The top five Hamptons home sales of the fourth quarter of 2016 starts out with a whopper—a $60 million transaction that beats the $57.3 million sale that topped Q4 in 2015—but from there the numbers are not quite as impressive.
The four sales that round out the top five of Q4 2016 would have fallen short not only of the top five but of the top 10 of Q4 2015. Real estate professionals have attributed the drop-off in activity in the $10 million-plus range to pre-election jitters, a lack of inventory, the fact that 2014 and 2015 were phenomenal years in the Hamptons market that aren’t easily repeated, and other factors that will become more clear as time goes on.
Whatever the reasons that Q4 2016 could not match Q4 of the prior two years, the top-five high-end homes are enviable.
56 Gin Lane
This sale in the Village of Southampton easily dwarfs other transactions in the fourth quarter—it is more than quadruple the second-place finisher.
The neighborhood, with its ample water views and a handful of historic homes that managed to survive into the 21st century, was chronicled in “The Southampton Cottages of Gin Lane,” written by Sally Spanburgh. A property selling for $60 million is far removed from the street’s quite humble beginnings: In 1882, Dr. T. Gaillard Thomas paid under $1,200 for two parcels of land. The name “Gin Lane” has nothing to do with alcohol, and it was not a drop-off spot for rum-runners in the 1920s. In the 1650s, a fenced-in pasture was created where South Main Street met the ocean, and “gin” is an Old English name for a common grazing area.
In the late 1800s and into the 1930s, Gin Lane was a big part of the summer colony that grew in Southampton, but, sadly, the Hurricane of 1938 damaged and destroyed many of the original residences.
The residence at 56 Gin Lane has no real connection to the past, having been built in 1994, on a spacious 4.3 acres. The home is more than 10,000 square feet containing nine bedrooms and an even dozen baths. As one can imagine, there are oodles of amenities, and the grounds are immaculate.
The buyer of the property is in county records as Jan Split Purchase Trust. This is a legal entity set up when a purchaser already has other properties and is a way to pass on the newly acquired property without too hard an estate tax hit. The seller, meanwhile, is Jewish Communal Fund Holdings II, a limited liability corporation connected—surprise!—to the Jewish Communal Fund. Celebrating its 45th anniversary, JCF now has 2,800 funds and $1 billion in assets. The annual grants it issues amount to close to $300 million.
“Since its inception, JCF has been blessed with a wealth of talented and passionate leaders,” its website states. “Our diverse donor base represents every sector of the Jewish community, and our grantees are a reflection of that diversity.”
And now, there is another $60 million in the pot.
1400 Meadow Lane
Sold by Fredric Snyder, a pediatrician, and his wife, Judge Leslie Crocker Snyder, to 1400 Meadow Lane LLC, this oceanfront property adjacent to Road D—a Southampton Village beach access and parking area—featured a 2,300-square-foot main house with pool and tennis on 2.7 acres, but was marketed as a teardown with plans ready for a 4,200-square foot modern home with five bedrooms, four bathrooms, an open living area and a separate dining area. The plans also include an oceanfront swimming pool and deck; the old pool was between the residence and the street. The street-side all-weather Har-tru tennis court will stay.
According to Corcoran, who brokered the deal back in October, the new owner wasted no time in demolishing the original structure to make way for a new residence and pool.
The Snyders had kept a low profile in their modest oceanfront abode—much in contrast to Ms. Snyder’s positions as special prosecutor and justice for the New York Supreme Court. During her tenure, she presided over a number of high profile cases and ran twice for Manhattan district attorney, losing in both 2005 and 2009.
As is the growing tradition among high profile real estate sales of the East End, the buyer’s identity is shrouded in LLC mystery; however, the LLC’s mailing address is a towering condominium complex in South Beach, Miami.
80 Sams Creek Road
This massive 12,000-square-foot barn-style home is tucked in among the estates of Sams Creek of Mecox Bay. While $13 million may sound like quite the price tag for a non-waterfront home situated on a 1-acre parcel, the brand new modern facade, complete with floor-to-ceiling windows, and the minimalist interior certainly make up for any shortcomings; not to mention a home theater, a billiards room and a fitness area. An addition to the eight-bedroom, 9.5-bathroom main house, the property includes a two-bedroom guest house and a Gunite pool/spa encircled by a striking slate patio with pool house.
The interior has a number of elegant selling points, such as high vaulted ceilings, a floating, nautical-style staircase, and a fully built-in kitchen and dining area with a banquet table and fine mosaic tiles. The master bedroom boasts water views of Sams Creek with an enclosed glass sitting area and its own spacious master bath.
The previous owner, Alemarc LLC, purchased the home when it was partially built back at the end of 2012 and saw through its final construction. Business records show the LLC is in the care of James L. Amine, former CEO of Investment Banking and Capital Markets at Credit Suisse Group AG. The buyer on the other hand is listed simply as Ariston Thalassa, LLC.
606 Halsey Neck Lane
This freshly built, freshly landscaped Dutch colonial-style home situated on just shy of 1 acre in the estate section of Southampton Village is 6,400-square-foot complete with all the typical Hamptons amenities, such as a spacious three-car garage, a minimalist Gunite pool with slate patio, and a separate pool house. Perhaps the most stunning feature of the property is a towering oak tree in the backyard, which in a rare move of preservation was kept after the original house was demolished back in 2013.
816 Mecox Road
Listed for $12.75 million before ultimately selling for $11.5 million, this new estate backs up to Swan Creek, a horse farm.
Developer Christopher Peluso sold the gated 1.4-acre parcel and 9,200-square-foot English country manor to Liben Children Trust. The home, outfitted with an elevator, has nine bedrooms, 10 full bathrooms and one partial bath. Among the amenities are stone terraces, a garden, pool and farm views, a formal living room, an open porch with fireplace, a den, formal dining and a finished 3,500-square-foot basements with a home theater, wine cellar, staff rooms, gym and more.
Tom Clavin, Brendan J. O’Reilly and Michael Pintauro