Tri State Neighborhhod Spotlights

Manhattan’s Energy in a Sophisticated Community on the Island

Less than half an hour away from the excitement of New York City, lies the vibrant town of Manhasset. With exceptional schools, world-class shopping, premier dining and a welcoming community, it is an ideal place to live and raise a family.

Manhasset is approximately 2.4 square miles and consists of Plandome Village, Plandome Heights Village, Plandome Manor Village, Flower Hill, Munsey Park and North Hills. The commute to Manhattan is ideal on the Long Island Railroad and take 28 express minutes! It is only 20 miles from Manhattan and 50 miles from the Hamptons.

The public schools are ranked in the top 100 in the country and ranked top 5 of spending per child in the Nassau County. There is a 12:1 student/teacher ratio. The residents in this community pride themselves in being very involved in the education system and that creates a strong dynamic between the students, teachers, administrators and parents. This also translates to success later in life as 80% of students go on to four year colleges. There are vigorous sports programs in lacrosse, soccer, basketball etc. that keep the children active throughout the years. Very strong academic standards and community service are established and encouraged from a young age.

AmericanaManhassetBkgrd2There are several country clubs in Manhasset that offer golf and tennis. There are beautiful parks, walking trails and beaches. A beautiful gazebo sits in the center of town and the community gathers there many times throughout the year to celebrate the lighting of the tree, the annual 5K Run Walk to fight breast cancer and many other events that bring everyone together.

With over 60 high-end stores the Americana Manhasset boasts outstanding outdoor shopping and dining. You will find luxurious brands such as Prada, Giorgio Armani, Tiffany’s, Ralph Lauren, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Christin Dior, London Jeweler’s, Burberry, Hermes, Tory Burch and many more. The incredible stores, restaurants, flowers and décor create a beautiful environment that is truly unique.

A few blocks from the high-end stores of the Americana you will find Plandome Road, which is home toCaption---  The Colombos- Dooley Team with happy client - Yankee Outfielder Carlos Beltran local merchants, many of whom have been there for generations. They know your name and pride themselves in providing exceptional service to their customers. Here you will find the small towns feel that creates a warm feeling amongst its residents.

Manhasset means “island neighborhood” and got its name from a Native American term. It is home to “Shelter Rock”, which is an 1,800 ton boulder which has been here since the Ice Age and is a landmark on Long Island.

As a resident of Manhasset for over ten years, I really enjoy the vitality of this community. There is sophistication in the people of Manhasset that comes with living so close to the heart of New York City. Comfortable living, proximity to the city, exceptional schools, family values and a warm sense of community – an ideal place to live.

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.

Small Town America in the Shadows of NYC

Heidi Henshaw

Heidi Henshaw
Trump International Realty

Located on the beautiful Hudson River, Briarcliff boasts its own Town pool and tennis facilities plus the stone Law Pavilion (rentable for private events) and historic Briarcliff Library which was once a train station early in the 20th century.

The overall feeling is freedom, warmth and a supportive community–security.

Briarcliff is also surrounded by prestigious world-class golf including Trump National Golf Course. Spectacular luxurious golf town houses can be purchased for those who want 24- hour- manned gate-house security in a beautiful private setting. The Trump Club offers golf, pool, tennis, gym and fitness, dining and social events and activities for members.  However, many of the town’s people line the course to watch the spectacular July 4th fireworks which are not to be missed!

Westchester backgroundThere are also many open spaces and parks.  Rockefeller State Park borders Briarcliff and is a very popular spot for hiking, running, dog-walking, sledding, cross-country skiing or just catching an amazing sunset….Other recreation includes basketball, hockey, tennis, softball,swimming and classes for children and adults.  There are also annual town community events that include races, rides, parades and celebration!

The Westchester Mall is just a 10 minute car ride for a great shopping experience.  Or visit one of the many spas that are nearby. Traveling North one can find peace and tranquility in the Catskills or Adirondack Mountains areas.  Traveling South one is relaxing at a Hamptons beach in under two hours.

Although Briarcliff is just under 7 square miles, there are also impressive estate areas including Scarborough Rd. which includes the 65 acre Holly Hill estate that Riveronce belonged to Brook Astor.   Other Scarborough Rd grand 20th century turn-of-century estates have breathtaking Hudson River views.  There are several other estate areas with beautiful homes that have golf course views or Hudson River views.

