Bates House - Art, Design and Arch Museum UC Santa Barbara


Your opportunity to own a unique piece of Modernism history will be available when the extraordinary Miles C. Bates House in Palm Desert is sold at auction. Designed by famed mid-century architect Walter S. White, this spirited structure features a unique wave-shaped roof sailing over concrete block and glass walls, a bathroom whose projecting glass shower opens to a private garden, and an open floor plan built for entertaining. Walter S. White (1917 - 2002) was an innovative architect, engineer, and inventor who was fascinated by the challenge of building livable spaces amidst the desert's stark beauty. Working in the 1950s, White designed structures featuring his much-imitated butterfly and parabolic roofs as well as the cantilevered corner windows he pioneered.

An inspiring collaboration between a talented architect and an unconventional playboy artist, the Miles C. Bates house still stands at 73697 Santa Rosa Way, but years of neglect have taken a toll. Fortunately, the changes wrought by time and some ill-conceived additions have not completely erased White's vision. The iconic roof remains, waiting to be restored by a new owner with the passion to save this exceptional work of modern architecture.

The City of Palm Desert and the Historical Society of Palm Desert are interested in partnering with a buyer who values Walter White's vision for the Miles Bates House and wants to return the structure to its former glory. The City has approved up to $50,000 in matching funds to incentivize this iconic property's restoration. 

For further information on the property please contact Cora Gaugush at 760-776-6450 or via email at