It’s no wonder Alicia Keys and her husband, renowned music producer Kasseem Dean (aka Swizz Beatz), call their home “Dreamland.”
The sleek 11,000-square-foot residence with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean is quite literally a dream come true for the duo.
In the December cover story for Architectural Digest, the music power couple shared exclusive access to the home and told the amazing story of how they ended up with the property. For eight years prior to their purchase, Dean had used a picture of the home (which is rumored to be the inspiration for Tony Stark’s futuristic bachelor pad in the "Iron Man" movies) as his phone's screen saver.
“I was low-key manifesting it,” he told the magazine.
And low-and-behold, one day, their real estate agent called them with the news that the home was for sale. “When your screen saver comes to life, it’s unbelievably crazy,” he said. (BRB — we’re going to download our dream home as wallpaper right now!)
The cliffside mansion in La Jolla, California, was designed by Wallace E. Cunningham and is a work of art in itself. “Every wall in this house, every bit of it, is sculpture,” the designer told the publication. “These beautiful S shapes, these chevrons going down the hillside, curvatures flying in space over your head. It’s more akin to sculpture than architecture.”
Working with interior designer Kelly Behun (whose work Dean admired), the couple made the home more family-friendly and less like a place a “superhero would live in” by bringing in warm elements like wood, Moroccan wool rugs and cozy upholstered seating.
The home also features art from the couple’s extensive collection, which totals more than 1,000 pieces and focuses on African American and African artists — many of whom they personally know.
“I love that 90% of the art in the house is by artists who are now our friends,” Dean said. “We’ve broken bread with them, they’ve partied at our house, they’ve spent the night. It’s not transactional for us.”
Keys likens the vibe of their home to their music. “When you hear a song or something we’ve produced, the foundation is to make people feel good and feel loved. That’s what our art is about,” she said. “When you come into our home, that’s exactly what we want you to feel. We want you to feel loved, to feel safe, to feel relaxed. We want you to have a great meal. We want you to feel inspired.”
Read the full story and see more pictures of the couple’s “Dreamland” in the December issue of Architectural Digest.