Thursday, March 20, 2008

UPDATE: Shelter Island's Shorewood Manor

With the the scent of summer coming on the spring air, real estate obsessed eyes turn towards the Hamptons to see who leases a slice of seaside serenity or plunks down the big bucks for a high priced trophy home. One such estate looking for a new owner with deep pockets, a world class architect, and a really good nice gay decorator is Shelter Island's Shorewood Manor, a graceful grandma of a sprawler that sits on 8.5 prime bluff top acres overlooking the Great Peconic Bay.

Your Mama first discussed this aging beauty back when it first hit the market in April of 2007 with an optimistic asking price of $33,000,000. We then discussed the property again in September of 2007 when the listing was ripped from one upper crust brokerage and given to another with a may-jer price reduction to $24,900,000. Your Mama still thinks that number is optimistic, but it's also far more realistic than the initial asking price.

Formerly owned by former New York State governor Hugh Carey, the 8,500 square foot (approx.) summer house with 11 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms sat empty for many years before it was purchased in early 2007 by a local man named Chris Knight for just $10,000,000. Mister Knight, seizing an opportunity to make a few million easy dollars, quickly and brazenly flipped the house back on the market at more than three times what he paid after making only minor cosmetic improvements to the house which, quite frankly, is in need of just about everything.

Every couple of weeks Your Mama receives a nice email from a real estate hungry child who wants to know what's happening with the property. Ordinarily, Your Mama does not have any news for little lambs. Until now.

Your Mama hears from a well placed source we call the Shelter Island Snitch that several big name real estate agents are quietly scratching each others eyes out in the hopes of securing the listing if Mister Knight decides to change brokers before the spring/summer buying season gets into full swing. We stress the "if" part because he may in fact chose to leave the listing right where it is.

Snitch also whispered in Your Mama's big ear that the perfectly private property has been eyeballed and circled by a number of hedge hogs, natch, several developers, natch again, as well as a prominent political family, a famous designer of beads and baubles, as well as a professional sports figure, who the Snitch declined to name.

Maybe Tiger Woods should have a look-see at Shorewood Manor since it seems the swimming in money professional golfer didn't buy that $65,000,000 Southampton spread after all. Plenty of room for sand traps, roughs and greens here. And, perhaps even more enticing, down to earth Shelter Island is fancy free of prying paps trying to stick their long lenses through the high hedges.


Anonymous said...

As always in RE, location, location, location. That one's a peach.

Anonymous said...

If the Gin Lane place went for 65 million then Shorewood could be worth 50 million. It is a steal at it's current asking price of 24.9.

Anonymous said...

Not really. Shelter Island is not Gin Lane in Southampton, so prices are not that comparable.

The Gin Lane house was done to the nines and Shorewood needs so much work. It's very very pretty, but it's a shambles really. No pool. no tennis. no manicured gardens. bathrooms from the 1950s (or something like that). no heat. no insulation. the guest cottage is super cute but tiny and a wreck.

It probably needs 10-15M to get it up to speed. You could spend $2M on the grounds alone and still not be done. There just aren't that many buyers willing to sink $35-40M into Shelter Island.

Someone will. But it's really not a bargain. Unless, maybe, it gets subdivided, which is allowable I think.

Anonymous said...

I was about to say the same thing, "can it really command that much on Shelter Island..."...Shelter Island definitely isn't in the same price category as "below the highway" Hamptons, does anyone have some recent comparables on Shelter Island for comparison? That said, beautiful home, beautiful property, who knows, maybe it is a steal at that price, but I think I'd wait for at least a 25% further price reduction before I'd bite, espescially in this market...

Anonymous said...

This is not a property that you can simply take comps and arrive at a valuation. The private setting, vast acreage, history etc.

Any appraiser worth their salt would open comps up past Shelter Island which would clearly dictate a valuation in the $3-4mm an acre valuation.

This property + a $5mm house is the stuff dreams are made of. Yes, its not Gin lane...but for the right buyer thats a good thing.

Anonymous said...

10 million an acre, like the 65 million Gin Lane sale works out to, is a bit steep for Shelter Island. 3 million per acre is more in line and that translates to the 25 million asking price. If I had the loot I would be all over it!! Last I checked, they are not making anymore waterfront land, except in Dubai.

