Tour Colman Domingo’s Story-Filled Wonderland in Southern California

“Everything is an event in my house,” Colman notes. “I only eat off stoneware plates with gold silverware—it really feels like I’m in my own luxury hotel and if I want to live that way, why not?” The wallpaper inspired by The Beverly Hills Hotel is a true testament to his theatrical background. 

“It felt like Big Bear meets Palms Springs,” the actor raves about his pine tree–lined driveway and dreamy outdoor space, respectively. “I walked in and said, ‘Oh, this is our home,’” he recalls of his initial reaction upon arriving at the open house. Built in 1964 by architect Jules Salkin, Colman and Raúl’s home is where old meets new in the best way imaginable. 

“I love having people over. There’s literally a fridge outside so that people can really make themselves at home,” says Colman of his Southern California place. 

Thanks to the previous homeowners, nothing had been touched. Walls dripped with original woodworking while indoor fireplaces (yes, fireplaces, plural) added warmth to the perfectly midcentury-modern space. All that was left to do—inside, anyway—was rip up the dated white carpeting and polish the already poured concrete. 

Maintaining the integrity of their new home was key to Colman and Raúl. The main bathroom, most notably, harbored a particular piece of history the couple felt inclined to hold onto. Laying proudly against the wall above a retro sunken bath are original tiles from LAX terminals 3, 4, and 6. “When I came into this bathroom, I actually had the feeling of ‘I have to preserve this,’” he remarks of the colorful tiles that grace the walls of only three other homes in Southern California. 

When it came time to furnish his new space, Colman says the words of a dear friend rang true: “Linda Dresner told me, ‘Colman, the thing about style is if you love it, it will work—don’t buy everything at once, source what you love, and your home will tell you what it needs.’” This mentality served as the backbone to his decor process.

Each room and hidden nook is a unique iteration of the couple’s stories, travels, and experiences. Introspection meets inspiration and vice versa in the “wonderland” Colman and Raúl have crafted. “It has different personalities,” according to Colman. “Everything is a mood.” From plushy velvet seating to carefully sourced vintage accents, everything serves a purpose, whether onlookers notice or not. 

“People would be surprised to see that most of our books are in Russian, Raúl’s first language,” Colman remarks of the guest room closet turned walk-in library. 

“We wanted it all to feel like Alice in Wonderland,” Colman says. And a wonderland they did create. In Colman’s home office, there’s a hot air ballon and neon lights that contrast with down-to-earth Article seating and warm tones.

Code-switching has no place at Colman Domingo’s. “My home means freedom, it should always be a space where I can be whoever I am, whoever that is at any given time.” Cue the Gordon Parks and Kerry James Marshall books lining his office bookcase, or the framed print of James Baldwin standing regally behind a pulpit draped in a “God Is Love” blanket. “It’s all images of hope,” Colman says. “There’s something everywhere that reminds you of where you are in history and who did it for you…everything you need to know about me is in my home—you just gotta look, you just gotta ask.”

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