Everybody knows that cities like Los Angeles, New York City, Miami, and Nashville are chock full of celebrities and these locations are pretty easy to spot on a map. But where exactly is Ketchum, Idaho (you mean Iowa, right)? Has anyone heard of Chelsea, Michigan? Is Taos, New Mexico really a place you can visit? You might be surprised to know that these small towns and many others are home to some of the most well-known music and screen stars of our time.
While the glitz and glamour of a traditional Hollywood lifestyle suits some people, there are others that would prefer something a little slower paced and a little more remote. More and more frequently, celebs are trading in their penthouses for pastures and their skyscrapers for the big sky. It’s quite a shift, but there’s something to be said for the peace and quiet that comes with a small town when you have spent years in the hustle and bustle. And they all say they don’t regret their decision in the least.
From the mountains to the valleys, we have searched high and low for celebrities that live in what can only be described as a random town. You might better know them as “flyover states”. Keep reading to find out where Taylor Swift throws her epic summer parties, where Justin Timberlake hides out, and where Nicole Kidman (and hubby Keith Urban) is growing roots.
19 Bedford, New York: Bruce Willis Has A Sixth Sense When It Comes To Real Estate
Located in Westchester County, Bedford has been described as “low key but luxurious”. We don’t know about low key, but Bruce Willis is certainly living a life of luxury there. His five bedroom house includes a wine cellar that stores over 1500 of the finest bottles from around the world. Situated near Mr. Willis, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds have also purchased property.
With only a few places to shop for groceries, we assume on any given day the store looks more like a film set.
If Bedford keeps growing at this rate, it might overtake the other big name cities for most celebs in one location.
18 Austin, Texas: Elijah Wood Has A Home That Blends Right In
It is hard for us to imagine Elijah Wood living anywhere other than in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but reality has to overtake fiction at some point.
In 2012, Wood sold off his assets in Santa Monica and moved himself to Austin, Texas. The ornate details on Wood’s Victorian mansion match perfectly with the neighborhood it occupies, known as Bouldin Creek. It is one of Austin’s oldest neighborhoods and has remained the central point as the city has grown around it, so it is close to the downtown nightlife and relaxing parks.
No word on whether or not his neighbors ever ask him to perform scenes.
17 Big Sky, Montana: Justin Timberlake Takes The Scenic Route
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel have more than just a roof over their heads, they’ve got the entire big sky.
Timberlake, especially, seems to be enjoying Montana as referenced in his latest album, Man of the Woods.
The couple purchased an estate in the ultra-swanky Yellowstone Club within Montana’s Big Sky resort. The amenities are immense for anyone that can afford it, but completely worth it for Timberlake and Biel who wanted cleaner air for their child to inhale (as opposed to the smog of Los Angeles). While we can’t argue that fact, we do wonder if they ever miss the big city.
16 Austin, Texas: Matthew McConaughey's home is alright, alright, alright
Everything is bigger in Texas, including Matthew McConaughey’s homestead. The native Texan purchased an estate in 2012 just outside of Austin that is nothing short of amazing. Situated on nine acres and a lake sits Matthew’s 10,000 square foot place of residence.
The Spanish-themed home itself is an architectural wonder, including seven bedrooms, eight bathrooms, double-island kitchen, and multiple outdoor terraces to enjoy those warm Texas evenings. We don’t know what he paid, but we do know you can’t get all of that in a place like New York City (even if you are Matthew McConaughey) so we totally understand the move.
15 Omaha, Nebraska: Warren Buffett Keeps It Simple
You might be surprised to learn that the world’s richest man actually lives in a fairly simple home (at least more simple than we would have imagined).
In the suburbs of Omaha within Nebraska’s plains, Buffett lays low in his five bedroom house.
It wasn’t a random nor recent purchase, he actually bought the home for just over $30,000 in 1958 and considers it one of the best investments he ever made (of which we know he has made many). The home is now valued at $650,000, but Buffett has no plans to sell.
