Architect A. Quincy Jones designed the winter home of Walter and Leonore Annenberg between 1963 and 1966. The 25,000-square-foot residence is an example of California Midcentury Modern architecture. Interior furnishings were designed in the Hollywood Regency style by William Haines. Jones and landscape architect Emmet Wemple provided initial designs for the park-like grounds while premier golf-course designer Dick Wilson refined the layout of the golf course on the 200-acre estate.
Sunnylands is an example of Midcentury Modern architecture. It integrates the inside with the outside using wide expanses of glass. Known for its pyramidal roof, the pink color of the tiles reflects the light on the surrounding mountains at sunrise and sunset. Lava stone walls in the atrium provided a textured background for the over 50 Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings collected by the Annenbergs. The open floorplan with its partial walls and coffered ceiling focuses attention on the relationship of art to nature within the residence.
A first visit to Sunnylands should begin with time spent at Sunnylands Center & Gardens, the access point and visitor center for the house. Here the film 'A Place Called Sunnylands' puts the house into its historical perspective. On view are exhibitions taken from the collections or archives. One of the interactive kiosks is dedicated to an understanding of modern architecture. Tours of the house must be booked online. Approximately 1,000 tickets are released on the 1st and 15th of each month at 9 am PST. Guests are advised to be online at exactly 9 am.
Inside Iconic Houses
Join Janice Lyle, Director Emerita of Sunnylands Center & Gardens, on a tour of Walter and Leonore Annenberg's winter home in Rancho Mirage.
You can stream the tour via the webshop.