Nate Berkus & Jeremiah Brent’s NYC Townhouse Has a Dreamy Double-Height Wall of Books

published Apr 20, 2020
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It turns out life on the West Coast isn’t for everyone. Just two years after design duo Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent declared their desire to “put down roots” in Los Angeles, the couple (along with their children, Poppy and Oskar) have found their way back to New York. The couple originally headed out to California after Berkus’s father passed away in 2015, and chronicled the experience on their TLC show, “Nate & Jeremiah by Design.” They settled on a sprawling Spanish Colonial home in the Hancock Park neighborhood, but soon found La-La Land life wasn’t right for them.

“One thing I can promise you is that I will never again tell a publication that a house is my ‘forever home,’” Berkus told Architectural Digest in a spread featuring the couple’s new 3,400-square-foot, 1899 town house in Manhattan’s West Village. The property had just undergone a gut renovation, but it had been so stripped that it lacked any real sense of character.

“Our job was going to be to give it some soul again,” Brent told AD. Of couple, first the couple had to edit down all their belongings from their sprawling LA home.  “Our old living room had 30 pieces of furniture,” says Berkus. “This one has six! But what you see is the best that we’ve got.” 

The voluminous living room is anchored by a white oak double-height bookcase that’s so heavy, it had to be bolted to the wall. Underneath, an Albert Chubac painting hangs over a Carlo Calobmo sofa, while a vintage ’70s club chair sits nearby. Outside, a courtyard with a 17th-century French fountain and an 18th-century stone table provides the perfect spot for the kids to play. A sunny terrace is filled with lush greenery and views of the city behind them. 

The living room opens into the kitchen, where a sprawling island moves throughout. A La Cornue oven is surrounded by a hood, backsplash, and countertops made of Calacutta. Unique details like custom faucets from Van Cronenburg and exposed cabinets with chicken wire give the spot lots of character.

Upstairs, a parlor area with a huge glass railing overlooks the living room below. The hallway continues to the children’s rooms, which are equally as lively as the rest of the space. Daughter Poppy’s room involved lots of input from the little one herself, including the desire for pink carpeting, a pink bed, and lively, floral wallpaper with an occasional peacock peppered in. An old antique bench is covered in pink polka dots, and pieces of art (mostly done by friends) adorn the walls.

The master bedroom is the ideal private oasis, but it’s undergone a major transformation from its original state. Desiring a larger dressing room area, the couple cut into space from the master bedroom and created a cozy dressing room with plenty of storage. The final bedroom area features chalky plaster walls, looped ivory carpeting, and a sculptural fluted plaster cabinet designed to hide the TV. While it may be smaller than most celebrities’ master bedrooms, it’s still gargantuan in most urban dwellers’ eyes! A spacious master bath features a 19th-century Alabaster pendant glowing overhead, while a vintage chair sits next to the deep bathtub. 

“Coming from LA, we wanted to find a place that our children felt safe, that felt like a home,” says Berkus. “And this house, the second we walked in, we knew we could make it our own and grow as a family here.”