Mysterious group buys underground doomsday house in Las Vegas

Built in the 1970s, this mysterious underground house at 3970 Spencer St., photographed on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, can house a family for as long as one year without having to resurface.

Underground House

Built in the 70's, this mysterious underground house at 3970 Spencer St. can house a family for up to one year with out having to re-surface, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013. Launch slideshow »

The famed underground house near Flamingo Road was built as a spacious Cold War bunker, to keep people alive and entertained in case the Soviets wiped out Las Vegas with a nuclear missile strike.

The property now has new ownership — but the survivalist history is not forgotten.

A mysterious group calling itself the Society for the Preservation of Near Extinct Species bought the house at 3970 Spencer St. for $1.15 million, property records show. The sale closed March 28.

The seller, Seaway Bank and Trust Co. in Chicago, foreclosed on the property in mid-2012. As of last September, the bank wanted $1.7 million for it.

It’s unclear what the group plans to do with it, and if its name is a joke or symbolic of some kind of ideology.

Internet searches did not shed any light on what the society might be, and neither its business-entity registration with the Nevada Secretary of State nor the deed recording the property sale with the Clark County Recorder list any names of people connected to it.

“I have no knowledge about who the buyers are. I just signed the deed,” William Bates Jr., general counsel for Seaway, said today.

Listing broker Winston King of Kingly Properties said the house sold to a group of buyers in Florida, though he doesn’t know what it plans to do with it. He dealt with the group’s broker for the deal.

“I’ll find out next week myself,” he said of the plans.

The two-bedroom, three-bathroom underground home might be the most peculiar in Las Vegas. Built beneath a typical, suburban two-story house, the bunker home spans more than 5,000 square feet and is part of a 15,200-square-foot basement that also features a casita.

The subterranean refuge seems designed to stave off boredom and claustrophobia. It has a four-hole putting green, a swimming pool, two jacuzzis, a sauna, a dance floor with a small stage, a bar, a barbecue and huge murals of rural, tranquil settings.

The home, with unchanged “Brady Bunch” decor, also has a laundry room, a kitchen, a fireplace, a generator, fake trees, fake flowers, two elevators, fire alarm bells, smoke detectors, an intercom system and several large pantries.

Light switches labeled “Sunset,” “Day,” “Dusk” and “Night” mimic lighting conditions at those times by dimming or brightening lights and stars on the ceiling, which is painted sky blue with white clouds.

A few miles east of the Strip, the home was built in the 1970s by entrepreneur Girard B. “Jerry” Henderson, who feared a nuclear Armageddon during the Cold War. While others built fallout shelters, he wanted to live underground full time, according to news reports.

Henderson co-founded Underground World Home Corp., a subterranean home building company. A brochure for the company boasts that underground living is healthier, cleaner, quieter, cheaper, safer and is “the ultimate in true privacy!”

“How would you like sunshine every day ... when you want it?” the brochure asks.