Indio, California: The Motorcoach Country Club scheduled a second open house - Lots of Dreams - today. As owners build-out their "campsites", the contractors (and the proud owners) want to show-off their designs, so once or twice a season, everyone gets to traipse through and see what amazing new ideas people have woven into their lots at the resort. There were 11 lots to visit this afternoon.
Building regulations constantly change. When the resort first opened, shade structures were required to be just that - ramadas - a shady area built with four corner posts and 2x2 slatted roofs. Years later, owners are now building (basically) houses. Three years ago, our build-out was one of the very first to have one solid wall. Now owners are using sliding/folding glass doors as walls and installing air conditioning. Furniture has transformed from outdoor/patio furniture to residential - upholstered sofas and leather chairs.
Today I will post a ton of photos, with captions and will place a horizontal line between different "campsites" so you won't get confused. After a while, they all become a blur and don't forget, every owner was pouring wine!
This is an "over-sized" lot (like ours). Larger lots can have up to 600 square feet of covered area.
Beautiful interior with residential furniture and cabinetry
Plenty of food for visitors
Our friend, Bill, inspecting the outdoor kitchen
This lot is a normal-sized lot, with a fantastic view of the mountains, golf course and lake. They can enjoy gorgeous sunsets every night. A typical lot can have 400 square feet of covered area.I especially love the stonework on this casita - and their wine rack
More food - wraps are the thing today
Dave, Crystal and Brent admiring the living area, and view over the pool and spa to the golf course and lake
Clever! Instead of having their fireplace bump-out to conceal a pop-up television, this owner installed a drop-down television.
Our next stop was to a "privacy" lot - meaning a back-in site with most of the property behind the bus. These lots run around the perimeter of the RV resort and are very popular with people with pets or owners who want lawn or a larger pool on their site.
Kitchen - more food for visitors
Pounded copper sink? Nice.
More clever television hiding tactics: the panel behind the painting opens up and spins around to reveal a big screen TV on the back.
Brent and Rick enjoy an adult beverage
Storm clouds were brewing and the wind was howling as we entered the next privacy lot on our tourAs you enter the site, they have a water feature, a beautiful olive tree and a table with outdoor fireplace. No wraps here - they were serving Chinese noodles and potstickers from tiny individual take-out boxes. Cute!
Beautiful living area
Dining area with wine bottle chandeliers - note the woven tile wall on the left.
Up against the back wall, they have created a little oasis. A dining area on one side with a grill, a water feature - with a fire wall on the top, of course. Beautiful at night! The lawn is artificial - very common in this part of the world. No need to mow, but the true beauty is no need to water. This is a desert, after all.
Mid-way through our tour, we stopped to pose with our MCC posse:
DT, Bill, Tom, me, Rick, Colleen, Crystal & Brent
And we ran into Captain Jim and Mary - with friends who had flown-in for a quick visit.
And now for something completely different - a waterfront lot, facing the canal,
everything inside is light, bright and modern
Where most casitas feature dark wood cabinetry, these owners opted for shiny IKEA overhead cabinets.
Love the grey tile and stainless combo
They also chose to place a massive window instead of closing-off the wall. They have a view into a green space next to one of the auxiliary buildings housing a pool, spa, bathhouse and laundry center.
An outdoor kitchen as wellAnd, even though there is a swimming pool next door, they added a huge infinity pool overlooking the lake and their boat dock.
Another privacy lot, but the owners situated their casita sideways
Which left them plenty of room for a pool and spa
Great stone fireplace and, again, residential furniture
I wonder if there is any granite left on the planet after touring through these beautiful casitas. Splendid!
This concludes our tour. Please exit through the front of the bus and don't forget to tip your driver. We returned to our simple, plain (hose-off-able) casita so I could prepare a complicated recipe for our Oscar Night Dinner for Two. I rarely attempt complicated recipes, but the photo of a tart from Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi looked too yummy to pass up. (Lisa gave me her copy of the cookbook because she felt many of the recipes required too many steps and have too many ingredients for a busy young mother to attempt - and she is an accomplished cook. I am going to try a few of his recipes and decide for myself.)
Even I will admit, my finished version looked as good as the photo in the cookbook... but... so... many... steps: First I had to line a tart pan with puff pastry and par-bake it with pie weights (oh, wait, first I had to order pie weights from amazon.com because who has pie weights in their RV???... and no, I don't like to use/waste dried beans as pie weights because they just don't weigh enough... and now I am that lady with pie weights in her RV kitchen).Next I had to peel three heads of garlic. Ended up with 47 cloves. The cloves had to be poached in water, drained, sauteed in olive oil and poached again. Then balsamic vinegar, a dash of sugar and herbs are added and simmered until all the liquid evaporates and the garlic cloves are caramelized and dark.Next step on my culinary trek? Two different goat cheeses were sprinkled over the bottom of the tart shell, the garlic cloves scattered over the cheese and then a custard base of eggs, cream and creme fraiche was poured over - and baked until set and golden. I served the tart with a romaine and tomato salad. DT felt it was too rich - and it was very rich. Maybe I would make it again as bite-sized appetizers? The garlic could be caramelized a day or so before.
If you would like to attempt this dish, the recipe was posted several years ago on Martha Stewart's website. Good Luck.
We were about 45 minutes into the Oscars, when our DirecTV went out. Nothing. I tried every trick in my book but our receiver would not power up. Finally a total reboot was required. Apparently we missed some sort of LEGO dance and song routine before all was right with the world again.
As we headed for bed after the presentations, it started to rain! It rained hard for several hours. Yeah! The desert always loves rain and southern California is suffering through such a serious drought and even artificial lawn needs a good cleaning now and again.
Until my next update, I remain, your vampire-free correspondent.
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Lots of Dreams in January 2015
RV PARK: The Motorcoach Country Club