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Luxury Insider Tips on the Best First Trip to East Hampton

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Our Insider Itinerary series shines a light on the best places to see, stay, and dine in some of the hottest travel destinations worldwide. Our far-flung correspondents are sharing their inside tips on how to best experience their chosen locations, especially if you’re visiting for the first time. Consider it your local luxury GPS. You’re welcome! In this edition, we head to East Hampton, New York. We’ve got insider tips on the best places to see, stay, and eat during a first (or hundredth) visit to East Hampton, including favorite restaurants, activities to do and top inns to book.

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The best way to ensure that your precious vacation time is well-spent is to ask a trusted insider about what’s truly special at your destination of choice.

Just in case you don’t have such a person in your network, dear reader, we’ve done the work for you.

Our far-flung correspondents have shared their insider tips on the ideal itinerary for a first trip to Cape Town, South Africa; Copenhagen, Denmark; and the island of Nantucket, Massachusetts.

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Next up? Another gorgeous summer destination: the village of East Hampton, New York.

We’ve visited the Hamptons many times, but we wanted the deep inside scoop from someone who owns a home and has a real history in East Hampton. So we turned to one of our friends, who prefers to remain anonymous (so he could speak frankly), to fill us in.

"Insider

Luxury insider tips on the best first trip to East Hampton

Here’s what our East Hampton Bureau Chief had to say about the iconic summer spot, and his insider tips on the best places to see, stay, and eat in East Hampton, including favorite restaurants, activities to do and top inns to book.

1. How long have you had a summer home in East Hampton?

Since I was born, so 50 years.  My grandparents had a weekend home in East Hampton. My wife and I have had our current home in East Hampton village for six years.

2. Why did you choose East Hampton over other towns and villages in the Hamptons? What drew you there?

The natural beauty was the key factor.  It’s also a history buff’s dream.

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3. If someone is visiting there for the first time, what are the top 3-5 “must see” sites, or experiences, or activities? 

Camp Hero State Park in Montauk is a special place for exploration and for family picnics.

Camp Hero State Park.

Main Beach is fun for kids and adults alike.

Main Beach.

Guild Hall is a gem for those into the Arts, with well-curated film screenings, plays and special musical acts.

nsider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton, New York.
Guild Hall.

The Pollock-Krasner House is a unique site and should be on any must-see list.

Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton: The Pollack-Krasner House.
4. Where should a first-time visitor stay?

For places to stay, there are a number of charming inns and B&Bs along Route 27 in East Hampton. The Maidstone Hotel, The Hedges Inn, and 1770 House are among them, and their locations are ideal for walking into town or to Main Beach. The Maidstone provides free bikes for guests to use to explore.

Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton
Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton: The Maidstone Inn.
Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton
The 1770 House.
Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton: The Hedges Inn.

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5. What’s your favorite shop in town?

Village Hardware.  It has all the essentials for a homeowner. Others might vote for Bookhampton, The Monogram Shop, or any of the fashionable boutiques along Newtown Lane and Main Street. Editors note: you need to visit Zimmermann, Clic Home, Nili Lotan, and the Reformation Beach House.

Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton: Main Street.
6. Favorite beach?

Main Beach is our favorite ocean beach and Maidstone Park is our favorite bay beach.

Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton: Main Beach.
7. Favorite restaurant?

Cove Hollow Tavern is a relatively new restaurant that is a real crowd pleaser; we always leave there happy. For quick bites and snacks, Citarella and the Golden Pear in town and the Main Beach Pavillion are all good.

Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton
Insider tips on how to have the best first visit to East Hampton, including the best restaurants: Cove Hollow Tavern.
8. Tell us about life in East Hampton – what clubs do long-time residents belong to, where do they like to spend their time?

The Maidstone Club and the Devon Yacht Club are still the primary social clubs for the old guard.  The Blue Book of the Hamptons (which is like the local Social Register) only recognizes those two clubs in town. Some of the newer money has joined the East Hampton Golf Club.  Those who dock their expensive boats in town can be found dining at East Hampton Point on Sunday afternoons.

what to do in East Hampton
The Maidstone Club.
what to do in East Hampton
East Hampton Point.
9. What’s the preferred car?

The Jeep Grand Wagoneer “Woody” is always a head turner. The Mercedes GL450 is the family car of choice.

10. Who would we be surprised to learn has a house there?

Beyoncé is the latest mega-celebrity to purchase a home here so that may still be a surprise to some.

11. Describe the East Hampton vibe in three words.

Pretty, artistic and self-aware.

insider tips on a first trip to East Hampton

That’s all you need know to have a terrific first (or hundredth) visit: insider tips on the best places to see, stay, and eat in East Hampton, including favorite restaurants, activities and top inns to book. What do you think, dear reader? Did we miss any of your favorites?

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For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier Newsletter hereAnd see luxury in a new light.

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Join our community! For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier newsletter. 

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Join our community! For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier newsletter. 

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