One parcel of land that was once intended to become an 18-hole California desert golf course is slowly becoming a community of 1,150 homes. The neighborhood – or “agrihood,” as it’s marketed – is set on the edge of Palm Springs. The amenities offered by the community include a coffee shop and a full-service bar, as well as a gym, yoga studios, bocce courts, and spa.
If that isn’t enough, 70 acres of the old golf greens are being transformed into a working olive grove, which will be harvested and turned into olive oil. (That’s where the “agrihood”Designation comes from.
Walking trails have been created from the old golf cart routes that run through the olive groves, desert landscape.
“Not everything survives 120-degree heat in the summer,”Brad Shuckhart, who was in charge of Miralon’s development and construction, said so. “Olives are a pretty hardy plant. They grow well in the Middle East, they also grow well in in the desert in California, and they’re not big water users.”
Shuckhart said that entry costs are the cost of a home in new construction. These homes range in price from approximately $700,000.00 to $1.2million. There are both single-family and condominium units.
This community was a long-term dream. Shuckhart stated that it was originally intended to be a community with nearby homes. After the completion of the golf course, however, 2008 saw the financial crash.
“It was go-go times and then 2007, 2008 just basically stopped everything, including this development,”Shuckhart. “When we bought the site, all of the landscaping had fallen into a state of disrepair. The infrastructure that had been previously installed needed to be significantly reworked or repaired, just because the passage of time and vandalism and things like that.”
More than a decade later, the work resumed, but with a different vision, more fit for today’s buyers. All the new buildings were inspired by midcentury modern design, instead of an eclectic mix of Spanish and Italian-inspired homes.
The golf course was ditched – “The desert is chock-full of golf courses, we didn’t see a need for another,” said Shuckhart – in favor of something that would put all that hypothetical water use to “literally bear fruit”Residents
Mindful water use is key to life in the desert, as is using the location’s most abundant natural resource: sunlight. All homes have solar panels on the roof, and there’s a large solar array in the community that helps offset the massive community center’s energy use, Shuckhart said.
The whole package has been an attractive offer so far for the more classic Palm Springs demographic – i.e. retirees – but also people inspired to leave the city since the pandemic, like growing families, Shuckhart said.
The community is also growing. So far, there have been around 100 homes; 70-80 of these are occupied. Shuckhart said it’ll be another six or seven years before the final home at Miralon is sold.
“We were just given a sizable blank canvas, and I think we’ve come up with something that has been appealing thus far to our residents and people are excited about it.”