Before you hit the L.I.E., make sure you know where to find the action-and how to escape from it.
Thu May 25 2006
Westhampton and Quogue
Where to be seen...
Folks in the know start the week off right at Tierra Mar (231 Dune Rd, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-2700), a high-ceilinged American restaurant on the beach that hosts Monday night lobster bakes with live music in July and August. Local families and vacationing singles alike fill the place between 5 and 10pm. A new kind of meat market has opened in the red brick building that once housed Se7en nightclub: Westhampton Steakhouse (142 Mill Rd, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-7161). Seafood lovers may prefer to gaze at the ocean—or each other—inside Tom Schaudel’s new shorefront restaurant, PassionFish (379 Dune Rd, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-5250), slated to open in early June. The deck dining is sure to prove irresistible to the throngs in search of a beach party.
The jewel-box-size Sweet Anezka’s Lingerie (120 Main St, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-2612) is a new addition to Westhampton’s main drag, where lace-loving women overtly purchase such upscale underpinnings as soft pastel Verena slips ($189) and Lucy B thongs ($22). A tutu-sporting bulldog named Moo-Cow holds court at Pigs Can Fly! (124 Main St, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-0655), a village mainstay cluttered with candy-colored Accessories Unlimited bags ($45--$75), cartoonish Sarut toasters ($65), and an excess of kitschy animal-themed pillows and doormats.
You’ll have to book a court early if you want to be ogled in your new tennis togs at popular athletic club Sportime of the Hamptons (2751 Old Riverhead Rd, East Quogue; 631-653-6767), where locals and time-sharing Manhattanites gather to lob balls and lounge poolside.
...and where to hide
Customers at the new, organically inclined Caf He Bird She Bird (49 Sunset Ave, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-8931) aren’t checking one another out; they’re focusing on high-concept ingredients like the Dragon Eyeball, a sphere of gracefully unfurling tea leaves served in a glass pot. Couples will likely prefer to get cozy in the candlelit nooks of The Patio (54 Main St, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-4878) while grazing on chef Matthew Guiffrida’s creative American dishes. Truly reclusive diners can take refuge behind the rice-paper screens that serve as room separators at Sushi1 (210 Mill Rd, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-5096), where one lone waitress (okay, two on weekends) serves top-quality Eastern fare in the tiny dining room.
No one will notice you among the jam-packed racks at Fahrenheit 451(105 Main St, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-5724): The labels—Marc Jacobs, Juicy, Seven, True Religion and Charlotte—are too distracting. Likewise, athletic shoppers are entirely focused on the Babolat tennis-racket stringing machines—two of only 12 in the world—at MD Tennis & Golf (122 Main St, Westhampton Beach; 631-898-0200).
Let your mind wander during a massage at the newly redesigned, full-service Spa Hampton at the Bath & Tennis Hotel and Marina (231 Dune Rd, Westhampton Beach; 631-288-4900). You won’t even need the sounds of Enya to relax, as there are treatment areas near the beach’s crashing waves.
Southampton, Sag Harbor and Wainscott
Where to be seen...
This season, you’ll need to befriend the doormen at three velvet-rope destinations: the safari-themed Cain (1181 North Sea Rd, Southampton; 631-283-0808), new Manhattan transplant PinkElephant (281 County Rd 39A, Southampton; 631-287-9888) and the new FM lounge—a loft space with its own separate velvet rope at the recently redecorated StarRoom (378 Montauk Hwy, Wainscott; 631-537-3332). Not exclusive enough? A $500 membership fee will insure your VIP status at MadameTong’s (256 Elm St, Southampton; 631-204-0300), a brassy Asian supper club that devolves nightly into one of the Hamptons’ most debauched nightlife spots. Pay once and you’ll skirt lines for an entire season. In one of the stranger twists of trendiness, expect a long wait at the humble FairwayRestaurant at the Poxabogue Golf Course (3556 Montauk Hwy, Wainscott; 631-537-7195), which has become the breakfast spot for power players (and their bratty kids).
The Elegant Setting has just moved two doors down to bigger, tonier digs (31 Main St, Southampton; 631-283-4747), all the better to purvey flauntable high-end home accessories—Herms linens, Raynaud porcelain, William Yeoward crystal—to well-coiffed Hamptons ladies. The glass-walled modern space of the recently opened Paulpac outpost (28 Jobs Ln, Southampton; 631-204-0353) provides a perfect stage on which to perform the act of buying one of the German company’s trademark vibrant nylon bags ($24--$136).
