svg-sleeps svg-bedrooms svg-bathrooms svg-stay pets

Tucson Time Machine Journey–Enjoy Rooftop Sunsets & Wildlife Show

(14 Reviews)

The owner has been emailed.
To book this property, you need to complete your booking through checkout on the VRBO website. We can't protect your payment if we don't know you've booked through us. Learn more


Last updated: 05/22/2017
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates
  • Minimum stay:2-7 nights
  • Sleeps:6
  • Bedrooms:3
  • Bathrooms:2
  • Property type:House
  • Internet:Yes
  • Pets considered:No
  • Wheel chair accessible:No

About the Property

Authentic Tucson Experience 3 bedrooms 2 baths on 3+acres

Just 10 miles and 100 years from downtown this brand new adobe home built in the classic Tucson styles offers an authentic Tucson experience. Passing through the entry of the Starlight Casa you cross a gateway between past and present.

The Starlight Casa is a reminder of yesterday and a harbinger of tomorrow incorporating modern passive solar design with ageless building practices originating in Babylon at the dawn of civilization. Though built with all the modern comforts of the present, the Starlight Casa is a portal into the past providing a sense of what life was like for Tucson's pioneers.

Who Else Wants to Feel Like a Pioneer without Sacrificing Comfort?

Then book the Starlight Casa and travel between eras enjoying the best of both incorporating creature comforts of the present while respecting and accentuating Tucson's original architectural elements.

Because you’ve read this far, you deserve a truly authentic Tucson experience, and you’ll find, as you read the entire description, even more...  

Since this is your holiday, your big break from life as usual, you’ll notice this property listing isn’t a few, measly sentences, haphazard room pictures, & a list of features looking just like every other listing.

This is a description more worthy your time, and ready to transport you to another. You may notice as you’re reading that you mind wanders… …picturing what's in store for you during your stay at the Starlight Casa.

You'll be ensconced in an intimate canyon setting studded with massive boulders.

It's the perfect peaceful retreat or a catalyst for tales of adventure. Evidence of Tucson's storied past surrounds the property. The abandoned gold mines in the canyon walls are reminders of hopeful miners from a time long since past. Perhaps you’ll be the next guest to find pottery shards from an earlier civilization along the wash immediately behind the home.

From several points on the property you can…
Feel the Peace from the White Dove of the Desert…

You'll enjoy panoramic views of the mission with its white towers reaching skyward from the surrounding fields. As you look upon the mission from this rare vantage point, you’ll be looking back in time… …back to the birthplace of Tucson.
The White Dove of the Desert, the San Xavier Mission, is Arizona's oldest intact European building. Returning to the Starlight Casa you can experience some of these original architectural elements inspired by the mission.

You can imagine Apache scouts atop the stone towers.

The canyon provided the ideal location for the Apaches to stage multiple raids upon the mission. Visitors from both near and far find the canyon and it's rich history a magical almost mystical place blending past and present in a vortex of time.

Prior to construction the site hosted a sweat lodge conducted by a Native American medicine man possessing an M.D. and Ph.D. Recently an owner of an adjoining vacant lot brought their newborn to the canyon for a naming ceremony ritual. If the location has this much appeal to natives, how much more magnificent will it be for your vacation?

Without this invitation you wouldn't find this place. There is a secret garden quality to the entire canyon hidden from prying eyes unless you know where to look. Even the artisans involved in the Starlight Casa's construction often commented that they never knew this place existed although they'd been in the area for decades.

Others tell stories of how they used to ride their horses all over the area yet somehow missed this place never knowing it was ever here.

Be Among Those Privileged Enough to Gain Passage...

…and you too will understand why everyone who does, feels happier and better for it.

There are 139 ageless building principles used in the design of the Starlight Casa that together form a language that speaks to you about the harmonious connection between yourself and nature. The canyon wildlife continue to use the same winding paths all around the home worn into the earth by earlier generations.

Often the local desert denizens visit the patios such as the desert tortoise shown in the property photos. Think about it…

Why Go on Safari when the Safari Can Come to You?

Multiple covered, outdoor seating areas connect the home to it's surroundings. The South facing back patio utilizes strategic design to maximize the sun's location in the sky throughout the year to allow for sun soaked winter afternoons and shady summer mornings. Sheltering the patio is Beehive Peak shaped by primordial winds and now home to a variety of wildlife.

While appreciating the ancient origins of the canyon walls you may be distracted into the present by coyotes scouting their next meal, hawks tending their nest high up on a craggy cliff face, or catch a glimpse of the javelina (ha va leena) returning to their beds where they lay together in sprawling pig piles. They look like hairy wild pigs but they're not pigs at all. Instead they're peccaries from South America.

