reader posed a good question recently. She did some driving around in Paradise Palms, noting that some of the properties â€“ in fact, some of the blocks looked kind of shabby.
I explained that sheâ€™s quiteÂ right.Â However, thatâ€™s true in neighborhoods all over the valley after the last 3 years of market decline, recession, and all that other bad stuff.
Thereâ€™s dead lawns and peeling paint in Summerlin as well. The HOA there has more power to fight it than we do considering the budget constraints of the city and the county.
Never the less, thereâ€™s a TON of foreclosures that have been sold during the last 6 months. (AND A TON OF THEM BEING RELEASED AT THIS MOMENT â€“Â IF YOU HAVENâ€™T BOUGHT YET! The shadow inventory is starting to emerge.)
Most of the people who have already taken advantage of the low prices and the low interest rates have been putting their time and energy into fixing and repairing and redecorating the insides this winter.Â
With Spring approaching, I think weâ€™ll be seeing a torrent of outside activity among the many new homeowners.
First however, I think weâ€™re going to see the biggest crop of weeds ever. It just might get uglier for a few months before the lawns and landscapes start to look good again. Of course, we needed the rain, and the logical (natural) outcome will be weeds.
So Iâ€™m taking a moment to start the appeal early. I saw my first littleÂ green shoots of growth this weekend.Â TheyÂ were in the fringes of A NICE LAWN. Â Whether youâ€™re Downtown, or in McNeil, or Westleigh or Scotch 80â€™s or FranÂ Park, or EVEN in Paradise Palmsâ€¦.get an early jump on them, and stay ahead of them. Go talk to your neighbors. ENCOURAGE THEM to stay ahead of the weeds. Help a neighbor who might not be able to pull them.Â Your HOME VALUE will benefit. Lots and lots of those vacant properties are going to get new owners soon. The better the homes around them look, the more theyâ€™ll be fighting over the available ones. The FIRST thing they always do is pull the weeds at their new home.
There wasnâ€™t a lot of news in this issue of the Paradise Palms â€œDesert â€“ Newsâ€ â€“ therefore the little essay above, butâ€¦.
Is she still around?
We know from a previous issue that the tennis courts were in the park that ran westward from Spencer along whatâ€™s now the South side of Chippawa Drive, and Chippawa Circle. I believe the pyramid roof house that shows in the background of the the top â€œtennis anyoneâ€ picture is at the end of the Commanche Circle Cul-de-sac.
The butterfly roof â€œclubhouseâ€ in the bottom picture seems to be where Chippawa Circle is now.Â What a shame itâ€™s now lost to us.
Iâ€™m trying to figure outÂ EXACTLY when the association for Paradise Palms was dissolved. Does anyone know? Any details? Was there a fight over it? Was the community thrilled to lose it? Who led the different factions. I just know there had to have been a battle. Any of you original or extremely long time owners have any insight?
The ONLY clue I have at the moment, is that all 5 houses on Chippewa Circle were built in 1979, and are absolutely NOT part of the brochure series, as they are on the North side of Chippewa Drive. So I know it had to have been at least a year or two before that. But when? Why?
TomorrowÂ or WednesdayÂ Â â€“ Plan 5 of the brochure series.
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Again, many of the carports have been changed to garages, or living area.
There have been many changes and modifications (some/too manyÂ of them being absolutley horrible) to the houses, especially the part of Paradise Palms north of Desert InnÂ â€“Â which even in 1962 andÂ 1963 was the lower end, â€œstarter homeâ€ part of the neighborhood.
Many of the 4Bâ€™s still maintain their rooflines and clearstory windows. Many of the Aâ€™s are now unrecognizable.Â Â
Iâ€™m real happy that we can put these out there as a resource for the future new homeowners.
Any of our Paradise Palms readers who live in 4â€™s care to comment?
The rubber stamp says:
Lot A = $24,950
Lot BÂ =Â $26,050Â
Lot C = $28,650
This is the first of the brochures to give us clue that there was different pricing for different lots.
In the brochure, the street is obviously along the right side of the drawing. It really makes more sense like this, when you can picture the driveway cutting across the front of the house with a side entry carport as it shows in the elevation drawing.
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Hereâ€™s our second installment of the Paradise Palms Desert-News from 1963!
Each page is clickable if you want to read it in itâ€™s full sized 8.5×11.Â
Walter Winchel, Tony Martin (?)Â and Ray Bolger getÂ nods as â€œTop Starsâ€ of the entertainment world, and golfers Gene Littler, Mike Souchak all get nods as endorsing the Stardust Golf Course.
The bottom left photograph in the Paradise Palms Welcome Mat from this March 1963 edition is none other than Maisie and Garland Ronnow. Maisie is who provided us with this treasure trove of material from 1963.
Garland went to the property every day while it was under construction. Maisie told me this little story when I met her. He noted that the studs in the walls werenâ€™t always â€œexactlyâ€ 16 inches on center, so he measured and and filled a notebook with the exact measurements of the difference between each stud before they got sheet rocked.
Iâ€™m not recognizing any of these kids names as adults. Surely they didnâ€™t all move away from Las Vegas.
Anyone recognize any of them? If you do, make sure to direct them to VeryVintageVegas.