The award winning, sought after Briarcliff school system has some people comparing it to private educational facilities.  There is one elementary school, and the middle school and high school are on the same campus.  Briarcliff High School offers a vast array of quality courses including many AP and honor level courses. There are also performing arts stage productions, dance and art shows, and science programs and competitions where students exhibit their talents and knowledge.  The sports scene is popular for both male and female students.  Briarcliff sports teams have garnered many awards over the past ten years including Womens  NYS Basketball and  Soccer Champions and Mens NYS Baseball Championship Finalists..

While Briarcliff has it’s share of celebrity and successful individuals, they blend in and are able to maintain their privacy.






Downtown Tribeca

KANE MANERA Douglas Elliman Licensed Real Estate Salesperson 212.321.7177

Douglas Elliman
Licensed Real Estate

The majority of the buildings in 10013 were designed for industry, yet proportionally speaking, they make for exceedingly luxurious living that is now being mimicked by architects and demanded by home buyers everywhere. High ceilings, large windows, exposed brick and quality interiors that are as custom to the apartment as the artistic individuals who colonized the neighborhood during the 1960’s and 70’s, not only add to the community and its abodes being diverse, but illustrate an inherent resilience to carve out a residential landscape and grow when times have been difficult. Couple these qualities with cobble stone streets, Hudson River Park sunsets and thriving restaurants, and you have the private and comfortable alternative to the finest neighborhoods in New York, with the ease of enjoying a superior caliber of lifestyle.

“TriBeCa is one of the most unique neighborhoods in the World and its inception as the residential locale of choice is something which could only have been conceived in New York City.”

Locanda Verde
377 Greenwich St
(corner of N.Moore and Greenwich) Great breakfast spot

J Crew Men’s Shop at the Liquor Store
235 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013 (at White St.)
First men’s only store for the ubiquitous brand

24 Hubert Wines
24 Hubert St
(between Washington St & Greenwich St)

Tutto II Giorno & NY Academy of Art
114 Franklin St., New York, NY 10013
De Felice’s rustic Italian. Tip: try the Chicken Milanese

New York Academy of Art
111 Franklin St.

Downtown Soho/Nolita

CHRISTINA VISCA BOND New York Senior Vice President 917-806-6867, 917-806-6867

BOND New York
Senior Vice President
917-806-6867, 917-806-6867
Click Here to Contact Christina

I’ve seen the neighborhood change dramatically…mostly for the good. It’s off the beaten path, yet has so much to offer. You’ll find a chic boutique or restaurant underneath classic tenement buildings and next door a new condo with starting prices of $10M. It’s a fabulous mixture of old and new, yet even the new feels old.

Brink of Little Italy “I am fortunate to have been selling and renting homes at The Police Building for the past 23 years.” 


408 Broome Street Food shop and tapas café

Ed’s Lobster

222 Lafayette Street

A proper seafood shack

Allan and Suzi

237 Centre Street

Retro clothing store

Animal Haven

251 Centre Street

Non-profit organization for abandoned cats and dog

Rice to Riches

37 Spring Street

Rice pudding boutique perfect one bedroom/convertible 2

Saddle River, New Jersey

Saddle RiverThis rustic community is situated along the picturesque Saddle River, which is located between 15 and 18 miles from Manhattan. From cottages to large estates, along with the minimum 2 acre zoning, this charming community offers a buyer proximity to New York and all the culture that offers, along with a serene and picturesque lifestyle.
The real estate values are from approximately $1,000,000 to over $30,000,000; although Saddle River is home to many high profile residents in the entertainment and music industry as well as internationally recognized entrepreneurs; there is a feeling of being able to lead a low key lifestyle here. We always have strong interest from Manhattan business owners who need to get to Manhattan quickly and often.
Although there are just a few local businesses in town, your access to the country’s largest shopping mecca is right within your reach. All in all, the beauty of the landscape (Saddle River, streams, brooks and mountain views) along with the great access to Manhattan makes this one of the top Platinum communities in the United States.
The two residences pictured above show the diversity of housing in Saddle River. From historic, landmarked homes to country French estates, this is an area that a discerning buyer should not miss.