Spend a late season morning on the North porch with a cup of complimentary coffee or tea and listen as the dawn chorus of the birds greets daybreak in celebration. If you're really lucky you might witness the rare and some say sacred dance of the cottontails where bunnies spring into the air kicking their heels skyward in pure joy somersaulting their tiny bodies before once again becoming earthbound.

After a full day of sights, you’re invited to turn your gaze toward the heavens from the rooftop deck as twilight blankets the night sky and…

Enjoy a 4th Dimensional Experience…

…as you look deep into the past over the infinite reaches of space seeing billions of stars as they looked thousands of years ago whose luminosity travelled at the speed of light to greet you in just this moment.

It’s this view that generated the name Starlight Casa.

Just as the Pioneers Who First Settled the Area…

...stone was gathered from the location for the foundation and the walls forged from adobe blocks molded from the sands of time. In accordance with tradition the patio wall follows the contours of the land creating a 'wild run' that merges into a living fence made from ocotillos that grow profusely throughout the desert.

Occasionally the ocotillos of the fence appear as though their time has passed. Sporadically throughout the year they produce dark green leaves and flame orange blossoms that lick the sky encouraging rains that like a fountain of youth turn back the clock.

Authentic Tucson architectural design elements appear to slow time until inside the home where state of the art appliances allow you to prepare a warm meal in minutes. Don't be surprised if you never have to adjust the thermostat since the natural building materials combined with the high ceilings moderate temperatures providing unsurpassed comfort while reducing allergens inside the home.

100% Satisfaction Guarantee

Should you fail to find the temporal or architectural qualities of the Starlight casa satisfactory you can 'travel back in time' and change your mind. We're so confident that you'll be enchanted by the magic of the 'Starlight Casa' that we guarantee your satisfaction in writing within the hospitality agreement. So go ahead and pick your travel dates and request your agreement while you’re still on this listing. 

You’re one step away from a truly authentic Tucson experience. There is a first come, first serve policy for reservations so you only have a small window of time to reserve your dates for this life altering and time twisting vacation before someone else. 

Guided Tours

For the Diné (Navajo), the largest Arizona tribe, Hozho or 'Walking in Beauty' is a state of grace where an individual exists in harmonious balance with nature. This connection to nature is linked to time and space by the cardinal directions of a compass.

The 8 directions for many tribes symbolize disciplines related to time always moving in a clockwise direction beginning somewhere in the East where the sun begins it's daily travels.

Here is an example of their timeless wisdom:

East -Inspiration; Hazards
Southeast -Curiosity; Games
South -Learning; Pattern recognition
Southwest -Culture; Knowledge of Place
West -Legends; Ecology
Northwest -Celebration; Traditions
North -Wisdom; Lore
Northeast -Awareness; Instincts

Budget overruns on the construction of the Starlight Casa prevent us from spending most of our time with our out of state grandchildren. While we're still here for the next year you can choose 1 free tour for every complete week booked. Additional tours can be added for $97 per person per tour.

Many of the principles and skills featured during the tours come from a period of 4 years when I was involved in mentoring naturalists for $10,000 per person. Each of the tours offered is related to the timeless wisdom of the 8 directions.

The time machine element of the Starlight Casa allows you to forego the tradition of beginning in the east and select any of the tours from the following list.

Desert Connection
Family Nature Games
Wildlife Viewing/Tracking
Edible and Medicinal Plant Walk (Wildflower Walk in Season)
Haunted Tucson Tour
Guided Downtown Tour
Ghost Town Tour
Bird Language Tour
Send email


Member since: 2011

Speaks: english
Response time: Within an hour
Response Rate: 100%
Calendar last updated: 05/22/2017

Property Type

  • House

House Rules

  • Max. occupancy 6
  • Children Welcome
  • Non Smoking Only
  • Pets Not Allowed

Accommodation Type

  • Vacation Rental


  • Guests Provide Their Own Meals


  • Wheelchair Inaccessible

Bedrooms: 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6, Beds for 6

Bathrooms: 2 Bathrooms

  • Bathroom 1: toilet, tub, shower, jetted tub


  • Bathroom 2: toilet, shower


  • 2 Baths - Master suite bath features a jacuzzi air jet tub. The air jets allow the use of bubble bath and oils since only air passes through the jets unlike traditional water jet tubs. ...moreless


  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Stereo
  • Television


  • Adventure
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/Bank
  • Groceries
  • Hospital

Leisure Activities

  • Bird Watching
  • Eco Tourism
  • Gambling Casinos
  • Photography
  • Scenic Drives
  • Sight Seeing
  • Walking
  • Wildlife Viewing

Location Type

  • Mountain View
  • Rural

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • Mountain Climbing


  • Dining
  • Dining Area
  • Seating for 6 people


  • Air Conditioning
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Fireplace:

    3 state of the art fireplaces that activate with the flip of a switch or remote that controls temperature and ambiance. ...moreless

