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December 2006


REAL ESTATE

Deeds & Don'ts
By Lily Oliver

INSIDE STORIES BEHIND AREA REAL ESTATE DEALS

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Cheers!
In our book, buying a vineyard can be a fine investment. It gives you a cool country home, and if the wine doesn't sell, you can drown your sorrows in it. Trouble is, properties don't often come to market. All the more reason, then, to consider Haight Vineyard in Litchfield, listed for $1.45 million. Marketed as "Connecticut's oldest vineyard," Haight was established in 1978 by the now-octogenarian Sherman Haight, who began cultivating chardonnay, Riesling and merlot grapes. Haight donated 92 acres of his acreage to a land trust, so his sale includes the remaining eight acres, the winery itself, the residence, a winemaker's cottage, the equipment and casks, and, of course, the wine. It's listed with Sean Aikmen of Sotheby's International Realty in Washington Depot (860-318-0643).

What Downturn?
While a black cloud hovers over much of the country's real estate, Greenwich is emerging as our Camelot, where "the rain may never fall," as the song goes, and where 30,000-square-foot homes have become the norm—at least among hedge fund managers and their ilk. Billionaire "hedgie" Steve Cohen, for one, lives in a 31,000-square-foot Georgian manse with his wife and seven children. It's a big family, but not so large as to crowd a dwelling that includes a beauty salon, art gallery, theater and ice rink groomed by the in-house Zamboni. Never heard of Cohen? That's because he's "the most powerful trader on Wall Street you've never heard of," per a BusinessWeek article about this "hedge fund king," who's also known as "Stevie."

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