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Rich Cribs: Cornelia Guest drops price by $10M

Socialite Corneila Guest has reduced the asking price

Socialite Corneila Guest has reduced the asking price for her storied Old Westbury estate by more than $10 million. Credit: Shawn Elliott Luxury Homes & Estates

Socialite Cornelia Guest recently re-listed her Old Westbury estate, which has seen a price reduction over the years of more than $10 million.

Guest — an actress, equestrian and author once dubbed the Deb of the Decade — now wants $9.695 million for the 15.5-acre home, known as Templeton. When it first came on the market in 2008, she hoped to get $20 million. It was later listed for $11.9 million and reduced to $9.7 million. The property recently became a Shawn Elliott Luxury Homes & Estates listing.

In explaining the steep price cut, Guest says the real estate downturn may have played a role. But, she adds, "I think that’s what it’s worth."

The compound includes a 1924 brick Gold Coast home, a pool, a tennis court, three greenhouses, some cottages and facilities for people who ride horses, including a 17-stall barn and paddocks.

Many legendary figures have wined and dined at the property. Guest's parents, C.Z. Guest -- the legendary garden writer, designer, equestrian and society maven once on the International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame -- and Winston Frederick Churchill Guest -- a polo champion who was related to Winston Churchill -- entertained the likes of author Truman Capote, President John Kennedy and first lady Jacqueline Kennedy, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor (Guest's godparents), dancer Rudolf Nureyev, fashion designers Halston and Yves St. Laurent and heart surgeon Dr. Christiaan Barnard.

Pop artist Andy Warhol was also a frequent guest. "That’s where I met him," Guest says. He was over for dinner, and Guest, then about 5, was coloring upstairs. He went up to meet her, and wouldn't leave her side to eat that night. "We became pals," she says.

Asked if it will be difficult to leave the home, where she has lived since 1968, she says, "It’s home. It’s beautiful. I have all my dogs there. But it’s too much. It needs a family."

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