There's a refreshing freedom in being able to wander downtown without a set schedule, final destination or the need to interrupt your shopping to feed a parking meter. New York City homebuyers headed northward have long sought after walk-to-town properties where shops, schools, restaurants and transit are all steps out their front doors. Here are some current listings with enviable foot commutes where Sunday afternoons can be the suburban equivalent of wandering Court Street post-brunch headed back to the F train with spontaneous stops in every quirky store along the way.
BRONXVILLE | 24 Park Avenue | $6,295,000
We're always a bit biased towards Lawrence Park—it's the very development Mr. Lawrence founded our company to sell way back in 1888—but it's truly among the premier walking neighborhoods in the New York metropolitan area. From this 1894 Shingle Style masterpiece, you're within a quarter mile of everything Bronxville Village has to offer: shops, schools, restaurants, Lawrence Hospital and Slave to the Grind en route to your 25 minute express train ride into Grand Central Terminal. On weekends, break out the bikes and roll downhill right onto the Bronx River Parkway, closed 10-2pm every Sunday for your pedaling pleasure. Groomed grounds by noted landscape architect Renée Byers embellishes the home's architectural nuance.
ROWAYTON | 10 Pine Point Avenue | $2,999,000
If you're more of a cozy New England fishing village type, it can't get much better than Rowayton, the sought-after Norwalk hamlet that the best of coastal living within commuting distance of Metropolis. This Bruce Beinfeld-designed masterpiece is a seamless blend of rustic minimalism and modern sophistication, sited on its own slice of shoreline on Farm Creek with direct water views and a private dock. Wander into town for a fresh catch at Rowayton Seafood, or take a relaxing walk along Bayley Beach.
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GREENWICH | 30 Oneida Drive | $4,895,000
Take a moment to just think about this: A Fieldstone carriage house on its own private 1.42 acre oasis of direct Greenwich Harbor waterfront, walking distance from The Avenue, Bruce Museum, Metro North, The Delamar (and ergo, L'escale). iPhone woes? Walk to the Apple Store. Craving omega-3 but don't feel like another run to Citarella? Walk over to Mediterraneo. Feeling like a movie? Walk. Everywhere: Walk. Even Equinox is walkable within a mile, so you can exercise en route to exercise.
KATONAH | 69 Valley Road | $1,275,000
Living walking distance from the beating heart of a downtown district provides a sense of place, a feeling of truly being a part of your community. That couldn't be more true in Katonah, an lovable, quirky, chain store-eschewing live-and-let-live village where mornings are about coffee sipped on Victorian cafe porches, family-run stores stay relevant and in business for a century and David always beats Goliath. You're a hop, skip or jump from it all at this sidewalk-street. Train station parking permit? Who needs it?
IRVINGTON | 316 Matthiesen Park | $2,650,000
With its wealth of history, swoon-worthy architecture and post-industrial waterfront of SoHo-style factory loft buildings re-purposed into creative office space, Irvington is something of Westchester's West Village, a diverse place with interesting residents where nuance is found by the square foot. Abutting the Old Aqueduct Trail a block from Town Hall Theater (patterned after Ford's Theater in Washington D.C.), this superbly crafted in-town residence is tough to beat.