borrego modern


It is not clear, whether the initial Master and Clubhouse plans are the result of Cody's work or Zerbe, or possibly both to some extent. According to the Borrego Sun, the first clubhouse was designed and built by another local designer and builder, Hal Martinez. 9 In 1961 Zerbe produces a revised Clubhouse design that expands upon the existing building, the contract announced in the December Borrego Sun:
"(George J.) Kuhrts said the plans for the project, drawn by Dick Zerbe, are in accordance with future plans for overall development of the clubhouse area, and the new structure will become part of the future complete clubhouse." 10

9 Borrego Sun, December, 1956
10 Borrego Sun, December, 1956

Additional changes are made to the land use plan, in an effort to create additional saleable units in the 33 acres near the Clubhouse and driving range. As reported in the Borrego Sun's "de Anza Divots" column:

"De Anza Desert Country Club will have a new, enlarged, beautiful look under an improvement plan tentatively approved by Directors of the Borrego Valley Golf & Improvement Co. the
Group which developed the picturesque golf course. The land use plan for 33 acres in the clubhouse area was Prepared by Richard M. Zerbe, Julian architect. Tentative
approval was given subject to some suggested changes and final approval must be given by the BVG&I stockholders." 11

While the "improvement plan" offered additional developable lots, the project overall carried a deficit of nearly a $250,000, which probably resulted in it not moving forward. The additional land near the driving range remained vacant until the 1990's when it was developed as Desert Shadows.


11 Borrego Sun, March, 1962

Zerbe was in many ways a renaissance designer. His work for Borrego Valley Golf and Improvement included the first logo for de Anza Country Club, in use from about 1955 to the mid 1980's. 12

In addition to work for Kuhrts and Borrego Valley Golf and Improvement Association, Zerbe designed a number of homes on the course for individual clients:

Cosgrove Residence (1956)


Zerbe offered a brief narrative for some of his plans. Of this home built at de Anza Desert Country Club he wrote:

"Good example of integrating floor plan with characteristics of site. Low profile suits desert. Floor plan provides good privacy to sleeping wing. Deep cantilevered roof overhangs provide protection from desert sun. Designed as a desert vacation house for a married retired insurance executive with one grown stepson." 13
12 Review of de Anza Divots, de Anza Country Club Newsletter and Zerbe Archive
13 Zerbe Architectural Records
Sach Residence (1960)
Designed for original owners Mr. & Mrs. Denis Sach, this house has an unusual undulating roofline and features an indoor pool. Originally one bedroom, an additional guest quarters has been added just off the pool. The house maintains many of its original features, including vintage Youngstown kitchen cabinetry and fireplace.


Petit Residence (1963) - De Anza Country Club
This is one of 3 homes that Zerbe would design for Dr. Mary Petit, a gynecologist and professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania who is considered a pioneering woman in medicine in the field of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Two homes, including this one, were in Borrego Springs, the third in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.