‘Great Gatsby’ Style North Shore Boston Estate That Hosted Judy Garland Set Sales Records for Massachusetts
George Sarkis of Douglas Elliman Massachusetts
Editor's note: This article was written by a Townsquare Media Northern New England contributor and may contain the individual's views, opinions, or personal experiences.
It takes you back to the gilded age, at least from the outside. I think that The Robb Report, where I found the listing for this massive estate, said it best about 34 Paine Avenue in the coastal suburb of Beverly:
If the fictional Jay Gatsby lived in New England, surely Rock Edge would be his residence of choice. Not only is this waterfront home designed for extravagant parties, but the privacy is unmatched.
According to Boston Magazine, this breathtaking home on Boston's North Shore in Beverly was once THE PLACE for Boston society and its celebrity-filled parties, thanks to society girl Eleonora Sears, an International Tennis Hall of Fame inductee. She threw parties that included actress Judy Garland, railroad executive Harold S. Vanderbilt, and composer Cole Porter.
It's called Rock Edge, and was built in 1911 when the most affluent families of Boston built their summer cottages on the shores of Beverly’s Gold Coast. While most of these grand homes on the Massachusetts coastline no longer exist, Rock Edge still stands, overlooking a private beach with an enormous cabana.
This 17-room, three story mansion was built in 1911 by Mrs. Marion Appleton Coolidge Sargent, a Bostonian of notable lineage and considerable wealth. Mrs. Sargent retained the home until her death in 1924 when it was purchased by the Alger family of Michigan. In ,1940, Rock Edge was acquired by its most famous occupant, feisty sportswoman and notable Blue-Blood, Eleanora R. Sears. Linked to many fabulously wealthy gentlemen of the day, it is quite possible that Ms. Sears entertained admirers Harold S. Vanderbilt and the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII of England) at Rock Edge. Her active lifestyle and active social life at Rock Edge is chronicled by author Peggy Franck in her book, “Prides Crossing: The Unbridled Life and Impatient Times of Eleanora Sears.” Ms. Sears owned the home until her death in 1968. It was then purchased by the current owners.
This massive, 28,000 square-foot home is the second-most expensive home ever sold north of Boston, according to Boston Magazine, and the most expensive home ever sold in Beverly.
Listed by George Sarkis of Douglas Elliman Massachusetts for $22 million, the home is selling for $18.275 million, according to Boston Magazine. It has 11 bedrooms, 12 bathrooms, 14 wood-burning fireplaces, a seven-car garage, a 1,500 square-foot kitchen, and sits on more than three park-like acres.
It's like entering the gilded age of The Great Gatsby when you enter through the gates and drive past a carriage house onto this estate. Of course, the house is stunning and was completely modernized by its previous owner, Linda Zarifi of Zarifi Design, who still preserved its grandeur.
So let's tour this legacy estate, then we'll stroll through that $30 million Cape Cod home.