Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Richard Gere and Carey Lowell List Hamptons Hideaway

SELLERS: Richard Gere and Carey Lowell
LOCATION: Water Mill, NY
PRICE: $8,800,000
SIZE: Halsey Lane, 7 bedrooms, 10.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: It's easy to imagine living here. Since the turn of the century, rooted in time sits this lovingly renovated farmhouse. Cozy comfort with high-end luxury. Hiding behind the hedges, merging fantasy and fairy tale, a place to call home. 7 bedrooms, 10 baths, heated pool, guest house, artists studio and not too many maples.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Being that it's the dead of winter here in the northern hemisphere, Your Mama thought the children could use a little dose of the summer to come so today we're going to discuss two pricey properties in posh Water Mill, NY. That's the Hamptons babies.

The first property we'd like to discuss, which we read about in New York magazine, is owned by one of the film industry's sexiest and most outspoken Buddhists. That's right children, we're talking about American Gigolo Richard Gere and his good lookin' wifey Carey Lowell who have recently listed one of their (two) Hamptons hideaways with an asking price of $8,800,000.

Property records show the comely couple scooped up their Halsey Lane house in February of 2001 for $2,750,000 and, according to listing information, the property has been dubbed Too Many Maples. Desirably located South of the Highway–that's Montauk Highway puppies–on a 1.2 acre pie-shaped parcel, the turn of the century farmhouse style residence measures in at approximately 5,500 square feet and offers 7 bedrooms and 10.5 bathrooms, a large number that ensures a minimum wage terlit gurl be on call 24/7 to deal with any back ups and etc.

Listing information also indicates the fully hedged mini-estate includes a large heated swimming pool, a guest house and an artist's studio where we imagine Mister Gere spends his summer mornings meditating in the nood. Okay, we don't know if the man meditates buck nekkid, but we like to imagine that he does.

Anyhoo, the 100+ year old residence has been updated and upgraded with modern conveniences while still retaining the original charm and rambling quality of a house that's been added onto in a willy-nilly fashion over the years as the owners needed another bedroom, another bathroom or stuck a screened porch on to the back so they could do jigsaw puzzles on warm summer evenings without being eaten alive by the horrid mosquitoes that plague the Hamptons.

The three story and much gabled getaway is graced with a lovely wrap around porch on what was originally the front of the house. However, the main entrance now appears to be approached from the side via a circular gravel drive that is partially shaded by a pergola like porte cochere. The stair hall sets the tone for the mood of the entire house–as it should–where a simple and subdued palette sets offs some seriously spectacular wood floors, a couple of vintage light fixtures and an elegantly turned newel post that anchors the wonderfully wide staircase.

Listen children, Your Mama can understand why this house and its day-core may not be to every person's preference or enjoyment. In fact, it's not even what Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter would do had we the scratch for a nine million dollar farmhouse in the Hamptons–which, of course, we do not. None the less, we find the Gere/Lowell abode and it's relaxed, weekend house of a very rich yet thoughtful person vibe to be almost beyond reproach. So y'all can make whatever sassy and snappy comments about all the silly plates that are stuck to the walls throughout the house, but we are going to refrain from our usual snarky remarks.

The living room is warmed by a corner fireplace, is stuffed with some comfortable looking seating and is separated from the formal dining room by a pony wall. Ordinarily we're not so keen on pony walls but, surprisingly, it's sorta working here. The farmhouse style table in the large dining room is surrounded by 8 mis-matched wood chairs and is lit by a pair of simple drum-shaped chandeliers. A mid-century sideboard adds to the eclectic but well conceived decorative melange.

The stunning wood floors continue into the kitchen–Your Mama loves us some wood floors in a farmhouse kitchen–where simple white cabinetry is topped by simple, but expensive, white marble counter tops. A large work island defines the work flow and hosts a quasi-commercial style stove, a two-drawer dishwasher and a breakfast counter where googly eyed guests can pull up stools and watch Mister Gere whips up some French Toast in his robe on Sunday mornings. Built into a well lit and windowed nook, the kitchen dining area is appropriately wrapped in wainscoting and the built in benches have been piled with down cushions and pillows in mis-matched striped and patterned fabrics. The children will note that a Scrabble game sits on the table. It warms the cockles of our cold, dark heart that the Gere/Lowell clan plays Scrabble because Your Mama loves playing us some Scrabble.

A small paneled den house features a built in book case with actual books in it as well as a good sized flat screen tee-vee so that no one need ever miss a single episode of the bizarre and dee-lishusly camp boob-toob extravaganza that is RuPaul's Drag Race where a bunch of catty queens are made to, "lip sync for their lives." Gorgeous!

Upstairs, the master bedroom features a high peaked ceiling with beautifully exposed wood trusses, a wood burning fireplace for all the Hallmark card types who like to get bizzy Valentine's Day style and French doors that lead to a private terrace. Although we really don't know if it's the case or not, given that there are 10.5 terlits for 7 bedrooms, Your Mama would like to think that each of the guest bedrooms claims a private pooper.

It seems almost unfathomable that Mister Gere and Miz Lowell would want to sell this near perfect weekend getaway. However, it does not appear that they are giving up the East End altogether because property records show that in November of 2005 the property rich pair picked up another Hamptons pad when they paid $6,900,000 for a 4+ acre water front property on Actors Colony Road in North Haven–that's up near Sag Harbor people.

In August of 2007, the couple paid $12,000,000 to purchase one of those delightfully ka-razy kribs in artist/filmmaker Julian Schnael's hot pink architectural folly in the far West Village of New York City that he whimsically calls Palazzo Chupi. However, it appears the pair are not so interested in living up in the Chupi with the usually pajama clad Mister Schnabel. Just seven (or so) months after closing on the 4 bedroom and 4 bathroom full floor flat, they flipped the bitch back on the market with an asking price of $17,995,000. According to the always helpful Street Easy, the asking price was later reduced to $15,000,000 where it languished before being taken off the market in early February of 2009.

As an aside and just for fun, here's a short list of things the children may not know about aging gracefully Mister Gere: He's an accomplished pianist; He was great friends with famed photographer Herb Ritts who took some of Mister Gere's first head shots; He turned down the lead role in Die Hard which subsequently went to Bruce Willis; And he went to the University of Massachusetts on a gymnastic scholarship which means the young man could (and perhaps can still) bend his body up like a damn pretzel. Lucky Miz Lowell.


Anonymous said...

when you have impeccable white marble countertops, you can have as many squishy pillows thrown about as you like. this place looks comfy and homey.

Anonymous said...

Mama - I don't know your family plays, but our Scrabble games always involve a few cocktails. I can't imagine getting up from the back of that booth every ten minutes to pee.

Even in spite of the bladder un-friendly dinette, I absolutely love this place.

Anonymous said...

RuPaul's "Back To My Roots" is just my most favourite gay anthem ever, after "I Will Survive" of course.

How I danced me tits off to that New Years Eve in a freezing cold and wintry Leeds in West Yorkshire, England, in about 1992!

I had my breasts squeezed by a lesbian that night and that was, and remains, a first I can tell you.

Mind you, she had a right tug on her. I swear sometimes that I am still smarting from the trauma.

Now that's off me chest, I absolutely hate this house. I just do. Nothing rational or sane. I just do.

And Richard Gere in "Die Hard"? Mama, while I appreciate that your information will be unimpeachable, but I have to use that favourite Bradford saying, beloved of chavs,
"U R pulling my plonker."

He is just not tough enough.

And well might he be able to bend his body into the shape of a pretzel; tantric is all well and good if you have the patience but I can tell you this for nothing; I would throw the remote control at his (probably upside-down) head and be screaming for him to be getting on with it.

Know what I mean?

Anonymous said...

Was RuPaul big in 92? I thought she was still one of Michael Alig's undiscovered club kids at that point.

Perhaps I am wrong...time does seem to be flying by.

I watch But I'm a Cheerleader just to see RuPaul as a dude.

Anonymous said...

"Supermodel" was 1993. "Ed Lamp" did write *about 1992* so not far off.

Anonymous said...

Love RuPaul, a ray of sunshine upholstered in hot pink and sequins with the most epic of blond wigs...

I love this house, it's a real home rather than a sterile hideaway. I can just see Dominick Dunne, Carey Lowell's ex father in law with whom she is still close, sitting that comfy booth style breakfast nook telling stories about Elizabeth Taylor binging and purging on the set of some 1970s piece of crap movie...

By the way, I LOVE the pool.

Anonymous said...

I adore it..
while it may not be what I'd want for my everyday residence, it is nearly exactly what I would want for a house in the country.

Anonymous said...

on another note, I am made to feel rather old by the realization that is has been nearly 16 years since I was blasting Supermodel from the tinny speakers of my first car...
But I am thrilled that Rupaul has managed to keep herself employed all this time. God love her.

Mike Cook said...

That's the kind of kitchen table you sit at to eat corn on the cob and grilled seafood while getting slowly plastered on white wine. I'm not one for the Hamptons, but this place? Sign me up.

Anonymous said...

Source for wood floors is The Antique Lumber Company in Water Mill. When we redid our floors out there, we went to them. They are a small, local operation with integrity. And, only some spots in the Hamptons are buggy...

Anonymous said...

Hamtons has to be the most overpriced place on earth.
Cold most of the time and a virtually unswimmable body of water.
$9 million is ridiculous for that house.
At that price you should be in Palm Beach, Malibu or Hawaii.
I can buy a palace here in Michigan with acres of land on the lake for a couple million.

Anonymous said...

Maybe you could buy a lake front palace in Michigan for just a couple million. But you'd still be in Michigan.

Anonymous said...

And what is so great about New York and the Hamptons?
Only reason it is so overpriced is because of the financial thieves and crooked lawyers that drive up real estate prices competing with each other for the homes.
For the money you save living in that congested hell hole they call New York, you could fly somewhere different every month or every weekend and have a great time.

StPaulSnowman said...

Now this is more like it! Mr. Britt could take a lesson from this place. I couldn't see corrugated metal anywhere but he may have Zac stashed in the basement.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:24 - You post reminds me of the famous quote by Madonna several years ago when she was asked what drove her desire for fame and fortune.

Her response?

"I was just trying to get the hell out of Michigan"

Anonymous said...

I checked Zillow, it said is not 7 bed & 10.5 bath.

Farm House/yard(1.2 acres) are very small in the photos compared to other monster houses and acreage in the area. There are many newer and larger houses for the same price or less that have much more land/features.

The price is INSANE for this -

Seems way overpriced, but they are most likely shopping his name first.

Anonymous said...

oh boy. haven't we already established that zillow's valuations are wrong far more than they are right?

not saying this place is worth 8.8, but I'm certainly not going to let zillow determine value on any property.

Anonymous said...

Zillow even says Average Joe has a brain.

Anonymous said...

cool house, maybe the 7 beds includes the guest?

Anonymous said...

I bet Tom Britt would get a big laugh out of the idea suggested above that he should drop over here to get a lesson in how to decorate a house! Once he saw that George Smith kilm covered ottoman and GS sofa. . . well, you know, it would just be a transformative experience.

Anonymous said...

just looked at this house on msn live search, its big, alot of additions over the years.
for you hamptons folks, what is grown in all that famland that surrounds that area? poppys?
i can't believe that farming is profitable after property taxes.

Anonymous said...

God, I love this house. I would SO buy it if I could. But you know what? There is something VERY familiar about this house. VERY FAMILIAR. I reminds me of the house that Diane Lane and Richard Gere owned as the married couple in UNFAITHFUL. I am serious. Please can someone check on that? I wouldn't know where to begin.

Anonymous said...

Don't you remember scrubbing the toilets, dear?

- Ronnie

Anonymous said...

Oh I'm in love

Anonymous said...

I think the Zillow estimates are way off.

However, they do list the actual asking prices that are currently listed for sale. That is what I think 5:55 is talking about. REAL LISTED PRICES, not the estimates!

Price seems a little high, but there are still a lot of terminally rich brokers running around with bonus money in hand!

Anonymous said...

It looks like the house featured in the film "Fatal Attraction".

Anonymous said...


unfaithful house

Anonymous said...

11:32 - actually, if you read 5:55's post, they were using Zillow as justification to state the bedroom/bath count in the ad is off, not anything about price/value.

Zillow is also notoriously wrong on bed/bath & s.f. numbers. This house is a perfect example of that as Zillow seems to think there is a 4 bedroom 2 bath 1382 s.f. (!!!) house on the lot, while the aerial photo on Zillow clearly shows a much larger home.

Anonymous said...

Here's my experience with Zillow on a house I owned but sold last year.

The property was two contiguous lots (two tax IDs and all that) that were used as a single property. One of the lots has a fully renovated 4 bedroom house. The second contiguous lot had no improvements (other than some landscaping and an old shed thing where I kept the lawnmower).

Zillow valued the lot with the house at $350k and the unimproved lot at $420k. That's not a mistake in my typing, Zillow valued the bare parcel at $70k MORE than the fully improved lot with the house.

Does that even make sense?

It's fun to bounce around on Zillow but it shocks me that anyone uses Zillow for providing an accurate valuation of a property.

Anonymous said...

Unforch, the link to the Unfaithful House was not working for me. If somenone could tell me the link again, I would greatly appreciate it. TYVM.

Oh. I don't do toilets, Ronnie, Dear...I supervise. I have people for that. Only someone totally inexperienced with domestic engineering specialists, would think a housekeeper/business owner such as myself who will soon be in the Fortune 10,000,000, would think I actually did toilets. :)

Anonymous said...

Dearest Consuela,

Are the support hose we gave you last Christmas a little tight? Driver can run you down to Big Lots! for the next size larger.

Of course I know what a housekeeper is...I've employed your people since your great grandfather's shirt was still wet.

You don't scrub toilets? Hmmm...let me see, what was that word again...."tocador" darling, you remember...you scrub my "tocadors".

And I even gave a good reference for you to Candy yesterday as we were lunching on celery sticks and martinis.

It's the Fortune 100 dearest. And the only housekeeper to ever come close is that dreadful Zsa Zsa Gabor. Thank God she isn't parading around in dresses made from curtains anymore. The poor dear didnt understand Scarlett O'Hara wasn't making a statement about fashion.

Anonymous said...


unfaithful house & interesting read

Anonymous said...

TYVM, sandman. I'm often fixated more on locations then plotlines.
For instance. What About Bob? Loved that house. Then there was the Manhattan penthouse in the cop movie with Tom Berenger, Lorraine Bracco and Mimi Rogers. I never thought Mildred Pierce's first house was such a terrible dump. She just needed a decorator.

Anonymous said...

what about bob house is on smith mountain lake virginia near the town of moneta.
haha, i feel the same way about that house on the lake, hated when they blew it up in the movie, even tho it was just a model.

Anonymous said...

i also liked that house in the movie Lake House.
i'm a sucker for lake houses.

Anonymous said...

favorite movie homes w/pics would be a cool thread mama.

Anonymous said...

Fatal Attraction was in Bedford

Anonymous said...

What about that house Michele Pfeiffer and Harrison Ford had in the movie when he was a homicidal maniac???

Speaking of Michele, has anyone seen Wolf? That was a beautiful home. I loved her apartment on her father's estate.

Mia Farrow used her own apartment for Hannah and Her Sisters.

I remember that Lorraine Bracco movie. That penthouse was AMAZING.

Anonymous said...

i liked that pfeiffer/ford house also, never looked it up tho.
that fatal attraction house was cool, i need to look up both.