Restaurant openings have been a rarity in the covid-era, but against all odds, Nick Martschenko is opening his third concept in New Canaan this month. Nick, Executive Chef and Owner, is known for South End, a comfy yet lively more upscale tavern, and Uncorked, more of a bar and snacks scene and a great place to meet friends. His third, and newest concept, The Back End (TBE for short) is a modern twist on high-end Mexican food – and as always, in a sophisticated yet welcoming setting.
Although Nick had already picked up the space behind Uncorked, pre-covid, and didn’t really have immediate plans to open up his newest restaurant, he knew as outdoor dining began to boom that he wanted to provide another option (and more outdoor seating!) to the town… so he quickly got to work developing a space that’s sure to brighten anyone’s day. The new space is in the shared alleyway behind Uncorked and the two restaurants share some outdoor seating and a brand new outdoor bar… Nick says “I’m also going to save some marriages! If you’re sitting outside, you’ll be able to order off of either of our separate kitchen’s menus.”
The shared outdoor space is inviting, contemporary, and private – it feels more like you’re at a young hip beer garden, reminiscent of New Orleans or Austin, than a sit-down restaurant in the middle of New Canaan. And yet, TBE will still offer a carefully curated menu, “when people think Mexican fare they think Tacos… we have that, and they’re delicious, but mostly we’ve developed an array of dishes that change things up a bit; definitely the kind of thing you can’t find anywhere else around here. I wanted to offer something new”, said Nick. Two large bay windows will allow bartenders to serve both indoor and outdoor diners, and a new custom-designed tent structure and heaters will make this a space everyone is sure to frequent even through the winter. The bar program and menu that Nick, a classically trained Culinary Institute of America chef (by the way), has designed is not your pub fare.
CLASSIC GREENWICH HOUSES
$55 from Elm Street Books in New Canaan
Published by the Monacelli Press, featuring 200 stunning images from homes designed by Charles Hilton. This book showcases detailed interiors, elegant exteriors, and expansive landscapes, Classic Greenwich Houses is an ideal resource for design professionals, admirers of traditional residential design and anyone planning to build their dream home. This thick and attractive book transports its reader into a world of luxury making it a great conversation piece and a fantastic book to complete your coffee table.
3. THE GLASS HOUSE x HERMES SCARF
$395 - available only from The Glass House Design Store
This limited-edition 90x90cm silk twill scarf is a collaboration between Hermès and The Glass House. The scarf features a design by the late American artist Elaine Lustig Cohen (1927–2016) for Hermès of Paris, Inc, based on a large-scale 1967 painting by the artist. In 1955, Cohen began her design work in New York by extending the idiom of European modernism into an American context for her diverse clientele of publishers, corporations, cultural institutions, and architects. Her first client was the renowned architect Philip Johnson (1906-2005) – creator of the celebrated Glass House (1949) in New Canaan, Connecticut. Only a limited number remain, and all proceeds benefit preservation of The Glass House.
$295 (value of $370)
This ageless skin duo helps fortify the skin and restore resilience. Great for all skin types.
This power couple works together to rejuvenate and restore an ageless look. Elixir Vitae provides a visible volumizing effect with natural redensifiers and targets severe signs of aging with neuropeptides to restore a plump, youthful appearance. Crème Riche is a rich night cream that helps regenerate and fortify with avocado peptides, vitamin E and F to reveal smooth, supple looking skin.
Elixir Vitae (10ml, 0.33 fl. oz.)
Creme Riche (50ml, 1.7 fl. oz.)
5. CARTER & CAVERO
TASTE OF THE MEDITERRANEAN HOLIDAY GIFT SET
This holiday season will be like none other… Carter & Cavero’s packages send a message that is both personal and caring. Since 2007, their international team has been dedicated to searching out and sharing some of the world’s finest olive oils and vinegars from select award-winning producers in Italy, Greece, Spain and California. During these unprecedented times, our homes and kitchens have become our special havens. This holiday is the perfect time to add to that sense of well-being by giving a Taste of the Mediterranean gift set.
This three bottle gift set is bursting with the flavors of the Mediterranean. The tastes of sweet basil, ripe meyer lemon, and our all time fave - fresh garlic - round out an amazing collection.
Available at: carterandcavero.com
6. THE WITHERS WINE CLUB
Give the gift of a Withers Wine Club membership!
Level 1 - one case per year (6 bottles in Spring, 6 in Fall) - $500/year
Level 2 - two cases per year (1 case in Spring and 1 in Fall) - $950/year
Level 3 - four cases per year (2 cases in Spring, 2 in Fall) - $1,900/year (with free overnight shipping)
All levels of the club are curated by The Withers owner, Andrew Tow. Cases include new and Library releases, plus special wines only for Wine Club Members.
If a few bottles makes more sense for you, we’ve got a special discount code for B&NC Mag readers to buy directly from the Winery: “BNCM” for 15% off.
7. 8KT DIAMOND RING
Bid on this elegant 8KT Diamond ring featured in our upcoming Fall 2020 Auction Est.: $15,000-20,000K. Round cut diamonds flanked by two trapezoid baguette cut diamonds set in platinum, marked with maker’s mark. 10% Iridium Platinum. Dimensions: 1 (d) cm (.5 [d] in.). ring size: 5 US. overall weight: 9.19 g (.3 oz)
8. PATEK PHILLIPE - POCKET WATCH
Available from Collecatbility for $8,500
The perfect gift for the person who already has everything. Made exclusively for Brazilian retailer Chronometro Gondolo & Labouriau in 1902, this 18K rose gold timepiece is in a league of its own. From 1872 until 1927, Patek Philippe’s partnership with Chronometer Gondolo created some of the most beautiful pocket and wristwatches at the dawn of modern watchmaking. For serious collectors or someone with a love of watches this handmade treasure has an enamel dial and an exquisitely engraved case.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
BMW 2021 X7 – MSRP $84,795 from BMW of Ridgefield (203) 244-2899
Lease for $919 Per Month, $3,900 Down, 10,000 miles per year, 36 Month Lease
“*Discounts are for BMWFS Lease & Finance customers only and includes all BMW incentives. X7 lease is with $3,900 due at signing, excludes 1st Month Payment, Security Deposit, Bank Fee, Document Fee and Any Applicable Taxes. 10K Miles per year for 36 Months (all i3 leases 24 months). Must see dealer for more details. Offers are valid until December 31.”
From Porsche Danbury
Porsche 911 -
starting at $99,200
Porsche Turbo -
starting at $170,800
Porsche Turbo S -
starting at $203,500
The Porsche 911 has powerful twin-turbo six-cylinder horizontally opposed engines in the rear of the car, and high-precision Porsche Doppelkupplung (DPK) transmission providing high level sports car performance.
The contemporary interpretation of this timeless design would make an amazing holiday surprise for a special someone in your life.
