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Stately Homes By The Sea 2013 Opens Today!

Hartshorne Mansion

It’s that time of the year: once again, the Visiting Nurse Association Health Group presents its Stately Homes by the Sea. This will be the fourth Stately Homes by the Sea Designer Showcase sponsored by the VNA Health Group. The VNAHG was founded in 1912 and is the largest voluntary non-profit home health, private care, hospice and community wellness association in NJ, caring for more than 120,000 individuals each year. Since its inception, the Show House has attracted more than 13,000 attendees to each home. Understandably, those in the design world find it to be a most coveted event.

This year’s Designer Show House is the Hartshorne Mansion in Little Silver. The home is also listed for sale by my esteemed company, Coldwell Banker. The historic home is an 8-bedroom, 11,000sf tudor-style estate situated on approximately 4.5 acres on the banks of the Shrewsbury River. The house was designed by renowned architect Roger Bullard, and built by Olympic medalist and world champion figure skater Harold Hartshorne in 1929. The amazing property comes complete with tennis court, pool, lush gardens, a dock with riparian grant, and a pond.

I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to preview the designer rooms at a black-tie-optional dinner dance held under a massive tent on the property this past Saturday night. It’s always enjoyable to tour the Show Homes, and this one was no different: more than 50 of the tri-state areas leading designers, decorators and landscape artists have brought their talents to individual rooms. My personal favorite was the blue and teal bedroom on the second floor. The colors were soothing and cool, and the designer even color coordinated her outfit to the room – loved it!

The formal was also a lot of fun. The cocktail hour included a delicious array of hors d’oeuvres and signups for a silent auction. We then entered the main area of the event, where there was a 15 piece band. The dinner started with an auction, including items such as swimming lessons for two with Ryan Lochte. In true form, I did a lot of talking – and as I am very animated and normally speak with my hands, I found I needed to actually sit on them to avoid unknowingly purchasing some very expensive items.

We were then treated to a touching story about the home from its owner. He talked about how much he and his family loved the home, but with the children growing up they no longer had a need for such a large space. The house was on the market and had a buyer – but just as they were supposed to close, Sandy hit. You guessed it…the home took a beating, and the buyers walked away. He had an agreement to host the VNA event, but didn’t think the home could ever be ready on time. Well against all odds, the home was not only ready on time for the event – but it looked spectacular. That seems to be the way at my beloved Jersey Shore…everyone pitches in to rebuild and make things happen.

Now, you too can tour this magnificent estate. Starting today, April 30th and running through June 9th, the home is open for tour Tuesday-Sunday 10am-4pm. Tickets are $35 general admission and $25 for seniors, with all proceeds going to the VNA. Make a day of it with lunch at the Show House Café – you won’t regret any time spent on this beautiful property. If you decide you don’t want to leave, contact me to learn more about purchasing this gorgeous home! Additional information about the VNA, visiting the property, and even beautiful photos and a detailed floor plan can be found here.