Liz Lambert's first project in trendy Marfa, Texas, is making the experience of sleeping under the desert stars possible nearby at El Cosmico, an 18-acre site that she's dotted with trailers, yurts, and a tepee.
Annie Block -- Interior Design, 6/1/2010 12:00:00 AM
Liz Lambert loves sleeping under the desert stars, and she thinks many others would, too. A former owner of the Thunderbird hotel, her first project in trendy Marfa, Texas, she's making the experience possible nearby at El Cosmico, an 18-acre site that she's dotted with trailers, yurts, and a tepee. "I die for trailers from the '50's and the '60's," she says. To share that passion, she turned to Lake/Flato Architects partner Robert Harris, who collaborated on the Thunderbird, and Design Build Adventure principal Jack Sanders. All three are proud Texans and champions of sustainability.
Harris, a U.S. Green Building Council national board member, was in charge of the site plan. Eventually, there may be as many as 20 trailers organized in concentric rings around a man-made pool, which will provide natural cooling as the water evaporates. (There are five vintage trailers currently, with three more to arrive later this year.) Harris also helped set up the solar-powered hot-water systems for the lobby pavilion and the two bathhouses.
Those buildings are primarily the work of Sanders, who studied architecture under the late Samuel Mockbee of the Rural Studio. "Marfa is a remote site with limited resources," Sanders says. "Everything had to be designed around what's available." That meant cutting up fallen telephone poles to make campsite benches, hitting ranch-supply stores for recycled steel pipe for trellises, and busting up sidewalks and driveways to yield concrete for steps and outdoor showers. Yes, guests can bathe under the stars, too. -Annie Block
Photography by Eric Ryan Anderson.
LUMOS SOLAR: SOLAR PANELS (BATHHOUSE).
ABET: COUNTER SURFACING (TRAILER).
FLOS THROUGH CONRAN SHOP: PENDANT FIXTURE.
TESOROS TRADING CO.: TABLE, SIDE CHAIR, RUG, BLANKET.
HOMESTEAD AND FRIENDS: TROPHY.
JAMES THOMPSON & CO.: CURTAIN FABRIC.
CONGOLEUM CORPORATION: FLOOR TILE.
JELINEK GROUP: FLOORING.
QUENTIN HUGHES LIGHTING: LIGHTING CONSULTANT.
MARK WORD DESIGN: LANDSCAPING CONSULTANT.
URBAN DESIGN GROUP: CIVIL ENGINEER.
JDOE MARFA PARTS & LABOR: GENERAL CONTRACTOR.