From PEOPLE Magazine Click to enlarge
Ever since 2006, when professional ballroom dancer Cheryl Burke cha-cha'd her way onto the second season of Dancing with the Stars and claimed her first mirror ball trophy with Drew Lachey, followed next season by one with Emmitt Smith, she has lived her life like a quickstep. "From the moment I moved to Los Angeles when I was 21," she says, "I was living out of a suitcase in an apartment for four years." Even so, Burke, 26, wasn't going to rush one of the biggest moves of her life-buying her first home. "It took me a year and a half to find the one that's right for me," she admits. "It's a huge investment, so you have to make sure you feel comfortable where you're living, and that it has a good vibe." Burke found her dream house in a three-level, three-bedroom '50s-style home in the Hollywood Hills. "I really just wanted a view and to be in a nice location," she says. "But I love the open space and all the windows and being able to see the lights at night-it's peaceful."

To help her create her ideal bachelorette pad, Burke turned to interior designer Katelyn Coscarelli-Schag. "She wanted to go for contemporary, sexy chic," says Coscarelli-Schag, who helped Burke choose the gray-blue-aqua palette on the walls, and the home's modern furniture. "She's working so much, it's important for her to come home to a space that is inviting and warm but also has a great entertaining space." Admits Burke: "Before I had this house, I used to always go out. Now I like to have dinner parties and barbecue and sing karaoke here." Friends and fellow Dancing pros Mark Ballas and Chelsie Hightower often drop by. "Derek Hough came and played Rock Band, and he likes to put up disco lights," says Burke of her other costar. "It's nice, especially during the season, when you don't want to go out. I bring a lot of the group here, and we just drink some wine and have fun and do what dancers do, dance all night!" And although her suitcases are still lined up underneath her spiral staircase, ready to whisk her out of town on a moment's notice, Burke smiles as she surveys her house. "It's just refreshing when you come in here," she says. "You feel like you've achieved something in life. I've worked hard for this."

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