Rotating House

Mount Helix house offers 360 degrees of subtle rotation. Al Johnstone’s circular house is a futuristic marvel, filled with gadgets and systems that he designed. The 5,100-square-foot, four-bedroom house atop Mount Helix would be a spectacular showcase even if it didn’t spin.

But it’s the novelty of a rotating house that has brought the Johnstones media attention around the world, thousands of visitors to their Web site at, and questions from passers-by each day.

This home is an example of the future of architecture “Kinetic Architecture”. It is the only structure in the world, that we know of, that is a fully functional rotating structure with all the utilities in the rotating portion (unlike the Space Needle and rotating bars located in some hotels) along with many other unique features. You choose the speed of rotation – from one revolution in 30 minutes to one revolution in 24 hours.

How It Rotates
The second rotating floor rides on top of the 50′ in diameter first floor on 40, 8″ bearings that each have a 50,000 pound capacity, a main bearing in the center of the elevator shaft carries 1,364,000 pounds and the drive wheels (two 16″ x 3″ wheels) are in pillow block bearings that carry 150,000 pounds each – that’s a 3,664,000 pound capacity, the second rotating floor weighs 600,000 pounds. It is driven by a 1.5 horse power DC motor, it takes .8 hp to start and .75 hp to run the house in either direction anywhere from one revolution in 33 minutes up to one revolution in 24 hours, it can rotate in either direction as many times as one would want (it doesn’t have to unwind). The motor drives the drive wheels through a 1564 to 1 dual worm gear transmission – very smoothly.

The first floor is close to the mountain but has a path all the way around it. The house could be built on flat land or on a central column (no first floor or the rotating floor could be on ground level) or several columns ours is the way it is because of the lot we choose to build it on.

There are few words from house owners:

“Perfect for entertaining and personal enjoyment. No longer will you need to decide which rooms will have a great view and which rooms will have a minimal or no view at all – the RotatingHome allows you to see your entire view from all the major rooms in your home! If you prefer to enjoy your view in the open air, a viewing deck can surround the entire circumference, or just part, of your home. A RotatingHome may be just right for you.

You choose the speed of rotation. We recommend a variable speed from one revolution in 30 minutes to one revolution in 24 hours. A RotatingHome is perfect for an upscale beach house or large mountain cabin or even in areas prone to storm surges! Steep mountain terrain is not a problem as the RotatingHome can be built up on a central steel column. With only one fully RotatingHome that meets 21st century building codes currently in existence, its uniqueness and technology are unprecedented!”


You can have a tour of all the unique features of the RotatingHome or a tour and formal or informal dinner for 8 or more, or drinks and hors d’oeuvres for 30 or more of your favorite people, or almost any combination you can think of.

The total house is 8,900 sq. ft. of living space, garage and decks. The main rotating floor is 5,100 sq. ft., 3,700 sq. ft. of living space and 1,400 sq. ft. of rotating deck and an additional 1,200 sq. ft. of fixed deck. The lower or fixed floor has 2,100 sq. ft. of living space, garage and entry plus a patio and putting green.


  • Food Stations/Reception (using main rotating floor only) 75-100 guests.
  • Food Station/Reception (using entire home) 150-175 guests.
  • Sit-down Dinner Party in the Dining Room 40 guests.

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Find rotating home on Bing Maps or Google Maps.

You can also find some additional information in this PDF file.