It’s a very good thing. Domestic arts guru Martha Stewart has sold her East Hampton, NY, vacation home for a whopping $16.5 million. The off-market transaction was surfaced by Dirt. That price is almost twice what the home had reportedly asked. The 19th-century charmer on Lily Pond Lane had last been shopped around for $8.4 million.
The buyers are said to be Kenneth Lerer, former chairman of BuzzFeed and co-founder of the Huffington Post, and his wife, the interior designer Katherine Sailer, according to Mansion Global. “Martha is very savvy. She followed the great real estate adage ‘location, location, location’ when she purchased her Hamptons home,” says Jennifer Victoria Lenz, managing director of Dolly Lenz Real Estate. “The premium that these buyers paid is a true testament to the strength of the overall Hamptons market and the emphasis buyers put on great locations.” In addition to a great locale, the home comes with plenty of Martha Stewart Living history, as it were. Even though the lifestyle leader mainly spends time at her farm in Bedford, NY, and a vast compound in Maine, she managed to still find time during the COVID-19 pandemic to make a splashy visit to her Hamptons abode. “My pool in East Hampton is the place to be on a 89 degree day,” she posted on Instagram. “When I built the pool thirty years ago it was designed to be as chlorine free as possible … After all these years, It is a fun place to swim!” Stewart purchased the home for $1.7 million in 1991, after her divorce from Andy Stewart. In addition to the pool, which she wedged into a narrow space right up to the property line of the 1-acre lot, Martha Stewart transformed the space that was “a wreck” when she bought it. Built in 1873, the residence served as inspiration for a line of paint colors and furniture, and is known for its glorious gardens. Stewart is said to have planted some 1,800 tulip bulbs, along with climbing roses and hydrangeas. The home was reportedly furnished with yard sale finds, most of which will go to her Maine estate, Mansion Global noted. Because the sale was off-market, we don’t have photos of the interiors to share. But according to a story on Martha Stewart Living, the six-bedroom retreat just a block from the beach now offers a fresh, updated look and features details like wainscoting on the ceiling, hardwood floors, big windows, plus an enlarged living room and master suite. The home’s notable neighbors include Billy Joel, Steven Spielberg, and Calvin Klein. And demand to live along this coveted stretch in the Hamptons continues to be fierce. “With neighbors like [Jon] Bon Jovi and David Geffen, who spent $70 million for his Lily Pond estate some years ago, and Barry Rosenstein paying $147 million nearby on Further Lane, it’s no wonder the buyers were willing to pay nearly double Martha’s asking price. Demand for trophy homes in the Hamptons remains at peak levels—especially in top areas such as the Estate Section of East Hampton along Lily Pond and Further Lanes,” says Lenz. Stewart has traded in her lively social life in East Hampton for the tranquil grounds of Skylands, her Maine property, and her 150-acre farm in Bedford, NY, about 45 minutes outside of Manhattan. At 80, the tastemaker has a dizzying number of ventures, from a line of frozen foods, to CBD supplements, to meal kits. This story was originally published on Realtor.com.