Seaworthy style on Rye’s Manursing Island

Manursing Island – a private waterfront enclave in Rye – offers homeowners the gifts of history as well as the sea.

William Paterson Van Rensselaer, son of New York Lt. Gov. and Congressman Stephen Van Rensselaer, owned the southern part of Manursing Island in 1840. Some 70 years later, Zeeland Realty purchased the 83-acre estate from the Van Rensselaer family, dividing the land into nine lots with seven homes, including the stately Colonial — with its gables and sweeping columned entrance — which is on the market for $6,750,000. 

The original owners were Donald and Catherine McKesson of the international pharmaceuticals corporation that bears their family name. (Donald was the son of McKesson founder John.) The house remained in the family until 1940 and continued to have prominent owners throughout the years, most recently serving as home to close relatives of major political figures. 

“The residence has always attracted great attention,” says Melissa Kaminsky of Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty, who holds the listing on the property with colleague Christy Murphy. “Former owners have hosted many political leaders.”

In 2013-14, the house was renovated with an eye to balancing its historic past with state-of-the-art amenities as well as creating an airy, maritime feel throughout the 6,135-square-foot space. Interior highlights include a plush media room with an adjoining wet bar; a cozy, well-lit, custom library; and a third-floor playroom and gym overlooking the Long Island Sound. Or residents can relax in the family room, which extends seamlessly from a sleek, well-equipped chef’s kitchen. 

 The six-bedroom residence also contains five fireplaces, all with original surrounds, wood flooring and custom detailing throughout, which is particularly evident in the crown moldings and elegant paneling. The master suite, which includes a study and a marble bath, exudes privacy and tranquility.

 Neighboring the Manursing Island Club, with its private beach, the home boasts more than an acre of lush lawns complete with a newly built bluestone terrace, mature specimen trees and pristine landscaping in addition to its views of the Sound. 

“This property really is a ‘new’ historic home in a one-of-a-kind waterfront enclave setting,” Murphy says. “Finding a home and lifestyle as wonderful as this is so incredibly rare.” 

For more, contact Melissa Kaminsky at 917-748-8880,; or Christy Murphy at 914-262-7123,

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