The Futuro House was conceived by Matti Suuronen in 1968 as a "portable" ski chalet. It is an iconic piece of architecture and this site is devoted to documenting the history of the Futuro and the current status and whereabouts of the remaining examples.
There are many photographs of Futuros in the snow but this one is a little unusual. Christmas time in the California dessert actually brought snow as can be seen in this 122619 photo from owner area_fiftyfive. Having lived in Arizona for a while we know this is a somewhat rare event and it makes for a rather cool photo.
Owner Ron recently posted this awesome two-part version of his "Futuro Journey" via his @area_fiftyfive Instagram account and a couple of Instagram "stories". It is fascinating to follow Ron's long journey from purchase through the launch of his awesome Futuro Airbnb in October 2019.
For anyone (including ourselves) who has dreams of owning a Futuro take a look and take note; this is not a journey for "the faint of heart"!
Moving on and changing the subject a little it is not unusual for Futuros to feature in music videos and Joshua Tree has now "joined the club". American singer, songwriter, and record producer Eric Bellinger's official video for the track Tapped In (from the album "Saved By The Bellinger") features the Joshua Tree Futuro several times during the course of the video. The video was posted to Youtube 110219.
If you ever wanted the chance to really experience "Futuro living" now is your chance. After months of hard work by owner Ronald and his team the Joshua Tree Futuro has now been launched as an Airbnb; to make your booking check out the listing here.
To celebrate the launch @area_fiftyfive added several items to their Instagram feed. The photos below show "what you would be getting" if you decide to take advantage of this opportunity to stay in a Futuro. We have to say she looks awesome. These photos, with the exception of the last one, were posted to Instagram 102519. The last photo is one of the set that accompanies the Airbnb listing; it gives a nice wider view showing a little of the location on which the Futuro sits and the other facilities available when you rent the property. Going to have to figure out when to take a trip to California ourselves.
These last two items were also posted to Instagram by @area_fiftyfive; the first item is an interesting little bit of video footage. The second uses an interesting technique we have seen a few times for Instagram posts which involves taking a photo, splitting it into multiple photos and then posting them to Instagram in the right sequence so that in the timeline they appear as a larger "mosaic" style photo. Once posted the "mosaic" is only visible correctly at certain times as it depends on how many posts follow. The photo below was taken from the desktop Instagram feed right after the photos were posted.
This awesome shot capturing this Futuro out in the dessert in a storm was captured by urbex_offlimits on 090419. The original photo can be found on Instagram here.
The advent of drones over the last several years and the footage they capture has provided many unique views not previously possible.
On a visit to Joshua Tree 071619 doclt captured some great footage of this Futuro using a drone (and along the way provided us with the dichotomous message seen above left).
The first two videos below were part of doclt's Instagram story, the third was a regular Instagram post that frankly makes our heads explode (though we do have to confess the effect is cool). The footage was shot using a technique known as "dolly zoom" which Wikipedia describes as an:
"effect achieved by zooming a zoom lens to adjust the angle of view (often referred to as field of view, or FOV) while the camera dollies (moves) toward or away from the subject in such a way as to keep the subject the same size in the frame throughout. In its classic form, the camera angle is pulled away from a subject while the lens zooms in, or vice versa. Thus, during the zoom, there is a continuous perspective distortion, the most directly noticeable feature being that the background appears to change size relative to the subject."
The effect is very apparent in doclt's footage. Thanks for the interesting and unique footage doclt!
The photo provides a great view of the "spiral galaxy motif" created by the careful layout of the rocks around the Futuro. We were previously completely unaware of this detail; it was never apparent in the ground level photos we had previously seen. On another completely different (and perhaps somewhat random note) we cannot help but be reminded of an M&M when we look at this photo.
This video, showing the opening of automated door now installed in this Futuro, was posted to Instagram 060919 by area_fiftyfive.
And; speaking of doors, we received this series of photos recently from Damien Downer (thanks Damien) illustrating the current condition (061219) of the shell segments of the second Joshua Tree Futuro. While the owner retrieved the door from Media and installed it in the first Futuro in Joshua Tree as we just saw in the video above, he has not yet had the chance to get the bulk of the Media Futuro moved. Looks like once he does that unit is going to be one heck of a restoration/reconstruction project.
It is always fun to track a Futuro restoration project as it progresses. This Futuro now has a snazzy new look as can be seen in these photos posted to Instagram by photolindsey_, area_fiftyfive, and swabyjustin. They were posted 042819, 043019 and 050619 respectively. The original photos can be found on Instagram here, here and here.
We particularly like the first of the three; seems like a really well composed photo. The second was accompanied by this comment "*First load*Landscaping with some Moon Rocks". We think she is coming along really well and we will definitely have to plan a trip from Texas to CA in the future to check it out for ourselves.
A Futuro in a new location always seems to generate a lot of local interest and a slew of photos on various web pages and social media platforms. The photos below are a few of our favorites of this Futuro; they are all from Instagram and by (top to bottom):
The owner also continues to post interesting content to his Instagram feed that allows us to follow the progress of the refurbishment project. The two videos below make a "call out" to artists that might be interested in creating a mural in the interior of the Futuro and give us a glimpse of the progress made in mounting and making functional the door and its mechanism.
Things are coming along nicely in Joshua Tree. The one time Rockland Futuro is now assembled in the high desert and, thanks to an Instagram Story from the owner on 030519 we now able to catch a glimpse of the Futuro in its new home as well as get a look at a little of the process of reassembly. Also, in the IG story we learn that the Futuro will in time be available for rent as the owner creates a "retreat". Very exciting - sign us up!
Some screenshots from the IG Story along with some of the videos that made up the story can be found below. Great to see how things are going.
We also chatted briefly with the owner the other day and he tells us his next activity will be to have some fiberglass work done to deal with the current non standard entrance which has the entrance elongated vertically such that it is actually merged with the window above it. Work will be done to recreate the standard configuration and then install the door from the Media Futuro.
Original Information 123118
We recently chatted with the owner, newly the proud owner of not one, but two, Futuro Houses; the ones previously located in Media and Rockland
The original plan was to purchase a Futuro and locate it on a 5 acre plot in the vicinity of Joshua Tree, California and the prospective owner was in discusssion with Doug Flahaut to purchase the Rockland Futuro but it looked like that was not going to happen so he diverted his attention to the Media Futuro. Obviously that one was going to take considerably more work to restore but this was "a man on a mission". Ultimately the sale of the Media Futuro went through and the new owner starting working with local folks to dismantle the Futuro ready for removal.
The day after the Media sale closed the buyer heard that the Rockland sale was again a possibility and in the end that sale went through also.
As of the time of writing the Rockland Futuro is already in Joshua Tree and the new owner expects it to be installed on site by mid January 2019. The Media Futuro will shortly be moved to CA and placed in storage prior to a restoration project which is expected to take somewhere between 6 and 12 months and possibly even longer.
Our congratulations to the new owner (a little "green" here); looking forward to seeing how things move along with your new Futuros.
There are no images yet available of either of the Joshua Tree Futuros in their new location of which we are aware. Photographs and historical information on the two units at their previous locations can be found on the Media and Rockland pages.