By: Michael Kaplan
MARTHA STEWART has been America’s lifestyle icon for four decades, and she’s just as relevant as ever. Broadcasting her new Martha Knows Best show on HGTV from her 153-acre home and farm, Cantitoe Corners, on the Bedford / Katonah border, hundreds of thousands of people commenting on her posts, still publishing Martha Stewart Living in print and online, and always selling a new book and fresh line of kitchen, bath or garden products…She’s the doyenne of domestic, the professor of proficiency, her honor of the home. She’s been an influencer since before there were influencers.
Explaining her career, Martha recounts: “I was lucky to choose an area of focus - the home and living - that’s infinite and involves everyone. I was a stockbroker and I probably could have been a CEO of some big company, but I chose to do what interested me. I published my first book in 1982, and it’s only grown over the years. I think of myself as a teacher, and in order to be a good teacher you need to be constantly learning at the same time. I’m always curious and inquisitive. I think people see that I try to learn everything about what I do, and they trust me to make good choices and help them live a healthy and wholesome lifestyle.” She continued: “I’ve also always been a student and an early adopter of technology. I got my first laptop in 1989 and I realized immediately that new media and the internet would change the way we communicate. I’ve tried to stay in front of that, on TV and online. It’s allowed me to keep growing my audience and my demographic. As times have changed, and particularly now, while we’re all trying to live with covid, and all trying to improve our houses and maybe grow some of our own food, more and more men, and younger generations, are more and more interested in things inside and outside their home. My audience used to be women 38 to 65, but now everyone is focused on living a good and healthy lifestyle.”
The reality is that Martha Stewart is really busy being Martha Stewart. Quite contentedly, her job is her life, and her life is her job. Life imitates lifestyle.
Despite quarantine, and with only a skeleton of the large staff that normally operates Martha’s greenhouse, gardens, stables, coops, kitchen and home, this year Martha managed to produce a 6-episode first season of HGTV’s Martha Knows Best that aired this summer, and an 8-episode second season that’s currently available. She has Martha Stewart Wine Co., a curated selection of wine, handpicked and approved by Martha, that will arrive at your doorstep - as if Martha brought it over herself- and she has the Martha Stewart Collection created for Macy’s and she’s collaborating with California Closets on a modular collection meant to solve a wide range of household organizational needs. She’s got Martha & Marley Spoon, a food kit delivery service with an emphasis on healthy meals that has Martha’s recipes included. And then she’s most excited about her new line - of all things - of CBD products, developed with Canopy Growth. She explains: “I’m not a big taker of anything, but my friend Snoop, and the folks at Canopy, got me into it. I learned everything there is to know about CBD, and I worked with Canopy to make these great CBD products. The gummies are the most delicious. I take them and I love them. They help me to go to sleep. And I hear from friends that I’ve given them to that they have all sorts of benefits. And it’s not just my old lady friends, it’s kids in their 20s and 30s.” Martha is, famously, best ‘buds’ with Snoop Dog. It gives her street cred to sell CBD and other risqué products and reach a broader audience on social media. And it leaves everyone wondering about this odd couple.
Martha’s manse is set on the Bedford Riding Lanes Association trails, between the Cross River Reservoir Recreation Area and neighbors Ralph Lauren, Caramoor and the John Jay Homestead. She rides a couple of times a week, for what may be the most private time she gets to enjoy. “I’m a long time member and supporter of the BRLA. I’ve had my groomsman map the entire thing on GPS and I’ve been out on every mile. BRLA is a great organization and the riding trails are a real asset, I highly recommend. I love getting out with some of my friends and going for a ride. One of my favorite things is to ride over to the Farm Market at John Jay Homestead on Saturday mornings to pick up some artisanal foods and get a smoothie or a fresh glass of cider with some tasty baked goods.”
Martha knows every boldface name who lives around here, and is an encyclopedia on who’s done what in life and business. She wouldn’t dish on exactly who else is out on the trails with her, saying that “a lot of the folks around here want to maintain their privacy”, but she did say she sometimes sees Pound Ridger, RIchard Gere, and “his beautiful family”. (Gere popped in for a visit on Season 1 of Martha Knows Best.) Martha did tell us she’s a fan of The Horse Connection, an equestrian shop in Bedford Village that was actually the original Bedford Tack Store, that boasts a who’s who clientele amongst the local horsey set.
For the holidays, Martha says: “I always do a family dinner for Thanksgiving. We’ll do that this year. Then we usually throw a big holiday party. I think we had 300 people last year. I guess we won’t be doing that this year. And then for Christmas, I usually take my 2 grandchildren traveling to exotic places. They’ve been to six continents and we have Antartica planned. We’ve been to the Galapagos, which is just wonderful, and to Africa, and we just have the best time. But with Covid, we’re not going to be able to do any of that. Like everyone else, we’re trying to figure it out. I think maybe we’ll do something here at home, and I’ll get all the kids baking, making some ice cream, and working with the hens, like old times. My new cookbook, Martha Stewart’s Cake Perfection, which is my 97th book by the way, has a yummy chocolate cake I’ll definitely use with the kids.”
And for a fantasy dinner party for four - able to invite any three guests, dead or alive - Martha invites, “Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Hilary Clinton, and, because I’d like another strong woman to make it a perfect group, Margaret Thatcher. I’d serve a terrific dinner and we’d have a fabulous conversation. And I’d give them some of my CBD gummies with tea and desert, so they’ll go home happy and ready for a good night’s sleep.”
By: James McCown
Some cities have residential architects whose work becomes legend—Addison Mizner in Palm Beach, Philip Trammell Shutze in Atlanta and Rosario Candela in Manhattan are just three who come to mind. Once this iconic status is established, residential real estate brokers are able to brag “This is a Shutze house” or “This building was designed by Candela.” Not only does the association with a famous architect provide a hint of glamour, it usually adds monetary value to the real estate as well.
Maybe it’s time to start talking about “Charles Hilton Houses” in the Greenwich area. A sumptuous new monograph, entitled Classic Greenwich Houses: Charles Hilton Architects, published by The Monacelli Press, chronicles this designer’s body of work in and around Fairfield County. It firmly establishes Hilton as a prominent practitioner of the New Classicism, an architectural movement begun in the late 1960s as a foil to the then-ubiquitous modernism. The book is also a good read and is richly illustrated.
Hilton’s oeuvre includes both from-the-ground-up new houses and additions and renovations to existing ones. So deft is Hilton’s work that it’s hard to tell which is which—indeed the additions are seamless while adding their own hints of the clever and whimsical. He is not interested in copying verbatim famous houses, explaining in his introduction:
Even in our most classical designs we respect the past without replicating the archetypes of historic houses. Our clients deserve more. They live in the present, and they rely on our creativity and ingenuity to design houses that honor tradition but are fully equipped for the present and the future.
