PILGRIM HOUSE

Marfa, Texas
Location
  • Marfa, Texas
  • Structure
  • House (Single Residence)
  • Type
  • Modern
  • Year
  • 1900
  • Square Feet
  • 1350
  • Lot Size
  • .48 acres
  • Bedrooms
  • 2
  • Full Baths
  • 2
  • Pilgrim House began as the home of Jim, a journalist turned Episcopal priest, and his wife, Andi, a writer and artist. The couple came from Northern New Mexico to Far West Texas in 2013, when Jim was called to be the vicar of St. Paul's, the historic Episcopal church in Marfa.

    At that time, the parish did not have a dwelling for its priest. After moving three times in less than two years, the couple finally purchased a 1,350-square-foot prairie-style adobe home that, ironically, featured typical New Mexico architectural tropes: corbels, dark wood beams, a log post in the middle of the kitchen, and cloud-shaped pony walls.

    The couple had the building's four rooms and two bathrooms gutted to create a sanctuary. Subtle touchstones allude to the work of late-20th-century artists: faux Carrera marble tile in the kitchen is a nod to the surfaces of Richard Artschwager's early sculpture; plaster-and-concrete bathroom walls and floors refer to the materials favored by Donald Judd, the master thinker and doer whose installation-driven museum, the Chinati Foundation, annually draws upward of 40,000 visitors from all over the world to remote Marfa.

    Contemporary artisanal fixtures and mid-century designs live side by side with antiques, some of which were originally housed at family farm in Ontario, Canada.

    Jim is not the first cleric to live in the house. As it happens, the home has had several clergy as residents, among them a cowboy pastor who implemented the Santa Fe-style renovation in the 1970s. The oldest portion of the house dates back roughly 100 years.

    The remodel in late 2014 had yet to be completed when Jim was called to be the associate rector of a church in Santa Fe. The couple, who had never had a chance to spend even one night in the house, relocated back to New Mexico and leased the Marfa house as a long-term rental for two years.

    In the spring of 2017, Jim and Andi reclaimed the home and readied it as a short-term vacation rental so they could enjoy it several times a year.

    "We imagined it as a pause on the pilgrim's way — a refuge for the many visitors who come to Marfa seeking its peace, silence, and beauty," said Jim.

    Despite the cactus, dusty roads, mountains, desert wildlife, and aridity, the place has a "beachy feel" — a perception that the couple wanted to emphasize. The interior walls are painted ultra-flat bright white, and light diffuses through translucent white shades.

    Windows and the front porch yield views of the ranch established by the one of the town's early settlers. Pilgrim House is a storied home in a storied town. High on a plateau in the Chihuahuan Desert, you feel like you've arrived on an island in an ancient inland sea.

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    Modern home with bedroom, bed, wall lighting, and light hardwood floor. high-country breezes in the master bedroom; French doors open to ranch land views Photo  of PILGRIM HOUSE

    high-country breezes in the master bedroom; French doors open to ranch land views

    Modern home with bedroom, bed, dresser, chair, pendant lighting, and light hardwood floor. heirloom mahogany chest; vintage painted chair; Baby & Child linen chandelier to complement linen bedding and towels Photo 2 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    heirloom mahogany chest; vintage painted chair; Baby & Child linen chandelier to complement linen bedding and towels

    Modern home with living room, light hardwood floor, and bench. living room Photo 3 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    living room

    Modern home with living room, console tables, and light hardwood floor. living room Photo 4 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    living room

    Modern home with table, outdoor, and large patio, porch, deck. weathered table from Mexico, Choisy Le Roi dishes, LinenMe napkins, espresso cups by Bennington Potters Photo 5 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    weathered table from Mexico, Choisy Le Roi dishes, LinenMe napkins, espresso cups by Bennington Potters

    Modern home with bath room, concrete counter, concrete floor, vessel sink, and concrete wall. custom vanity Photo 6 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    custom vanity

    Modern home with kitchen, tile counter, white cabinet, pendant lighting, ceramic tile floor, range, and ceramic tile backsplashe. Bertazzoni stove, ranch shelves, mid-century side table, Daltile Florentine Carrara porcelain backsplash Photo 7 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    Bertazzoni stove, ranch shelves, mid-century side table, Daltile Florentine Carrara porcelain backsplash

    Modern home with doors, exterior, and wood. front door in Picture Gallery Red, by Farrow & Ball Photo 8 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    front door in Picture Gallery Red, by Farrow & Ball

    Modern home with kitchen, ceramic tile floor, and pendant lighting. eat-in kitchen; drapery fashioned of queen-size percale sheets, custom copper tube rod Photo 9 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    eat-in kitchen; drapery fashioned of queen-size percale sheets, custom copper tube rod

    Modern home with doors, exterior, and wood. front view, Pilgrim House Photo 10 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    front view, Pilgrim House

    Modern home with kitchen, tile counter, white cabinet, pendant lighting, drop in sink, and porcelain tile backsplashe. Hangout Lighting pendants; Grohe faucet, Kohler sink, and saltillo tile counters continue the scheme of black, white, and sun-faded earth tones throughout the house Photo 11 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    Hangout Lighting pendants; Grohe faucet, Kohler sink, and saltillo tile counters continue the scheme of black, white, and sun-faded earth tones throughout the house

    Modern home with dining room and table. Kitchen table doubles as work space Photo 12 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    Kitchen table doubles as work space

    Modern home with kitchen, tile counter, and porcelain tile backsplashe. kitchen window with view of the well house Photo 13 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    kitchen window with view of the well house

    Modern home with bath room, freestanding tub, ceramic tile floor, and porcelain tile wall. Footed tub, the base of which is painted Railings by Farrow & Ball; Smedbo Air towel hooks in foreground Photo 14 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    Footed tub, the base of which is painted Railings by Farrow & Ball; Smedbo Air towel hooks in foreground

    Modern home with living room, chair, console tables, table lighting, and light hardwood floor. entry in living room; Blu Dot by Target console; heirloom copper and wrought-iron lamp Photo 15 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    entry in living room; Blu Dot by Target console; heirloom copper and wrought-iron lamp

    Modern home with bath room, concrete counter, concrete floor, wall lighting, vessel sink, and concrete wall. view into master bath; custom vanity; heirloom mirror; light pine floors Photo 16 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    view into master bath; custom vanity; heirloom mirror; light pine floors

    Modern home with storage room and closet storage type. walk-in closet in master bedroom with heirloom vanity and bench Photo 17 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    walk-in closet in master bedroom with heirloom vanity and bench

    Modern home with outdoor, front yard, desert, large patio, porch, deck, hanging lighting, shrubs, and concrete patio, porch, deck. Indoor-outdoor living Photo 18 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    Indoor-outdoor living

    Modern home with bedroom, bed, wall lighting, and shelves. custom-fabricated spruce headboard by Austin McLure Photo 19 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    custom-fabricated spruce headboard by Austin McLure

    Modern home with bath room, concrete counter, concrete floor, vessel sink, wall lighting, ceiling lighting, and concrete wall. master bath, custom vanity, heirloom mirror, LinenMe towel, artisanal fixtures Photo 20 of PILGRIM HOUSE

    master bath, custom vanity, heirloom mirror, LinenMe towel, artisanal fixtures