Celebrity clientele (reportedly, Christy Turlington and Russell Simmons have hit the mat here) salute the sun alongside the dedicated local students at Yoga Shanti (23 Washington St, Sag Harbor; 631-725-6424).
...and where to hide
Nursing a wicked hangover? Escape those knowing glances at the unassuming Hamptons Coffee Company (869 Montauk Hwy, Water Mill; 631-726-2633)—a cottage on the highway with a landscaped garden overlooking a flower farm—where you can discreetly sweat out toxins over a brunch of spicy chilaquiles (think nachos meet huevos rancheros). If you still aren’t up for the people parade, slink off to The Beacon (8 West Water St, Sag Harbor; 631-725-7088), on the second floor of a peaceful harborside spot, with a gorgeous view of the Sag Harbor sunsets. Finally, the back room at Sant Ambroeus restaurant (30 Main St, Southampton; 631-283-1233) has frosted glass dividers and a separate entrance that’s so well concealed it took most patrons years to notice it.
You need an appointment just to get through the door of new Scandinavian antiques shop Dienst & Dotter (23 Bridge St, Sag Harbor; 631-725-6881), but once you’re there, it’s easy to immerse yourself in the goods: a Danish rococo mirror from the 1730s ($12,500), a Swedish Gustavian table ($3,250) and countless other pricey pieces. You’ll want to get lost among the 19th-century country furniture at Simply French (18 Jobs Ln, Southampton; 631-283-5115). The quiet shop’s nooks and crannies are loaded with treasures, including a 19th-century pine cupboard ($2,650) and caviar spoons ($9).
Avoid the hordes at Omni Health & Racquet Club by popping in to the one-room Symmetry Studio next door (395 County Rd 39A, Southampton; 631-204-0122). A private or duo class in Pilates, Gyrotonic or Yamuna body rolling offers blissful exclusivity. At The Lotus Blossom Center for Transformation (328 Montauk Hwy, Wainscott; 631-537-7442), owner Patricia Borrego and her legion of teachers perform energy healing and lead you inward with yoga, breathwork and meditation workshops.
Bridgehampton and East Hampton
Where to be seen...
All heads turn whenever someone enters Nick & Toni’s (136 North Main St, East Hampton; 631-324-3550), the undisputed heavyweight celebrity social club of the Hamptons (ask for the front room if you really want to gawk). But locals know that you can probably catch just as much action for less money (and no reservations) by visiting one of the Golden Pear Cafs (2426 Montauk Hwy, Bridgehampton; 631-537-1100. 34 Newtown Ln, East Hampton, 631-329-1600. 111 Main St, Sag Harbor; 631-725-2270).
Before you go out posing, take a jaunt to Khanh Sports’ new sunglasses hot spot, EH Eyewear (58 Park Pl, East Hampton; 631-324-1077), where the vivacious Khanh Ngo himself will guide you through shelves of Versace, Revo and Ray Ban. At the brand-new Cynthia Rowley boutique (79 Main St, East Hampton; 631-324-1722), you can flaunt your foosball skills at the custom-made table (outfitted with female players, of course) before scoring a backgammon-board--printed silk scarf ($250), sold with wooden playing pieces for portable gaming. Gucci’s newly minted, 1,650-square-foot space (46 Main St, East Hampton; 631-907-9290) offers ready-to-wear items, and a made to-order Gucci bicycle exclusive to this location.
Tote your personal trainer to the just-opened Railroad Avenue Fitness (11 Railroad Ave, East Hampton; 631-907-4221) and rub elbow pads with other private-session duos using the equipment in the 2,000-square-foot space. Former teachers at Lotte Berk—the Hamptons outpost was the crme de la gym for 25 years—resurrect the method on Friday 26 at Physique 57 (264 Butter Ln, Bridgehampton; 631-537-5722). Put on your hottest matching spandex suit and step up to the barre.
