The New York Times took a deep dive into the town surrounding Taylor Swift's famed Rhode Island estate, and came up with a few glorious tid bits about the singer's new-ish shack. Today, I share them with you in a lovely bite-sized list form because reading blocks of text is annoying! Yay!
1. It's called High Watch. Yes, her house has a name, so you know it's posh AF.
2. It's in a historic Long Island Sound enclave. Watch Hill is an affluent coastal village in the town of Westerly, Rhode Island. It's not as in-your-face fancy as nearby Newport, but it's been home to the "discreetly rich" for many years.
3. It's technically a "cottage". A 11,000+ square feet cottage with 8 bedrooms and at least 10.5 bathrooms.
4. It used to be owned by an oil heiress who loved ballet. Before Taylor (and a few others), Rebekah West Harkness, a Standard Oil heiress and patron of the Joffrey Ballet, owned High Watch. From the NYT: "Dancers practiced on the lawn for more than a few summers, though when Mrs. Harkness planted a blue plastic Buckminster Fuller dome there as a practice space, the neighbors were outraged and sued to have it removed."
5. Taylor paid A LOT for it. bought for $17.75 million, and apparently it was in all cash. Girlfriend is loaded.
6. It's kind of a weird choice for Taylor? Most of the people who live in Watch Hill, RI are old money, with the houses being passed down for generations. Plus, the house is *extremely* close to a public beach and has access paths that run along the property line. Kinda odd for a celebrity of Taylor's magnitude.
7. Taylor has cheeky no trespassing signs around the property. They say, "I knew you were trouble when you walked in." Clever!
8. Taylor kinda already pissed off some neighbors. Although she had the blessing of Rhode Island's Coastal Resources Management Council, the property's eroding armor stone sea wall and planting a chain-link fence irritated some neighbors.
9. You can stay close to her, but you'll have to pay$. The fancy-pants Ocean House has a seaside terrace that offers a nice view of Taylor's house, but the rooms starting at about $1,000 a night in the summer. Cha-ching!
10. She's been adopted as the town's pet celebrity. Nate Mr. McBride, a local architect, sums up the feeling the town has about T. Swift: "[She's] is an anomaly. So she's like our pet celebrity. Everyone has kind of adopted her and refers to her by her first name. She's ours now. In a community like this, you either absorb or deflect."
I write on Fox’s THE GREAT NORTH. Before that, I wrote and edited for Cosmopolitan magazine and the Jezebel blog. My writing has also appeared in the New York Times, The New Yorker, Esquire, VICE, Marie Claire, McSweeney’s, California Sunday, BUST, Elle, Village Voice, Harper’s Bazaar, LA Weekly, Eater, Fast Company, Mic, Atlas Obscura, and more. I co-host/co-produce a comedy/storytelling show on the first Friday of every month at Stories in LA. I have a degree in Film and TV from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
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