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June 2008


REAL ESTATE

Deeds & Don'ts

(Page 4 of 6)

Director Mike Nichols and writer Philip Roth, among others, contributed to an effort to protect land in Kent, while the designer Bill Blass gave 30 acres of farmland on New Preston Hill in New Preston.

NEW THIS MONTH:
SHIPWAY IN ROWAYTON

Barbara Garfield, the super-industrious Rowayton-based designer, has built and put on the market a handful of homes in her coastal village, all blessed with her now-signature style: She mixes salvaged beams and distressed barnboard with rough-finished plaster walls in lofty spaces that, to our eyes, combine the best of the New England vernacular and the French farmhouse. New on the market are the first three of five planned homes for a private association called Shipway, within walking distance of the village center.

Listing agent Joanne Townsend says the meticulously crafted homes are perfect for empty nesters looking to "resize"—but not necessarily downsize. "When children leave the house you don't necessarily need less space. They come back with kids of their own," she explains. Between 3,000 and 4,000 square feet, the Shipway homes have four bedrooms, four bathrooms and open-plan kitchen, dining and living room spaces for easy entertaining. Aesthetically, they have the gravitas of an antique but with brand-new fixtures, utilities and appliances. And they sit on parcels measured in feet, not acres—so there's virtually no yard work. Indeed, Garfield prides herself on her fabulous and finished landscaping—no dinky boxwoods the size of tennis balls or spindly saplings that won't last the winter. She has planted a glorious alee of 14 sugar maples along the shared driveway and flowering trellises to screen one home from the next. Inside, she favors gorgeous, multi-paned windows imported from Poland, foot-wide oak floorboards, white marble in the kitchens and bathrooms, handmade sconces and unusual, oversized hardware. Our favorite is No. 200 1B Rowayton Avenue, which repurposed the bones of the second-oldest house in Rowayon, built in 1785, but has been entirely re-imagined inside. All three homes are listed for $2.4 million with Townsend at Wheeler Real Estate in Darien (203-858-6352).

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