The book features houses in three distinct styles: Georgian, New England Shingle and French Norman. It opens with an aerial view of a Greenwich waterfront estate that’s straight out of The Great Gatsby. Hilton acknowledges that the site “was both its greatest asset and its greatest challenge, as coastal construction also comes with a staggering number of regulations and requirements that are not for the faint of heart.” He freely acknowledges borrowing from McKim, Mead & White’s nineteenth century shingle house work, considered the apex of the style.
In the chapter titled “Lakeside Georgian Estate,” a gargantuan house is given a sense of human scale, as described by the architect: “We engaged in sleights of hand, with the utmost attention to proportion in order to unify and modulate the generous size of the home.” He also points to architect David Adler’s 1928 Crane estate in Ipswich, Massachusetts, as inspiration. (The Crane estate is now part of The Trustees, a Bay State organization that preserve’s the Commonwealth’s architectural patrimony.)
One of the refreshing things about the tone of the book is that Hilton makes no apology for the fact that his clients are rich. In fact he revels not just in their money but their cosmopolitan tastes, to wit: “They are extremely well travelled and regularly bring us fresh ideas from around the globe . . . [they] typically have the resources to pursue the very highest level of architectural design and construction.”
As was the case in the Victorian and Edwardian eras, Hilton’s houses are peppered with exotic flourishes that keep them from feeling stale and academic. The ceiling of a pool pavilion utilizes Japanese joinery; a weathervane atop a cupola looks like a Chinese dragon; a round foyer’s floor is an exercise in precise curvilinear geometry inspired by Michelangelo’s Campidoglio in Rome.
As much as I admire the Georgian work that predominates in the book, I have two personal favorites. One is the French Norman Residence that could be the setting of a fairy tale. In fact the architect states that he and his clients took a “research trip to France” (quelle vie!) and “found that Marie Antoinette’s hamlet at Versailles could serve as a touchstone for our plans.” Hilton’s medieval French post-and-beam façades are accurately and impressively rendered.
The other project that caught my fancy is the most modest abode in the book—a townhouse in downtown Greenwich described as “steps from the train station, movie theater, shopping district and fine restaurants.” Here too, Hilton uses his skill by making a rather large house appear much smaller than it actually is. This results in a “four-story home that is cozy enough for two and also accommodates grown children and grandchildren who often visit from out of town.”
It may be decades before Hilton’s houses in and around Greenwich achieve the iconic fame of Mizner, Shutze and Candela. But in the mean time we have a book that is not only filled with compelling ideas about traditional design, but is pure eye candy as well. It makes for a nice addition to any design library.
By: Drew Bordeaux,
B&NC Mag Arts & Culture Editor
Within moments of meeting Clare Murray, you learn that the Community Center of Northern Westchester is so much more than a food pantry. A space that appears so small from the outside actually houses a grand operation with intention behind every inch: neatly-organized packages of school supplies in the front entry, a room (the size of most small boutiques) packed with clothing resources, a well-stocked pantry with animated volunteers, and buzzing offices. Each employee who greeted us, like Murray, displayed a mix of discipline and joy, reflecting the gravity of their work and the confidence of knowing they’re making an important difference.
Similar to the center she runs, Murray’s small physical stature is a sharp juxtaposition to the size of her impact, and her humble manner belies the true scope of the massive enterprise she leads. According to Murray, “Here at the Community Center, there are seven of us, but we have an army of volunteers. At least 500 different individuals get involved each year. And without whom we couldn't operate... they are the lifeblood of the center. We serve the whole of Northern Westchester. There’s 38 different towns that we're trying to broadcast our services to so that those in need know of us, and know where to turn, but also those who want to get involved know where to and how to.
Murray grew up in England, and worked as a physical therapist there and in Canada for 22 years before moving to the United States with her husband. Shortly after the move, she was drawn to the CCNW by a newsletter she kept on her desk. One volunteer shift turned into two, which inspired her to apply for the role of Operations Manager, a role she held for 7 years before her current 5 year tenure as Executive Director. “I guess what inspired me,” Murray said, “One, was the mission. And two, was the immediate feeling of being at home. Just in those first two shifts of volunteering. It felt so extraordinarily comfortable. And three, I think it drew upon, I hoped that it would draw upon, both the organizational and human services skills that I had through my work in the medical field, as well as some of the business I had learned in terms of working in the retail and wholesale field. And it seemed like a good fit.”
With her team, Murray has a unique ability to creatively synthesize and transform the support they receive from the community into meaningful programs. For example, when they noticed an influx of boutique attire in the 200,000 lbs of clothing they received annually, they saw an opportunity to leverage the value of those pieces for the greater good. The result became a shop on Katonah Avenue, run by Ann Hardy, that generates revenue through designer pieces that is then routed back into the core mission of the organization. In Murray’s words, “We do get quite a lot of very, very high-end, hardly used clothing that we felt, if we could make money out of it, it would help us to buy food for the food pantry. So when we get that Prada jacket, and if we could sell it for $100, $100 worth of food is more important than one jacket for one person.”
Another program, an entrepreneurial sewing and design course, was launched to help those in need of income who lacked transportation or child care. With machines donated by the community, “The sewers are making their own products, and then we have a corner in the shop where they're able to sell their products, so they're directly earning an income, as they're learning and as they're honing their skills. We teach them the basics of entrepreneurship, marketing skills, as well as the real physical sewing skills.”
Rounding out the full spectrum of wraparound services provided by the CCNW, Murray spoke of the educational programs provided. “We have an array of educational programs to help [with] employment opportunities. We teach English as a Second Language, basic computer skills. We have job counselors who are volunteers to help...with the applications, to prepare for interviews, to guide you in terms of choices and availability of opportunities. And then we teach basic skills of construction, and OSHA training, OSHA certification… and we have restaurant skills. And we teach entrepreneurship, and money management, and all sorts of things to try and help people, to say, ‘Okay I'm in this spot, now is there anything I can get help from to get out of this spot.’”
Murray’s spirit of innovation and collaboration is best serviced by the emphasis she places on effective communication. Whether it is outreach to those who have visited in the past to check-in on their needs, coordinating the efforts of partner organizations, or leading fundraising initiatives, it is clearly her personal mission to ensure that no stone is left unturned in her service to the community. This unwavering discipline, however, is complemented by her deep appreciation of serendipity. Tales of wedding dresses appearing in the perfect size, or Thanksgiving turkey donations hitting the target number just in time, hold as much weight and gratitude as the carefully orchestrated efforts of her team. For Murray these moments go hand in hand with the work and goodwill of the community.