  • Garage
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Parking
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine


  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Toaster


  • Balcony
  • Deck / Patio
  • Outdoor Grill


from 14 traveler reviews
Rental basis: Per property
Dates Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
Early Summer
May 15 - Jul 6, 2017
4 night min stay
$797 $2,997

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $10 per night, per additional guest

Jul 7 - Jul 30, 2017
2 night min stay
$137 $197
Fri, Sat, Sun
$797 $2,997

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $10 per night, per additional guest

Late Summer
Jul 31 - Sep 28, 2017
4 night min stay
$797 $2,997

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $10 per night, per additional guest

Sep 29 - Nov 21, 2017
3 night min stay
$1,483 $4,727

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $20 per night, per additional guest

Nov 22 - Nov 26, 2017
4 night min stay

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $25 per night, per additional guest

Late Fall
Nov 27 - Dec 17, 2017
4 night min stay
Dec 18 - Jan 25, 2018
4 night min stay
$1,963 $7,847

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $25 per night, per additional guest

Gem Show
Jan 26 - Feb 11, 2018
7 night min stay

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $25 per night, per additional guest

Late Winter
Feb 12 - Apr 29, 2018
5 night min stay

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $20 per night, per additional guest

My Standard Rate
5 night min stay

Rates are based on 4 guests; add $20 per night, per additional guest

* Approximate Monthly rates, actual rate will depend on the days of the month you stay

Additional information about rental rates


  • Taxes Not included


Minimum reservation rate $497

Cleaning fee additional.

*Rates subject to change until reservation is confirmed.

Owner's cancellation policy:

100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.

Don't forget your vacation protection! Get protected now

Adding our Vacation Protection services can make sure your getaway goes smoothly, no matter what. We offer Cancellation Protection and Damage Protection so you can truly relax.

Protect your payments in case you need to cancel.
Travel with peace of mind.
Ensure you're prepared in case of accidental damage.


Last updated: 05/22/2017
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates


8.5 Miles
Nearest Airport
Tucson International Airport
2.5 Miles
Nearest Barpub
Chili's Bar & Grill
8.8 Miles
Nearest Golf
Star Pass PGA Course
9.5 Miles
Nearest Train
Amtrak N Toole Ave
4 Miles
Nearest Motorway
Interstate 19
1.4 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
Little Mexico Steakhouse
51 Miles
Nearest Ski
Mt Lemmon Ski Valley

Car: Necessary


Owner info

Why the Owner Chose Tucson, AZ, USA:
Even now nearly 14 years later I still remember the first time we saw the canyon like it was yesterday. It was completely by accident. One Saturday I happened to be working as a real estate agent showing a friend homes in the area. Wanting Rhonda to get to know his family better, for the 1st time in 12 years I brought her along on an appointment with me. In an attempt to take a short cut to the next house we tried to go through the canyon. As soon as I saw the for sale sign, we stopped so I could get out. The place was completely captivating unlike any other I'd ever seen in Tucson after living here for 40 years and seeing more than a 1000 homes in my 12 year career. After seeing so many homes it was surprising that only 5 homes or so were truly memorable. This was something that I continued to wonder about throughout my time as an agent. What made those few homes so charming? We were fortunate to win the property from a competing buyer. Since then we've come to regard ourselves as custodians of this valuable resource including the plants and wildlife it is home to. In 2008 during an annual family retreat when we gather together to celebrate the past year and share our visions for the coming year, one of our goals was to build a home that our family could use to carry on our tradition. For 10 years we had been collecting ideas for our dream home largely from multi million dollar homes throughout Arizona that we wanted to somehow incorporate into our more modest budget.

The Unique Benefits at this House:
During project planning once again I returned to the question of the source of indefinable charm that only 5 homes in a thousand possess. A builder friend recommended the work of architect Christopher Alexander who studied some of the most loved buildings throughout time in an effort to capture that special quality that makes these structures so appealing. Alexander ultimately came to describe this quality as wholeness. According to Alexander there are 151 patterns that form a timeless way of building. So far we've been able to incorporate 112 of them. Hints of the pattern language are included with your welcome email. During your stay see how many you can identify.

Contact us

Speaks: english
Response time: Within an hour
Response Rate: 100%
Calendar last updated: 05/22/2017

Send email

Links to more information:



VRBO #599147

This listing was first published here in 2014.

Date last modified - Thursday, May 25, 2017

Partner Offers

Enter dates to see accurate pricing

Minimum stay 2-7 nights
Dates are unavailable
Please enter travel dates
Please enter # of guests
Please stay a bit longer. A stay of nights or more is required for these dates.
This listing requires that rentals start on a .
Send a Message Get an Instant Quote
Pay with confidence
 please wait... When you book through the VRBO website, your booking is backed by our Book with Confidence Guarantee Learn more