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Private Retreat in Paradise, 22-Acre Park & Wildlife Sanctuary

Pioneertown, CA, USA
  • House
  • Bedrooms2
  • Sleeps5
  • Bathrooms1
  • Half Baths0
  • Minimum Stay2 nights

House, 1 Bedroom - queen + 1 Convert. queen + 1 single ,1 Bath, Sleeps up to 5*

At 4,400 feet, the undiscovered gem called PIPES CANYON VALLEY, just a stone's throw from historic PIONEERTOWN, is a refuge of serenity nestled at the foothills of the BIG BEAR MOUNTAINS adjoining 33,000 acres of WILDLANDS CONSERVANCY. Our gorgeous solar and wind-powered Southwest casita, graced by fine art within, is situated on 22 acres of nature's own artistry without.

Serene setting, artistry and comforts to sooth the soul. A high desert pied a Terre or a one-of-a-kind healing experience with yoga, meditation and nature immersion with Max Thomas.

Actually, our guests describe it better than we can:

"Here, you can learn to just be."

"Staying at the Casita on this property was an amazing experience. Max and Robin have created a symbiotic environment with the animals and earth and all you have to do is blend in and enjoy."

"Their property is amazing! So many fun spots to explore. They are on acres of land that you can hike, relax on- they have a hammock, tons of rock gardens, a fire pit! They also have a screened in porch that has a bed so you can sleep outside but still be protected."

"My best friend took me here to relax for four days for my 50th birthday and it was life changing and the best gift ever! I have had over the last two years major health issues and surgeries. My soul was broken. But for the first time in two years I felt this wonderful peace and it truly healed my soul!"

"It's a sweet homely, clean perfect place close to nature! I never want to stay anywhere else not even a 5 star resort!"

"The screened-in porch was amazing - it allowed us to wake up to the chirping of the birds in the morning and go to sleep feeling like we were camping out. The scenery around the casita was wonderful -flat top mesas, big boulders to climb, gullies to explore…"

"What an unbelieveable natural setting, with a feeling of remoteness despite the relative proximity to LA. Good food and entertainment up the road at the inimitable Pappy and Harriet's. Magnificent night skies with the distant howl of Coyotes."

"Robin and Max are gracious and generous hosts; they have built and lovingly maintain a nurturing oasis of peace for us pamper-seeking humans as well as a home for a fabulous biodiversity of birds, animals, plants, and rocks. They offer here what we all need most - the rest and renewal that comes from slowing down and paying attention to the elemental essence of life itself - inside and out. We could hardly drag ourselves away to go out and get groceries."

"Waking up to cottontail rabbits outside our bedroom window. Following fresh tracks to the nearby wash for a gorgeous sunrise heralded by coyote howls. Back at the comfortable casita eating breakfast with a primeval view while a covey of quail wander by outside. Midday hike along a ridge of low hills for long views with hardly any signs of civilization--without leaving the 22 acre property."

"At night, since the place is far enough from the light pollution of the city, so many stars are visible - we saw the Milky Way and even caught a few shooting stars while sitting out by the fire pit (which was ready for us when we got there - filled with wood and easy to start up with just a lighter). The bed out on the covered outdoor patio was very comfortable and perfect for spending the night if you want to have more of a "glamping" experience."

* Sleeping arrangements for winter months: Warm weather and cold weather impact the sleeping arrangements. In warm months the screened sleeping porch is everybody's favorite, with its comfy queen bed, which (with the queen in the bedroom and the pull-out queen couch in the living room) makes a total of 3 queen beds (a maximum of 5 guests). In winter, while some are happy to brave cold temperatures on the porch with flannel sheets, down comforters and wool caps, it's not for everyone. A 5th guest can stay on a comfy single couch in the living room or an equally comfortable single fold-up bed in the large bedroom. This works best with adults and kids, but if it's all adults, you need to be a very cozy group.