When asked how she stays motivated through times as challenging as this year, Murray shared, “There's a story about somebody walking along a beach and all the starfish have washed up out of the ocean, onto the beach, and they're all dying. And then there's a chap walking along throwing them in one by one. And someone else says, ‘Well why would you even bother? How can you make a difference? You know, there's thousands on the beach.’ And he said, ‘Well it mattered for that one. And it mattered for that one.” As he's throwing them back in. And I think by keeping focused on whatever we do, one by one, we are helping.”
*Funding and donations from our community are essential to keep this resource available for our neighbors in need. To make a donation or get involved with the Community Center of Northern Westchester, please visit: https://communitycenternw.org/
In 2012, the CDC reported that since 1991, high school age drinking and driving across the U.S. had dropped by 54%. The CDC then issued a 2015 report that described the percentage of teens who said that they had at least one drink per month had dropped from 50.8% in 1991 to 32.8% in 2015.
More recently, in July 2019, The American Academy of Pediatrics’ journal, Pediatrics, continued the statistical good news when it reported that overall alcohol use amongst 8th, 10th and 12th graders was in decline.
Parents, educators, coaches and all of our communities should quietly celebrate, and maybe even offer some pats on the back, for decades of consistent messaging. D.A.R.E., crashed cars displayed in front of high schools, more widespread education about legal consequences of DWI, and even that old, unsung hero, assemblies, all no doubt contributed to the drop in teen drinking.
As a reminder, Connecticut and New York are both zero tolerance states when it comes to drinking and driving under the age of 21. If a Connecticut driver is under 21 and operates a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .02% or above, the Superior Court will treat the driver like any other DWI. Meanwhile the Connecticut DMV will go even harder on the underage DWI; it will suspend an underage driver’s operating privilege for 8 months at a minimum and require an ignition interlock device for that entire period. In New York an underage driver who drives between .02% and .07% BAC will pay a fine and suffer a six-month driving privilege suspension. Above .07%, New York law will prosecute the underage driver as any other DWI would be prosecuted.
It is essential that adults understand the profound role that we can all play in continuing the trend toward decreased underage drinking. What we do and say about alcohol, how we treat alcohol in our homes, and our own habits separating drinking and driving, are models for our children. We must educate ourselves about the susceptibility of the teen brain to being attracted to the risks of alcohol and other substances, as well as its neurological vulnerability to addiction and damage.
We have the power to educate our children, including high school students, about alcohol and substance abuse. We have the power and the privilege to safeguard our youth, while listening to them and meaningfully engaging with them. This means dinners at home, being available for questions...and the rescue pick-up from a party that’s gotten out of control.
Ultimately, CDC and other agency statistics are just that: statistics. Behind those numbers are many saved lives and brilliant futures, preserved by families, neighbors and community.
By: Joyce Corrigan - B&NC Mag Fashion Editor
James Taylor sings:
...That applies double for the watch collector! These horologists get great pleasure from the minute and measured workings of their tested and true timepieces. Their watches are a style statement. And, right now, fueled by a younger audience and active online trading, there’s a real investment opportunity.
Though Covid may make time stand still in some respects, the vintage watch market is as hot as ever. Maybe too much time on their hands has been one reason collectors have been buying more for their wrists, but a growing acceptance of the internet as an exchange has been a primary market mover. It used to be that big ticket timepieces were only sold at auction houses; like when Christies sold Eric Clapton’s very rare Patek Philippe Ref2499/100 with perpetual calendar, chronograph and moon-phase for $3,635,808. But this past June, a circa-1970 Paul Newman’s circa-1970 Daytona, with a Panda dial, set a new web record when it brought $500,000 in an online sale (albeit that the online sales are run by Sotheby’s). Sotheby’s drops new pieces for sale online at Watches Weekly. A new generation of online collectors is ‘buying without trying’, poised to jump if Jennifer Aniston decides to sell her vintage diamond Cartier or any watch from LeBron’s collection comes up for sale, and willing to trust in the authenticity of the watch’s bona fides.
Tania Edwards has been the Marketing Manager for Christie’s Luxury Watch Division, and Marketing Director and VP at Patek Philippe USA. At Patek, she played a prominent role in developing the iconic campaign: ‘You never actually own a Patek, you merely look after it for the next generation’. British-born and still flaunting a perfect accent, Tania moved to Bedford with her husband and children after 9/11, and has stayed ever since. She’s a real expert when it comes to buying and selling in the multi-billion dollar vintage watch industry.
Tania now works with Collectability, an online resource and retailer specializing in pre-owned Patek Philippe. She explains: “Online trading is a factor, but the real thing driving the vintage watch market is value. Demand is growing and supply is diminishing. It turned from being just a haute hobby into a cash-worthy collectible in the 1980s - after the so-called ‘Quartz Crisis’, when the widespread availability of very inexpensive and efficient quartz watches threatened the very viability of mechanical watches...but increased interest in the most valuable vintage watches. At the same time, prices for new rare watches skyrocketed, making the $5,000 to $10,000 you can pay to buy a used Patek seem a bargain. Demand has grown steadily ever since, and exploded of late, so vintage watches have been and should continue to be a great investment. People crazy about vintage are insatiable. They want to know the origins of the model, the creator, the mechanics, the history, the provenance. Sometimes the story is key. We just got in a beautiful Patek pocket watch owned by Albert Russel Erskine, the President of Studebaker from 1915 to 1933, that will attract collectors. I think it was Oscar Wilde who said ‘No man is rich enough to buy back his past’, but plenty can purchase a piece of history with a storied vintage watch”.
At 27, Bedford resident Cooper Zelnick has already amassed an impressive collection of more than 60 vintage timepieces. “I got interested when I was only about twelve. I wanted a Rolex, but my budget was about $800. I started to investigate the auction and private dealer market, learned that vintage watches really can be affordable, found what I wanted, and realized that vintage watches were more valuable than they were priced. To me, the older watches are actually better looking, and they have interesting stories. I love history, and a vintage watch is even more than owning a piece of the past. It’s time travel for me. The mechanical genius that went into watchmaking in the 50s and 60s is incredible! The 1950s Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Futurematic was the first self-winding wristwatch without a crown. I like that nostalgia!”
Cooper has even started a business, Cloister Watch Co., to offer historic wrist watch customization. “As much as I love each and every one of my watches, I really wanted to do something to make them more unique. I like to be a little bit different. I took a 1963 Rolex Datejust 1601 that I never wore, and worked with a reliable craftsman to refinish the dial in what we now call ‘Just Orange’. I liked it so much it became my everyday watch, until I ran into a friend who is a fellow vintage collector on the street in Manhattan. I proudly told him that I’d built it myself and that it wasn’t for sale. Fifteen minutes later, I left with a check, and he with my Just Orange Datejust.”