...and where to hide
Located at the end of the alleylike Parrish Mews off Main Street, Rowdy Hall (10 Main St, East Hampton; 631-324-8555) is a terrific pub-cum-bistro hidden from public view (the fiercely shy can sit near the fireplace in the back). Cheating spouses and other stealthy types should head to the new creative-American Leif Hope’s Restaurant (31 Race Ln, East Hampton; 631-324-5022), formerly the Laundry, and ask for table 24, behind the brick wall. Those seeking utter isolation should drive to Michaels’ (28 Maidstone Park, East Hampton; 631-324-0725), which is near nothing other than Maidstone Beach in the Springs, for dinner before or after taking in a gorgeous sunset.
Duck into Out of the Closet (2401 Main St, Bridgehampton; 631-537-2470) for vintage items—Victoriana through 1970s. Prices aren’t exactly thrift-store--ish ($345 for used Larry Mahan cowboy boots), but the selection is impressive. Loaves & Fishes Cookshop (2422 Montauk Hwy, Bridgehampton; 631-537-6066) is a perfect spot to take refuge; its bowls carved from African petrified tree trunks ($70--$650) are so big that you could almost jump into them.
For a place located smack in the middle of town, The Seaflower Spa (10 Main St, East Hampton; 631-324-6996) is an especially tranquil escape. Owner Kim Keller allows absolutely no chemicals inside her six-room oasis. That’s why she doesn’t do nails—yet (stay tuned for all-natural pedis to come). Keller’s impossibly gentle facials will soothe your skin and heal all of the city’s wear and tear. Naturopathica, maker of blue-hued bottles of organic tinctures, has such an enormous wellness center and spa (Red Horse Plaza, 74 Montauk Hwy, East Hampton; 631-329-2525) that it might feel like you’re disappearing into a compound. But once any of the impeccably trained therapists touch your skin, you’ll consider yourself a convert.
Amagansett and Montauk
Where to be seen...
Montauk’s rich and beautiful pack into Harvest at Fort Pond (11 South Emery St, 631- 668-5574) all year round for enormous, shareable portions of fish, ribs and pasta. Expect a wait even with reservations, which can be tough to score. In Amagansett, the current hot spot (and this community doesn’t get many) is Meeting House (4 Amagansett Sq, 631-267-2764), an upscale, kid-friendly comfort-food eatery with outdoor tables facing the newly refurbished square. It’s across the street from The Stephen Talkhouse restaurant and bar (161 Main St, 631-267-3117), where boozers party into the wee hours.
Everyone will notice your postworkout glow as you cross Amagansett Square from Mandala Yoga Studio to its brand-new boutique (Amagansett Square, Amagansett; 631-267-6144). The vast array of jeans, tees, bags and jewelry—some handmade in India—might remind you how to be beautiful on the outside, too. The funky vintage furniture and newly added high-end Winick jewelry collection at Haven (83 South Elmwood Ave, Montauk; 631-668-4844) are so desirable you’ll want to show off your purchases.
With windows overlooking the ocean, the yoga room at Samadhi House Studio and Spa (83 South Elmwood Ave, Montauk; 631-668-5555) fits 44 mats and still fills up fast. Strike a weekend-warrior pose with other summer guests and locals who’ve been coming for years. And when you want to completely disappear, just book a massage at the adjoining spa.
...and where to hide
The latest clam shack to open up in the long, lonely gap between Amagansett and Montauk is 27 (2095 Montauk Hwy, Montauk; 631-267-6980), which occupies the space formerly known as Napeague Stretch and boasts a fireplace (for rainy days), two 50-inch plasma screens, live music and more than 30 tropical frozen drinks. Way out near the tip of Montauk, a new Cuban restaurant called Havana BeachClub (448 West Lake Dr, Montauk; 866-377-8132) just opened. Festive? Yes. Out of the way? That too.
The rustic 19th-century American furniture and Simon Pierce glassware at Nellie’s of Amagansett (230 Main St, 631-267-1000) are as yet undiscovered, but are sure to go fast once the secret’s out. Montauk was one of the last East End towns functioning sans Calypso—until now. The ubiquitous upscale boho-chic boutique is moving in (99 The Plaza, 631-668-4999), and chances are most local shoppers will be too busy rifling through racks of costly garb to notice you.
The Sea Water Spa at Gurney’s Inn (290 Old Montauk Hwy, Montauk, 631-668-2345) is colossal, replete with wet room, indoor pool, fitness facilities and full-service salon. It may be old and a little bit rusty, but when you’re staring at the ocean during a leisurely pedicure, you’ll feel as if you’ve landed at the end of the world—or at least the end of Long Island.