A successful partnership makes a masterpiece of the art of compromise. If the home that they share is any indication, newly engaged actors Jesse Metcalfe and Cara Santana are set for marital success. The house, a graceful ranch-style home in the hills high above West Hollywood, melds their two styles into one inviting whole. Diplomatically, each gives credit to the other. “The cool thing about sharing a life and sharing a space with someone is that, aesthetically, you start to meet in the center,” Metcalfe says. “I was way over on the other end of the spectrum—everything was dark and heavy—and Cara was very light and airy and clean and a little minimalist, and we landed somewhere in the middle. Both of our tastes have evolved.”
In contrast to their previous home, a Gothic-style Spanish Mediterranean, their current space is bright and warm. Combining pieces they already owned with new items picked up around Los Angeles and on location, the result is a soft contemporary with touches of glamorous Hollywood Regency style befitting two people in the spotlight.
Although Santana credits Metcalfe with being the design expert, when it came time to move, he was in Texas, filming the reboot of Dallas, so she shouldered the daunting task of decorating. “I talked to him the day after and said, ‘Well, I’ve done a lot and hopefully you like it,’” says Santana. “And he said, ‘I think I’ll like it as long as it’s not all gold and white and mirrored.’ I responded, ‘Does beige count?,’ because it was all of that. So when he came back, he helped…” “Fine-tune it,” Metcalfe finishes. The give and take that’s apparent in their banter reflects itself in their home. The living room’s extra-large sectional is a feminine shade of cream and piled with pillows. “That’s all Cara,” says Metcalfe. “She has a specialty in pillows. She really shines in the pillow department!” Teasing aside, he admits it’s his favorite room in the house. “It gets amazing light and has great flow. It’s also where I play the majority of my music.” A turntable, a birthday gift from Santana, connected to the home’s sound system lets Metcalfe pipe his collection of vinyl records throughout the house. His piano, an antique Steinway from the 1900s, sits in a choice spot by the window alongside two of his many guitars. Metcalfe is also a songwriter: Hallmark’s Chesapeake Shores, in which he currently stars as musician Trace Reilly, often features his musical contributions.