For another client who came to him with a Jaeger Futurematic, Zelnick amalgamated the best elements of each iteration of that model, deleting the word ‘automatic’ and replacing it with ‘Futurematic’ in a stylized art-deco font that was found on the later models, and replacing the words “Power Reserve” printed on the sundial with a name significant to the new owner. Also the words “Power Reserve” traditionally printed on the subdial were replaced with a name significant to the client. “The watch became his,” says Zelnick,” not the previous owner’s.”
Zelnick says the favorite watch in his collection is the Jaeger LeCoultre Master Geographic that his grandfather wore every day and gave to him. The watch he would most like to find, well… “that’s easy; one of the seven Patekn Philippes that Lyndon Johnson ordered from Tiffany’s when he was in the Senate, and had inscribed with the golden rule on the dial”. Edwards said “singling out a favorite watch is like singling out a favorite child: I love them all equally! If pushed, I would say the first Patek Philippe I bought myself 26 years ago. I felt so proud to have accomplished my dream of owning one.” She says her dream watch is a 1980s Men’s Patek Ref3940 with perpetual calendar.
For more affordable options, Edwards recommends: the Breitling Navitimer, an aviation chronograph introduced in 1952 which was capable of calculating a flight plan and that is still a favorite of pilots; the Breitling Top Time, worn by Sean Connery playing James Bond in Thunderball, and; variations of Jaeger-LeCoultre’s 1960s icon Memovox, the first automatic watch with an alarm function - each of which can be found for under $5,000.
“You buy what you like, what looks good on you, the watch that speaks your style, and a watch you think will appreciate in value. I know a guy who lives on Succabone Road who bought that house with the proceeds from a Patek his grandfather had purchased as a young man. It doesn’t happen every day, but it does happen.”
On a recent sunny Sunday in the Tow’s beautifully landscaped gardens, I met with Andrew and his wife Kathleen, to find out how he's managed to live at his life-long home with his family (the Tow’s three adult children are now out of the house) at the same time as he manages to run a growing Sonoma Valley winery…and to get to taste some of his recent releases to see if they warrant the accolades of past vintages.
Q. Before we get into a discussion of the winery, I have a few questions about your connection to the local community. As I gather, you’re still living in your childhood house in Pound Ridge?
A. Yes. Although I was born in Brooklyn, my family had this house as a weekend retreat. We moved here permanently when I was 12, and I attended Fox Lane Middle School and High School.
Q. Any particular notable memories from growing up here?
A. Well, I’m in love with nature, so I spent a lot of time with friends in the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, fishing in local ponds and streams, and looking for critters in the woods. And I remember the many activities that my parents always had going on at this house. My mother was involved with the local garden club and ambulance corps and liked to have her fellow volunteers over to where we’re sitting right now. I’m still close with a few friends from middle and high school and we reminisce often.
Q. What are some of your favorite local restaurants or other hangouts?
A. We go to or grab take out from the Inn at Pound Ridge, Elm, South End, North Star and DiNardo’s. All have generously supported The Withers.
Q. What was your reason for starting the winery and how has it gone?
A. Although my parents weren’t into wine, I’ve always enjoyed it. About 18 years ago we met winemaker David Low, of Anthill Farms, whose wines I really liked. We became friends, and in exchange for me teaching him to fly fish - one of my passions - he taught me how to make wine. I made about 1,000 bottles at David’s winery, purely for personal consumption and to give to friends. Everyone really liked it, so I eventually took it around to a few local and New York City wine shops and asked them what they thought. Everyone was positive, including wine distributor Michael Skurnik. So, in 2013, with Low and another friend, Tyson Freeman, who sources the grapes and assists Low making the wine, I launched The Withers. I got some financing from a few early partners, including friends from my life spent loving music, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi and all three Followill brothers, who are the Kings of Leon. They are all wine lovers and big supporters of our label.
The wines are made using grapes carefully selected from premier vineyards in high elevation, cool climate sites in Anderson and Green Valleys, Mendocino County, the Sierra Foothills and the Sonoma Coast. We strive to make wines that are food-friendly, understated, low alcohol, yet deeply flavored. We accomplish this through minimal intervention in the cellar, allowing native yeast fermentations that include whole clusters, and then age the wine almost exclusively in neutral oak so as not to manipulate flavors or aromas. We bottle without fining or filtering, again preferring to avoid altering the wines in any way.
We were “discovered” when the Wall Street Journal proclaimed our debut Rosé as one of the best of the year just after we launched in 2014, which put us on the map almost immediately. Other highly regarded critics then found, and started writing about, our wines as well, culminating with The Withers being named one of the Top 100 Wineries. More recently, The Wall Street Journal wrote a feature on me and our story, and then named our Rosé #1 in the U.S. just a few months ago. We now produce about 5,000 cases a year and are distributed in 31 states and 3 other countries. We have a robust wine club and website on which anyone can purchase our wines. I don’t have any employees, so I split my time between Pound Ridge, California, and visits to all the states in which we distribute.
Q. And what does the name of the winery and drawings of a horse on all the labels signify?
A. The withers are the point on a horse’s body from which their height is measured. I loved the lyrical sound of the term, but also the connection to measurement, and the aspiration for height in both winemaking and equestrian pursuits. It’s really a tribute to Kathleen and our daughters Olivia and Grace, who are all horse lovers and active riders. Kathleen, and occasionally our children, are ambassadors for the winery. The horse depicted on our label is based on a painting by a young local artist, Alanna Purdy, and it’s of our 24-year-old Connemara pony, named Mr. Burgess. Kathleen still rides him almost every day.
Q. How have coronavirus and the recent spate of California wildfires affected winery operations?
A. Before the advent of coronavirus most of our sales were to the wholesale market for restaurants and wine shops, with the remainder coming from website sales and wine club memberships. As you can imagine, this year has been a real challenge due to widespread restaurant closures and limited in person retail shopping. Thankfully, we have a loyal and growing base of customers purchasing wine directly from the winery, and this saved us during the pandemic. We have had wildfires near our vineyards and winemaking cooperative three out of the last four years, but luckily we’ve been spared, and all our grapes have come in safely and looking perfect.
Great, now let’s taste a few of your current releases!
2019 El Dorado Estate Rosé ($21)
Reminiscent of a French Bandol wine, it shows a bouquet and taste of ripe peaches and watermelon with a lemony acidity in its long finish. More than just for sipping, this wine mates well with fish, like tuna and swordfish.
2018 English Hill Pinot Sonoma Coast Noir ($51)
It has a floral bouquet and full, rich taste of cranberries, plums and notes of herbs in its smooth finish. Great with a wide range of fare, from turkey and chicken, to steak and lamb.
2016 Claire’s Vineyard Mendocino County Pinot Noir ($47)
This powerful wine, named in honor of Andrew’s mother and because he felt it was a one-of-a-kind special vintage from a great vineyard, shows a bouquet and taste of ripe black cherries with hints of rosemary. Serve it with grilled fish, baked chicken and even pork chops.
