The Bedford/Katonah Estate in Westchester County, New York – less than an hour from Manhattan – is no ordinary estate. Its secluded houses, laid out in lush wooded and gently sloping countryside, are reached only by dirt roads – here this is a sign of exclusivity rather than deprivation. One thinks that the residents of this delightful retreat could, no doubt, afford to pave the roads with gold if they had a mind to. But they don’t. They like it just the way it is.
And here amongst all this is Mount Holly. It would be indiscreet to mention the name of a previous owner – a massive figure in the entertainment business – because discretion in luxury real estate is everything.
Originally built in 1928, Mount Holly is a part stone, part shingle hung home that owes a great deal to the Arts and Crafts movement. It sits in 47.5 well thought out acres of woodland and pasture, including a very serious equestrian yard and gardens that give this inspired home its final flourish.
Loves: I loved the conservatory – giant. I loved the master bedroom where Dunhill meets Ralph Lauren in an exquisite blend of cherry wood panelling and bevelled mirrors – ravishing. I loved the media room – a home theatre where the only thing missing was a torch brandeshing usher or usherette selling choc-ices and popcorn off a tray in the intermission (although I am sure that could be arranged). I loved the 80 ft pool and I loved the charming little stone building that caught the eye on a far slope – a writer’s hut with a cosy fireplace in which to write that next great American novel.
Mount Holly is an exceptional home created over the years by some exceptional people with enormous taste, talent and means. It is a creative space that gives plenty of room for imaginations to soar. I get the impression that if you give to Mount Holly it will repay you with considerable interest.