Back to the land of high end real estate and hydrangeas as far as the eye can see. Because our trip North was planned last minute, all of the preferred accommodations in the Hamptons were booked. July and August are the busiest of months so I settled for a brunch reservation at a place I was dying to try-The Topping Rose House. We requested a table outside in the garden and were seated immediately. Within minutes of arrival, the kids had run off to play and Jeff and I were enjoying our coffee in peace. The memory of this alone time in the midst of a family holiday may positively colour our view of the place but it was lovely in every way. The gardens were expansive, set with pink Veuve Cliquot umbrellas and enough wicker chairs to seat a crowd. The salmon benedict was superb and the property demanded a return visit.
Growing up in New Zealand, I took the close proximity and year round access to the beach for granted. While I knew that the Hamptons would feel very different from New Zealand, I did not know that this would extend to the beaches. Beach parking access, for non-residents can be purchased once a year but the quantities are limited. Very limited. The hotels carry a small number of passes for their guests but not enough to give to each guest. We were very lucky to gain one and spend an incredible evening on one of the best beaches in the area-Flying Point Beach. As we arrived at the beach for a sunset walk, we found the most stunning Long Island scene. It was a lobster boil, complete with string lights, music and what I can only hope were young adults counting their blessings... There was a beach volleyball net that no one was using. After our walk, Jeff put two beach chairs down in the sand for us to enjoy the sunset. It wasn’t long before he was cajoled in to a game of football with the kids. Emma was eventually approached with the kind offer that they could use the beach volleyball court and before I knew it, they had joined the party. I only realized this had happened when Emma ran over with the most delicate (and dare I say delicious) ahi tuna skewer that I had ever seen. I packed up our family just as the lobsters were being served for fear of overstaying our welcome. It was one of those rare and magical holiday nights when the stars seemingly align to give you a memory that you hope will last forever.
From the hydrangea lined driveways to the front lawns that belong at Augusta, the Hamptons are the place to indulge your real estate and landscaping dreams. The kids amused us with “WOW CAN WE LIVE THERE?!” over and over again, each Lane seemingly more exclusive that the one before.
We also ventured to Montauk, also known as “The End” due to its location at the far end of Long Island. A surfer town with a reputation for being a lot of fun once the sun goes down, we enjoyed the beach and some lobster before beating the notoriously bad Friday traffic and heading North.
Our short stay in the Hamptons had come to an end. This is a beautiful place filled with farm stands and orchards as well as beaches and boutiques. You can find anything here from the high end to the laid back, the Hamptons truly has something for everyone.