Ex-Banana Republic Executive’s Latest Design: A $12 Million Joshua Tree House


Buyers of this California spec home won’t have to pack much for stays in the build home. Designed by a former fashion executive, the home’s $12 million prize includes astronaut-inspired clothing for residents to wear.

The Joshua Tree property was designed by Omar Nobil, former vice president of women’s design at Banana Republic, and his fiancée, Erika Stahlman, who runs an eponymous design firm. Plans call for a three-bedroom concrete house of about 3,200 square feet, with a guest house and an eco-friendly mineral water pool.

Omar Nobil and Erika Stahlman in 2021.


Located in the desert north of Joshua Tree National Park, the main house will be a cylindrical shape with two 180-foot-long windows, Ms Stahlman said. The interior will have a concrete kitchen counter, a built-in concrete and glass dining table, and a gray and plush media room.

In the master bedroom, a dressing room will be filled with 21 outfits custom-designed for the shopper by Mr Nobil and Ms Stahlman, with some pieces created by London-based bespoke tailor Kathryn Sargent. From jumpsuits to metallic swimsuits, astronaut clothing is meant to induce “an exploratory mindset” and create an immersive experience, Nobil explained. Putting on the clothes “makes you feel attached to the feelings that we’re trying to create,” he said. “You will immediately feel more removed from everyday reality and engage in the experience of being there.”

The partially underground two-bedroom guesthouse is outfitted in the same futuristic clothing line, Mr. Nobil said.

Mr. Nobil and Ms. Stahlman have renovated two homes together in the past, but this is their first building project together. They purchased the approximately 3 acre lot for $85,000 in February 2021.

The house comes with custom-designed clothing to induce an “exploratory mindset.”


“The healing energy of the desert is unmistakable,” Ms. Stahlman said.

They chose concrete as the primary building material for its aesthetics and durability, she said. Construction costs are expected to total about $10.24 million, they said.

The pool uses minerals like sodium chloride, magnesium chloride and borates instead of chlorine to reduce environmental impact. The land, which offers mountain views, will have minimal landscaping. “It’s important not to affect the environment and let the flora and fauna be,” Ms Stahlman said. “We want to observe and experience life with the nature that is naturally there.”

The asking price also includes a customized Land Rover with an electric motor, and the house will have two electric car charging stations. Mr. Nobil said the property, which will have Onyx solar panels, will generate $11,000 of solar energy per year.

Construction will begin after finding a buyer and will take about 12 to 15 months, Nobil said.

Mr. Nobil worked at Banana Republic for nearly 15 years before leaving to work full-time on development projects with Ms. Stahlman.

The property is being sold off the market, Ms Stahlman said, but realtors Katharina Trappe of Keller Williams NYC and Benjamin Teper of The Agency will help market it.


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