Press "Enter" to skip to content

Lake front to desert mountain

Somehow seems odd that a man who has spent so much of his life ensconced on a beautiful lakefront would opt now to build his megamansion at Palm Springs, way out in the desert.

Duane HagadoneSo it goes for Duane Hagadone, and that probably means something new for the city of Coeur d’Alene.

None of Idaho’s larger cities, and none really anywhere in the Northwest, is so tightly identified with and socially dominated by a single figure the way Coeur d’Alene has been, for more than a generation, with and by Hagadone. He has owned its local mass media (and nearly all the locally-based newspapers in the Panhandle), owns its dominant commercial structure (the Resort on the lake) and the main upscale social attractor (a golf course on the lake), and has reshaped downtown, sweepingly, and more than once. He is not the only important factor in town and he has not always gotten his way, but he has been the overwhelming figure there for a very long time. He was that, albeit in a somewhat smaller way, back in 1973 when your scribe first came to live in Idaho, at Coeur d’Alene, and was a (lowest-level and short-term) employee of his operations at the predecessor lodging of what is now the Resort.

For some years has been building a big new house at Palm Springs, and his plans to move there. For four years it has been in planning and early work, and now it is expected to be completed in January next year. Business Week is reporting that “Billionaires like both Bill Gates’s (Sr. and Jr.) and Roger Penske have second, third, or fourth homes here. Still, the community was all ooh and ahhh when word got out about Duane Hagadone’s new, 32,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor house … . The house is nothing if not spectacular. Built into the side of a mountain, and overlooking 11 golf courses in three directions, the futuristic spread has 19 electronic, moveable glass walls that can open onto the mountain air and the vast network of pools that weave through the property.” (A tip to Huckleberries Online for its note on this article.)

It hasn’t been built without controversy. Local planning staffers have recommended against approval, and others in the area have complained as well. So far, though, all the commissions and other actual decision-makers have signed off with approval.

Our interest, though, is in its short quote from Hagadone: “I’m 74 and I’m not getting younger. I want to enjoy it.”

Hagadone leaving Coeur d’Alene. That’s a sea change, or at least a lake change.

Share on Facebook