“I went riding at Wolffer this morning and plan to do yoga at home later in the afternoon. I did a short film with artist Nick Weber yesterday, he’s an amazing artist,” explained model, author, former “Real Housewives of New York City” star, and mom Kelly Killoren Bensimon. For Kelly, it was a typical day filled with friends, creativity, and a curiosity for the corner of the world which she loves most, the Hamptons.
Back in 2011, Kelly first released “In The Spirit of the Hamptons” with Assouline, this summer she is back with a update created in just two short weeks over her Christmas vacation. “I really wanted to update my book because as I’ve gotten older my experiences have changed me and my perception of the Hamptons has changed. I felt that the area deserved the respect to show how it’s getting better and evolving.”
“I’ve made my best friends that I’ve had for over 20 years in the Hamptons,” she said with a sigh, “I’ve just made my closest, closest friends in the Hamptons.” With that cadre of talented friends Kelly explains, “I begged Martine Assouline for two years to redo the book and she gave me the go ahead but told me I had two weeks. In two weeks we compiled hundreds and hundreds of pictures from friends who are surfers and writers. We had iPhone pictures and my kids took pictures. It was just such a fun experience. It was more exciting that my friends were so enthusiastic about it and I knew that I was doing the right thing.” And the hard work paid off in this beautiful new tome available this June that is a must-have for any Hamptons home.
“Most people think of the Hamptons as a place to party and share a house and vacation. For me the Hamptons is packed with such unbelievable history.” Kelly, a history buff, went on to share stories with me about Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders who sought refuge in the Hamptons to recover from malaria and the artists like Jackson Pollack to whom beach towel placement marked the pecking order. You can find more anecdotes and great images from across the east end in “In The Spirit of the Hamptons”.
Where does Kelly take refuge and enjoy down time out east? “Every morning I go to Once Upon A Bagel in Wainscott and I get a sugar free muffin and a cappuccino. I love the orecchiette at Cittanuova in East Hampton. I am obsessed with candy and love Dylan’s Candy Bar [in East Hampton].” When the sun goes down and her daughters are at sleepovers Kelly says, “I’ve had some really fun nights at SL East. I like to go to Ruschmeyer’s and Surf Lodge. I go to Cyril’s and The Hideaway, my favorite restaurant on the planet, for margaritas.” When she’s just relaxing with her girls you can find her at Wiborg Beach in East Hampton.
“The Hamptons is such a huge place and I wanted to put Quogue and Westhampton but you can’t have it all,” she said with a laugh. Will there be a third edition I wondered to which she replied, “We’ll relaunch in a few years with another book with even more.” When it comes to the second edition Kelly will be celebrating with friends and well wishers at Montauk Yacht Club on June 1, 2013.
“In The Spirit of the Hamptons” is to quote Kelly, “Just such a special book. It is more than a cataloging of place I love. It’s a scrapbook of who and what I love and whey I love them.”