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Inisfada, One of Long Island's Greatest Gold Coast Mansions now being destroyed

The entrance facade of Inisfada at North Hills, now under demolition.
The entrance facade of Inisfada at North Hills, now under demolition.
It is with great sadness that Inisfada is in the process of demolition. I never thought it would come to this. I received notification almost two years ago about the closing of the building and many, many groups, historic organizations and articles in the print and online media brought attention to it's endangerment. I was fortunate enough to have seen the house a few times in past years and once had a basement to attic tour. I have been in many mansions over the years and while all are different and beautiful in their own way, Inisfada was truly unique and a national treasure, worthy of the status of Biltmore, Hearst Castle and many of the Newport houses. When I attended school at the New York Institute of Technology in the 1970s, I would often drive all over the Gold Coast and search for the mansions that still existed. Today so many of those that were left even at that late date, are now gone. Fortunately Inisfada was a well documented house that appeared in books and magazines and I have many photos of the house in it's heyday. It really is a shame that such a house could not have been saved for the public to enjoy or have been preserved for future generations. Ada Louise Huxtable said of the demolition of Penn Station which also applies here, "We will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed". Please visit my blog, Mansions of the Gilded Age to see numerous vintage photos of the house and it's magnificent interiors. http://garylawrance.blogspot.com/2010/10/estate-of-nicholas-brady-inisfada.html

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Sean Hassett December 29, 2013 at 12:04 PM
I am disgusted with this news.
Arguendo December 29, 2013 at 03:28 PM
So rules the almighty $.
Ilivehere December 30, 2013 at 08:15 AM
I've been on several tours of the Newport Mansions. They are a national treasure in my opinion. "They don't make them like that anymore". Everything always comes down to money....
Laura B. December 30, 2013 at 10:00 AM
Very sad indeed. Laura B. Tour Docent Oheka Castle
Roll Back Our Tax December 30, 2013 at 11:30 AM
Could it be the taxes on that property? It much easier to subdivide a 300 acre property into smaller parcels than to maintain a mansion this size.... http://www.theislandnow.com/news/article_6db41846-004a-11e3-b931-0019bb2963f4.html... "The Jesuits maintained the property for more than 50 years, but officials said high operating costs led the order to sell off most of the 300-acre property over the years. The order put the property on the housing market for $49 million a little more than a year ago".
sadeto December 30, 2013 at 04:35 PM
I would think that a Jesuit retreat would be exempt from property taxes. It's probably the costs of just maintaining such a monstrosity. It's sad, but it's also hard to see a reasonable alternative to destruction and redevelopment. No public entity is in a position to buy what would be a money-losing, under-utilized property. The difference between the Newport mansions and this property is that Newport is a quaint seaside community that easily attracts tourism and has the amenities to support it. Inisfada is between the so-called village of North Hills and 495. North Hills isn't even a real community, by its own mayor's admission. There is no there there.
Roll Back Our Tax December 30, 2013 at 05:13 PM
Sadeto...according to the listing record when they were trying to get $49M for the property, the total taxes were $3,160,797 and yes "currently exempt"... http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ja4CT0lfN90/UIEzhrrMhnI/AAAAAAAARcc/lgT08lMtuyY/s1600/Inisfada+1.jpg ... But once sold, exemption goes away. School taxes alone are $1,984,210 for 33 acres of land. Now this development company saw $ signs because they should be able to subdivide each one of those lots into 1/2 acre lots if zoning permits making a nice little development of 66 homes. To make matters worse it wasn't a US based development company that bought it. Rumor has it the development company is out of Hong Kong.
sadeto December 30, 2013 at 08:47 PM
I don't see how foreign real estate investment "makes matters worse," at all. This is a good thing for the taxpayers in that school district, putting property back on the roll. Unlike the Whitney property right up the street, where the family avoided a huge tax bill by agreeing to keep ownership in a trust and giving the town the right of first refusal if they ever decide to sell.And not even granting public access to land everyone is subsidizing.
Chuck Idol January 17, 2014 at 03:37 AM
Inisfada the Book - which means Long Island in Gallic has been written to capture the timeline of Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas Genevieve Carroll Garvan Brady. “Papal Duchess”. Mrs. Brady was a woman great means and tremendous generosity Holy inspirational vision and hope to people throughout the world. The book covers her work from WW1, WW2, Great Depression, Spanish War and much more. The book also covers some topics of interest related to key events such as the sinking of the Titanic and the illuminati theories of the Federal Reserve. Mrs. Brady was and remains the highest decorated Catholic Woman in America. She worked very closely with the Catholic Church, The Jesuits the Vatican and Presidents during very difficult times. This is a must read book for all women who hold Jesus close to their hearts and Women's rights at the forefront of all that is good in the world. This book is very thought provoking for anyone who is interested in the Illuminati theory of the Holy Grail. http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/inisfada/14373000 http://www.lulu.com/content/e-book/inisfada/14373253 http://www.amazon.com/Inisfada-Chuck-Idol-ebook/dp/B00HVRXE2G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1389893604&sr=8-1&keywordsInisfada www.Inisfada.org The Physical Inisfada has been lost but The Human Form Divine Lives Eternal

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