Haute Habitats July/August 2013

Sitting at the end of a quiet street on an already quiet island is this grand Dutch colonial compound built to entertain a family, or a family of families. Drive down the tree-lined driveway and the handsome 16-room main house reveals itself, flanked by a three-bedroom guest house and a pool house with its own kitchen and second floor studio. Each building has unobstructed views of Coecles Harbor and the leisure boat traffic that travels to and from Gardiners Bay. Arriving by boat yourself? Hop off the craft after mooring along the 300 feet of private shoreline and dock and make your way to the extensive patio area behind the house an hour or so before lunch. Work up an appetite by playing touch football or croquet on the back lawn or tennis on the court. Cool off with a dip in the infinity pool, which doesn’t skimp on the views, then head to the patio for a bite to eat alfresco. Back inside, guests can catch a brilliant view of sunset from the second floor terrace then zip down to the basement media room for movie night…via the elevator.

Like most East End towns, Shelter Island’s population swells to over four times its typical size during the summer months. And like those towns, the island started as a seasonal destination, though one with a decidedly different vibe than its posh cousin to the south. Unlike the cedar shake-dominated look of the coastal Hamptons towns, the island’s architecture is a mix of Queen Anne Victorian, Craftsman-style and Colonial Revival houses, with newer, modest ranches dotting the landscape in between multimillion-dollar estates. Despite the wealth and prestige, the town retains the laid-back feel of a wilderness retreat thanks in part to the large section of land that remains protected by the Nature Conservancy. Home to ospreys and other wildlife, the preserve encourages residents to get a closer look from a walking trail or kayak tour. Life here prior to iGizmos was best enjoyed outdoors on golf courses, trails, beaches and bike rides and that hasn’t changed. The island’s historical website notes the amenities: “Stores provide everything a visitor should need. There is no movie theater and never will be.”

List Price: $14,995,000
Taxes: $47,558
Style: Traditional
Year Built: 2005
Rooms: 32 1/2
Bedrooms: 9
Baths: 10 1/2
Lot Size: 3 1/2 acres
Listing Agency: Saunders