14 Westerly, Rhode Island: Taylor Swift Is The Literal Girl Next Door In This Small Town
Born and raised in Reading, Pennsylvania, Taylor Swift knows the ropes of small town living. After much musical success early in her career in Nashville, she decided she felt most at home in the Northeast.
She purchased a charming home (read: mansion) right on the ocean and fixed it up to be perfectly Taylor.
Her New England residence is known around town (and around the celebrity circuit) for epic Fourth of July parties. Her guests, which frequently include bestie Ed Sheeran, fit in well with the eclectic performing arts nature of Westerly, Rhode Island.
13 Charleston, South Carolina: Bill Murray Pours Coffee At His Co-Owned Spot, Harold's Cabin
Saddle up to the counter at Harold’s Cabin and you might be met face to face with Bill Murray. While he is thrilled to be away from big city life (and doesn’t shy away from saying so), he does still enjoy the attention of an adoring fan from time to time (he is known for photobombing unsuspecting tourists and is always happy to chat).
He is kind of the unofficial mayor of Charleston.
When not working on a film project, he splits his time overseeing Harold’s Cabin, a favorite local eatery, and the town’s minor league baseball team.
12 Kalamazoo, Michigan: Jack White Takes Floor To Ceiling Windows To New Heights
Taking what you know about Jack White, it probably makes sense that he would choose to spend his days in an obscure location where he can be alone with his thoughts. It might even make sense that he would choose to purchase a house without seeing it first.
That quirky personality is just part of what makes him, well, Jack White.
Located in the woods outside Kalamazoo, Michigan, White’s $510,000 home is a modern take on a mountainside cabin. He doesn’t believe in homeownership in the sense that most of us do and fully intends to pass the home and its stories along to someone else in due time.
11 Aspen, Colorado: Kevin Costner Enjoys Sweeping Views
Spend one day in Aspen, the state of Colorado’s playground, and you will fall in love with its beauty. That is basically what happened to Kevin Costner, who now calls it home (or at least one of his homes). Costner purchased the 165-acre ranch just outside of Aspen over twenty years ago and has thoroughly enjoyed the solitude (and ample fishing opportunities).
If you’re particularly drawn to the ranch, you can actually rent out the entire retreat for weddings and events.
Pro tip: don’t ask the booking agent if Mr. Costner will be there.
10 Chelsea, Michigan: Jeff Daniels Returns To His Roots
All roads lead home for Jeff Daniels. A man that one generation will remember for his place in Dumb and Dumber, another will remember for his music, and another will remember for his roles on Broadway and directorial contributions, Daniels has returned to his childhood home of Chelsea, Michigan. The theater company he founded in 1991, Purple Rose, is still going strong and he has taken the reigns back (at least in part).
In December, he will hit the stage at Purple Rose for an evening of songwriting. If you’re wondering, the woman down the street still remembers babysitting him.
9 Telluride, Colorado: Tom Cruise Settled Into A Cabin In The Woods
Tom Cruise cruised into town and didn’t leave without buying a $59 million mountain home, complete with a custom library. His Telluride retreat sits on nearly three hundred scenic acres and there’s not a bad view from any window in the house. The seven bedroom, nine bathroom house can comfortably accommodate family and guests but for those feeling cooped up there is more than plenty of outdoor space. The driveway alone spans over a mile in length and there are numerous trails connected just out the back door.
We just have to say that he definitely showed them the money (and that’s our only Jerry Maguire reference).
8 Middletown, New Jersey: Jon Bon Jovi Shares An Inside Look
Jon Bon Jovi is not living on a prayer, he is living in New Jersey near the beach (but that would not have been as good of a song so we are pleased those were not the lyrics).
Bon Jovi purchased a parcel of land in Middletown in 1995 and constructed a custom home for his wife and children in 1999.
The curtains and furniture are really great and very period specific, so anyone visiting is going to take a trip back in time. He also has a room (a man cave of sorts) dedicated to his music, which he had to start because his awards just didn’t flow with the theme of the house.
