One morning not too long ago Julianne Moore woke up in her cute-as-button cottage on the placid shore of Fort Pond in the sleepy and low-key, if still alarmingly expensive, Hamptons community of Montauk to find a drunken woman passed out on the deep-cushioned leather sofa in the living room.
The “Still Alice” Oscar winner, whose many upcoming projects include the comedy-drama “When You Finish Saving the World,” and her filmmaker husband Bart Freundlich reportedly wasted no time in moving to a more secluded Montauk hideaway near Eothen, the five-home bluff-top compound once owned by Andy Warhol and now owned by billionaire Adam Lindemann. It wasn’t too long before the humble and pretty near perfect pond-front cottage popped up for sale at $2.85 million, considerably less than the almost $3.5 million they asked when it came for sale a handful of years ago. And, when the roughly 1,000-square-foot beach-chic cottage finally sold earlier this year for its full asking price, the Moore-Freundlichs more than tripled the $1.07 million paid for the place in 2007.
Built in 1940, hidden out of site behind electronic gates on a .69-acre parcel and clad in weathered cedar shingles, the pint-sized cottage has three bedrooms and just one bathroom, albeit one with a snazzy black-and-white checkerboard floor, a marble-topped vanity, a claw-footed soaking tub and a separate stand-up shower. The bohemian hideaway oozes with original charm and is fashionably turned out with hand-scraped antique barn wood floors, a brick fireplace painted onyx and a vaulted ceiling crossed by thick wood beam. Placed along the back wall of the airy great room, the simple kitchen is zhuzhed up with an over-sized porcelain apron sink and a high-quality designer range, not to mention a nifty espresso maker, while the spacious stone-floored screened porch encourages languid lounging and dining with a serene cross-pond view.
Outside, a wide stretch of lawn makes a gentle slope down to the water’s edge — perfect for launching a kayak, and, off to one side where it’s lushly enveloped in billows of foliage, a saltwater swimming pool is complemented by a pool house and trellis covered terrace.
Saunders & Associates handled both sides of the transaction.
Moore and Fruendlich’s Manhattan home, a stunning late 1800s Greek Revival townhouse in the heart of the West Village, was purchased in 2003 for $3.5 million. After they were married in the back garden and an extensive renovation spearheaded by Fruendlich’s architect brother Oliver Fruendlich, the pedigreed furniture filled six-bedroom home was unsuccessfully set out for sale in 2009-10 at $11.995 million, and then again in 2011, but with a $12.5 million price. Alas, there were no takers. Then, about five years ago, they embarked on a second renovation that saw the kitchen relocated to a more optimal, sunnier position on the parlor floor before the five-floor red brick stunner was photographed for and featured in Architectural Digest.