Meet Vicki Gaily

Sea Cliff, Long Island

Sea cliff MainSitting atop a 120 foot bluff on the North Shore of Long Island (overlooking Hempstead Harbor and the Long Island Sound just 25 miles east of Manhattan), the Village of Sea Cliff is a town unlike any other. Though becoming increasingly upscale, the area is known as a haven for artists, writers, musicians and actors with a bohemian relaxed feeling that the residents have enjoyed for over 100 years.

The walk-ability of the town and a central main street with charming boutique shops, restaurants, music/dance studios, outdoor cafes and the Victorian architecture make it a desired destination for city people who do not want to give up the downtown experience.

At just 1 square mile, The Village of Sea Cliff has 16 parks, some hidden among the many small side streets that add to the charm and lifestyle. It is an area rich in spirit; with a strong civic consciousness including excellent schools, quiet and friendly neighborhoods and an incredible arts community.
Each October, the Mini Mart arts and crafts fair showcases many of the talented residents.

Tappen Beach, with community pool and a 272 slip marina, is there for lovers of the sea. A long walkway esplanade along the beach is a magnet for those who enjoy walks with their dogs; people can often be seen capturing sunset views over the harbor. Sea Cliff Memorial Park boasts some of the most magnificent water views that could rival those of the Amalfi Coast and draws local musicians. Clifton Park is home to the Sea Cliff Little League where sluggers of all ages compete. Children’s storytelling at the library is a tradition enjoyed by all age groups. Sea Cliff Museum, right next to Village Hall, remains a focal point of the town where people work tirelessly to preserve their quality of life.

Well renowned poets, authors, rock stars and famous actors have all called The Village of Sea Cliff home at one time or another. It is a truly special place on the North Shore; one that embodies the small town feel with the groove of a happening place in the know. The zip code 11579, with preserved architecture of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s of Victorian homes and quaint arts and crafts cottages, fill the landscape of about 5,000 residents.

Westways stands alone as a meticulously restored grand estate located in the heart of the village. Just imagine the parties and lavish affairs that world famous composer Cole Porter once hosted in this magical home that he rented during the summer in the 1930’s. This English Cotswold Storybook Estate is privately set and not visible from the street, but upon first sight of this magnificent residence, it will take your breath away. On 1.5 acres, the property has a peaceful serenity and incredible pool setting with cabana and summer kitchen.

Westways  Sea Cliff Put toward the end - smallWith only three owners since 1913, Westways is approximately 6,800 square feet. With 64 windows and high ceilings, the residence was built by hand with all concrete and steel. Definitely a house for entertaining, the reception foyer has refurbished wood paneling, detailed staircase and a fireplace. Walking through the generously sized living room with another fireplace, the rooms flow nicely into the library, banquet sized dining room and solarium that overlooks the slate patios and grounds.

Perhaps one of the best features of the home is the newly remodeled kitchen with coffered ceilings, radiant heat and copper sinks. The idea of the kitchen was to maintain the integrity of the time while updating it to the 21st century with all new appliances, a center island and family-friendly breakfast area.

The Master Suite with dressing rooms plus large closets and fireplace is the perfect place to unwind. Bedrooms have access to private en-suite baths and include a 2-room suite. The third floor is outfitted with a game room/playroom. The house also has a chauffeur’s apartment separate from the main house.

Westways estate is the perfect place for the person or family who wants to live in a community, but in the privacy a grand estate and beautiful property offers. Sea Cliff is sure to delight all who visit; once you do, you will not want to leave. The vibe has existed for many years and is surely not leaving this enchanting village any time soon. It is a lifestyle all its own with a personal touch that welcomes new residents.

Click to View Michael Stanco’s bio and listings On Douglas Elliman Real Estate

Westport, Connecticut

Westport is a beautiful coastal town located approximately 47 miles north of New York City. Originally an artists’ colony, the town has held strong to its cultural roots while expanding into an affluent community. Connecticut Magazine ranked Westport the #1 town by in their Rate the Town 2011 issue for populations 25,000 to 50,000. Westport’s small-town atmosphere provides residents with a quaint haven away from the bustle of larger cities. Of course its proximity to New York City means you’re still only an hour away from enjoying the big-city benefits! The downtown area offers a robust shopping experience with everything from one-of-a-kind boutiques to international luxury retailers.

The thriving arts community offers outstanding performances at the Levitt Pavilion and The Westport Country Playhouse. Of course the quality of life extends past award-winning entertainment and shopping…. a first-rate public school system. Westport’s public high school was ranked in the top 10 Connecticut high schools by US New in 2013.

