Treasures from “The Dunes”


“The Dunes,” circa 1912.

I’m so excited that tomorrow I will be heading out to The Ladies Village Improvement Society of East Hampton’s  20th annual Landmarks Luncheon at the Maidstone Club. The event, which will be held from noon to 3 p.m., will feature the unveiling of treasures from “The Dunes,” which some of you might recognize as the 30-room beachfront home of the wealthy Wiborg family.

Significant in its own right for many other reasons, I’m mostly entranced by this house because it was home to Sara Murphy, née Wiborg. She was the wife of Gerald Murphy and friend to some of the most influential literary lions of the early 20th century, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, who claimed that “Tender is the Night” was inspired by Sara and her husband. Other famous faces often seen in the company of the couple include: Ernest Hemingway, Cole Porter, Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso and John Dos Passos.

At the luncheon tomorrow, Laura Donnelly, the Murphys’ granddaughter, will share some of her favorite memories of living at “The Dunes.” Family memorabilia, including Sara’s wedding dress, artwork by Gerald, and family photos will be on view.

Money raised (tickets start at $75) will benefit LVIS projects. To reserve a spot, call 324-1220 or email

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