Old Westbury, an 8.5-square-mile village on Nassau County's North Shore, was named the most expensive suburb by Business Week in 2007 and has been home to some of New York's wealthiest, well-known families, including the Vanderbilts, Whitneys, DuPonts and the Phippses.
The Phipps home was transformed into the village's standout attraction -- Old Westbury Gardens -- where the public can tour the original mansion and 200 acres of formal English-style gardens, landscaped grounds and woodlands. Communications director Vincent Kish says Old Westbury Gardens hosted 70,000 visitors last year and has served as the location for dozens of films and television shows since it opened to the public in 1959.
Old Westbury is also home to the Meadowbrook Polo Club, founded in 1881, the longest-running club of its kind in the United States. The club welcomes spectators and offers lessons. Polo matches are held three days a week at the Whitney Lane location.
Several educational institutions are found within the village. There's SUNY Old Westbury, a public college with more than 4,500 students, and the private New York Institute of Technology, with 6,200 graduates and undergraduates. It's also home to Holy Child Academy, a private Roman Catholic day school with 220 students, in grades K-8. Residents of the village attend three different school districts -- Jericho, East Williston and Westbury.
Michael Berman of Automatic Real Estate, who has been selling homes in Old Westbury for a decade, says the village stands out for its generous property size of at least two acres, as well as its "winding roads, stately trees and horse trails." But it's not just the properties that are a draw. One of the best features, he says, is the village's easy access to Manhattan via train and the Long Island Expressway.
Ellen Zipes of Daniel Gale Sotheby's International Realty agrees. Zipes has been selling homes in Old Westbury for more than 25 years and says it's one of the easiest villages to commute to or from -- whether you are headed to the city or out east on Long Island. She says she also loves the diversity of architecture the village offers, everything from traditional brick estates from the 1930s to Contemporaries, Postmoderns and Southampton-style homes.
SALES PRICES. Between July 1, 2014, and Aug. 15, 2015, there were 50 home sales, with a median price of $1,881,500, according to the Multiple Listing Service of Long Island. The low price for that period was $720,000 and the high was $9 million. During that same period a year earlier, there were 46 sales with a median price of $1.644 million. The price range was $790,000 to $7.250 million.
ATTRACTIONS. Old Westbury Gardens; Meadowbrook Polo Club
Town: North Hempstead and Oyster Bay
Area: 5.5 square miles in North Hempstead; 3.0 square miles in Oyster Bay
ZIP code: 11568
Median age: 22.1
Median household income: $195,417
Median home value: $2,025,000
LIRR time to NYC: 39 to 47 minutes at peak from Westbury
Monthly ticket: $287
School districts: Jericho, East Williston and Westbury
Sources: 2010 Census; mlsli.com; LIRR;
*Based on sales in the past six months, according to MLSLI
ON MULTIPLE LISTINGS
Number of houses: 71
Price range: $1,098,000-$11,800,000
Tax range: $18,915-$194,288
Sandpiper Court, $2.35 million
With an original asking price of $2.399 million, this four-bedroom house sold after just 10 days on the market. The 1924 home features a master suite, three full and two half-baths, a formal dining room, two fireplaces and a library. There's a guest cottage, saltwater pool and a three-car garage with horse stalls on the two-acre property. Taxes are $41,339.
Morgan Drive, $2.35 million
This six-bedroom Colonial with an original asking price of $2.575 million sold after 172 days. The home was built in 1970 but underwent an extensive renovation in 2004 to include two master suites, four bathrooms and a half-bath, a granite kitchen and two fireplaces. The 2.13-acre property is zoned for horses and features a heated gunite pool and bluestone patio. Taxes are $45,333.
I U Willets Road, $4.55 million
After 292 days on the market, this five-bedroom Colonial sold for $1.25 million less than its original asking price of $5.8 million. The house was built in 2014 and features five bathrooms and a half-bath, a chef's kitchen, a formal dining room and two fireplaces. The finished basement offers a theater, wine cellar and sauna. There's a gunite pool and three-car garage on the 2-acre property. Taxes have not yet been determined.
NOW ON THE MARKET
Low end, $1.099 million
This five-bedroom Colonial has four bathrooms and a half-bath, a guest suite, and wood floors and crown moldings throughout. The home features two staircases, four fireplaces, five skylights and remodeled kitchen and bathrooms. There's an in-ground pool and a circular drive on the 1.3-acre property. Taxes are $24,000. Phyllis Beitler, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, 516-921-2262.
There are 6,700 square feet of living space in this seven-bedroom Contemporary, which offers five bathrooms and a half-bath, a formal dining room and a chef's kitchen. The 2.2-acre property has a black marble gunite pool with a waterfall, a bluestone patio and a tennis court. The basement features a cabana area with a wet bar, a game room and an art studio. Taxes are $42,718. Lisa Cerreta, Laffey Fine Homes, 516-305-1466.
High end, $7.9 million
This six-bedroom, center hall Colonial features a master suite with a sitting room and his-and-her walk-in closets. The house has six bathrooms and a half-bath, five fireplaces and a formal dining room. There's a gym, playroom and 15-seat home theater on the lower level. The 6.7-acre property has its own 150-yard golf hole and a gunite pool. Taxes are $68,897. Michael Berman, Automatic Real Estate, 516-658-1605.