Katharine Hepburn’s Connecticut Paradise Returns to the Market


The buzz continues as legendary actress Katharine Hepburn’s quiet summer escape returns to the market.  Everybody’s talking about this historic waterfront dream estate located in the historic community of Fenwick in Old Saybrook, Conn.  It is currently listed by William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty Essex agent Collette Harron for $14,800,000.

The house is remarkable, containing over 8,000 square feet on three floors that overlook astounding views of the Sound with a private beach just a few steps away from the front door, as well as a pond located in the back of the house.  Hepburn and her family constructed the home in 1939, and for 65 years the highly acclaimed Hollywood actress used this Fenwick “paradise,” as she often called it, as her summer retreat.

Wanting to keep this retreat as secluded as possible, Hepburn made sure to build her house on a 1 ½-acre lot surrounded by not one, but two more waterfront lots, totaling her summer sanctuary to 3 ½ acres.  Inside there are six bedrooms, seven and a half baths, and seven fireplaces. Living spaces include living and dining rooms that overlook the Sound and pond, a kitchen with AGA stove and Sub-Zero refrigerator, den, chart room, potting room, pantry and laundry room.  This exquisite lifestyle doesn’t end here.  On the vast, pristine grounds of the estate lie a sandy beach and dock with boating access to the Hamptons.  The property also has the convenient ability to land seaplanes in front of the house for a casual afternoon visit, as Hepburn’s good old friend, aviator Howard Hughes, often would.

The estate came to the market in 2011 with a listing price of $18,000,000 for the home on the original plot of land, while the whole 3 ½ -acre paradise was offered at $28,000,000.  After having been off the market for over a year, the house has just been relisted without the two additional lots.  Owner Frank Sciame, the founder of Sciame Construction, is currently building a beach house for his family on one and securing approvals to build another home on the other. Back in 2005, this well-known New York City builder oversaw renovations of the historic landmark, raising it five feet for protection from devastating storms such as Hurricane Sandy.  He also installed new systems and expanded the residence with light-filled rooms to illuminate its architectural and maintained historic beauty.

Agent Collette Harron is humbled and proud to represent such a renowned Connecticut home.  “The historic Katharine Hepburn home remains the quintessential family estate, featuring an extraordinary renovation that maintains its legacy,” said Harron. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to market this most prized and cherished possession of one of our culture’s most important icons.”  The home itself epitomizes the legacy of Katharine Hepburn and her eternal, peaceful mark on Old Saybrook’s beautiful shoreline.

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