Best Underground House - 2011
Earth House, Cosanti
Most people who want a glimpse into futurist Paolo Soleri's vision hoof it north an hour to his Arcosanti, when a good feel for the guy is available right here in town.
Soleri lived and worked in Paradise Valley from the 1950s on (not far from Taliesin West, where he studied). Today, his disciples are still hard at work, casting the bells that fuel his now-obviously futile passions.
Located on the grounds of Cosanti, the "Earth House" is billed as the "original underground house." We're not so sure about that (what about the cavemen?) — but we do know the partially submerged building is considered a fine example of underground house construction in the Valley. Built in the mid-'50s, it looks a lot like the Flintstones' house — but with lower A/C bills.
To see more photos of the Earth House, visit www.phoenixnewtimes.com/bestof2011.