In this episode of Open Door, celebrity designers Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent (stars of TLC’s Nate & Jeremiah By Design) give Architectural Digest a full-access house tour around their spectacular 1928 Spanish Colonial home in the Hancock Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, California.
The house clocks in at nearly 9,000 square feet. Past the front door there’s the gorgeous grand stairway with its original wrought-iron balustrade, straight out of a movie from Hollywood’s Golden Age. Then room after room bathed in glorious sunlight, gurgling fountains, and that heavenly oak tree, literally topping everything off. And, of course, there’s Poppy, the mistress of the manor. Not even Central Casting could produce a more scrumptious sprite.
The house’s facelift entailed installing floors of antique marble to demarcate points of entry and transition; stripping, bleaching, and waxing the existing mahogany paneling in the dining room; replacing fireplace mantels and hardware with antique models; reworking the kitchen with new fixtures and surfaces; and furnishing the many rooms of the home in signature Berkus-Brent style.
As for what constitutes clean and masculine in this context, the designers layered the house with rustic French, Swedish, and American furnishings of wood and stone, juxtaposed with more tailored Continental pieces by the likes of Jacques Adnet, Maria Pergay, Angelo Mangiarotti, and Afra and Tobia Scarpa.
The through line is the doggedly neutral palette; Berkus and Brent rely on texture and patina to animate their personal interiors.
The one exception to the rainbow-of-beige rule is Poppy’s bedroom and playroom. In her bedroom, Poppy has the beginnings of a proper art collection, stocked with gifts from her parents’ friends, including a dreamy mobile by Julia Condon and a Michael Hainey hummingbird painting.
For Berkus and Brent, the one other space that seems to deviate from the distilled masculinity of the rest of the house is the master bathroom, which features hand-painted murals by James Mobley along with architectural details of a Prunella marble richly veined in deep purple and brown.
The couple took advantage of the ample space beyond the bathroom to install two very serious his-and-his closets.
In the atrium, a 19th-century bench with Kravet-velvet upholstery sits atop antique Spanish tiles from Paris Ceramics. 19th-century English glass pendant; 1950s low table from a Paris flea market; vintage club chair in a Carolina Irving Textiles stripe.
In the living room, a sofa by Afra and Tobia Scarpa for Cassina, a circa-1950 Italian chair, and a pair of 1940s linen club chairs surround a marble cocktail table from Hollywood At Home. A 1950s Italian sconce hangs above a 1960s English bench covered in a Lee Jofa fabric; Belgian linen curtains by RH.
In the kitchen, the island is surrounded by circa-1960 French barstools; sink fittings by Waterstone; 19th-century French lanterns. Backsplash and surrounding countertops by Ollin Stone; Whitechapel brass knobs.
In the dining room, 1950s Jacques Adnet chairs join a 19th-century English table. A painting by Matt Connors hangs above a Directoire limestone mantel; circa-1970 Georges Pelletier ceramic pendant lights.
In the gallery, a 19th-century Italian bookcase, an 18th-century Swedish table, and a 1950s American bench.
The playroom’s “memory” board and table, by RH Baby & Child; sofa and rug by RH Teen. Floor pillows and hippo basket from Anthropologie.
In Poppy’s room, a wallpaper by Apparatus and ZAK + FOX hosts art by Hunt Slonem, Michael Hainey, Fernando Bengoechea, and Mary Little. A Julia Condon mobile hangs over an armchair by Cisco Home wearing a Mexican Otomi textile; crib, table, and chair by RH Baby & Child; Nate Berkus stool for Target; Caitlin Wilson rug.
In the master bath, a James Mobley mural and marble molding and panels from Waterworks. Tub by Signature Hardware, with Waterworks fittings; Duravit sink.
Brent and Berkus’s RH bed, dressed in Matteo linens, is flanked by 1970s Italian tables. The circa-1960 chairs wear an Edelman Leather suede. Circa-1950 French bronze saucer light; custom Roman shades by The Shade Store; Maria Pergay steel table; HD Buttercup rug.
The pergola is painted in Benjamin Moore’s Alabaster. RH pendant lights; vintage Kreiss chairs; Pottery Barn pillows. Poppy wears a Marysia Bumby swimsuit.