2017 Mr. Burges - El Dorado ($43)
A Syrah Blend made in the style of French Northern Rhône wines, it has a bouquet and taste of cassis and cherry, with undertones of ripe raspberry, in its dry, smooth finish. Perfect to marry with pasta with red sauce, duck and lamb.
2017 In Hand Mouvèdre – El Dorado ($24)
This is a second label from The Withers. It’s a very fruity wine, with flavors of strawberry, raspberry and ripe plums, that makes a great accompaniment to pizza, hamburgers, ribs and even Buffalo wings.
2018 Peters Vineyard Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($41)
Made in the style of a great white Burgundy, this wine shows a bouquet and taste of ripe apples and lemons, and has a lively finish that will pair well with sushi, salmon and shrimp.
These wines are a great value and, most important, a pleasure to drink. They’re relatively low alcohol, yet full of flavor, and each is truly representative of the varietals they’re made from. In general, they mate well with a wide variety of fare, and have a long-lasting, pleasant finish. In particular, I found the Rosé and English Hill Pinot Noir both bursting with flavor that last and lasts. The Withers should please the novice looking for a great bottle with dinner and the seasoned enthusiast alike - without severely denting the wallet.
Prices are the suggested retail price for 750ml bottles. The Withers wines can be found direct from the winery at www.thewithers.com and locally at Pound Ridge Wine & Spirits, Wine Connection, Stewart’s Wine & Spirits. Siemer’s, Wine Geeks, Harry’s, Greens Farms Wine & Spirits, Bedford Wine Merchants, Fine Wine Company of Westport, Rye Brook Wine & Spirits, Westchester Wine Warehouse, Zachy’s Wine and Liquor, Inc, Village Wine and Spirits Sleepy Hollow, Grapes the Wine Company, Balducci’s, Putnam and Vine, and Citarella Wines & Spirits among others.
December 16th marks Beethoven’s 250th birthday. While Covid-19 silenced the many concerts planned for his anniversary year, it hasn’t silenced his music, nor muted his message of endurance and hope. One hears it very clearly in the 9th Symphony with its rousing “Ode to Joy,” but also in the “Moonlight” Sonata, a work that transitions from a funeral march to a defiant rebirth. Patricia Morrisroe’s novel “The Woman in the Moonlight” is the story of Beethoven’s relationship with Countess Julie Guicciardi, the dedicatee of that sonata.
By Patricia Morisroe
Countess Guicciardi became Beethoven’s piano student in 1801. She was 19, and so beautiful people referred to her as La Bella Guicciardi. He was 29, and the foremost piano virtuoso in Vienna. They met when he was struggling with his hearing loss. In a letter to a friend, he referred to her as a “dear, enchanting girl” and confessed that they were in love.
Recounting Julie’s first visit to Beethoven’s apartment off the Graben...
Lucy and I climbed three flights to his apartment, where a harried-looking servant answered the door. I’d never seen such an untidy place, every inch covered with loose papers, haphazardly arranged books, dirty clothes, half-eaten food, and mysterious rolls of cotton steeped in sweet-smelling oil. The creator of all this chaos was sitting at the pianoforte. He was so caught up in his playing he didn’t even notice us until a servant tapped him on the shoulder.
Countess Guicciardi is here for her lesson,” she announced.
He stared at Lucy. “Who are you?”
“Lucy Caldwell, lady’s maid and companion.”
“I cannot teach with an audience. Go away!”
“Distractions,” he muttered. “In order to create, one needs order and discipline.”
I thought he might have been joking, but he was serious. There was nothing ordered or disciplined about anything. Even his hair stood up in every direction. He wore it à la Titus, a short, spiky style that had originated in Paris. I noticed that his ears were shiny, as if he had applied oil to them. He smelled of almonds, the same fragrance I detected on the cotton.
“You’ve been to Frau Streicher’s,” he said. “She makes an excellent instrument, although I do wish it sounded less like a harp.”
“How would you like it to sound?”
“Like me.” He laughed. “I would like to produce my own tone. Her pianofortes are too delicate. I need something capable of withstanding—”
Several months later, Julie encounters Beethoven at a ball given by his foremost patron. She unintentionally humiliates the composer by asking him to waltz.
During my next lesson, Beethoven was cold to me. I knew he was embarrassed, and I wanted to ease his concerns. “I don’t much care for dancing myself,” I said.
“Then it’s lucky I’m not giving dancing lessons,” he replied sharply. “Now shall we begin where we left off – at the pianoforte.”
I’d been lax with my practicing, but after some warm-up scales, I began playing a Clementi sonata but kept hitting wrong notes.
“No, no, no,” he shouted. “You are playing like a child. An untalented one at that! I don’t think I can continue to teach you. You are an impossible girl!”
He tossed the sheet music on the floor, toppled a chair, and threw a pair of candlesticks at the wall. Moving over to his desk, he sent papers and letters flying before pounding his fists against a nearby windowsill.
“Stop!” I cried. “Your hands! Don’t injure your hands.”
“My hands?” He sneered. “You’re worried about my hands?”
“Please tell me what is wrong.”
“Wrong. You want to know what is wrong? Then I will tell you. I am going deaf! Beethoven, the musical genius, is losing his hearing!”
After a tragic event, Beethoven composes the Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp Minor, later known as the “Moonlight” Sonata. At her relatives’ Hungarian estate, Julie hears the piece for the first time.
Beethoven began to play the first movement. He had indeed written a song without words: wistful, mournful, hushed. The rhythm was unrelenting, a funeral march with no ending or beginning. But then, without pausing, he moved directly into the second movement, creating a light, fetching atmosphere in the form of a scherzo.
If the first movement was nostalgic and contemplative, the third was powerful, defiant, and ferocious in its rapid shifts in volume and pace. Though the underlying motif was one of profound grief, he answered it with a display of dazzling virtuosity that made it clear that he would rise above his anguish.
Forced to marry a man she doesn’t love – the ballet composer Count Robert Gallenberg – Julie moves with him to Naples. There she is drawn into the complicated relationship between King Joachim Murat, Napoleon’s valorous (and foppish) brother-in-law, and his politically savvy wife, Caroline Bonaparte.
I was summoned to a mysterious meeting at the Palazzo Reale, where a monumental cream-and-gray marble staircase led to multiple antechambers, the throne room, and finally the royal apartments. The queen was surveying a new portrait by François Gérard, who had completed a similar commission for her sister-in-law, Empress Josephine.
“It’s called Caroline and Her Children,” she said slyly. “In order to gain power, it’s important to project a maternal image. Otherwise, I’ll be thought of as that.” She pointed to the menacing specter of Vesuvius. “Josephine may be beautiful, but she cannot give my brother a child. Without heirs, the marriage won’t last.
I waited for the queen to continue. She couldn’t possibly be asking me to have a child with Napoleon.