Westport also has amazing parks such as Compo Beach and Sherwood Island State Park, located on Long Island Sound for picnic areas and beach, and Longshore Country Club is available to residents for golf, swimming, sailing and fine dining.

Photo Courtesy of Thrutheeyes Photography

Westport has easy access to Interstate 95, the Merritt Parkway, and U.S.1 as well as the Saugatuck River, which runs right through the town. Green’s Farms and Westport have train stations on Metro-North railroad with service to Grand Central terminal in New York City.

Many famous entertainers have called Westport home, most notably actor Paul Newman. Many corporations make Westport home such as Bridgewater Associates, Canaan Partners, dLife, Terex and the global non-profit organization Save the Children.

There are unique real estate opportunities in areas such as Compo Beach, Greens Farms and Old Hill, from new construction homes to luxury condos in many price ranges. Westport is a thriving and creative community – come take advantage of all it has to offer!

Learn About Rick Higgins


Fairfield County Connecticut “The Quiet Confidence”

Photo courtesy of  Matt Hintsa

As a lifelong resident and veteran Realtor in Fairfield County, I have been drawing comparisons between New York and Connecticut for over 20 years. Monumental Manhattan makes Fairfield County all the more magical and meaningful, particularly because of the vibrant contrast between the two. Although Fairfield County is more than half the size of Manhattan it enjoys arguably less than one percent of the fanfare—and we in Fairfield County wouldn’t have it any other way.

I, personally, know of no other county in the United States that is as celebrated and as bustling as Fairfield County, and yet still maintains a compelling constellation of country-towns, small cities, quaint suburbs and seashore communities. While nothing can compare to the blessings of living directly in Manhattan, for the millions who desire either a primary or secondary residence outside of Manhattan, Fairfield County is just the place.

While we cannot boast of reality shows, NFL teams, or bridge and tunnel access, the absence of these is a compelling reason that Fairfield County maintains its alluring characteristics. We gladly trade loudness for quiet confidence. The approximate hour commute from Manhattan transports rail commuters to a diverse state replete with

Photo Courtsey Of Doug Kerr

Photo Courtsey Of Doug Kerr

culture, education, and recreation–all of which is submerged in breathtaking pastoral views. Few wonder why Fairfield County, beyond its countless satisfied citizens, is known as a mecca for hedge fund executives, artists, entertainers and world-renowned celebrities. These savvy folks, after traveling much of the world, realize that Fairfield County is the ideal haven for either a full time residence or for a quick getaway.

Born out of a New England tradition of independence, it is clear that each town, hamlet, village, borough or city is absolutely distinguishable from the rest. Fairfield County’s quintessential charm is contrasted with its high-industry aspects: it is also a regional hub of several world-headquartered financial and high-tech firms. Few places can boast of such progressive diversity while still preserving its heritage and old world charm.

CTAlthough Fairfield County is known by many for its Great Gatsby-like estates (which are also linked to Connecticut’s favorable tax structure and storied topography), there is an impressive range of housing available that can satisfy all price ranges and lifestyles. One thing you will not find though, unlike much of the U.S., is a preponderance of cookie cutter developments. I have buyers from all over the world, including seasoned corporate transferees, who constantly remark: “I can’t believe how every home seems to be different from the next.” Connecticut is not where homes and developments, or people for that matter, are viewed as interchangeable widgets—yet another testament to our independence.

Given the emerging importance of peer reviews and recommendations, I am encouraging “Real Recommendations from Real Residents” on the “Homes in Your Town” websites that the Vanderblue Team will be creating for towns throughout Fairfield County. Over the years, I have learned that consumer-to-consumer recommendations actually influence purchasing decisions much more than traditional marketing and advertising.
Manhattanites familiar with their city’s distinctive neighborhoods will value learning of the nuances of Fairfield County – from our urban planning to our pristine horse properties and farmlands, from our exceptional seashores to our bustling cities – there is literally something for everyone. My experienced team is prepared to consult with anyone seeking to learn more about Fairfield County and other areas within the beautiful state of Connecticut. We invite residents of Manhattan to experience the wonders of Fairfield County this fall season.

Visit Julie Vanderblue, CEO, The Vanderblue Team President, The Higgins Group