Camp in Style With This Hand-Restored 1950 Westcraft Capistrano Calypso Trailer
12 December 2019 - autoevolution
Call it a labor of love or call it, before anything else, a sound investment. A very rare and beautifully restored 1950 Westcraft Capistrano Calypso trailer can now be yours, if money is of no consequence to you.
And we can't stress that enough: this retro camper isn't just vintage, retaining many of the original elements that have been brought back to life through hard work. It isn't just very modern as well, as it was redone to incorporate modern technology in a way that doesn't do away with the distinctive retro feel. It is also very rare, and turned out to be a tortuous and expensive restoration job.
Owned by Lucas Lackner, the Calypso is now listed for sale through the DuPont Registry. It was originally listed last October but is still available – with a considerable discount.
Lackner bought the Calypso in dilapidated condition and, being passionate about retro trailers, set out to restore it. About 11 years and some $600,000 later, and working closely with restoration expert Steven Butcher, Lackner declares himself satisfied: the Calypso is opulent, elegant, and very true to the time period it came from, but includes modern amenities that make life on the road a little more fun.
The Calypso camper is also very rare: according to the DuPont Registry, only one such trailer exists in the world and it is in no condition to take to the road. Nor will it ever be again, as it's been sitting in the desert for far too long.
This one, though, is state-of-the-art in every way. It's something Jon Hamm's Don Draper would have been right at home in, with (mostly original) wood paneling and stainless steel surfaces, soft lighting and spacious rooms, but it's also a trailer in which even picky millennials would be comfy in. Modern tech is hidden throughout the trailer, available at the push of a button but discrete so as to not interfere with the overall retro aesthetic.
This is the largest model ever offered by Westcraft: it's 33 feet long and includes a Pullman roof with 7 windows on each side. It includes 2 bedrooms, a dining room and kitchenette, and a spacious bathroom with everything from a vanity to a sizable shower.
Restoring it included replacing about 50 percent of the interior birch paneling, which was a time-consuming job since the new panels had to look exactly like what was left and reconditioned of the original ones. The pine floors were removed and refinished, and then put back in.
About 50 percent of the aluminum body was oxidized, so heavy-gauge stainless steel surfaces were put in as replacement in the kitchen and bathroom. Period faucets and fixtures were then incorporated into the new furnishings. To maintain the vintage look, Lackner opted against LED lights and put in original light bulbs: that alone proved a very challenging task because they're not exactly easy to come by.
If you're more of a techy-type of traveler, rest assured that the Calypso has you covered. You might not be able to tell from the photos included in the gallery, but this retro camper comes with 2 NAD audio systems that can be played independently in the living room and bedrooms (a party for every one!). A Sony flatscreen is included in every room, with Bose soundbars. USB charging sockets, coaxial cables and ethernet, modern grounded outlets are also available, hidden away in cupboards and easily reachable spaces.
Climate control is also included, with custom-designed air conditioning and air heater and a water filtration system, as is a completely redone Dixie Permaview stove and a new Norcold freezer / fridge.
The original listing came with a price upon request mention, but the DuPont Registry now has the price set at $975,000, with the "OBO" mention, which means Lackner could go lower if you know how to bargain.