The Hudson Valley in New York has become more bustling in recent years. The upstate area is packed with vacation homes and has a growing appeal among wealthy weekending New Yorkers. Some even call it ‘the new Hamptons’, after the posh seaside enclaves on Long Island.
The previously little-known area has mountainous and rolling pastoral scenery, whimsical, cosy character and a raft of popular towns and villages, such as Germantown (where the actor Chloe Sevigny has been spotted shopping) and Hudson. Here, new owners are upgrading old houses while developers are building a raft of new ones.
Scenic views abound in the Hudson Valley, with its pretty settlements and farms perched along the banks of the eponymous river. It has the Catskills as its backdrop, American colonial farmhouses, grand mansions (think clapboard and columns), and dreamy all-year scenery.
A fairytale’ Hansel and Gretel’ house in Chatham
1 bedroom; $1.795 m via Houlihan Lawrence
Try comfy backwoods living at this timber cottage, set in woodland a few minutes from Chatham town. The storybook retreat appears much older than its build date (less than 20 years ago) and features peaked roofs and over 50 windows. It has cocooning wooden rooms, including a kitchen with church-like ceilings and diamond-shaped windows, and a great room has wooden walls, casement windows and barn doors that can be opened in warm weather. Its gabled loft bedroom has eyrie-like views over its 32-acre woodland grounds, including trails and a decked swimming pond.
A historic ‘center hall’ in Hudson
5 bedrooms; $1.4m via Nicole Vidor Real Estate
Union, Allen and Front Street form the core of Hudson’s historic district and this colonial’ center hall home’ dates from 1880. It has a redbrick facade with the entrance at the centre of its design, with the hallway acting as the spine of the home and rooms branching off it. Interiors have undergone a minimalist (though colourful) renovation that dips into a gentle pastel palette and pays attention to the original features of the house – namely, its handsome woodwork, fireplaces and large volumes. The exterior meanwhile features ionic columns, six bay windows and an attic with ‘eyebrow windows’.
A 1970s Hudson revamp by Perifio Interiors
3 bedrooms; $1.76m via Houlihan Lawrence
This 1973 property in Hudson is the home and first project of interior design couple Matt Bidgoli and Raphael Portet, co-owners of Perifio Interiors. They almost completely rebuilt the rural house during the pandemic, adding new siding and picture windows to upgrade its spaces, according to a recent Elle Décor article. It has a fun and calming vibe through its patterned wallpaper and white walls, which make good backdrops for hanging artwork. Living spaces link to a wraparound terrace, with views over a new gunite pool and a rolling landscape of neat lawns.
Sleeve House in Ancram
3 bedrooms; $2.275m Four Seasons Sotheby’s Realty
This 2017 contemporary property in Ancram is formed of two elongated volumes, with a small private living space ‘sleeved’ inside a larger public space. Architect Adam Dayem designed the house with a brise soleil covering made from charred Accoya wood, which appears like the bellows of an accordion. Inside it has raw concrete interior walls, a multileveled layout, and double-height windows capturing meadow grounds and the Catskills. Read more about the home.
A converted chapel in Rifton
4 bedrooms; $2.495m via Four Seasons Sotheby’s Realty
This handsome brick building dates from 1876 and has been a church, a town hall and, more recently, a farmhouse and an animal shelter. The eclectic Hudson Valley property has been renovated following the Japanese philosophy concept of wabi-sabi, which centres around the acceptance of imperfection. Worn beams and rugged stone walls, bedrock ledges, pine flooring and patinaed antique doors pay homage to the past, while neon lighting, terrazzo tiles, and moody concrete accent inject modern flourishes.
A redbrick renovation challenge in Hudson
3 bedrooms; $1.25m via Nicole Vidor
Featuring symmetrical windows and a decorative overhanging roof, this redbrick ‘doll’s house’ is an enticing renovation project that’s partially complete. The three-storey house has stripped-back wooden casement windows and flooring and plaster-less walls. But it’s a real gem in the making: a double reception room with a dividing pocket door, a kitchen with a brick fireplace hearth and thick ceiling beams, and a barn door opening onto a raised terrace. The hallway has a through-view to the rear garden and the mountains beyond, and its large, raised garden, while a bit unkempt, has bags of potential.
A gallery home in Hudson
5 bedrooms; $1.46m via Houlihan Lawrence
Airbnb, commercial gallery and artist’s studio – this renovated Hudson townhouse wears many hats and boasts a raft of original features. It features 10-ft-high ceilings, original marble fireplaces and a curvy central staircase that will wow visitors.
Modern interventions at the 1900 home include a French patisserie-inspired kitchen that looks onto the patio and garden, a rooftop deck, and a minimalist-inspired colour scheme. Presently, the first floor is a commercial gallery with a private residence on the second floor – ‘an extremely profitable Airbnb in the past, making more than $100,000 gross annual’, according to the agent. The artist studios are on the third floor. If turned into a single residency, it would stretch comfortably to five bedrooms.