On the Market: Indoor swimming pool, outdoor tennis court at 'River Run' estate in Westport

WESTPORT — The energy coursing through the stunning “River Run” estate at 157 Easton Road must be like electrical charges stimulating the mind and creative juices of those who reside there and visit.

This is a unique place that has inspired musical masterminds, artists and even the builder who completely renovated the house this year. And it will definitely inspire modern-day families with its mélange of elegance and comfort, its secluded resort-like setting yet convenient location and its boundless number of amenities for everyday living, entertaining and recreation. The indoor swimming pool and outdoor tennis court are only two of its many indulgences.

“The (9,360-square-foot) main house, guest house, river house and greenhouse combine to offer a sleek, sexy sanctuary with places and spaces for everyone you love. Imagine being together while having the room for when you must be apart,” says the listing agent, making reference to social distancing because of COVID-19.

According to the agent, this estate, with its 17-room cream-colored Mediterranean-style house and its nearly three-acre waterfront property in the Coleytown neighborhood, influenced The Beatles and perhaps one of the Gershwin brothers, Ira, as well as his sister Frances Godowsky. Frankie, as she was known, was a singer who took up painting after moving to this estate, shortly after her famous brother George died in 1937.

It was on this property that Frankie “hit her own artistic stride. She took up painting and turned out hundreds of well-received oils and acrylics,” according to her Jan. 20, 1999, obituary in the New York Times.

Color played a big part in her life. Her husband, Leopold Godowsky Jr., was the co-inventor of Kodachrome film.

“In 1935, Leopold Mannes and Leopold Godowsky Jr. invented Kodachrome 16mm motion picture film. By 1936, Eastman Kodak Company (PDF) introduced the vivid film in 35mm for still images to the masses. The craft of photography and the way the world would look at the printed image changed forever. Kodachrome is the oldest successfully mass marketed color film in history,” according to the Kodachrome Project website.

Years later, it was another notable resident of River Run, Prudence Farrow — sister of actress Mia Farrow and daughter of actress Maureen O’Sullivan — who was immortalized by The Beatles in their song Dear Prudence. The agent said Prudence ran in the same circles as John Lennon and George Harrison, who tried to coax Prudence out of a bout of depression after the death of her father, director John Farrow, with their lyrics and eventual hit song:

Dear Prudence, won’t you come out to play?

More Information


STYLE: Mediterranean

ADDRESS: 157 Easton Road

PRICE: $9,000,000


FEATURES: Heated indoor swimming pool, spa, steam room, tennis court, direct waterfront along the Aspetuck River, waterfall, foot bridge, greenhouse, 2.75-acre level and sloping property, main house, guest house and separate river house, patio, terrace, decks, balconies, exterior lighting, underground sprinkler, home gym, in-law or au pair suite, fully fenced property, five fireplaces, central air conditioning and natural gas heat, attached and detached garages totaling 12 vehicle bays, full finished basement, attic, tile roof, public water connection, septic system, seven bedrooms, eight full and two half baths.

SCHOOLS: Coleytown Elementary, Coleytown Middle, Staples High

ASSESSMENT: $2,422,740

MILL RATE: 16.71 mills

TAXES: $40,484

Dear Prudence, greet the brand new day

The sun is up, the sky is blue

It’s beautiful and so are you

Dear Prudence, won’t you come out to play?

“In her memoir, Prudence describes hiking in the woods, canoeing and skating on the pond and playing with neighborhood kids surrounding River Run,” the agent said.

While a Beatles’ song was influenced by a resident of this riverfront masterpiece, the current owner was influenced by John Lennon’s “Imagine” during the recent renovation.

“Imagine all the people ...” reflects the current owner’s vision. As he breathed new life into the home that was originally built in 1955, he connected back to its history and also looked forward, imbuing it with a message of hope for the future, the agent said.

This concrete, stone and stucco house has direct waterfront property along the Aspetuck River just at the point where it widens to create a pond providing natural beauty and sporting opportunities.

“Perennial walking trails throughout the ample acreage lead to green and serene spaces for contemplation, yoga or meditation,” the agent said.

“The current owner is a collector of fine properties all over the world and is known for restoring and resurrecting the inherent beauty of spectacular and significant homes, large and small. His homes have attracted celebrity audiences and River Run was used as a studio for Netflix during the COVID-19 shut down,” according to the agent.

Inside the main house. there are spacious rooms and architecturally distinctive features including stained glass elements as well as high ceilings and sophisticated moldings. The main house has five bedrooms including a large master suite with a sitting area.

Beautiful as the main house is, the exterior portion of the property will have the next owners riveted and exploring ways to extend outdoor living beyond the summer and fall seasons. There are multiple stone patios, a built-in outdoor kitchen, an octagonal deck atop the river house, a greenhouse for those into gardening or sustainability and a foot bridge by the waterfall to an open field.

Won’t you come out to play and live and entertain and relax and enjoy?

For more information or to make an appointment to see the house, contact Susan Vanech of Susan Vanech Properties and Compass Connecticut LLC at 203-685-2348 or susan.vanech@compass.com.