7 Lexington, Kentucky: Johnny Depp Follows The Brick Road Home
If collecting movie star memorabilia appeals to you, get in line to put a bid on Johnny Depp’s bluegrass farm (because living there would be the ultimate purchase for a fan). Born in Kentucky, Depp purchased the farm in 1995 to get closer to his roots.
He might even be seen cutting his own hedges.
He is now selling the property, which includes forty-one acres, a 6,000 square foot main house, a caretaker’s house, swimming pool, and barn with fifteen horse stalls. The property was listed last year and is still on the market, but buyers might expect a drop in price soon.
6 Taos, New Mexico: Julia Roberts Found The Ultimate Hiding Spot
Just over an hour from Santa Fe, Taos lingers in the shadow of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and nearby Rio Grande River. Its buildings have retained their adobe structure and its galleries pay homage to the work of local artists, many of which have been flocking there for years to capture the untouched beauty of the town.
If you think you see Julia Roberts somewhere near the art museum and have to do a double-take, you probably did. She and her husband live a happy and healthy life there away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
5 Salisbury, Connecticut: Meryl Streep Is The Talk Of This Sleepy Town
The townspeople of Salisbury, numbering just a few thousand, can say they knew Meryl Streep way back when. Fresh out of drama school and having no idea what to expect in her acting career, Streep landed on Main Street in Salisbury and proceeded to star in a number of plays that the town sponsored.
One of the most recognizable women in the world chooses to live in a town where everyone already knew her.
That was in 1975 and she still has a home there (and things look very similar to how they did in 1975). The Litchfield County, Connecticut lifestyle is obviously suiting her well as she continues to dominate the big screen and her advocacy work.
4 Jackson Hole, Wyoming: Harrison Ford Makes Us All Want To Cowboy Up
Classic Hollywood dynamic duo, Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart, have been long standing proponents of separating work and leisure, which means living nowhere near a film set. This has proven to be a successful venture and the two are making life out west look pretty good.
Their Jackson Hole home, nestled on 800 acres of land, embodies all the elements of Wyoming with a little Hollywood flair. There’s plenty of open space for any private planes to land and when you’re Harrison Ford, you have at least a few friends with private planes that want to visit.
3 Yellow Springs, Ohio: Dave Chapelle Is Chasing Waterfalls
Dave Chapelle kept us laughing for years and it’s easy to be a big fan of his. When he departed Comedy Central, we didn’t hear much from him. He eventually resurfaced in Yellow Springs, Ohio. Known mainly as a college hangout for students at Antioch, Yellow Springs is as unique as it is picturesque, especially around the old mill.
Those college kids might be lucky enough to catch some impromptu Chapelle stand-up at the local.
Chapelle publicly thanked his new Ohio neighbors (and their kind demeanors and nice smiles) slighting his old home of Los Angeles only slightly when he mentioned that it turns out it doesn’t need to cost $50 million to be happy.
2 Franklin, Tennessee: Nicole Kidman And Keith Urban Cozy Up In The South
Between the two of them, Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban have dozens of awards. We’re guessing they needed a place to keep all of those, so they purchased thirty-five acres in Tennessee in 2007 (though there were probably other reasons, including a desire for their children to have room to run around outdoors).
Their sprawling southern farmhouse features four bedrooms (one of which is a palatial master suite), but the acreage also includes a guest cottage and barn. Tucked away into the woods of Franklin, the home can’t be seen from the street, which means the couple’s private walking trails throughout the property remain private.
1 Roxbury, Connecticut: A Day In The Life Of Daniel Day Lewis
It’s just an hour away from New York City, but Roxbury, Connecticut seems much further. With nothing more than a gas station, market, and one restaurant for its 2000 residents, it’s a bit of a difference from its close neighbor, the Big Apple. That hasn’t stopped hordes of the biggest stars from making it their home over the years.
Arguably, Roxbury’s most famous resident was Marilyn Monroe who lived there from 1956-1961.
These days the locals are used to seeing recently retired actor Daniel Day Lewis meandering down the town’s winding main road.
References: Nicki Swift, Livability, Bob Vila, Cheapism, BBC