Here's Why City Dwellers Have to Visit the Rockaways This Summer



The Rockaways Are a Top Beach Destination for City Dwellers Who Don't Want the Hamptons Trek

Can’t deal with Hamptons-bound traffic on the L.I.E.? Tired of the trudge to Jones Beach? The Rockaways—less than an hour from the city via the A train or ferry—are well on their way to becoming one of the most sought-after beach destinations for city dwellers. Seeking affordable waterfront property near Manhattan, NYC&G contributing editor Sharon King Hoge bought her Beach 26th Street bungalow in 2005. “The Rockaways have the same configuration as Miami Beach, with a bay between the beach and the ocean,” she says. “If the Rockaways were Miami Beach, every single one of the tiny lots would be worth millions. It’s flabbergasting.”

For Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, principal at Manhattan-based interior design firm BNO Design, the Rockaways are a little slice of heaven. Eight years ago, he purchased a condo near Beach 119th Street, not far from Jacob Riis Park, with his husband, Steven Wine, founder and creative director of ABYU Lighting. “Once you’re there, you feel like you’re on vacation,” he says. “It’s a small town with local flavor and interesting characters—kind of like Williamsburg on the beach.” Indeed, Insta-worthy spots like Rockaway Brewing Company, Boarders surf and skate shop, and new restaurants such as the Dropout and Whit’s End are making hipster inroads into the laid-back community, which first became a popular summer retreat during the 1830s. “The change is exponential,” says Patrick Flibotte, co-owner of five-year-old Sayra’s Wine Bar on Rockaway Beach Boulevard. “Every year something new pops up, and it just keeps getting busier.” Flibotte’s business partner and sister-in-law, Rashida Jackson, who grew up in Rockaway Beach and bought her parents’ home there in 2005, adds, “When we first opened Sayra’s, people were visiting for the summer. Now they’re here all year long.”    

The Rockaways Are a Top Beach Destination for City Dwellers Who Don't Want the Hamptons Trek

Prices are going up, too. According to Jonathan Miller of real estate appraisal firm Miller Samuel, the median sale price of $473,000 reflects a 27 percent increase from the end of 2016 to the end of 2017. But even if a buyer has the cash, it can be hard to break into the market, since locals tend to sell existing properties to one another. Now housing developments are being built to accommodate increasing demand from newcomers, including  Saltmeadow, a 60-unit waterfront rental property designed by CetraRuddy Architecture, which debuted in February with prices starting at $2,500 a month. But as the Rockaways become popular with year-round beach lovers, Jackson warns, these new residents need to remember that there’s always winter to contend with. “It can be really tough,” she says, “although there’s nothing like getting off the bridge and smelling that salt air.”

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
33 Crooked Mile Road, Darien, CT
Magnificent blend of classic Connecticut craftsmanship and style with the ease of contemporary living, filled with natural light and modern flow. Each space has been designed with exquisite attention to detail, from the intimate paneled library to the luxurious master bathroom with heated glass mosaic floor and elegant soaking tub. Set on a private cul-de-sac with a pool surrounded by beautiful gardens, enjoy privacy and serenity in a park-like setting only 5-minutes from Darien town and train.



View more details about 33 Crooked Mile Road

Edit ModuleShow Tags
20 Juniper Road, Darien, CT
One of the largest waterfront properties in Darien. Magnificent 11-room estate on 7.1 private acres looking south to Long Island Sound and north to Goodwives River and Rings End Bridge. The 8,300 sq.ft. home includes: great room with 12’ ceilings and 2 limestone fireplaces, gourmet kitchen with breakfast room, family room with stone fireplace. 10 sets of French doors to expansive flagstone terrace. 5 en-suite bedrooms with water views, 8 bathrooms, full basement with billiard room, astroturf play room, workshop. Includes a pool/spa, outdoor shower and dock and more!



View more details about 20 Juniper Road

Edit ModuleShow Tags
29 Barn Lane, Bridgehampton
Beautiful 6-bedroom, 6-bathroom home conveniently located between Bridgehampton and Sag Harbor. This 6,400 SF Dutch Gambrel home is the perfect place to relax or host family and friends this summer. 10’ – 11’ ceilings throughout main level including a designer kitchen featuring breathtaking stonework with Sub-Zero, Wolf and Miele appliances. The master suite showcases a luxurious bathroom. Finished lower level, upgraded construction features, and integrated concierge services by Chaloners make Barn and Vine the easiest home for you.

Barn and Vine

View more details about 29 Barn Lane 

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Unprecedented Compound, East Hampton NY
Featured in the Wall Street Journal Mansion section and the New York Post, this luxurious 23-acre compound minutes from East Hampton Village includes an approx. 18,000-sq.ft., 12+ bedroom main house, chic 6-bedroom former carriage house, and charming horse stables with paddocks and riding fields. The Cotswold-inspired main house with heated gunite pool, oversized spa, pool house, and hard-court tennis is framed by stone courtyards, covered arbors, and idyllic gardens.



View more details about this East Hampton NY Compound

Edit ModuleShow Tags
265 Thimble Island Road
Lifestyle & Luxury meet the sea in this 4 bedroom waterfront home with panoramic views of the Thimble Islands. This home embraces it’s surrounding & is the epitome of seaside elegance. The interior is caressed with charm & character. The walls of windows bring in the light of illuminating ocean sunrises & by evening the interior space is filled with picturesque evening sunsets. The lush side courtyard & wrap around deck both take on spectacular water views making this home the envy of the most rich & famous.

265 Thimble Island Road

View more details about 265 Thimble Island Road

Edit ModuleShow Tags
11 Musket Ridge Road, Wilton CT
Perched at the top of a roaring Silvermine River waterfall on almost 4 acres, the property spreads out into Wilton and New Canaan. Every inch of this home has been perfected to capture the timeless appeal of the river while exuding ultimate refinement and good taste. The architect-designed home captures river views and sounds, and almost every room opens to one of the magnificent decks or to a private balcony.

11 Musket Ridge Road

View more details about 11 Musket Ridge Road
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags