After buying the house in 1995, the Gersteins immediately set about doing nothing to it.
When David and Janellen Gerstein traverse the foyer into the light-filled center of their Norman Jaffe house, the soaring angular ceiling and picture windows looking out onto abundant grounds give them a great sense of arrival and tranquility. The couple added philodendron to give the space warmth and a more human scale and placed objects from their travels, such as a Southwestern blanket over a railing, throughout the house to assert their personalities and history. Ms. Gerstein’s harp and piano, below, occupy the space in front of the great room’s window.
Much of the exterior of the house is obscured by plantings.
Mr. Gerstein’s key collection
The dining room table and chairs are original.
Southwestern dolls and Sagaponack turkey feathers
A school of trophy fish
A golf green on the property gives the Gersteins a chance to practice.
A pergola marks the entrance to the patio and pool deck at the front of the house.
Jaffe’s signature narrow door
For Sean MacPherson reconstructing the Montauk Association's clubhouse ‘seemed in every way the right thing to do’
Long buried under the back lawn of a nondescript beach house, the foundation for the Montauk Assocation’s clubhouse was carefully uncovered as part of an archeological study that will help the property’s current owners, Sean MacPherson and Rachelle Hruska MacPherson, reconstruct it as it originally looked.
The MacPhersons and their sons, Maxwell and Dashiell, having a family night out at the Crow’s Nest when the boys were younger.
This photo shows the later addition to the clubhouse. On the horizon, just to the right of the horseman’s head, is Third House. Montauk Library
Sean MacPherson, Robert Hefner, and Britton Bistrian reviewed Mr. Hefner's findings in the excavated clubhouse foundation this spring.Carissa Katz
The MacPhersons took in the view from the lawn, which remains much as it did when the clubhouse was still standing. The lawn, too, is covered in the historic district guidelines.Carissa Katz
The Montauk Association, then and now
The Montauk Association’s Seven Sisters, designed by McKim, Mead, and White, sited by Frederick Law Olmsted, and built between 1881 and 1883, were each “distinct but . . . none stood out as being more important than its neighbor,” according to East Hampton Town’s guidelines for the historic district. All seven, including the rebuilt Tick Hall, lower right, can be seen in this aerial photograph.
Eloise Payne Luquerpainted watercolors of six of the seven cottages in 1885. Above, the Benson cottage, built for Arthur Benson, who once owned all of Montauk but the Lighthouse and the life-saving stations.
Sandra Brant and the late Ingrid Sischy bought the de Forest cottage from Dick Cavett and his late wife, Carrie Nye. Images Courtesy East Hampton Library, Long Island Collection
The Andrews cottage has seen minor additions since Luquer painted it in 1885, including a kitchen on the north side of the house.
The Agnew cottage
Some are local, some far afield
The house, with few furnishings, brings in the out-of-doors
The “infinity” edge of the pool is a visual runway into one of the rarest landscapes on Long Island.
Seen from the road, the big box ends at one of two peaks and a diagonal plane. At left, the protruding tower contains the inside staircase. Durell Godfrey
Top left, A diagonal plane slicing through the roof of the living area shields the entrance to the rooftop terrace, which offers, at bottom left, a panoramic view of the dunescape. An exterior spiral staircase connects the pool area with the roof terrace. Durell Godfrey
Floor-to-ceiling windows form one of the walls on corridors that run from front to back on both floors. Durell Godfrey
Pointed corners contain fireplaces and TVs in the dining room and in the master bedroom on the second floor. Durell Godfrey
A giant porthole provides a contrast with the house’s living wing. Durell Godfrey
he vast living room is decorated by stripes of light on sunny days and a reminder of its use as a photo studio. Durell Godfrey
Objects and memories create happy spaces
The living room of the Wainscott house, which was built in 1986, displays items found near and far. The flying Pegasus was once on a Mobil gas station.
Dawn Lesh’s surprising rolling pin collection warrants a careful look. Photographs include the couple, the places they have visited, and family members. Durell Godfrey
A local carpenter’s workbench, with its original vise, has a place of honor. The master bedroom is filled with hearts John Czepiel has given his wife. Durell Godfrey
Two square sieves, gifts from a friend, are displayed separately from their round cousins, which came from around the world. Durell Godfrey
The painter Salvatore Gulla transformed the wooden table in the wine cellar with portraits of grapes more than 20 years ago. Durell Godfrey
The deck at the back of the house leads to gardens with plants that bloom in every phase of the growing season. Durell Godfrey
Even the garage is home to collections, including some vintage watering cans. Durell Godfrey
The owner of the late Ward Bennett’s estate has preserved the designer’s vision
The panels in the large ceiling skylight form a square that is echoed in the railings outside and in the floor plan of the room itself. The straight lines quietly set off the sweep of nature.
The sofa separates the room from the kitchen behind it. Durell Godfrey
The master bedroom looks out at the woods.Durell Godfrey
In the basement, a hot tub adjoins a room that leads to a sunken garden. Durell Godfrey
Asian furniture is set against a monster Mexican monstera.Durell Godfrey
"Seemingly incompatible" modern lines, redwood louvers, and old-fashioned awnings are original to the design, while a sculpture of an ancient Chinese warrior stands at attention. Durell Godfrey
A "moon gate" guards the entrance to the basement and a "rug" of small Chinese stones enhance Ward Bennett's penchant for squares. Right, one of two lions at the main gate commands respect. Durell Godfrey
A water course in a sanctuary for rescued turtles is protected by larger and heavier stones, which also were imported from China. Durell Godfrey
Tibetan flags and a rotating prayer wheel help define the estate's meditative environment.Durell Godfrey
A leather couch offers peaceful seating in the sitting room, where windows with nearly square mullions meet in the corners.Durell Godfrey
A Sag Harbor writer jettisons a Jacuzzi in favor of bookshelves
On one of Sag Harbor’s trademark little lots, Suzanne McNear has scaled back.
The homeowner’s green thumb is evident in the shadow of the red brick elementary school across the street. Durell Godfrey
The brand-new built-in bookshelves are fit for a writer’s life.Durell Godfrey
The country kitchen was relatively untouched in the redo.Durell Godfrey
The second-floor features a landing barely wide enough for the homeowner’s King Charles spaniel, Gus. “That lace curtain drives me crazy,” she said, “but I can’t get to it.” Durell Godfrey