Escape

A Fire Island beach house for $1.1 million with a vintage vibe

The house was built in 1937 and has been renovated.

Douglas Elliman

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Fire Island has long been a beloved summer getaway for New Yorkers. The 9.6-square-mile barrier island, off Long Island's Suffolk County, offers pristine (occasionally nude) beaches, rollicking nightlife, a thriving LGBTQ scene (particularly in the towns of Cherry Grove and Fire Island Pines), and car-free streets for biking, running, and strolling barefoot, should you choose. 

There's also a slew of good real estate on the island, provided you stock up on flood insurance. Fire Island Pines, for instance, features a number of gorgeous modernist houses, as does the party-happy village of Ocean Beach. Other residential options include vintage bungalows, condos, and pool-outfitted beach homes for summer visitors and year-round residents alike. You have to have some decent cash to own property on the island, with median listing prices in popular villages climbing over $1 million.

But if that's feasible for you, there are beautiful houses to be had, like this three bedroom, two-bath house at 170 Wilmot Road in Ocean Beach, now on the market for $1,100,000. The house was built in 1937 and has been newly renovated, and is about a block from the bay. 

The house has a light-filled living room, with an impressive ceiling with wood paneling and exposed wooden beams, and oak floors, evoking a true vintage beach-bungalow vibe. The wagon wheel light fixture is a nice touch, too.

There's access to a porch off the dining room via a glass sliding door, which probably makes for some lovely sunlit breakfasts. 

The stone-finished kitchen has been outfitted with modern Samsung stainless steel appliances, and Maplewood cabinets that match the wood-paneled ceiling. 

The window-filled master bedroom has room for a king-sized bed and a desk, and there's an en-suite bathroom.

The bathroom's got an inviting-looking custom glass shower.

There are two additional cozy bedrooms, for children or for guests.

But the property's best feature is its outdoor space, as is befitting a summer beach house. There is, for instance, this outdoor deck for lounging and sunbathing.

When the sun's too strong, or in a storm, you can retreat to the enclosed porch.

There's another deck with room for a second dining table and chairs.

And there's even an outdoor shower house, so you can de-sand your feet post-beach.

To get to Ocean Beach from the city, you can take the Long Island Rail Road from Penn Station to Bay Shore station and a cab to the Fire Island Ferries (instructions here.) Note that Ocean Beach is a car-free village. The whole trip takes a little over two hours.