When The Big Bang Theory's Kunal Nayyar moved into a Nichols Canyon compound with his wife, Neha Kapur Nayyar, in late 2011, he was overwhelmed by the idea of decorating a 5,000-square-foot hacienda surrounded by jungle—or as close to jungle as one gets in Los Angeles. Just one month before moving in, the couple was married in an appropriately elaborate seven-day ceremony in India. For a city boy leaving his Hollywood bachelor pad to cohabit for the first time with his new bride (Neha, who was relocating from New Delhi), this was new and rather frightening territory. An anxious Kunal wondered, “What will we do with this space?” Fortunately, he says, “Neha being very cultured and having a very good eye, she saw this vision of the place.”
The previously long-distance couple had spent nearly a year seeing properties of all styles before being struck by the 1948 Spanish hacienda. Neha—a former Miss India and the designer behind luxury fashion line Hensely, which launched last fall exclusively on Moda Operandi—saw past the home's Baroque fountains. The façade's unique shade of pink drew her in, as did the property’s somewhat triangular shape. “In India there’s this thing called gou-mukh. It’s very auspicious if the house opens into the back like a triangle—it’s very good in Indian culture,” Neha explains. “You walked in and just felt you were in this sanctuary.”
The couple entertains weekly and has an open-door policy, quite literally. There’s a breeze blowing through the house at all times. Plus, “you don’t know who is going to show up at what time and want to eat or drink something,” says Kunal, who has played astrophysicist Rajesh Koothrappali on The Big Bang Theory since 2007 (the 11th season will premiere on September 25).