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Sandro Rosell
FC Barcelona President
Tuesday, October 24, 2017

If you’ve ever dreamed of living in a 19th Century cottage not far from the Atlantic Ocean, you will soon have the opportunity, granted you can meet the $55 million asking price. In a report Monday, the NY Times noted that in, addition to its hefty price, the 1887 house comes with a property tax of $13,848 a year.

If they can get past that, lucky buyers will be able to enjoy the cottage’s seven bedrooms and seven-and-a-half baths (even the numbers evoke a fairy tale), and porch on three sides. According to the Times, the house was named “Kilkare” by its original owners, Michael and Eleanora Kennedy, to evoke both a fictional Irish town, and, as its name suggests, a place where you cares disappear.

The Times noted that the late Mr. Kennedy, who passed away last year at 78, was a trial lawyer who represented the Black Panthers and Ivana Trump, the former wife of President Donald Trump, during the couple’s divorce proceedings in 1991.

In her coffee table book “Out East,” Southampton resident and producer Jennifer Ash Rudick noted that the construction of Kilkare was commissioned in 1877 by Camilla and Walter Edwards at the edge of the Georgica Settlement, now known as the Georgica Association. According to the NY Times, the Georgica Association is a “guarded enclave” whose quaintness resembles something stripped from a Norman Rockwell fantasy, with an eighteenth-century windmill, four tennis courts, weekly baseball games, and children’s sailboat rides

In its original state, the cottage apparently had a more gothic, mysterious allure than the almost excessively bright picture painted above. Describing her first impression of the house, Eleanora Kennedy could not resist dropping a literary reference, remarking that “the fog was so thick all we could see was this looming Wuthering Heights.” Still, after moving in, the Kennedy’s were careful to preserve the cottage’s distinctive character while modernizing it at the same time, as Rudick’s book notes.

“Upon taking over the house, Eleanora Kennedy vowed to bring a sense of the present to an old family home without disturbing its worn surfaces and mottled colors,” the book states, according to an excerpt cited by “Introducing air conditioning would have compromised the layout, so the Kennedys went without, reasoning that the 85 windows would allow plenty of breezes. The only accommodations made for a modern lifestyle were the addition of two bathrooms and the transformation of a butler’s room and pantry into an eat-in kitchen.”

The Times noted that the house was frequented by celebrities, including the actress Candice Bergen, author Kurt Vonnegut, and musician Billy Joel, who played the piano with Kennedy’s daughter. Kennedy described Donald and Ivana Trump, who vacationed at the house every summer for seven years, as “perfect tenants.”

By: Prescott Cooper