“My husband thinks you’re very attractive,” she went on. “To be honest, he thinks many women are attractive. Still, he mentioned you several times. I want you to become his mistress.”
“I mean no disrespect, Your Majesty, but I don’t know what you could gain from this.”
“Knowledge. “You would be my eyes and ears.”
“I’m afraid I’m not cut out to be a spy,” I said.
“Of course you are. You live with secrets.”
The queen wasted little time setting up the assignation, and the following week, I had the
pleasure of watching the king’s valet meticulously finger-curl his long damp hair. When the valet finally created a luxuriant lion’s name, he dressed the king in his military uniform.
“We must make this quick,” the king said, moving over to the bed. “I need to make an offering at the shrine of Saint Januarius. I want my people to love me.”
After I complimented his elaborate attire, with its feathers, braids, and medals, he confided that he designed his own uniforms.
“I wouldn’t think you’d have the time,” I said. “I don’t sew and I haven’t—”
“Led the cavalry into numerous battles. Nearly avoided death countless times. Had a Turkish commander fire directly into your mouth?”
“Not the last one, no.”
After realizing I was joking, he threw his head back and laughed, his long curls falling in perfect regimental alignment.”
Even while living in Naples, Julie never forgets Beethoven and when she finally returns to Vienna in 1821, she immediately seeks him out.
I felt something graze my temple. My hand flew up to my face as woman brushed past me in the doorway. “Even if you’ve fallen on hard times,” she warned, “don’t become his housekeeper.” Another woman followed. “And don’t be his cook either.”
“I picked up the flying object, a leather-bound volume of Homer’s Odyssey. The cover was flecked with candle wax and ringed with coffee stains.
“Is Homer your preferred weapon?” I asked Beethoven. “Or do you alternate with Shakespeare?”
He stared at me through his spectacles. Deep horizontal lines slashed his high forehead and ran vertically on both sides of his mouth. He was wearing a navy dressing gown spotted with more candle wax, one foot in a velvet slipper, the other bare. His big toe was black and blue.
“I kicked the housekeeper,” he explained. “She was a troglodyte, a hound from hell.
Six years had gone by since we’d seen each other, six years of dreaming and hoping and not once during that time, not once on my worst day, did I picture such a reunion.
“May I come in?” I asked. When he didn’t respond, I walked into the apartment, which resembled all his previous places in its titanic disorderliness. I placed the book on the dining table next to an open sketchbook and a plate of half-eaten red herring.
After he convinces Julie to cook him a bowl of his favorite bread soup, she puts on her coat to leave.
We stared at each other as if searching for a way to rekindle the love we’d once felt. It was so long ago that it felt like swimming against the current back through time. He reached for my hand.
“I would dearly love to see you again,” he said.
“I looked at his wild hair, windswept even indoors, at his white whiskers, unruly eyebrows, and stained dressing gown. I glanced down at this feet, one still unshod, and at the dining room table, herring next to the Missa Solemnis. A voice said, “You are as mad as he is.
Another voice said, “Yes, I would like that too.”
In the winter of 1826, Beethoven is seriously ill. Julie visits him at his apartment in the House of the Black Spaniards, where his factotum, Anton Schindler, has achieved a position of power by controlling the flow of visitors.
“I thought you had deserted me,” Beethoven said.
“She didn’t want to tire you,” Schindler wrote on a slate.
“Leave us,” Beethoven said, pointing to the door.
Beethoven looked terrible. Even his normally vibrant eyes had lost their luster, yet he treated his illness as just a temporary distraction. He had overcome much worse, and nothing stopped him from composing, even deafness. He pointed to a forty-volume set of Handel’s works that a British admirer had sent him. “I’ve been studying them,” he said excitedly. “One can learn much from Handel.”
“It touched me deeply that he still wanted to learn and that despite his conviction that his own work would be eternal, he showed a deep respect for his musical forebears. I didn’t know how long I had before Schindler returned, so I pulled out the note he’d written me all those years ago. I watched as he read it.
“I gave you what I could,” he said slowly. “It was not enough. I know that.”
“You gave me a sonata,” I wrote on the slate.
“It’s not my best, but people will play it forever.
I kissed him lightly on the forehead.
“You will always be my dear, enchanting girl.” He had tears in his eyes, and then his lids closed and he fell asleep. I heard Schindler coming up the stairs, so I quickly wiped the slate clean. If one looked hard enough, the word ‘sonata” lingered in a wisp of chalk.
A generation of families moved into towns such as New Canaan, Armonk, Bedford and Katonah to raise their families in big homes, with yards, perhaps a pool and maybe a tennis court, and a highly-rated school system, in a wave that started in the booming 1980s and lasted until the Recession hit in 2008.
Now…their lives and requirements have changed, as kids have grown, jobs have changed, they’ve purchased a second-home, retirement has come, there’s been a divorce, or other change in circumstances, and…their mansion is now an oversized albatross. Home repair and maintenance, heating and air conditioning, utilities, lawn care, pool care, storm damage. Empty kids’ rooms, formal living and dining rooms that only get used on holidays, massive play rooms meant for growing up.
Then, too, there’s the functional and stylistic simplicity and minimalization that drives modern sensibilities. Less is more. The idea is to trade square footage and acreage, for useful and efficient spaces. Change decorating from clutter to clean.
For a lot of these owners of big homes, right now is the time to sell! A new generation of young families - with Covid on their minds - has now determined that the leafy suburbs are more desirable than city dwelling, and sellers who’ve been waiting for a chance to sell since the Recession of 2008 now have the opportunity to get their price.
The new move is to Upscale Downsize!
The idea is to move into a smaller home…without sacrificing on comfort, luxury or style.
Most downsizers are ‘taking money off the table’ as the price of the new smaller digs will be less than the amount of equity they are getting upon sale of the old whale. But whatever the economics, the key to a successful downsize is that it’s an 'upscale downsize’. Getting rid of the extra bedrooms is fine, but getting a sparkling kitchen with all the best appliances, new bathrooms, a first-floor master, or the guest room that really does function as an everyday working office, are the things that can be ‘musts’ in the new equation. If access to shared amenities or membership to a fitness facility nearby will not be enough to replace the in-home gym, then finding a smaller space with a gym, or a space that can be converted into a gym, is a requirement.
And the good news is that ‘upscale downsize’ is available in the B&NC MAG area. No need to leave the community and decades-long relationships with friends, doctors, and favorite establishments, or that cherished afternoon walking route, or proximity to relatives. There are condominiums and smaller houses that fit the bill.
Choosing an ‘upscale downsize’ condominium, over a house, has its pros and cons.
Security is usually a big plus of condo living. 24/7 electronic surveillance, on-site security personnel, an electronic or manned gate, a doorman, and the presence of other condominium owners, are attractive features which condominium living can offer.