Keywords: Southwest, luxury casita, wildlands-adjacent, ancient trees, boulders, stargazing, labyrinth, tee-pee, kid-friendly


Robin Maxwell and Max Thomas

Member Since 2010
Premier Partner
This HomeAway partner has demonstrated and is committed to fast response times, the best rates, and a great guest experience.
Response rate:
Response time:
within a few hours
Calendar last updated:
Apr 20, 2018
About Robin Maxwell and Max Thomas

Your hosts are yogi and healer MAX THOMAS and his wife of 35 years, bestselling author and screenwriter ROBIN MAXWELL. They are privileged to be caretakers of the land and creators of the High Desert Eden sanctuary. Countless artists, writers, musicians, healers, yogis, parents and children have found quiet, comfort and inspiration in this remarkable 'home away from home.' Now Max and Robin have decided to share their little corner of paradise with you. Depending on your wishes, they will grant you total privacy or offer guidance for your many adventures.

Robin Maxwell and Max Thomas purchased this House in 2004

Why Robin Maxwell and Max Thomas chose San Bernardino County

An Eco-Friendly Destination 'We'd always dreamed of owning property adjoining public lands and to live a sustainable life. The magnificent WILDLANDS CONSERVANCY on two sides of High Desert Eden is that dream come true, and we're proud to be off the electrical grid, with a photo-voltaic array mounted on a state-of-the-art 'tracker,' augmented by a wind generator. While we have all the modern amenities here, we've learned to be conscious about consumption and live lightly on the land. We ask all our guests to do the same.' Max is available for discussion and consultation about our system.

What makes this House unique

PRIVATE YOGA RETREATS: If you make yoga a part of your HIGH DESERT EDEN getaway, you will enjoy the most delightful, tailor-made experience of your life. With 35 years of yogic wisdom at his command, MAX THOMAS offers his own eclectic and non-dogmatic style of yoga to everyone from raw beginners to seasoned practitioners. You can choose gentle, restorative session to promote healing from injuries or illness; basic to more complex breath work; or learn how to use 'Yoga as Preventive Medicine.' Yoginis and yogis might wish to kick-start their days with energetic classes, to refine or re-design their current practice...or even create one from the ground up. And there is no one better than Max at just 'playing yoga,' with kids from 9 - 90. LODGING AT THE CASITA, YOGA CLASSES and HEALTHY GOURMET MEALS included.


    • Internet
    • Air Conditioning
    • Accessible
    • Heater
    • Fireplace
    • Satellite or Cable
    • Kids Welcome
    • Washer & Dryer
    • Parking
    • TV
    • No Smoking


      • 2 Bedrooms, Sleeps 5
      • Living Room
        1 queen, 1 twin/ single, sofa bed is incredibly comfortable, memory foam topper
      • Bedroom 1
        1 queen, Great queen bed with memory foam topper
      • Bedroom 2
        1 queen, 1 twin/ single, In good weather the screened sleeping porch is divine!
      • Queen size Beds (3), Twin or Single Beds (2). Starting now the screened sleeping porch is the most sought after bedroom in the casita.


      • 1 Bathroom
      • Bathroom 1
        toilet, combination tub/shower
      • Tile shower, washer/dryer

      Location Type

        • Mountain View


            • Adventure
            • Away From It All
            • Family
            • Historic
            • Romantic
            • Sports & Activities
            • Tourist Attractions


                • Guests provide their own meals


                    • Parking
                    • Air Conditioning
                    • Fireplace
                      Outdoor Firepit
                    • Heating
                    • Iron & Board
                    • Linens Provided
                    • Living Room
                    • Clothes Dryer
                    • Parking Off Street
                    • Parking for RV/Boat/Trailer
                    • Telephone
                      Landline for emergencies only
                    • Towels Provided
                    • Washing Machine
                    • Wireless Internet


                        • Cooking Utensils
                        • Kitchen
                        • Microwave
                        • Refrigerator


                            • Dining Area


                                • Books
                                • DVD Player
                                • Satellite / Cable
                                • Television
                                • Video Library


                                    • Lanai / Gazebo
                                    • Lawn / Garden
                                    • Outdoor Grill


                                        • alternative lifestyle
                                        • wheelchair accessible


                                            • cinemas
                                            • live theater
                                            • museums
                                            • restaurants

                                              Leisure Activities

                                                • antiquing
                                                • bird watching
                                                • eco tourism
                                                • horseback riding
                                                • scenic drives
                                                • sight seeing
                                                • wildlife viewing

                                                  Sports & Adventure Activities

                                                    • cycling
                                                    • equestrian events
                                                    • hiking
                                                    • mountain biking
                                                    • rock climbing

                                                      99 Reviews


                                                      Latest reviews


                                                      our family had the most wonderful time in this desert wonderland. Fabulous for families, couple or singles.....

