For the author Kati Marton, the Hamptons have been a welcome haven for many years, especially Southampton.
She and her husband, the diplomat Richard C. Holbrooke, spent many weekends at their waterfront cottage there, just north of the village center, where they’d swim, kayak, ride bikes or relax by a fire. Ms. Marton also wrote three of her books in the Southampton house, including her latest, an upcoming biography of the German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
“We did some intense socializing in the city,” Ms. Marton said of their former apartment at the Beresford on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. And they traversed the world together a few times. “But this house,” she said, “was more of a sanctuary for family and close friends.”
Those friends happened to include other prominent diplomats like Kofi Annan, who served as the secretary general of the United Nations, and with whom Mr. Holbrooke had forged a close relationship during his tenure as U.N. ambassador. After Mr. Holbrooke’s death in 2010, Ms. Marton and her son and daughter (children she had with her former husband, the ABC News anchor Peter Jennings) continued to use the house. But she now finds it too big for just herself and is ready to move on to new environs.
“I believe in chapters in life as in books,” said Ms. Marton, who had also owned a house in nearby Bridgehampton. “I’m in a different chapter now. I’m on my own. I like being on my own, frankly. I like the idea of being in a closer community of fellow scribes and creative people.”
Ms. Marton, whose main residence remains in Manhattan, is now looking to relocate to Sag Harbor, a longtime literary hub farther east on Long Island, and so she is selling the Southampton house on North Sea Harbor off Noyack Road. The asking price is $4.65 million, according to Lawrence Ingolia of Sotheby’s International Realty who is listing the property with his colleague Jonathan Smith. Annual taxes on the house and an adjoining half-acre lot included in the sale total $14,066.
Ms. Marton and Mr. Holbrooke bought the two-story, wood-shingled home in Southampton in a private sale in 2005, paying around $2.8 million. “It was my dream to be on the water,” she said. “As I entered the house I saw the view. I saw the bay. I didn’t even need to see the inside.”
Built in 2001, it was in “impeccable condition,” Ms. Marton recalled, and over the years, just a few minor changes were made, like some painting and refinishing of the wide-plank oak floors.
The house, which extends around 3,400 square feet, sits on a total of 2.2 landscaped acres with roughly 125 feet of harbor frontage. There are three bedrooms and two and a half bathrooms.
Entry to the secluded property is through a long driveway past numerous trees and lawn sculptures acquired from the Shona tribe in Zimbabwe. There’s a 38-by-15-foot heated pool near the house, ensconced behind a border of tall hedges, as well as an outdoor shower and a detached two-car garage (in addition to an attached one-car garage).
At the front of the house is the kitchen, which Ms. Marton called “my dream kitchen,” equipped with granite countertops, stainless-steel appliances and wood cabinets. There is a farmhouse sink, a spacious center island and a separate dining area. “We all had Thanksgiving there,” she said.
Beyond the kitchen is a well-lit living room with a wood-burning fireplace and three French doors leading out to a spacious deck. There is a study, powder room and laundry room on that level, too.
“The house has an open floor plan, which is great for entertaining, and it has a very relaxed feeling,” Mr. Ingolia, the agent, said. “Almost every room in the house looks out on the harbor.”
The bedrooms are upstairs. The primary suite features two decks, along with a large walk-in closet and bathroom. The other bedrooms, one of which has a skylight and a deck, share a bathroom.
The home also has a full, unfinished basement currently being used for storage.
“It has really been a very happy house,” Ms. Marton said. “Richard loved it. We spent many good years here.”
She has especially enjoyed swimming laps in the pool — “I’m a pretty zealous swimmer,” she says — and sitting by the living room fireplace sipping tea while peering out at the surrounding flower gardens and harbor. “There’s an endless parade of birds of all sorts landing on the water here,” she said.
Ms. Marton, a former NPR and ABC News correspondent, has written several books over the years, including her memoir “Paris: A Love Story,” which provides an account of her career and marriages. She and Mr. Holbrooke were married for 15 years. Her upcoming biography of Ms. Merkel, “The Chancellor,” is slated to be published in October.