Denver Bronco Kareem Jackson’s Stylish Colorado Home
The NFL player was hands-on with the interior design of his 303 home
THE CLIENT: NFL player Kareem Jackson moved from Houston to Colorado three years ago to play defensive safety for the Denver Broncos. Jackson, who played with the Houston Texans for nine years, still owns a home in Houston, as well as one in Miami, but wanted a place in Colorado where his young daughters could stay with him during home games.
“When I came to Colorado, everything I looked at was so dated, and that’s not my style,” he says. “I’m more contemporary with a little bit of modern.”
So Jackson found an almost-fabulous spec house in Centennial that needed a fashion-forward infusion. He picked Studio Thomas to help him achieve the look he was going for and was hands-on with the design process. He frequently popped into the firm’s office to provide an in-person assist. “Maybe a little too much,” laughs Jackson. But this was his third time designing a home, and he knew exactly what he wanted.
THE TEAM: Studio Thomas Owner and Principal Designer, Kristen Thomas, and Design Director Heather Hill, helped Jackson turn the suburban estate into a chic, dialed-in showcase for his art and various collections.
“We work with a lot of NFL players,” says Thomas. “They are drawn to us because our design has a luxe feel. We also know that any time you work with professional athletes, their life can change within the season, so we have to be cognizant of that.”
Instead of redesigning a whole kitchen or knocking down walls, the design team updated features and finishes, modified built-ins and fireplaces, and brought in custom upholstered pieces to create a comfortable yet hip and modern home. “Kareem is well traveled and understands pop culture. We wanted to be representative of his interests,” says Thomas.
THE VISION: Jackson bought the 10,000-square-foot house in 2019 with a specific plan. “I wanted lounge areas with a hotel feel,” he explains. “You go into some of these hotel lobbies and see cool lights and great artwork … but I also wanted a homey feeling with a relaxed vibe.”
Thomas and Hill went with a super-stylish, classic menswear vibe—the result is a tailored, masculine feel. “In terms of color, we used neutrals combined with olive, rust, and navy. Plus, lots of white and cream,” says Hill. “Kareem loves white!”
“You want to have your guests see things they have never seen before.” — Kareem Jackson
THE SNEAKER ROOM: At first, Thomas and Hill wanted to turn a main-floor study into a playroom for his daughters, but Jackson asked for a shoe room (he already had found a storage system at The Container Store that he liked). “I’m huge into fashion and needed a pretty big closet—but it’s already full, so I needed one room dedicated just to my sneaker collection,” says Jackson, who has more than 1,000 pairs in Denver alone.
THE ART: “When Kareem was first showing us his art,” says Hill, “we didn’t know if all of the pieces were going to work, because each one was a lot more colorful than we would normally use, but his collection is very much a part of his personality. Fortunately, it worked out from a design standpoint, because the neutral furniture is complementary to his art and the color. It was a perfect marriage of the two.”
Jackson says his friend in Atlanta had been advising him to invest in the art world, and a few years ago he finally took that friend’s advice. “Now I’m knee-deep into it,” says Jackson. “I fell in love with art and purchase a new piece every two or three months if it really moves me.”
“Kareem’s pieces of art are so big and so pronounced that his home looks like an art gallery.” — Kristen Thomas
THE END RESULT: A spacious retreat for a busy professional athlete who definitely enjoys his downtime. His favorite room in the house? “It’s the whole lower level—my man cave,” he says. “I love the space and how it’s broken into different areas. There’s an intimate lounge area for conversations, but the TV side has a sectional sofa and bar area for entertaining. I just love the versatility of the space. It’s where us guys go to hide!”