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We were honored to have helped broker the sale of the Boulder House in 2005 for $ 4.8 million.  While we no longer offer it for sale, we are presenting the amazing history of the structure for your enjoyment.  The Rare and Unique Boulder House in North Scottsdale,  with the site and petroglyphs on the National Register of Historic Places sits on almost 9 acres of unspoiled desert. Its been  called ''The most Original Home in America'' by author Stanley Marcus in the book "Quest for the Best!   It was also included in "The Home Book" of greatest world-wide home designs which includes "Falling Waters" and the "Vanderbilt"! The World renowned Boulder House-one of the only Arizona Architectural Digest Cover Homes, designed by Charles Johnson  has been featured in over 30 publications and international TV including The Discovery Channel and Fox Network. This residence is integrated into a massive outcropping of granite boulders that make up over 60% of the structure.  It's located right in the middle of North Scottsdale, near the Boulders Resort, and surrounded by the famous and exclusive Whisper Rock golf course on two sides.
See a video tour  on here:   Video Tour of the Boulder House
Typical Media coverage: Story    The Business Journal   Australian Media 
Fox News spent 9 hours on scene, preparing a feature for the 3rd season of "The Property Man with Bob Massi" on Fox Business Channel. Watch it: Boulder House on Fox


The astonishing Boulder House is just south of the World-famous Boulders Resort. Constructed by the Empie family in the early 1980's when they answered an advertisement that said "who wants to buy my beautiful pile of rocks?" Noted architect Charles Johnson got busy designing a residence like no other, incorporating the huge boulders into the structure and grounds.
The land has additional open space on several sides, bordered by the Whisper Rock Golf Course (below)


When the Empie family purchased the "pile of rocks" property, the architect, Charle Johnson told them not to build a home around or in the rocks, as the boulders were so imposing, there was no design he could come up with, that would be more imposing, and he suggested making the rocks the house! The 95-foot-wide wall is a jaw-dropping sight as you approach the residence!

 The site was used an ancient encampment for many of the Native American tribes. Certain aspects of the rocks were used as a calendar.  In the main living area, on the Spring and Fall equinoxes, a beam of light travels across the room and hits an ancient spiral calendar chiseled into the rocks! (scroll down for rare Vernal Equinox photos!)
Photo below left,  medicine wheel on the property. The original owners placed quartz rocks found in the area, in this geometric labryinth shape.

A large portion of the home has exterior walls consisting of the natural boulder rocks, in a fascinating display of geology.  It's the Ultimate Green Home!
(below left) A Masterpiece of engineering.  The path to the upstairs master (right) Dining area with the Great Room beyond

The ancients used the site as an observatory/calendar and there are a number of locations around the property that react to the solstice and equinox position of the sun.  One of the most dramatic, is the  Boulder House rare equinox beam seen during the Spring and Autumnal Equinox!  A slot in the rocks shoots a beam across the house to hit the wall on the other side.  Cameras were just set up this year to capture the event, as the equinox beam appeared around 5:45 pm on the Vernal Equinox.  An arrow, below left, points to the slot.


Area around The Boulder House, shown from Ashler Hills Road to the Whisper Rock Golf Course The property is on 8.99 acres with a square-shaped parcel

Media Highlights of The Boulder House!
Cover, Architectural Digest           Arizona Highways          The Discovery Channel     Chicago Tribune 
The House Book    showcasing the greatest homes ever built in the World. The Boulder House is included with Frank Lloyd Wright's "Falling Waters"  and also the Vanderbilt in North Carolina.

Quest for the Best-Stanley Marcus  which described  it "The  Most Unique Home in America"        
Fine Homebuilding Magazine

Minding a Sacred Place    An entire volume telling the story of the home, by the  builders.  Please click on the book for ordering information. This is the definitive history of the home and it's construction and engineering.
The Natural House,  by David Pearson     Town and Country Magazine      Santa Fe Style

Japanese TV   Canadian Broadcasting   British Broadcasting    German TV     Switzerland National TV
The Arizona Republic        Featured in a Japanese Seiko commercial      Marie Claire-Paris   Fox10 News "Cool House" with Diane Ryan.  Please click on the photo on the left to see this historic tour, one of the last to allow TV cameras in the home!

Poured  concrete  with integral color makes the unusual flooring in the home, wrapping around the natural Precambrian granite boulders.  This is the ultimate in Green Homes, using viga poles across the ceiling, and natural substances whenever possible. The architecture borrows from Native American cliff dwelling designs, a true indigenous type of building, and in fact, the only style of architecture that America gave to the world!

(above left) A creative bit of engineering made a path to the Master Suite. (right) The front entrance door, seen at dusk, with curved glass and shape, fitted into a gap in the boulders, for a dramatic front entry. (also below left) Seen from the outside. (below, right) Rising like "Ayers Rock" in Australia, the Boulder House rises from the Upper Sonoran desert, described by National Geographic as "the most beautiful desert in the world."  The desert surrounding the monolithic home is untouched and in natural state.

(above left) Additional structures integrated into the rocks include the Master Suite with private patio
(above right) Afternoon view of Carefree's Black Mountain, from the Boulder House Great Room
(photos below) The Boulder House kitchen, with double Dacor built-in ovens, range with hood, super-wide stainless fridge and island. The  kitchen is  conveniently located as part of the Great Room.


Photos below, Close up area of the expert scribing of the glass to the natural boulders. (right) The edge of a butterfly shaped rock integrated into the wall of the structure.

(above left) The Master Bath with  hand-tiled deep jetted tub/shower combination. And the whimsical-shaped door that leads to the upstairs view patio with vistas of city lights and mountains to the South
Below, left, Master bath and on the right, Master Suite with a fireplace that "morphs" out of the rocks!

Guest Bedroom with private patio entrance.  Adjacent to the bed is a natural fireplace.  Scorch marks on the left are preserved from ancient Native American encampments and their actual fires on the site!
Below, two other angles of the guest suites

Below, outdoor pato with views to the South, and below that, a most unusual BBQ area!

Above and below   Furniture placement in the home was easy because of all the open space.  The conversation area above is in front of the massive fireplace.  Below, note the dining area by the kiva fireplace.  The kitchen is around the corner. Guest rooms and the library are off to the right

above left-Looking toward the West. Note the slit in the rocks that produces the Solstice beam across the floor.  (above right),  one of 20 "vulvaforms" identifiied on the property and certainly the largest, at 8 feet high, four feet wide and several feet deep. Ancient rock art that depicts female genitalia is very common and early examples in Europe date back 37,000 years.  This symbol was verified by Ken Hedges, curator of the San Diego Museum of Man.  Carved by the ancients, in the shape of female genitalia, to honor "Mother Earth", or to symbolize fertility rites, some of the forms have a line from the bottom going into the ground. 

Rising out of Upper Sonoran Desert in North Scottsdale, resembling "Ayers Rock" in Australia, The Boulder House remains an iconic marvel of engineering and a reverence for the preservation of this rare desert region.  We no longer offer The Boulder House for sale.  It is privately owned and no tresspassing is allowed.  Thank you.   Video Tour of the Boulder House
Fox News national story, airing on "The Property Man with Bob Massi"  Boulder House on Fox