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Deeds and Dont’s

Inside stories behind area real estate deals

Good news! The spring selling season has racked up some impressive sales—at the top of the market anyway. According to the National Association of Realtors, sales of homes priced at $1 million or more rose nearly 4 percent in February 2011, as compared to February 2010. Indeed, California posted the highest price ever paid for a U.S. residence when Russian billionaire Yuri Milner bought a chateau-style mansion in Silicon Valley for $100 million. In Manhattan, another Russian paid $48 million for a 6,000-square-foot residence at the Plaza, the highest price paid for a condo unit on record in New York City. And we’re happy to report that high-end properties are selling well in Fairfield and Westchester counties too. For example, in the Belle Haven neighborhood of Greenwich—which has been called home by Paul Tudor Jones, Diana Ross and George H. W. Bush—a waterfront estate recently sold for $25 million after a couple of years on the market, first listed for $35 million. Near Conyers Farm in Greenwich, another newly constructed home finally sold for $14 million, after nearly 500 days on the market. And in Westchester, the $12.5 million paid for 100 acres in Katonah was all the buzz, thanks to the notoriety of sellers Peter and Paige Bluhdorn: Lawsuits claim that the socially prominent couple owe a chauffeur $170,000 in overtime pay and another $25,000 to the agency that says it placed a private chef in their home. As sales mount, so does news of exciting listings, from an English manor in Greenwich to a Georgian estate in Purchase. Here are the best of the bunch.

 


Fairbourne
$14,850,000
Greenwich

This circa-1919 stone estate, beautifully restored by the prestigious architectural firm of Austin Patterson Disston, now offers both Old-World grandeur and every modern amenity. On the list of posh appointments: a dining hall that seats 20; a luxe master suite with a private sitting room and balcony; and a 2,000-bottle, climate-controlled wine cellar. The 1.5-acre waterfront property is sited with views of Cos Cob Harbor and features an infinity-edged pool and a private dock. It’s listed with Robin Kencel and Lyn Stevens of Greenwich Fine Properties.
(203) 661-9200.

 


Belle Haven Compound
$10,750,000
Greenwich

Here’s a second Greenwich estate offering sweeping water views and a fabulous master suite, this one with a sitting room built into a turret, a private balcony and his-and-her dressing rooms and baths. Located in the prestigious Belle Haven enclave of Quarry Farm, the 11-room home sits on two acres, which feature a waterfall, a koi pond and, coolest of all, a two-bedroom guest cottage that was built 200 years
ago as the farm’s “counting house.” It’s listed with Lee Weld and Sharon Fogarty of Sotheby’s International Realty in Greenwich.
(203) 618-3173 and (203) 983-3811.
 


Purchase Manor
$7.9 million
Purchase, NY

Overlooking the grounds of the Purchase Golf Club, this newly constructed Georgian-style home offers almost 15,000 square feet of luxury. There’s a dramatic, double-height entry hall, a Christopher Peacock-designed kitchen, a mahogany-paneled library and a home theater. On the 3.3-acre grounds: a stream-fed pond, a Shoreline pool with a pool house that’s equipped with a kitchen and a bluestone terrace with a built-in grill. It’s listed with Susy Glasgal of Houlihan Lawrence in Rye. (914) 967-7680, extension 307.

 


Circa-1850 Antique
$1,195,000
Weston

Here’s a beautifully restored Colonial that has retained its antique charm, including vaulted ceilings, rustic beams and chestnut floorboards. The heart of the 4,821-square-foot home is the wonderful new kitchen that features a Sub-Zero refrigerator, a Thermador double oven and a Gaggenau six-burner cooktop, along with an adjoining walk-in pantry and a wet bar. In all, it offers five bedrooms and four bathrooms (plus one half bathroom). On the 2.38-acre grounds: terraces, stone walls and lush gardens. It is listed with Leslie Smith Clarke of William Raveis in Westport. (203) 571-0577.

 


Gedney Farms
$1,169,000
White Plains, NY

We hear that this cool circa-1927 residence is home to a jewelry designer. And it is indeed stylish throughout, with ornately patterned floorboards, gem-like newel posts adorning the gracious staircase, fancifully carved moldings and fabulous wall coverings and light fixtures. The 3,000-square-foot interiors offer a renovated, eat-in kitchen with a butler’s pantry, four bedrooms and two bathrooms (plus one half bathroom). Todd Goddard of Houlihan Lawrence in Armonk has the listing. (914) 406-0588.
 

Circa-1926 Estate
$4,995,000
New Canaan

Renovated and expanded in 2009, this red-brick Georgian sits on 10 private acres with
access to walking and horse trails in the adjacent 45-acre land trust. The gated estate greets guests with a gracious stone drive and front courtyard. The entry hall features a spectacular staircase with carved balustrades and pocket doors opening onto living and dining rooms.
In all, it offers four bedrooms and six bathrooms, as well as four fireplaces. On the grounds: stone walls, terraces, pretty gardens and a swimming pool. Mary Higgins of Halstead Property Connecticut has the listing. (203) 966-7800.

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