New York

The Art of Columbia County, NY

Mary Stapleton

Mary Stapleton
Halstead Property
Click Here To Contact Mary

Columbia County in Hudson Valley is known for its varied landscapes, winding country roads, majestic mountain ranges, lakes, streams, the mighty Hudson River and some of the finest historic estates in New York.

Photo Courtesy Of Sandy ArthurOnce a hidden secret, the county has become a haven for weekenders from the TriState area and beyond. Well-known artists, musicians, actors, and writers are calling Columbia County their home for the same reason many day trippers hop on the Amtrak or wind up the beautiful Taconic Parkway. They come for the majestic beauty, endless outdoor activities for every season, quintessential country towns dotted about, and the hippest little city in the Northeast: Hudson.  There you can find unique and important antique and design establishments, as well as some of the finest galleries, shops and restaurants in the Hudson Valley. In Hudson, you may feel like you stepped back in time, (for the boomers) to the West Village, say forty years ago—or the new running joke, ‘Hudson is the new Brooklyn!’

These are some of the same reasons that brought myself and countless others to the area. Many start as weekenders, but we have been seeing a trend of people coming with the intent of becoming full-time residents. Not only is the Baby Boomer generation transitioning, but it seems every generation is coming as well, bringing creative, innovative businesses to the area. As we are in a mobile, global time, it is easy to see why so many are wanting to call Columbia County their home!



Photo Courtesy of  Dan Tappan - featuring  The Kennedys

Photo Courtesy of Dan Tappan – featuring The Kennedys

Another trend is the Modern Organic Farmers and the Creative Chef figures that are flocking to the area— where the lands are bountiful and the ‘farm-to-table’ explosion is making this region a popular food adventure destination. Add several first-class ski resorts, golf and tennis, boating, hiking and bike trails to the mix and it’s easy to see why so many have shifted from the weekender to the full- ime resident. Of course, there are countless farmers markets, music, art, and film festivals, and many historic sites here, such as Clermont Historic Estate. The Fredrick Church’s Olana, another historic site, is where the famed American School of Painters obtained their a good deal of their inspiration.

Once seasonal, it is easy to see why the area has become a four season destination. The eclectic mix of real estate is so complimentary to a wide range of buyers, keeping the rural communities beauty intact. It’s also easy to understand why Columbia County has become the place for artists, writers, actors of stage and film wanting to be anonymous in our beautiful environment.

Logistically, we are within two hours from New York City, and are centrally located in the Hudson Valley, where we can easily enjoy and utilize the services the surrounding communities.

Photo Courtesy Of Jay WoodworthHalstead’s Hudson Valley office opened its doors in Hudson eight years ago and continues the tradition of offering the finest properties and service available, as in all our offices throughout New York City and the TriState area. I walked into the office five years ago and was greeted by a vibrant New Yorker, a successful New York City Halstead agent and broker, and instantly felt at home. Whether you are looking for a minimalist retreat hidden down a wooded path, a majestic Historic Estate, or a Mountaintop modern masterpiece, you will find it here.

Scarsdale: A Community Rich in Spirit

Anne Moretti

Anne Moretti
Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty
Click Here to Contact Anne

Established in 1788, Scarsdale is a suburban village located 24 miles north of New York City. The name is a concatenation of “scar,” meaning crag, and “dale,” which is synonymous with “valley.” Since its emergence in the early 20th century as a choice abode of the city commuter, Scarsdale has prospered from its residents’ commitment to excellence in living and in education. With a population of 17,000, Scarsdale packs an array of cultural offerings into its 6.6 square miles. Its long list of famous denizens, from public and private sectors alike, is still growing.

This year, Scarsdale was ranked first in the nation among CNN Money’s “top earning towns.” While the wealth and prominence of Scarsdale residents attracts national interest and discussion, their down-to-earth demeanor and commitment to giving back are the real draws of living here. Citizens harness their intelligence and affluence to help on a local and global level: from next door neighbors to Cambodian women’s shelters, Scarsdale’s community opens its hearts and wallets to share their talents and gains with others.

The keel of Scarsdale’s community is its school system. Educators measure success by the degree to which students fulfill their potential to improve the common good. The high school’s motto is “non sibi”: not for oneself alone. Scarsdale teaches a traditional liberal arts curriculum through a progressive pedagogy that emphasizes holistic instruction. There are five elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school, through which 4,700 students pass every year. Scarsdale rivals the most elite private school in curricular depth and rigor. Language instruction is emphasized early: Spanish is offered starting in first grade and Mandarin is now offered in the high school.

The schools have recently integrated interdisciplinary studies, following some of the nation’s top universities. We have caps on class sizes in the elementary schools, and our middle and high schools stratify courses based on ability.

Photo By  Audrey Lynne Shares 2Residents run the professional gamut, from medicine to sports, from fine arts to finance. Through their individual commitments they form a caring, cosmopolitan community. Early 1900s architecture defines the village’s timbered Tudors, the dominant local mode. There is plenty of green space: parks, playgrounds, baseball fields, tennis courts, stables and a riding academy. A catalog of recreational programs is available to children and adults. Platform tennis, or paddle, was invented here in 1928, and the local paddle league remains active. The public pool facility has four swimming pools; lessons are offered in both swimming and diving. Sidewalks line almost every major road—you see people strolling, jogging, biking, pushing strollers on them all the time. Hoff Barthelson Music School offers top-tier music instruction and classical concerts, attracting students and attendees from across Westchester county. The downtown area in the village presents a lively assortment of delicious and diverse restaurants, delis, bakeries, and boutiques. Members of the Building Department keep a watchful eye on new construction and housing development in the Village to preserve a happy medium between consumer demands and historic character.

It is a noted trend for children raised in Scarsdale to move back as adults. Communities reshuffle and morph, but in Scarsdale, this one fact persists: it is a great place to raise your kids. My husband’s family has lived in Scarsdale since the 1920s; two of his three siblings are also raising their children here.

I have worked in real estate throughout Westchester County for seventeen years, but my primary focus has been selling homes in Scarsdale, where I live. At its heart, Photo By  Audrey Lynne SharesScarsdale is a community of diverse individuals committed to the common good. As an agent with Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty, I often meet prospective homeowners who are curious about Scarsdale because its schools’ excellent reputation. Buyers are also attracted to the brief 30-minute commute to Grand Central in New York City. When they visit, they’re won over by the many parks, leafy environs, and vibrant international community. Schools often host events to celebrate the world cultures current residents have brought to Scarsdale, including an annual Thanksgiving luncheon that features a smorgasbord of international cuisine.

The juxtaposition of comfortable living with deep-rooted values distinguishes Scarsdale among the suburbs of New York. People come here for the schools, but they stay for the richness of spirit they discover when they see the town for themselves.