                                                      Owner's Response:

                                                      We have so many happy memories of your visit. Still haven't gotten up into the boulders to find your cairn. Didn't the kids love "mining for stardust?" Can't wait for your next visit.

                                                      Joshua Tree Heaven!

                                                      Lana H.

                                                      We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at High Desert Eden! The property is located close enough to Joshua Tree to be convenient for activities in town or at the national park, yet very removed from people and houses. The casita is in the high desert just out of town nestled between ridges for complete privacy in an expansive Mojave Desert setting. Just “next door” is a multi-thousand acre land conservancy, great for hiking. Or just explore right out the back door!

                                                      Our hosts Robin and Max were very helpful and friendly. They let us know about multiple activities in the surrounding areas; concerts, art galleries, restaurants, spectacular nature areas and desert oases.

                                                      The casita was great! It was very roomy and comfortable with everything you need for a week. Sleeping in the sleeping porch was a treat. It is screened on three sides and there’s lots of fresh air! We heard coyotes barking and howling at night and the wind blowing over the hills.

                                                      We cooked in the kitchen. It had everything necessary but I’m sure Robin would help you if you needed something special.

                                                      This is a great place to escape to if you are looking for peaceful surroundings. Plus you’re close enough to other activities when you want to change the pace. If I ever come back to Joshua Tree, Robin and Max’s High Desert Eden will be my home base!

                                                      Special location and perfect hub for desert family vacation

                                                      Lourraine C.

                                                      What an amazing find for our family to spend our spring break! We searched long and hard to find the perfect spot to introduce our children to the desert for the first time and serve as a hub for our various destinations over the week. Luckily we found Desert Eden! While it served as a perfect location to begin tours of Joshua Tree National Park, The Living Desert Zoo, Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, and other various destinations in the area, we enjoyed our days at Desert Eden just as much while we searched for treasures, watched wildlife, sifted for moon dust (magnatite), and just relaxed in the enclosed porch watching the private sweeping views of the high desert plateaus. The setting that Robin and Max have created is unparalleled.

                                                      Beautiful secluded location comfortable space

                                                      Michael C.

                                                      This is a site for any desert lover who craves seclusion and quiet, with just the flutter of birds in the morning coming for the seed provided by Max and Robin. The space is delightful, with beautiful vistas to the horizons.

                                                      Clean, comfortable, spacious, beautiful surroundings

                                                      Catherine T.

                                                      This is truly a slice of desert paradise. Robin and Max take such good care of their land and home that life flocks to it. We enjoyed birdsong in the morning, coyote song at night. The Casita was very comfortable, plenty of room for three, and the land surrounding it offered easy hikes and beautiful views. Would love to return here!


                                                      Suzanna R.

                                                      The reviews and the listing itself were spot on. The hosts were lovely, knowledgable and had lots of good tips; the casita was clean and well appointed; the grounds were perfection for stargazing, hiking, labyrinth walking, and hare/rabbit/bird sightings. Have already recommended to many friends and family.


                                                      Pioneertown, CA, USA

                                                      Private yoga on site, exploring back roads, historic Pioneer town, caves, birding, rock hunting, petro glyphs, guided nature hikes and photography, eclectic live music scene

                                                      Rates & Availability

                                                      Additional information about rental rates

                                                      Cleaning Fee
                                                      Additional Guest Fee
                                                      Tax Rate

                                                      Private yoga classes with Max available upon request - $75/hr per person. $15 for each additional person Retreat services and prices tailored to your needs

                                                      99 Reviews
                                                      Exceptional 5/5
                                                      Premier Partner
                                                      Enter dates for accurate pricing
                                                      For booking assistance, call 888-640-7927

                                                      Property # 299249vb