Factbox: NY's wealthy returning to Hamptons

Wed May 19, 2010 4:02pm EDT
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NEW YORK (Reuters) - The tony beach retreats in the Hamptons are once again drawing wealthy vacationers from nearby New York City, but the glum economy is prompting people to lay low and avoid publicity, real estate specialists say.

Here are some facts from the experts:

* Judi Desiderio, chief executive officer of Town & Country Real Estate, said summer rentals through her firm were up 140 percent on last year.

* Pamela Liebman, Corcoran president and chief executive officer, said that in all of 2009 there were only 13 sales above $10 million, while in the first quarter of 2010 there already had been 14 such deals.

* Liebman said within her firm, Corcoran's Hamptons sales had soared 300 percent over last year, and rentals increased 72 percent in March and 87 percent in April.

* The Wall Street Journal recently reported that New Jersey hedge-fund manager David Tepper had agreed to buy an oceanfront estate belonging to the ex-wife of former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine. The sale price was not known, but the property in the Hamptons village of Sagaponack had been on the market for $50 million, real estate experts said.

* Tepper was the No. 1 paid hedge-fund manager in 2009, according to Institutional Investor magazine, earning $4 billion.

(Reporting by Michelle Nichols, editing by Ellen Wulfhorst and Xavier Briand)