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Martha Stewart's East Hampton mansion sells for $16.5 million

Martha Stewart bought the home on Lily Pond

Martha Stewart bought the home on Lily Pond Lane, shown in 2004, in 1991 for $1.7 million and renovated it from top to bottom. Credit: Julia Xanthos

Lifestyle mogul Martha Stewart’s 19th century mansion on East Hampton’s gilded Lily Pond Lane recently sold for $16.5 million, nearly double the asking price.

Listed in June for $8.4 million, the three-story, shingle-style home sold in August. According to Suffolk County property records, the buyer was Kenneth Lerer, former chairman of BuzzFeed and co-founder of The Huffington Post.

Soon after her 1990 divorce from Andrew Stewart, Martha Stewart, now 80, bought the home for $1.7 million and quickly stamped it with her own refined aesthetic in a top-to-bottom renovation.

Working with Ben Krupinski, who was known as the "contractor to the stars," Stewart kept some of the original framework, including paneling and built-in cabinets. Walls were knocked down to expand the living room and create a luxe primary suite; an open covered porch enclosed to create a dining room, to which a teal-blue Mexican cement tiled floor was added; and cracked plaster ceilings replaced with beadboard, according to MarthaStewart.com. Eclectic furnishings came courtesy of antique shops and yard sales, and included collections of McCoy pottery, mercury glass, jadeite dishes and game-fish taxidermy.

Built in 1873, the home sits on a site once known as Divinity Hill, named for the many ministers who stayed at its boardinghouses. It belonged to the Rev. De Witt Talmage, well-known for his dynamic sermons, which were reported to have attracted up to 3,000 parishioners on any given Sunday.

Located a block from the ocean and East Hampton Main Beach, the 1-acre property contains Stewart’s lush garden filled with petite purple Japanese maples, hostas, peonies, roses, lilies and hydrangeas.

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