Real Estate Gem: 376 Daniels Lane
by Mike Olson
The idea of retirement just didn’t suit Alan Schnurman, a prominent attorney who has run 15 marathons over the years and even climbed to the base camp of Mount Everest. So when the longtime Hamptons resident grew restless, he turned to his next passion, real estate, leaning on a quarter of a century of buying and selling property on the East End (more than $150 million worth all told) to embark on the next phase of his career. The end result is 376 Daniels Lane, perhaps the most stunning home in Sagaponack.
Though Schnurman is a vice president and associate broker at Saunders realty, he isn’t just the realtor for this 10,000-square-foot home that’s listed for $19.995 million; he also developed this property as well as seven other lots on these 17 acres nestled between agricultural reserves. And it’s only appropriate that this, the best of the bunch, became the canvas for his favorite builder’s masterwork. “The key to 376 Daniels Lane is that it was built by George Gavalas,” says Schnurman. “Anybody who purchases this house knows that it is built to the highest standards and quality construction.”
The property’s amazing vistas and the sound of the Atlantic’s crashing waves just one block away served as inspiration for Gavalas, who completed the home this summer. “I don’t venture into a piece of property unless it clicks with my heart,” Gavalas explains. “When I saw this one, I just fell in love with it. The setting itself, the ocean breezes, the views—right from the beginning I knew what I could create.”
From the foyer to the dining room to each of the seven bedrooms and 12 bathrooms, virtually every space in 376 Daniels Lane takes full advantage of these views, whether it’s looking south to the ocean, east over the reserves, or north into the rear yard and its sunken, all-weather DecoTurf tennis court, entertaining space with a custom-built barbecue and pizza oven, and 60-foot saltwater pool.
But it takes a trip to the third floor widow’s walk to absorb it all. “That is a highlight of the house,” attests Schnurman. Adds Gavalas: “Up there, you truly get a breathtaking sense of where you are in the Hamptons.”
That attention to detail is on display throughout the home, from the poplar millwork throughout to the eight fireplaces and a Christopher Peacock kitchen equipped with two-inch-thick Imperial Danby marble from Vermont—the same marble that can be found in the butler’s pantry and the second kitchen on the lower level. This is another of the home’s highlights, boasting a gym with a steam room and sauna, plus a wine room, media room, and home theater. “I would never leave,” admits the fitness enthusiast Schnurman, who can imagine grabbing a steam after a long exercise session before nestling into the screening room to watch some television on the 11-foot screen.
Such a setup makes sense in a home filled with every top-flight amenity, from the necessary (an elevator) to the decadent (radiant heating on outdoor decks to melt snow in winter and keep feet toasty on cool summer nights). But this is best exemplified by a 29-zone heating and cooling system that, in a green twist, is run off geothermal heat and a fully integrated Crestron home automation system that allows the savvy homeowner to crank up the home’s heat via laptop before heading to the Hamptons for the weekend.
Fittingly, these high-tech touches also extend to the garage, where Sagaponack code and Gavalas’ desire to preserve living spaces inspired the builder to get creative. The result is a lift system straight out of a Manhattan parking structure that turns a garage with a two-car footprint into one that can store four vehicles. And just to satisfy the most selective automobile aficionado, the garage is also tiled, has its own heating and cooling system, running water, and, naturally, crown molding.
These types of little touches are traditional for Gavalas, who, in an almost unheard-of move in his field, works on only one home at a time to guarantee that he can devote his utmost personal attention to every project. Schnurman, who has called this area home for 25 years, believes the result speaks for itself. “It’s just spectacular,” he says. “Selling this home is a labor of love. Everything about it is perfect.” Alan Schnurman, Saunders, 2287 Montauk Hwy., Bridgehampton, 917-991-4076
photography by GARY NOLAN