Alessandra said...

Fabulous! This is the kind of home I love: it has a desirable location, lots of land, spectacular vistas, a house that has character but needs a serious face-lift, a storied history, plus Mama's first-hand knowledge from personal "excursions" there. It would be worth every penny to buy and restore, especially at $24mm. I know plenty of people who would want to spend that kind of money and then an additional $5-10mm in restoration/renovation to have a property such as this.

Anonymous said...

Please, somebody nice, buy me this property for Easter....

I promise to leave the land wild, with a small patch cleared for some gorgeous outdoor furniture for consuming a tipple of gin and tonic, esp. when Mama and Dr. Cooter, and the long bodied bitches, come to visit.

I'll hire a squadron of nice gay decorators (even some not so nice if I have to) and make sure that there are some deep, soft, white sofas. Lots of flowers, some old, old, threadbare silk Persian rugs, some old fashioned tin wear in the kitchen to take ones mind off the new appliances, and some cozy rugs for snuggling up in winter.

Sure, there needs to be some updating but this is one grand dame of a house. Pity if someone ruins that.

Ahhhh... off to dream.
Thanks for the update Mama.
Happy Easter to all - enjoy the holiday.

Anonymous said...

i would like to take Mama back up there in that tower and do unmentionable things to her without dr. cooter's permission or knowledge. you're hot mama

Anonymous said...

It looks like a lot of work to me, charming as it is. Think I'll need to pass on this one. LOL

Here's a article on the property and its related market considerations. Interesting.
[Published prior to the price reduction.]

Anonymous said...

I hope a developer doesn't buy it and ruin it.

lil' gay boy said...

Shelter Island is like no where else - it'll take the right buyer for this one.

But what an opportunity! As Alessandra said: ". . . has a desirable location, lots of land, spectacular vistas, a house that has character but needs a serious face-lift, a storied history. . . "

Been for a look-see myself (don't get caught after midnight on Shelter Island; you'll have to stay at the Rams Head Inn and wait for the morning ferry), but you can't see much from the road, and I am not one to trespass (anymore).


Interestingly enough, Carey's brother recently pulled his listing for the old Woolworth mansion (said to be haunted by those who've lived there); he was asking $19.5M for 18 acres in Glen Cove (that translates to about $168K a year in taxes).

Anonymous said...

I know the townies must have a deep affinity and emotionally-vested concern for the preservation of this property.

If I had that kind of cash, I could easily be tempted to do a true period restoration, with upgrades ... including insulation. Would probably even keep all the tiny bedrooms as currently floor planned, with exception of any that could be easily combined into a few larger room suites (load-bearing considerations). It's not impossible and could be very quaint and functional.

Deep in my heart, I strongly speculate that one of two things will happen; both involve the demise of this structure. It will either be rebuilt into a huge McMansion that has little vestige to the original main structure; or the demolished property will be carved up into a half dozen plots of cedar-shingled McHampsions. (My new word.)

I'm not saying that's my wish (because I appreciate what is in place too much); rather, it's the pervasive reality of what may ultimately play out.

Anonymous said...

A house like this in a place so named.

Anon 7:12, you nailed it. Eden.

Yes, please.

Anonymous said...

Message to you on LeAnn thread.

Anonymous said...

I have a soft spot in my heart for such a grand dame, but HELLO? I require a proper light fixture in the kitchen, not just an insulated wire and a bare bulb, for any house over 1 mill. I mean, dude...not that hard to buy a light.

Anonymous said...

Back at you, Sandpiper.

Anonymous said...

Mama it's about time you came home to the Hamptons!
I think it's just to much for shelter island and the condition of the home.
I would also hate to see this property subdivided.
Here is a Peconic bay cam/web cam on a local site. link.
Happy Easter Everybody!

Anonymous said...

We used to sneak onto the estate in the early '90s when it was vacant. The tiny guest cottage in the lower left of the aerial is beyond cute. There was an overgrown English garden, and the ruins of a concrete wharf (a rarity) and boathouse. Rumor had it that the heirs to the Borax fortune had originally built the place, but that may be just a rumor.
It's an amazing property.