When Zoe Saldana isn’t in space, the Avatar star is relaxing at home in Beverly Hills with her husband, Marco Perego, and their three young sons. That’s why it was so important for her to create a space that was comfortable, inspiring, and interactive for her family. No room is off limits to the boys, and their garden is just one of the many places where Saldana teaches them the importance of caring for and creating things.
Her emphasis on a healthy life is why she partnered with Planet Oat Oatmilk as the brand brings three pop-up "Plan-Oat-ariums" to life across the country (the space-theme initiative is a nod to the plant-based product's "out-of-this-world" flavor). Architectural Digest was able to chat with Saldana as part of the promotion, and she dished about her lifestyle—and her interesting secret to affording expensive furniture pieces.
Architectural Digest: Planet Oat Oatmilk is used for cooking a lot. Are you a cook at home?
Zoe Saldana: I have to be. I'm a mom of three little boys. My husband and I call ourselves magicians because we have to know how to make everything, since they can be picky and we want it to be nutritious. So, having a product like oat milk that’s rich, creamy, and versatile gives me the ability to make everything from oatmeal to scrambled eggs and know that I'm putting in things that are only going to make their bodies better.
AD: Since you are health-conscious and loving plant-based products, do you have a garden at home?
ZS: We do. We have a little garden and we're able to grow small things. And with the kids, it gives them that experience of nature and growing. There's pride you take in that.
AD: I imagine you take pride inside your home as well. What’s your design style like?
ZS: Well, it’s traditional colonial architecture and inside is Italian ’60s modern.
AD: That’s an interesting combination.
ZS: Yes! We like buying things that were designed by amazing furniture designers or architects and then refurbishing them.
AD: Can you tell me about a favorite piece of yours?
ZS: We have a Gio Ponti dresser that we absolutely love. But, I have to be honest. What we couldn't afford, we were able to design with carpenters either in Italy or here in Los Angeles that have the art history to get inspiration from a Vincenzo De Cotiis piece and create a piece of furniture for us that we’re going to love to live with. I think because we're artists, it's very important for us to live in art as well. We never broke the bank to do that, though. We curated what we wanted.
AD: It sounds like you put a lot of thought into your pieces.
ZS: We waited and were patient. We enjoyed the experience of everything, like the fabric. There's also this old sofa bed that was called The Amphibian, and we were able to just acquire it on the Internet because we found an original and just refurbished it. Things like that are very important for us because we want our children to see that you can live really, really well with very little, as long as you put attention and care into what you're doing.
AD: So, do you keep them in mind when designing these pieces?
ZS: I wanted to make sure that in addition to everything being beautiful and affordable and super artistic, I wanted it to be child-safe. I have three boys and they're going to be jumping, ripping, and biting. I also wanted it to be durable.
AD: Do you have a favorite room in your house?
ZS: I think it's all the spaces that we created for our children. I grew up in that generation where you only had one room in the house that was for the kids and then every other room you weren't supposed to go in, because that’s where Grandma’s china was. I love that my parents raised us to be super meticulous, but I wanted our kids to live in their homes and understand why they needed to be careful and not have area restrictions. So, it's all the space that we created for them. It's their playroom, the family room, etc. That’s where we usually are every day playing on the floor, reading on the couch, or watching TV.
AD: And you’ve been on some pretty cool movie sets. Have you ever taken anything from set that's in your house?
ZS: No, I wish. I’m in like lavish intergalactic universes, so there's nothing that I would be able to take and put anywhere in my house.
AD: Lastly, besides your partnership with Planet Oat Oatmilk and filming Avatar, what other projects do you have coming up?
ZS: There's also my digital company called BESE. It’s where I tell tales of everyday Americans that have been left out of mainstream discourse for too long. And obviously I'm in space a lot.