We all love going on trips to escape the hustle and bustle of the big city. One way you can go away without forking out a large sum for a vacation is by having a camper van. Camper vans make traveling a lot more comfortable and accessible (no more wondering if the sheets are clean, no need to make unnecessary toilet stops!).
Most of us can be content with readily available modern RVs but camper van enthusiasts often look for rare vintage trailers. Vintage trailers provide a more luxurious holiday experience. The 1961 Holiday House Geographic X is one of the rarest of them all. For a long time, the world believed that only one model remained. However, in 2016 another was found. As a result the second surviving models’s restoration has caused a stir.
There’s only two surviving Geographics in the world today. Its extremely limited number has made them a lucratively rare trailer home. Holiday House began producing trailers in 1959. Their highly progressive and futuristic designs quickly catapulted the Holiday trailers ahead of their contemporaries. The Geographic X model was, perhaps, the company’s crowning jewel.
What makes the Holiday House Geographic X so special?
In 1958, David Holmes, the president of the ‘Harry & David’ fruit company, enlisted world renowned industrial engineer Chuck Pelly, to design the Geographic model. Chuck Pelly was the designer of the Scarab race car and the founder of Designworks USA which is BMW’s California Studio. The “Model X” with its state-of-the-art, futuristic fittings was truly befitting of its description as the “trailer for the rich“.
Holiday House only created seven of these strikingly futuristic trailers. The showroom model of the Geographic X went on the road in 1960 and toured California. The hefty price tag of almost $8,500 (which is $71,000 today) put off buyers. Only one Geographic was purchased.
Unfortunately, a fire destroyed the Holiday House factory in 1962. This unfortunate event made the Geographic X one of the rarest trailer models around. Fortunately, the buyer of the showroom model decided to sell it on 1999. As the sole surviving model, it was restored back to its former glory then exhibited throughout Europe and the United States.
17 years later, a second model emerges.
Flyte Camp, an Oregon-based company that specializes in vintage trailer restoration, found the second Geographic X in a garage in 2016. The owner, without realizing that the trailer was in fact one of the most sought after mobile homes in the world, was using it as a storage unit for spare car parts. The company immediately launched into a large-scale effort to restore this marvel of industrial design to its glory.
It took a lot of work to revive the iconic camper van from its neglected, moss-covered state. Flyte Camp’s restoration aimed to preserve the classic, coveted camper van while giving it the adequate upgrades at the same time. The restoration and renovation process of the Holiday House Geographic X took over two years. After its restoration, the Geographic X became the embodiment of the modern luxury travel trailer that Holmes had intended. Check out the gorgeous Geographic X below:
The L-shaped sofa and the gaucho couch can sleep four.
“The front L shaped sofa, is 30” deep with pillows removed and can comfortably sleep two. The gaucho couch also extends to sleep two.”
The Holiday House Geographic X has a fancy functional kitchen.
“The kitchen is outfitted with a stainless two burner cook top, a two drawer stainless 3-way fridge, and a stainless sink with a built-in drain board.”
“The interior features Black Walnut wall skin, cabinetry and black walnut hard wood flooring with custom aluminum detailing.”
This is probably the fanciest trailer bathroom we’ve seen.
“The bathroom/dressing room features Marmoleum flooring, Walnut & Marmoleum countertops,” Flyte Camp wrote in the camper van’s description.
“and a Stainless Steel shower with a Teak hardwood shower floor insert.”
This Holiday Home Geographic X is the only one to have its designer’s signature.
“No detail has been overlooked including the laser etched stainless steel transition with “Geographic Model X” inscribed.”
“The trailer also comes with the personal signature of Chuck Pelly himself, both inside the trailer and on the exterior.”
Someone took the trailer home for $250,000 after its showcase at the Modernism Week 2018. Watch the designer reunite with his masterpiece after 60 years:
Photo source: (Hal Thomas, Tim Cash and Anna Scribner) via Flyte Camp