A look inside The Rexford — a quintessential midcentury modern Las Vegas apartment complex

midcentury-las-vegas-1 npf-2016Okay, I’ll just spit it out: This was MY #1 FAVORITE spot on Nevada Preservation Foundation‘s 2016 Vintage Las Vegas Home & History Tour. The Rexford, a 22-unit cooperative apartment complex built in 1958. Built like a big oval — with a swimming pool in the middle — this is my retirement dream. As in, Beverly Hills 90210 meets The Golden Girls — that’s where I’m headed! On this tour, we got a peek into a one-bedroom, one-bathroom unit, with original features, currently for sale. It was an absolutely sweetheart of a space. 


Nevada Preservation Foundation explained the historical significance of The Rexford:

This condo-like apartment complex was the first, and one of only three co-op ownership buildings in the state of Nevada. Built in 1958, privately owned aprtments were a new concept in home ownership and advertised a “a truly luxurious home of your own without the cost or responsibility.” Liberace’s mother resided in the Rexford as did several other prominent Las Vegans. When originally built, two-bedroom, two-bath apartments started as low as $15,000.

midcentury-las-vegas-4Oh, how I love details like original (I presume) screen doors.

midcentury-las-vegas-6The unit we saw was a ground-floor unit, and the living room looked out on to the pool. In my decorating daydream, all the window treatments get switched out for Beauti-Vues woven wood and yarn shades. I’d keep these chairs and lamps, though, and go Polynesian Pop! Oh — and notice, lots of mirrored wall tile in lots of the houses we saw on the tour.

midcentury-las-vegas-7The kitchen was original, except for the refrigerator. That’s Pam — she was a tour guide for this space. She also has an apartment in the complex. Hi, Pam! It was So Great to meet you! You rock!

midcentury-las-vegas-8Lovely GE appliances! Now we’d just need a yellow vintage GE fridge – this one would do just nicely!

midcentury-las-vegas-10midcentury-las-vegas-9The cabinets could use some freshening. But get this: Pam has the same cabinets in her apartment — and they cleaned up beautifully (see photo below). Those knobs and escutcheons too!

This is a cabinet in Pam’s apartment. See how beautifully it cleaned up!

midcentury-las-vegas-11Vintage Nutone exhaust fan, but of course!

midcentury-las-vegas-13midcentury-las-vegas-12rexford-1Pink bathrooms galore in Las Vegas, too!

pink-bathroom-tileAbove: The pink tile that was in Pam’s bathroom. 

midcentury-las-vegas-5Ahhh, climbing bougainvillea — sweeeeeet memories of my Southern California childhood.

  1. Janet in ME says:

    I love those apartments! I wonder if anyone got in on the ground floor at $15,000 and stayed there ever since! I have similar cabinets in birch but mine have rounded edges to the doors and possibly a better grade of chrome hardware as they are still shiny. As a matter of fact, I found a house here in town where they were removing the kitchen cabinets and I went over and stripped twenty sets of these knobs and backplates off of them. People still do not understand these old kitchens need to be preserved. Bravo to them to keep the places mostly original.

  2. Amarissa Parker says:

    Oh my goodness. This is just fantastic! Can you imagine living on the ground floor by the pool in Vegas…? Divine.

  3. Gail Witham says:

    Where can I get those mirror tiles in the bathroom? My house is circa 1965 and I’d love some of those in my home.

    1. Jukesgrrl says:

      According to condo.com, there are currently three apartments for sale at the Rexford (1700 Rexford Drive, 89104). They are all over 1,000 sq. ft. The two on the first floor are under $50,000. The one of the second floor has been significantly updated (not in MCM style) and the asking price is $65,000. There are multiple pictures of ever unit on that website for anyone interested. There are far too few of these extant MCM buildings in Las Vegas.

  4. Dolly says:

    I have very similar cupboards in our desert mid-century house. What’s best “clean them up nice” – because ours look more like the ones that are NOT cleaned up — any tips appreciated.

  5. Maria says:

    My aunt in SoCal lived in a complex very much like this when I was a kid – all surrounding the pool centerpiece (everyone also had a garage of their own). I can recall running in and out of everyone’s apt because it was all like one big family.

  6. Carol says:

    I just bought a small minimal traditional house with the same cabinets but the boxes show more. They are pine and the doors are birch so I’m going to paint the pine eggshell white and refinish the doors. I have birch hardwood floors that I’m going to have refinished with no stain – hopefully I can get the doors to match. The door hardware is copper – those marks are from the lacquer wearing off – a bit of copper polish and they are good as new and can be resealed, if desired. The escutcheons are painted black – I’m going to strip them and start new once I see what the base metal is. Not sure if I’ll return them to original black…

  7. This is a very, very cool feature! What a special, well preserved, time capsule living space! Although planned obselesence has been part of our consumer driven culture for decades look how well these appliances, fixtures and overall craftsmanship & construction from 60 years ago, give or take a couple of years, have stood up over time versus what’s on the market today. Thanks for the cool story and pic’s!

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