Hairstylist-to-the-stars Leanne Citrone taps Lauren Soloff to design a picture-perfect family getaway
“What is Lake Arrowhead?” Leanne Citrone remembers asking when her brother invited her to join him on a real estate reconnaissance mission one day over Christmas break in 2015. After a winding, queasy sojourn through the snow, the British co-owner of celebrity-adored Andy LeCompte Salon fell under the spell of this unassuming resort town in the San Bernardino Mountains.
A follow-up visit with her husband, Michael, and their kids, Luca and Willow, sealed the deal: Come January they were calling a 1940s cottage set three houses back from the lake their own.
Citrone enlisted close friend and interior designer Lauren Soloff to help transform the 1,200-square-foot cabin into a home. “There’s a realness to Leanne—she isn’t part of a flock; she doesn’t need to be where the rest of the girls are going,” says Soloff, who credits Citrone as the client who “put me in a position where people knew what I did,” after the pair collaborated on the hairstylist’s Hancock Park abode.
Soloff added stained wide-plank oak flooring throughout, sanding down the house’s original wall paneling to mute its high-shine varnish. She hung works of art from Citrone’s considerable existing collection, such as Chuck Close’s painted portrait of Philip Glass and Alison Van Pelt’s Spotted Jack Rabbit oil on canvas, and filled the modestly sized rooms with spare furnishings: a vintage European console in the living room, custom wood bunk beds in the kids’ room, and English schoolhouse-style chairs from Brenda Antin in the kitchen, which Soloff opened up and updated with white paint, new appliances and open shelving lined with Citrone’s collection of Japanese pottery by artist Akio Nukaga.
Four mattresses, dressed in contrasting striped bedding from Ikea, are lined up flush in the attic to maximize sleeping accommodations when friends join for the weekend, a frequent occurrence. “The kids love to do parkour there—the house is so old you feel like they’re going to come crashing down,” Citrone says, her unplaceable accent the product of growing up in the north of England and coming of age in Florida, before settling down in L.A.
Describing her family’s city home as “a mishmash of chaos, children and our mini bull terrier, Lottie,” she contends that the cabin is visually quieter: “Leanne’s look is very clean and purist, with an easiness to it,” Soloff confirms. “There’s an appreciation for Old World and a depth to everything.”
Life here is also authentically layered: Days are spent hanging out on a friend’s boat or hiking to waterfalls, rock formations and hot springs along the Pacific Crest Trail, followed by stops in the village for tater tots at The Lakefront Tap Room Bar and Kitchen or pizza at LouEddies. The evenings “come early and dark,” Citrone says, and the family cozies up together to watch movies.
“It’s sort of exactly what you’d think it would be,” she adds—and also much more. “I mean, my husband and son have taken up mountain biking—and we have kayaks now,” she offers in a tone of complete wonder. “We were not that way before.”
Photography by: SAM FROST.
Written by: MELISSA GOLDSTEIN.