Brittny and Jenson Button’s careers are nothing but the product of hard work. But for the former professional model and 2009 Formula 1 World Champion, their new Palm Springs vacation home is the epitome of coincidence. “We were in Palm Springs for a weekend and almost immediately felt that the people, the place, the architecture [were] all so incredible,” explains Brittny, who recently married Jenson. “We decided it would be a great place to own a house. But when we looked at the market, we noticed nothing.”
That changed when Brittny reached out to a group of new moms on social media. (The couple have two parents.) “After someone put out feelers, someone showed us a new listing of a modern Spanish Revival home,” she explains. “We went to see it the next day and fell in love.”
While the duo’s primary residence remains in Bel Air, Palm Springs offers a much-needed escape from city life. “I love going out to the backyard, having a drink by the pool, and looking up at this almost otherworldly mountain range,” Jenson says of the nearby San Jacinto Mountains. “And since we don’t live here full-time, we get goosebumps every time we come back. This house centers us more than anywhere I’ve ever been.”
For Jenson, who was born and raised in the UK and retired from Formula 1 racing in 2016, Palm Springs has always had an idyllic association with American culture. “Where I come from, there was this mythical perception of the California desert,” explains the 42-year-old. “Now, after all my years of traveling the world and seeing what this area is all about, I’ve come to realize that you can’t find another place like this.”
The house itself was far from a turnkey purchase and instead required a major facelift. That meant stripping the staggering marble floor of the family room and the wood cabinets and back wall of the 90s kitchen—replacing the former with clean, uniform concrete and the latter with quartz. In the living room, an uninspiring fireplace was upgraded into an adobe-style hearth. In general, what was once an almost stuffy set of interiors has been transformed into a serene abode with a mix of old-world charm and new-world relaxation. In the end, that was exactly what the couple wanted. “I love being in these old Palm Springs homes and letting my mind wander,” Brittny says. “The conversations, the parties they must have had…”
While Jenson was in the back seat, his wife took the reins of the redesign process. During the overhaul, she found herself drawn to design as a profession. “Growing up, I always went to flea markets with my parents,” notes the California native. “I like to dig through things and find the unexpected… I like objects that show real craftsmanship.” But to really make the house fit their vision, the couple knew they needed a branch. Again, Brittny reached out to the same group of moms on social media to find an interior designer and eventually a new boyfriend.
“When I first met Jenson and Brittny [Button]“I was a little nervous because they’re celebrities,” explains Tanya Stone, founder and owner of Tanya Stone Interiors. “But they are such incredible people, so down to earth, so warm… They are the client you always dream of working with.” As Brittny’s vision became a reality in the architectural scheme of the renovated interiors, Stone helped refine the space with recommendations on materials and lighting. “I understood her perspective and she trusted my opinion,” Stone says. “During the pandemic, we worked on the house, which caused a lot of delay. But in a way it allowed us to really slow down, talk through the process and really get to know each other. Brittny has a keen understanding of balancing textures and styles, which really impressed me.” As a result of their collaboration in the Palm Springs home, the dynamic duo joined forces this year to create Stone & Button, a company specializing in the revival of Spanish-style homes.
“Neither I nor my husband had done anything like this before,” admits Brittny. “Nevertheless, we somehow made it work for a retired driver and former model. We are even a little impressed with what we have created in this house.” Like most things the couple has done in their lives, they aren’t the only ones impressed with the end result.