When designing the seventies ranch house in Lockhart she calls Casa Suerte, estate-sale devotee Celeste Quesada selected objets d’art that “conjure magic”—from animal masks to intricate textiles given to her by her tías. An Austin-born artist, real estate agent, and community activist, Quesada bought the 1,959-square-foot rambler in 2021 with her husband, Grammy-winning Latin funk-rock musician Adrian Quesada, a native of Laredo. With two teen daughters, the Quesadas call nearby Austin home, but Casa Suerte is their escape. They also rent it out to friends and other creatives as a retreat, she says. “Guests enjoy it as a sacred space and summon their own luck, fortune, and blessings within a small Texas town.”

Many of the gems here—prints her mother picked up in Guatemala, an antique velvet chair from France—were gifts from Celeste Quesada’s wide web of close family and friends. “I come from a long line of pickers and yard salers. I mean, that’s our generational wealth.”

Although Quesada did not work with an architect or interior designer, she doesn’t see Casa Suerte as her project alone. She attributes much to the tradespeople, whom she calls “the team,” who worked on the year-long renovation. “I think because of my event-production background, I’ve always felt the real rock stars in the room were the plumbers and the electricians. All the people who helped me paint or Sheetrock—they are the artisans of these homes.”

Raised by a young community-activist mom, Quesada is naturally wired to give back. In her mid-twenties, she cofounded Cine Las Americas, an Austin-based film festival; now in her fifties (she calls herself a “midcentury mujer”), she has decades of experience advising arts-centric nonprofits. Her real estate practice focuses on helping musicians and artists find a home in the competitive Central Texas market. “I’m a homemaker, but not in the Barbara Billingsley kind of way,” she says. “I create spaces.”

An abbreviated version of this article originally appeared in the August 2023 issue of Texas Monthly with the headline “House of the Spirits.” Subscribe today.