If you Like us,
why not LIKE us?

Not now, thank you I already Liked Health Beauty Life
  • home
  • home

Mario Lopez: At Home With The Family

watch video
MarioLopez At Home with the Family

By: Greg Root for Health Beauty Life
Photos: Allen Carrasco & Lisa Perkins
Wardrobe stylist: Julie Kozak
Wardrobe assistant: Monica Abercrombie
Wardrobe provided by : Gap
Stylists: Lihn Tran, Rodney Rinks, Lara Kay

Mario Lopez is a busy man.

When he’s not anchoring the daily entertainment news show, Extra, he’s hosting MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew, and you can hear him evenings on his nationally syndicated radio show on MYfm. He’s a prolific author with three fitness books and two children’s books to his credit. He is an accomplished film producer, a successful stage and screen actor, and a gifted athlete who’s parlayed his well-tuned physicality, dazzling smile and dancer’s grace into an astonishingly successful career.

In fact, 20 years after the popular sitcom Saved by the Bell made Mario Lopez a household name, his star is still very much on the rise. But that’s not all. He’s an excellent amateur boxer, an HBO Boxing commentator and a journalist-documentarian, having recently produced and narrated the highly acclaimed film documentary, Champs. Introduced and enthusiastically received at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, the film is a thoughtful prospective on the rich history and colorful characters who inhabit the world of professional boxing. In typical Mario Lopez fashion, the film touches and explores the inner struggles, challenges and victories that we all must face to experience success.

He cares about his roots and proves it through philanthropic works in support of causes that are near and dear to him. He remains connected to his friends and close to his family and is well regarded throughout the entertainment industry and beloved by his crew and co-workers. He’s a dedicated family man devoted to his 1 ½ year old daughter, Gia and his beautiful fiancée, Courtney Mazza. We recently had the opportunity to visit with Mario and his family at his hillside home just outside of Los Angeles, California.

At Home

The residence is a handsome Spanish Colonial estate with generous vistas, gracious landscaping and plenty of room for the family, and their beloved French bulldog, Julio. Beautifully decorated with art and furniture that reflect the family’s rich Latino heritage, the living rooms are warm and welcoming with Spanish tile floors, graceful arched doorways and a large, well-appointed kitchen. The home’s comfortable patios take full advantage of lush landscape and expansive city views. After spending time with the family, Health Beauty Life publisher Patrick Dockry, sat down for a casual conversation regarding Mario’s flourishing career, future projects and intensely busy life.


Mario Lopez on Extra Q&A with Mario Lopez

PD: Thanks for inviting us into your home to meet you, your beautiful fiancé, little girl and “your other child,” Julio.

ML: Oh yeah, our dog, Julio Caesar Chavez Lopez…thank you.

PD: You are on such a busy schedule. How do you do it all?

ML: I’m very blessed to be doing all the things I’ve got going on right now, not just professionally but personally. I have a great life, a beautiful girl, a baby and a great dog.

PD: It’s all part of it, right?

ML: Yeah, it’s all part of it. I’m working on Extra and on the nationally syndicated radio show. We just finished the 7th season of America’s Best Dance Crew, and I am producing some projects for ABC Family, and potentially some other things for Disney, and I’m doing a cartoon. Those are the best projects, doing things that your children will enjoy.

PD: Wow, that’s so true. What’s the cartoon about?

ML: It’s a daytime show on Sprout TV called The Sunnyside up Show. It’s kind of like The Today Show for kids, and it’s something Gia loves and watches every day. It’s her favorite. I tweeted the producer that it’s Gia’s favorite show and randomly ran into him in New York. He approached me saying he had something that might work and I knew Gia would love it. So I got involved. They are creating a spin off to the Sunny Side up Show called The Chica Show and they created a character that is one of her friends, a little chicken named Stitches who looks like me. It’s very cool. I love doing things for Gia and for children, like my children’s books, Mud Tacos and Mario and Baby Gia.

PD: That’s very cool. How did that start? What was your inspiration?

ML: I write what I’m passionate about: food, health, fitness and family. I wrote the Mud Tacos series with my sister, Marissa, to pass along to our kids to tell about our lives growing up and encourage kids to use their imaginations and to flex their creative muscles and celebrate our Latino culture. I noticed that reflected in your home.

PD: There is a lot of Mexican and Spanish influence in your home. There’s a definite vibe and theme that you’ve created throughout your home.

ML: It’s an Old Spanish house built in 1928 that we love. The Spanish decor goes with the house and it’s part of my culture, which I like. Also, the house is tucked away, but not too far from LA. It gives you a respite from the hustle and bustle of LA. It’s only 15 or 20 minutes from work, but it seems like I’m really far away when I’m here. It’s the best feeling in the world when I can kick back at home with the family. It’s rare that I get to spend a lot of time here, but I do get the mornings before work. And I get to play with Gia, and we all eat breakfast together, and I’m usually home in time to tuck her in. On the rare times that I do get to hang out here, I like to chill out and be still. Again, that’s rare. I definitely want to make the most of it when I do get the chance to just hang out. I love being home with friends and family, entertaining, hosting dinner parties with carne asada bar-b-que. Good friends and food is very much my favorite way of hanging out and entertaining.

PD: The house is really cool. On our tour, we saw the guest house too. It’s nice that you have a place for family when they visit.

ML: My parents are a couple hours south in San Diego. So they come up often and spend time with us and with their granddaughter. I know you have so much going on and you are really into fitness.

