Beyoncé and Jay-Z Just Bought a $200M House That’s Not Everyone’s Idea of Curb Appeal

But we see its homey potential.
Lydia Geisel Avatar
beyonce and jay z portrait
Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

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There is no question that Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s latest real-estate purchase was expensive. The couple just bought the priciest home ever sold in California, dropping $200 million on a compound in Malibu that’s just steps away from the ocean. The real debate? How homey it actually is. So far, Reddit users have compared the massive complex to a “fancy high school,” the “Avenger’s headquarters,” and LAX. The sheer size of the place is hard to wrap one’s head around (it’s 40,000 square feet), but we’re guessing most people are taken aback by the ultra-minimalist design: It’s essentially all concrete. (Catch a glimpse of it here.)

The mind behind the building, Tadao Ando, is known for the impressive concrete structures he’s built across the globe. But the Japanese architect doesn’t just like to use the material because it happens to be resistant against fire, rot, and weathering and is a naturally cooling surface—he gravitates toward concrete because it’s a part of our everyday lives. “I believe that the emotional power in architecture comes from how we introduce natural elements into the architectural space,” Ando previously told Architizer. His work has caught the attention of other A-listers who have a thing for vast, Brutalist spaces, including Kim Kardashian, who released her own line of pricey bathroom accessories made out of concrete last year. 

When you’ve seen as many homes as we have, you realize that concrete is only as unapproachable as you make it. Sure, fill a house built out of it with gray furniture and a steel staircase and it’ll come off cold, but warmth is achievable. Here are a few easy ways we’d ensure their new residence reads less like an airport terminal and more like a retreat. 

Introduce Color

concrete tiled kitchen
Photography by Veerle Evens for

Myth: Concrete comes in gray and only gray. Truth: In tile form, at least, it can be pigmented to give it funky Rubik’s Cube vibes, like in this kitchen designed by Rhonda Drakeford. 

Bring on the Glass

Large skylights and floor-to-ceiling panels help bring you closer to sunlight and nature, whether that’s in a bedroom or in a detached sauna, like the one at Magdalena Wosinska’s desert getaway. In completely closed-off areas, antique light fixtures will lend a sense of delicacy to the supersturdy material. 

Soften It Up With Marble and Wood

The floor tile in this Melbourne bathroom is a direct nod to the home’s austere facade, but the milky white backdrop of the marble counters and grainy oak-wood vanity doors make it look suited for a luxe hotel.

Get Creative with Your Landscaping

plants on roof
Photography by Read McKendree

Topping the roof with greenery is one way Beyoncé and Jay-Z could bring their exterior (literally) to life. Robert McKinley added textured grasses to his concrete bunker-turned-bungalow pictured above and it’s giving vacation energy, not town high school. 

Lydia Geisel Avatar

Lydia Geisel

Home Editor

Lydia Geisel has been on the editorial team at Domino since 2017. Today, she writes and edits home and renovation stories, including house tours, before and afters, and DIYs, and leads our design news coverage. She lives in New York City.