Nick Churton of Mayfair International Realty considers the joys and benifits of downsizing having visited an outstanding townhouse in New Canaan, CT.
Once upon a time – before the bankers and the financiers and the corporate investors spoilt it all – everyday well-off people enjoyed living in multiple vast houses in places like Palm Beach, the Hamptons, Aspen and New Canaan.
But then the banking crisis happened, followed by a change in thinking – and in spending. Now many everyday well-off people prefer multiple smaller homes in places like the Hamptons, Aspen and New Canaan.
And this is where 15 Old Stamford Road, New Cannan, CT comes in. In the US this property is called a condo. To the British mind this doesn’t mean much and if it does it usually means a waterfront apartment in Florida. We don’t have condos in the UK. So to me ‘condo’ doesn’t reflect what this house really is. But, ‘A rose by any other name would smell as sweet’ as our Mr Shakespeare once wrote. This is a town house and a fine one. It is on the end of a short, attached row of similar attractive and manageable houses, just a short walk from the pretty New Canaan town centre, great schools and, most importantly, the railway station. You can be at Grand Central station in New York in about an hour. It is a great service: I know because I have done it.
The interior of this very comfortable, three-story, high ceilinged home is lovely. It has all the style, glamour and rooms of a much larger house but this is smaller, more economical to run, less ostentatious and more homely somehow. There is even a wonderful, temperature-controlled wine cellar. The house is great for entertaining, bringing up a family or having the grandchildren over to stay. And when it’s time to fly off to Palm Beach, the Hamptons or Aspen you can lock and leave without its gobbling up wasteful amounts of your hard-earned income in tax while you are absent.
In the UK we call this mouseholing. But instead of Palm Beach, the Hamptons, Aspen and New Canaan we choose mouseholes in Paris, St Tropez, Gstaad and Venice. Vive le différence! In respect of this charming town house and those who might live there – and with apologies to Sir Winston Churchill – some mouse! some hole!
This is a fragrant flower of a home. A rose.