Location, location, location - known to be at the center of real estate value - can be of particular importance in making the condominium decision. Condominiums are typically developed around water or other attractive scenery. But, whereas the question used to be whether the residence was in the best neighborhood and on a street where the kids could ride bikes, the answer to the best location, now, may turn on: being walking distance to town and shopping; able to access a senior center; having proximity to public transportation or a hospital; nearby recreational opportunities. And having a convenient, close-by hotel for grown kids, and those guests whose room was sold, can also be a big plus.
People are an important factor. In a condominium there will be other people involved. This has the benefit of community, and may mean friends for recreation and social activities. And, to some extent, the greater the number of people, the more money there is to provide common amenities like a pool, gym, tennis, conference center or catering kitchen. But people can also be nosy and annoying, and rules and regulations, and governing boards, are necessary evils.
And, to be sure, a big attraction of condo living is being freed of home, lawn and pool repair and maintenance.
Thee premiere new condominium offering in the area is The St. Regis Residences in Rye!
These highly anticipated residences offer ‘upscale downsize’ to its finest - and even with an emphasis on the ‘upscale’. These are homes, not units. Ranging from 975 sq. ft. to 2,775 sq. ft., there’s ample room in the one, two, three and four bedroom designs. Living spaces are sized graciously, the kitchens are spectacular, and there’s plenty of room for well-designed bathrooms, closets, and an office.
Set on 7 beautifully landscaped acres, off Old Post Road in Rye, The St. Regis Residences are located close to the Rye and Greenwich downtowns, significant outdoor attractions and country clubs, and many social and cultural activities.
And the community will be the first ever condominiums designated exclusively for the 55+ set!
Everything about the St. Regis Residences says luxury.
First, there’s the unparalleled St. Regis service. Residents are offered valet parking, a doorman, porter services, butler service and a 24-hour concierge!
Then there’s the 25,000 sq. ft. of resort-style amenities, including an indoor pool and fitness center, outdoor whirlpool spa, spa treatment rooms, saunas and steam rooms, a golf simulator room…and even a pet spa.
It’s everything about ‘St. Regis’, and the ‘spa life’ feeling of a St. Regis resort - but it’s ‘real life’!
No more lawn guy or snow removal to worry about - yet the lawn is always mowed and the drive is always plowed. The building is maintained perfectly - no need to worry about repairs. Doormen, butler and concierge to tend to any need. Gym, pool and spa- always available - no work required.
Louis and Marcella Pellicano, who recently purchased at the St. Regis Residences in Rye, were attracted to the lifestyle, including the social aspect of the community, such as St. Regis-hosted events for residents and the afternoon tea in the drawing room. “We've already met some very interesting and lovely people. That makes it easy for us to move from a totally different location.” said Marcella.
With move-ins starting late 2020, the St. Regis Residences are already 50% sold. “We’re very pleased with our sales activity over the past few months. At our current pace, we are exceeding our sales targets. Whether it’s people downsizing from larger homes or leaving their apartments in New York City, buyers are discovering the incredible luxury lifestyle that we are offering at The St. Regis Residences, Rye - it’s unmatched anywhere in our market,” said Alan Weissman, President of Alfred Weissman Real Estate, the developer of The St. Regis Residences, Rye.
There are plenty of ‘upscale downsize’ houses on the market in the B&NC MAG area.
2 Middle Patent Road in Bedford is an ‘upscale downsize’ because the main house is only 2,092 sq. ft. This meticulously renovated 1900 Farmhouse, with wide oak floors, sun-filled living room with coffered ceiling and fireplace, formal dining room, stunning new kitchen with Sub Zero, Thermador and Bosch appliances, marble counters and center island, master with private bath finished in Carrera marble, two additional bedrooms plus third floor guest suite, has all new mechanicals including central air and a generator. And with this ‘upscale downsize’, there’s no trade-off in terms of what’s outside. The two level acre property boasts Magnolia and Apple trees, perennial gardens and a pool!...with a pool house with an additional bedroom and bath!
Exceptional luxury for only $999,000!
GINA NEW GINNEL REAL ESTATE 914-980-0421 email@example.com
HANNELORE KAPLAN HANNELORE & CO. 914-450-388 firstname.lastname@example.org
William Raveis Real Estate, 4 Elm Street, New Canaan, CT 06840
This ‘upscale downsize’ gem, walking distance to Scotts Corners in Pound Ridge, is expected on the market in the Spring. This charming and historic 3,300 sq. ft. home, has three bedrooms and four baths. Spacious and sundrenched two-story great room with grand stone fireplace, gracious living room with fireplace, separate dining room with French doors to patio and attractive kitchen, make this feel like a country house but function comfortably as an everyday home. Master bedroom suite with cupola, loft overlooking family room, bedroom with exposed beams and antique flooring throughout are just a few of the special features that highlight this home’s century of history. And a separate cottage with kitchenette and bath, above the two-car garage, is suitable for older kids, guests, or a tenant.
Making the ‘upscale downsize’ move is an opportunity!
The direction of the new home’s decor is essential - and the best advice for most is to discard or store as much as possible from the old house. The moving process reveals the true cost of having ‘stored’ all those belongings in the home and dictates that you use much less costly storage facilities to keep all the valuable and treasured items you just can’t part with, but that won’t fit in the new home. Store fine art and rugs that don’t go with the new decor, and consider putting seasonal items, like winter clothing and ski equipment, in storage too. George Carlin once joked “If you didn’t have so much stuff, you wouldn’t need a house. That’s all your house is, it’s a pile of stuff with a cover on it.” The ‘upscale downsize’ is a chance to become unburdened.
“Have a strategy when packing, prepare ahead of time with packing items, and know exactly what you want to store and what you want to take to the new place,” says Maria Hernandez, Facility General Manager of Hollow Tree Storage. “Label and take inventory, which will help when unpacking and with easily accessing items from storage. Most important on this end, is to organize your storage unit so it works for you like a closet, with everything still easy to find and use”.
And maximizing the utility and function of the new space is absolutely critical. Before moving in, if at all possible, imagine day-to-day in the new home and make whatever changes are necessary to suit particular requirements. If the new house is perfect, but old, do the kitchens and bathrooms before moving in. Build-in the office space or exercise room that will make the new house work. As Masha Alimova, Director of Marketing at California Closets, points out, “The key to success in living in smaller homes is to maximize the usage of every space.” Alimova recommends focusing on spaces which can be optimized to be dual-purpose or multi-functional. “Consider making the most of a spare bedroom by opting for a Murphy bed with a good mix of open and closed shelving space to display mementos and store linens. A double-duty system is ideal for the occasional guest room as well as office space for everyday use. No space is dead space. Almost any corner or unused area can be transformed into a closet. And closets can be re-designed, with better hanging rod and shelving layouts, to make them much more useful.”