Property of the week
A New York mansion fit for a Rockefeller
Just 45 minutes from New York City, but in an isolated spot miles from anyone, is this house with a famous former resident, writes Isabelle Fraser.
It was the home of David Rockefeller, the grandson of the oil tycoon John D Rockefeller, who was considered to be one of the wealthiest Americans of all time.
David, who died earlier this year, was head of Chase Manhattan Bank, and was instrumental in the building of the World Trade Center; one of the Twin Towers was nicknamed after him.
While making these big deals and helping to shape New York’s skyline, he retreated to his country house in a hamlet near Westchester, upstate New York, where he collected 250,000 specimens of giant beetle and raised a donkey named Cleopatra.
The house, which has 11 bedrooms, was designed in 1938 by Mott Schmidt, who was the architect to the most famous families in New York. The building itself is tasteful in a Georgian style, surrounded by apple trees, an oak and an American elm.
Inside there are details such as a carved fireplace, a grand, sweeping staircase, a lift, a wine vault and various hobby rooms.
The house, which covers 11,000 sq ft, is on a bank high above the Hudson river, and large windows overlook the 75 acres of pristine parkland that surrounds it. Simmental cattle, which the family kept, still roam on the surrounding hills. The family also kept a herd of sheep, pet raccoons, deer, four dogs and two cats, and in the garden is their pet cemetery.
It is on the market for US$22-million (£16.6million) with Houlihan Lawrence (001 914 234 0308; houlihanlawrence.com).