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Nick Churton of Houlihan Lawrence’s London office enjoys visiting a sensational home in BelIe Haven, Greenwich, Connecticut.
The Property: 44 Mayo Avenue, Belle Haven, Greenwich, CT
The Broker: Houlihan Lawrence
The Agent: Kristy De La Sierra
I know two houses called Fairholme. Both are beautiful, large and grand. One Fairholme is in Newport, Rhode Island overlooking the celebrated Cliff Walk. John F Kennedy used to swim in the pool. I’m not sure who has swum in the fabulous pool at the other Fairholme, but it’s likely some were also pretty important.
I visited this second Fairholme in Belle Haven, Greenwich, on a hot, high-summer day with the 2.74 acre garden in full bloom. Described as an English manor house, it is hard to argue. It melds Tudor and Elizabethan styles into a Tudorbethan amalgamation that works perfectly in this rarefied location. All the elements are there: high brick chimneys, tall gables with decorative bargeboards, half-timbered elevations with magnificent bay windows, a sensational garden and the unmistakable feeling of dominance, security and pride – English characteristics that, some feel, are a little strained nowadays. But you can’t keep a good nation down, just as you can’t keep a good house down.
Fairholme has managed the years very well indeed. It was built in 1891 as a Gilded Age summer house for shipping magnate, real estate developer and philanthropist, Nathaniel Witherell. Successive owners have looked after the house beautifully. Today it sports an Alexa Hampton interior and a delightful formal garden that nods to the French influence on the English country house.
I loved this house. It felt like home. But not just any home, it felt like a Fairholme.