PD: What is your secret to getting all of your work and projects in and keeping such a great body?

ML: Thanks. Well, for me, health and fitness is a top priority in my life because I like to de-stress in the gym and work out hard, but I like to say work out for sanity not for vanity. It helps me chill out and gives me more energy and complements every aspect of my life. It helps me release tension and deal with stress. I like to mix it up too. I like to box, run marathons, run triathlons and keep my muscles guessing. When the weather’s nice, I like to swim. That way I never get bored. The key is consistency and to never get complacent.

Fitness PD: As we talked about, you’ve always been into fitness. Have you ever had a weight problem?

ML: Well, I was kind of a fat baby but I started getting hyper as a young boy and once I started running around and burning energy, I got thin and I’ve remained thin. I do, however, have some family members with weight issues, and it’s a problem within my culture and in general, here in America with obesity rates being what they are. So I wanted to help my family by introducing them to living a healthier lifestyle. You can’t eat tortillas and butter all day. That will weigh on you, literally. Mexican food is delicious but can be prepared in a way that is not so unhealthy. I love food and embrace food but it’s all about moderation and it’s all about a healthy balance of food and nutrition.

PD: So, you’ve changed traditional recipes in your books to make them healthier but still retain all the flavor.

ML: Yeah. Again, I want to embrace food, and I want people to know the recipes are really easy…I’m no Rachel Ray, but I do know how to cook easy to prepare, healthy meals.

PD: Do you like getting in the kitchen?

ML: Yeah, when I have the time, I like to try new things. I like to be with the family in the kitchen. Aside from loving to eat, I think it’s kind of a lost art of sitting around the dinner table and having conversations with the family. I think it’s never too soon to introduce your child to what a sensible plate looks like and to be involved in the kitchen. We talk about all that stuff in the book.

PD: That’s great. You know, there are surveys that support the fact that families that spend time together in the kitchen are leaner. That’s kinda’ weird how that works.

ML: I agree. And I think people are scared for the most part because they think they have to starve themselves or cut out eating what they love, which isn’t necessarily true. I have three rules about eating that I think are really important: Every plate should have a combination of protein, carbs, and fat. Try to eat frequently throughout the day, kind of like feeding a furnace to keep your metabolism burning. Practice portion control. Keep away from giant portions and eating frequently through the day helps to do that.

PD: I understand that sometimes when people get stressed, they tend to overeat. Have you found that to be true?

ML: I know people react to stress in different ways. Personally, I tend to not eat when I get stressed because I am thinking about so many different things. You want to get into certain habits that make it so you’re not even thinking about what your plate should look like.

PD: Do you ever have any trouble putting on weight or are you lean?

ML: Not really, and I never tried to get big. When I was a kid, I spent a lot of time lifting weights and was into seeing how much I could bench press…that sort of thing. But as I got a little older, I realized I just wanted to be fit and. Then I got on TV, I never wanted to look like a meathead or be too thick. So I started getting into different types of activities outside the traditional gym, like swimming and boxing.

PD: Your professional career has had quite a few facets: including acting and dancing. How did your career lead to you hosting EXTRA?

ML: I started hosting when I was about 18. I have always been social and I like people. And I am a good listener and I genuinely react. Plus, I am actually interested in people.

PD: Were you always a social person?

ML: Oh yeah, I always got in trouble for talking too much in school.

PD: What is your favorite kind of interview, red carpet, sit down, etc.?

ML: Red Carpets are my least favorite interviews! I love to see all the people but those situations are a little chaotic and not very good for actually listening to people. My favorite type of interview is where you sit down to have a little one-on-one time. To actually talk to someone and get to know them.

PD: How did your reality show Saved by the baby affect your lives. How did that work out for you and Courtney?

ML: It was fun. It was about being a first time dad. Rather than following the events on a flip cam our an IPhone, I thought it would be good to capture the whole thing and do it with production and find out what was going to happen and it’s something that we can always look back on and keep forever. We’ll show it to Gia when she gets older.

PD: Personally, I loved the show. What was the reaction of your fan base?

ML: It was great. My fans got to see a different side of me. Who knows, we may do something similar in the future.

PD: Wow, that’s great…So what are your plans for the future?

ML: Well, aside from Extra, the radio show, which keep me really busy, one of the projects I’m producing is the boxing documentary that will come out pretty soon and I have the cartoon coming out as well. Lots of projects that are keeping me really busy. And I’ve got some other projects in the works that we are waiting to announce, but I am blessed to say that things are going well and…

PD: …And you have marriage on the horizon too.

ML: Yes. At the end of the year, we are getting married.

PD: Wow, are you excited…got it all figured out?

ML: Well, Courtney’s handling the wedding itself. She’s the quarterback; I’m more involved in the reception and in charge of the party to make sure that everyone has a good time and that it is going to be all right.

PD: I’ll bet it feels like you guys are married now. Will the marriage change anything for you?

ML: It will only change life for the better. It will only change it for the better and I’m excited for everyone to have the same last name.

PD: Any more kids on the horizon?

ML: I hope so…I hope we will be blessed with more kids.

Thanks so much for taking the time to sit down with us, Mario. You are everything I expected you to be.

Visit Mario Lopez’s Official Website



By: Greg Root

Photos: Allen Carrasco

Posted in: CelebrityFeaturedSummer 2012
Tagged with:

One comment on “Mario Lopez: At Home With The Family
  1. Gia says:

    Why have a fame whore?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *