Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Sandy Gallin Is Doing It In The Hamptons

SELLER: Sandy Gallin
LOCATION: Sagg Road, Bridgehampton, NY
PRICE: $32,000,000
SIZE: 6,500 square feet (approx.), 7 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...This private one-of-a-kind property offers beauty, serenity, peace yet enough space to host a major event in the Hamptons. Draped by nature and dripping with tasteful luxury. Exuding richness while maintaining its comfort. The 6,500+- sq. ft. residence includes 7 bedrooms, 8 baths and is situated on 14+- park-like acres. Seeing is believing.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Late last week, just as Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter were packing up the big BMW with our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly and a few extra bottles of the Bombay Sapphire, we received an urgent dispatch from our long lost pal Kenny Kissintell who is happily whittling away the waning days of the summer in a tiny bathing suit while cavorting on the sugar sand seashore of the battered and bruised but still hoity-toity Hamptons.

Kenny, a gabby gal who knows just about everyone who is anyone on both coasts whispered in our big ear that legendary talent manager turned prolific high end house flipper Sandy Gallin had recently listed his big, beauteous and land-locked Bridgehampton, NY estate with a scorching asking price of $32,000,000. The children with intact memories will recall that happens to be the exact same asking price Miss Gallin is asking for his big and beauteous house in Bel Air, CA. While it's admittedly a bit contrived and even pretentious to list both properties at the exact same price, there's a book-end sort of symmetry to Miss Gallin's identical east and west coast asking prices that pleases and soothes Your Mama's OCD.

Sandy Gallin, for those who do not know, has steered the careers of leading lights like Dolly Parton, Neil Diamond, Barbra Streisand–who, we hear, made an appearance at Miss Gallin's Hamptons hideaway this summer, and Michael Jackson–who, obviously, did not make an appearance at any of Miss Gallin's many dinners and parties in the Hamptons this summer.

Since we heard from Kenny, the "for sale" status of Miss Gallin's sprawling Sagg Road estate has already been reported far and wide but, since Kenny Kissintell was able to give us a wee bit of insight to the property, we've decided to discuss it anyway. Besides, after the cauchemar of Real Housewives of New Jersey Danielle Staub's perplexing and ├╝ber-vexing manse in Wayne, NJ that we discussed at the tail end of last week, we need a little real estate sunshine to start the week off on an architecturally and decoratively correct foot.

As best as Your Mama can surmise, Mister Gallin cobbled his 3 parcel estate together in late December of 2001. A peep and a poke around the property records reveals that the largest parcel, at 8.45 acres, cost him $1,775,000. An adjacent 2.49 acre parcel was purchased from a different seller and, according to property records, cost Mister Gallin $1,975,000. A third 2.62 acre parcel, bought from yet another seller, cost Mister Gallin another $1,975,000 and at the time of the purchase included a 5 bedroom and 3 bathroom house. Combined, according to property records, the three parcels total 13.56 acres of bucolic bliss and, according to our bejeweled abacus, cost Mister Gallin a total of $5,725,000. Certainly, he spent many millions more on the necessary renovations, improvements and landscaping to turn a decently located property into a fairyland fit for billionaires and millionaires that want to live like a billionaire.

A discreet driveway shared by a small handful of other dee-luxe digs leads to a rutted and graveled path that winds gracefully and rustically past the 1.5 acre man-made pond Mister Gallin installed and through a few acres of expansive and verdant lawns where one could easily host a dozen concurrent and booze-fueled games of lawn darts or a perhaps a charity event for a few hundred of the sort of well-heeled Hamptonites who spend their summer weekends hopping from charity event to charity event in seer sucker suits, Easter colored polo shirts, $400 summer shifts and bejeweled sandals.

At the front of the house ,a large graveled motor court is bordered by stacked stone walls. There really is little more audibly dee-lishus than the snap, crackle and pop of a luxury automobile rolling slowly over a weed-free, gravel driveway. A slate walkway shaded by a dee-voon Japanese maple tree leads to an unassuming front porch that opens to a bright, white, double height entrance hall that–as it should–sets the stylistic tone for the entire house. The walls glisten with art gallery worthy white paint, the reclaimed, dark chocolate stained wood floors have a light reflecting sheen and perfectly distressed but well preserved antiques are married with crisp, clean lined and cozy white upholstered cushions and pillows.

Listing information reveals Miss Gallin's shingled summer house measures approximately 6,500 square feet and includes a total of 7 bedrooms and 8 poopers. Just off the entrance hall is a large, formal living room wrapped in French doors that open to a wisteria covered, slate terrace overlooking the swimming pool and pond. This shady and soo-blime spot serves as the primary outdoor eating area where Miss Gallin and his decorating people have put a trestle style picnic table nearly a mile long where many of the Hampton's richest and most famous folks have feasted on gourmet meals prepared by Miss Gallin's extensive staff.

Because this is, ultimately, an informal house and even rich people like to sit outside and chaw on a cob of corn in the summertime, the formal dining room is modest in size and features a small cache of quintessentially American looking antiques and an alabaster chandelier that we're sure cost more than Your Mama earns in a single year but is, none the less in our humble and meaningless opinion, not quite substantial enough for the room. A large, narrow, well equipped and wood beamed kitchen has all the Viking brand appliances a private chef could want, there is an adjacent breakfast room and an intimately scaled family room nearby features a wood beamed ceiling, fireplace, a builtin entertainment set up and book shelves that contain actual books. Say what y'all will about Miss Gallin and his decorating ways, but at least the biznatch knows enough to have books in his damn houses.

Mister Gallin's massive master bedroom features a peaked and rough-hewn beamed ceiling and in addition to a queen sized sleigh bead has been outfitted with an office area because sometimes moguls like Miss Gallin have to move money around and take care of their bidness in between dips in the pool. The gleaming white, marble master bathroom has all the accoutrement a $32,000,000 house should including a custom wrought iron rack that holds more than 50 fluffy white bath towels for when you invite a few dozen friends over to use your shower. This folly of bath linens is sort of silly–how many white towels can one (or two) people use in a day? However, it's become somewhat of a signature element of Mister Gallin's interiors and perhaps vastly wealthy people simply use more towels than middle class people. You can do that when you've a laundry room in the basement with multiple washers and dryers, a large center island for ironing and folding, and a couple of full-time, minimum wage house gurls, or as the case may be, house boys, you can use all the damn towels you want.

A detached building building, according to Kenny Kissintell, sits almost at the water's edge of the pond and includes a separate guest suite, a wisteria covered outdoor lounge with a massive stone fireplace and a dock that extends out into pond. The simple, rectangular shaped swimming pool has been placed rather dramatically in the pond where it is surrounded on three sides by water. A wide strip of well tended lawn serves as the terrace where Miss Gallin and guests and sunbathe and sit back and mentally relish in the lucky luxury of their lives.

Listen children, this is not how Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter would choose to shack up in the Hamptons, or anywhere else for that matter. But that's of no matter, really, because we are not nor will we ever be in the market for a $32,000,000 house that probably gets used, at best, 6 months of the year. None the less, whether one loves, hates, covets or dismisses Mister Gallin's particular brand of casually sophisticated interiors that rely heavily on white walls, white sofas, worn leather club chairs, massive stacks of fluffy white towels and bed linens that cost more than a Mercedes, they do represent a certain kind of pared down architectural restraint and decorative perfection and you'd have to be a moe-ron not to recognize that.

Due to the recent economic turmoil and the near evaporation of Wall Street bonus money, there are not as many big bucks buyers scooping up top tier properties in the Hamptons as there used to be. Add to that that there are a large number of substantial estates on the market in a price range similar to Mister Gallin's property and it remains to be seen if he will be able to scare up a deep pocked buyer willing to part with $32,000,000 for a high-maintenance summer house anytime soon.

Other available mega-properties include the Southampton spread of deceased financier Howard Gittis on Ox Pasture Road has been languishing on the market at $45,000,000 after first being listed 1.5 years ago for a spleen busting $59,000,000. Model Christie Brinkley has had her behemoth, land-locked Bridgehampton estate on Brick Kiln Road on and off the market for a number of years. It's now priced at $30,000,000. And Miz Brinkley's ex-huzband, soon to be thrice dee-vorced piano man Billy Joel, has a pair of recently overhauled, side-by-side ocean front properties on Gibson Road in Sagaponack that he snatched up in the summer and fall of 2007 back on the market for a combined price of $35,000,000. And hunnies, that's just the tip of the $30,000,000+ real estate iceberg in the Hamptons.

For what's it's worth and for anyone that might care, Mister Gallin's spread on Sagg Road is just around the corner from the Highland Terrace estate of dee-vorcing (or not dee-vorcing) Count and Countess de Lesseps (they of the Real Housewives of New York infamy) as well as the quirky and quaint converted chicken coop where Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter have spent many a lazy summer day laying around nursing cocktails and eating cheese with our good friend Lee-lee and her canine mate Pood. Mister Gallin's beach house is also just a quick bicycle ride from Fair Field, the outrageously decadent 29 bedroom beach house of industrialist Ira Rennart that, quite frankly, makes Mister Gallin's place look like servant's quarters.

Anyone want to take bets one which of Mister Gallin's $32,000,000 properties will go into contract first?

More photos of the Bridgehampton property can be seen here and scads of pictures of Mister Gallin's crib in Bel Air can be seen here. We suggest you grab yerself a nice, cold gin and tonic and settle in for the long haul because there's a lot to look at.

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