Melanie Griffith’s Beloved Aspen Home
A Q&A with the actress about the Aspen aerie she and her family have cherished for 15 years
"The minute I saw this place and walked in, I was in love."
That’s how actress Melanie Griffith describes her cherished Colorado home, where she’s lived and raised a family for 15 years. The A-Lister’s Aspen aerie is currently on the market, now that her children have flown the nest.
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Daughter of actress Tippi Hedren and mother of Fifty Shades of Gray leading lady Dakota Johnson, Griffith is essentially Hollywood royalty. Her critically acclaimed films include titles such as Body Double, Something Wild, and Working Girl, which earned her a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress and won her a Golden Globe. While she is no stranger to the luxe life, Griffith prefers the serenity of the mountains versus the hustle and bustle of the city—and her Aspen retreat has served her well.
The star’s five-bedroom, six-bathroom home sits on two acres of secluded and rustic wilderness, on the backside of Aspen Mountain. On top of stunning views, meticulously curated furnishings, and a 9,000-bottle wine cellar, Griffith will most miss the adventures and memories made there with her three children.
We caught up with Griffith minutes after completing her scenic morning hike to learn more about the home, what makes it so special, and whether or not she’ll return to Aspen.
CH&L: What made you choose this property?
Griffith: I had lived here with my first ex-husband Don Johnson, down the valley in Woody Creek. Later, in 2002, I brought [then-husband] Antonio [Banderas] to Aspen, since he had not ever skied before. He fell in love with it. We had been staying at The Little Nell or The Ritz, and Antonio said, ‘Go buy us a house!’
I looked at 20 places that were outrageously expensive, huge, and not built for family life. And then the last one I looked at was this gem. The minute I saw this place and walked in, I was in love.
It’s an absolutely beautiful 15-minute drive up the mountains from town—up or down. All I see from my windows are mountains. I don’t see any people, houses or anything. The views are simply breathtaking.
It’s just so family-oriented. I love the way the kitchen is situated with the dining room and living room, with the huge fireplace in the middle. It’s all beautifully done in wood with big, high ceilings and beams.
Who designed the interiors?
I did it myself! I love it. Everything is quirky; no room is cookie-cutter. I call it ‘funky elegant.’ It’s all very eclectic, unique, beautiful, and meaningful. Each piece tells a story. The table is [repurposed from] a door from Spain. I love the 1930s leather chairs.
The couple I bought the house from—two very special women—made all the tiles in the house. The kitchen tiles were handmade, in the downstairs room, which is Dakota’s bedroom. A lot of the furnishings are pieces I bought with my kids or when they were little, so they’ve known all of this for a long time.
What’s your favorite décor item?
The lamp hanging over the table in the dining room [seen above]. It’s made out of crystals and has such great energy. It’s an amazing, magical piece.
How did you and your family spend your time here?
We have so many great memories here of all kinds of adventures! Snowmobiling, biking, fishing—we do it all. We’re big skiers in the winter and big hikers in the summer. The outdoor fire pit is perfect for mountain evenings, especially when there’s a full moon.
Have you encountered any wildlife?
There are animals all around here. Sometimes we have bears—not so much anymore. They were always good to us; we never had a problem. We’ll see elk, too. This morning there was a deer outside my door. It’s really special.
What are some other cool features of the home?
There is a full 9,000-bottle wine cellar. It’s downstairs and gorgeous. I used it for wrapping the kids’ Christmas presents because it’s a great hiding spot! There is also a beautiful dining table down there for enjoying nice, romantic dinners.
A wooden sign above the right window reads, "Cowgirls are forever"
You’ve loved Aspen for a long time. Are there plans to come back?
I don’t need a house here anymore. I’m currently leasing a home in L.A., and I think I’ll stay there because that’s where my kids are. I’ll always come back to Aspen, though. I love it so much.
See the home listing and learn more about the property here.