The DOTSâ€¦ANDâ€”â€“DASHES column tell us about a â€œpackage from heavenâ€ and a new â€œJr. Prom Queenâ€.
I really hope you are all getting a kick out of these the way I am. Comments? Feedback? Back Story? Current Updates on people who are named? Click on the comments link just below.
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Below youâ€™ll find Plan Three of our series on the group of houses in Paradise Palms that were commissioned by Irwin Molasky. They were designed by the famed architectural team of Palmer and Krisel. NOT all of the houses of Paradise Palms are Palmer and Kriselâ€™s however. The series weâ€™re running now are, though.
Next week is Palm Springs Modern week. Iâ€™m still working out the details, but Iâ€™m planning on attending the premiere of the new Documentary on William Krisel. It was filmed by JG Gorst, and Design OnScreen. The documentary series theyâ€™re doing is about noted regional architects of theÂ Modern Era. This is one of them Â Itâ€™s being shown for the first time on Sunday Night the 14th as part of Palm Springs Modern Week.
If you recall, last March,Â we contributed to the film with a major segment on the Palmer and Krisel houses of Paradise Palms in Las Vegas. Iâ€™m told that I didnâ€™t make it to the cutting room floor, and that the interview with me is several minutes of the film.
Hereâ€™s the trailer for the film.Â Â Â
Model 3 in our series has me confused at the moment. I recognize the floorplan, but not the front elevations.
Iâ€™m going to do a drive around and see if I can remember which houses Iâ€™ve been in that have that floorplan, and compare the fronts.
Plan 3A seems similar to one that I know that has a soaring vaulted carport
I donâ€™t ever recall seeing a 3B that would have the butterfly roof with 5 sets of clearstory windows to the left. Or maybe my memory isnâ€™t what it used to be.
3C is even more perplexing.
Anyone else able to help on this mystery?
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The â€œModel 2â€ plan was 1200 sf. Iâ€™ve mostly seen it the part of Paradise Palms NORTH of Desert Inn. It was the â€œstarter homeâ€ and was base priced (according to the rubber stamp on the floor plan side) $22,300.
AÂ terribly kept, run down, broken, but original of this model just sold for $55,000 as bank owned repo. It breaks my heart to report that. Especially since the buyer I wrote an offer for didnâ€™t get it.
Most often, Iâ€™ve seen it as a plan B
Thereâ€™s a few plan Câ€™s along Golden Arrow Drive on the north end of Paradise Palms, and Several Aâ€™s on Burnham and Gaucho.
Some of them have had the carports converted to living area, and a few of them have been thoroughly butchered with room additions that block the â€œwall ofÂ glassâ€ at the back of the house.
Tomorrow, weâ€™ll do the March edition of the Paradise Palms Neighborhood Newsletter from 1963. If you missed the first edition, you can scroll down, or click here.
Both of these pictures are clickable thumbnails if youâ€™d like to see it in the full 8.5 x 11 version.
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The Paradise Palms Brochures From 1963 – The Most Important Mid Century Modern Housing Tract In Las Vegas
One of the coincidental outcomes of the ReVision House (the deep green retrofit that was done for last weeks International Homebuilders show) was that I got to meet a few of the original Paradise PalmsÂ owners on Pueblo Drive. One of them made me an incredible offer.
Maisie Ronnow, and her late husband Garland bought their Palmer and Krisel â€œJet Ageâ€ Modern house in 1963. The Ronnow family were the owners of Superior Tire. Â
During her tour of the ReVision House, she told me that she had all the original floor plan brochures from 1963!
I now have them in my possession and am busy busy scanning them for you. Hereâ€™s plan number 1. Previously, we had some photo copies of an abreviated version that we had published one of them here. Alan Sandquist had a few of them on his flicker page, but they are no longer there, and I canâ€™t remember why I was requested to not show them.
But now we have our own set of originals so theyâ€™ll be permanantly archived for everyone during the next few weeks.
But wait! Thereâ€™s more. I also have 8 of the original Paradise Palms Community Newsletters that were part of the marketing of the neighborhood. The were handed out to potential new homeowners, and mailed to the existing owners. Theyâ€™re full of fun pictures of Mid Century Modern furniture, hairdoâ€™s, clothing styles, as well as a TON of previously lost knowledge about the Paradise Palms community of Las Vegas.
These are clickable thumbnails. Theyâ€™ll open in a new window, at their full 8.5×11 size. Youâ€™re welcome to Save As or whatever youâ€™d like. If you have friends in Paradise Palms that are regular readers of VeryVintageVegas, I hope youâ€™ll share these with them as I publish the whole set.
One of the most interesting things about the floor plans, and why itâ€™s so easy to believe that thereâ€™s actually dozens of different models is because of the multiple elevations and roof lines. Besides that, some of the models could be turned 90 degrees left or right and then combined with a different roofline.
That is the same floorplan could get built with the front door facing the street, or turned with the door facing to the side. Depending on that, you alway got the rear living room wall of glassÂ facing the side the back of the house. Depending on the rotation of the house, the fireplace wall and the glass wall were interchangable.
So there really are dozens of variations thru out The Mid Century Modern Neighborhood ofÂ Paradise Palms.
Now, armed with these brochures, Iâ€™m going to go find us 1B and 1C.
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