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This... is Darien Connecticut. We are going to explore living in Darien CT and the differences between the neighborhoods, so you can decide which area is a fit for you
Hi, my name is Charlie Vinci. I am a Darien CT Realtor, and my realty team and I specialize in helping buyers understand what living in Darien CT entails and how to relocate to the area.
Let me show you why you might want to move here, AND a few reasons why you might not.
Table of Contents:
- Darien CT Overview
- Darien Train Station
- Long Neck Point
- Noroton Neck
- Northern Noroton
- Noroton Heights
- Northern Darien
- About the Author
- Relevant Links
Darien CT Overview:
This is a different kind of tour. We will take a look at the train stations and the beaches. We'll talk about home values in each neighborhood. We will explore the schools, shopping and the breathtaking waterfront. I’ll even throw in a few easter eggs along the way.
If you are new to the website, blog or YouTube channel, my name is Charlie Vinci and I am a Darien CT realtor that helps people move here. If you are thinking about buying a home in lower Fairfield County feel free to sign up on our website or subscribe to our Youtube Channel as we are constantly creating new content for you!
In order to follow along, it will be helpful to have our Darien Neighborhood Map. Make sure to right click to save on your Mac/PC, or tap the image on your phone to save it.
We will start with a central hub of commuting in Darien.. Are you ready, let's go!
Darien Train Station
If commuting home from Manhattan, there’s a good chance you will end your day at the Darien Train station. The fast train will get you home in about 55 minutes from Grand Central.
Before heading home, you can grab a bite to eat at one of the many top rated restaurants in the area: Little Thai Kitchen , Louie’s Italian, The Goose Bistro, or Ten Twenty Post for Seafood. With such great choices, you really can’t lose.
This is also an excellent walkable area and can find just about everything you need here. There are banks, coffee shops, a pharmacy, a butcher shop, a post office, and Darien Sport Shop, a town favorite. Just around the corner from Darien Sport Shop is the local Whole Foods. There is also a Stop & Shop, as well as a Trader Joe’s north of the railroad bridge on Rt 1.
If you want to grab a coffee and meet a friend, or take your dog for a walk, Tilley Park is a great place to relax and unwind. Want more of a hike, rather than a stroll? Explore Selleck’s & Dunlap Woods where you will find a lake, small beach, a butterfly garden and more.
You can also find the Darien Ice House skating rink which is home to many local teams as well as synchronized skaters. They host organized sports and skating lessons for all skill levels throughout the year.
Homes within a mile of the Darien Train Station typically sell between $550k and $2.5MM, with the best examples selling for north of $3.5MM. If you want to live within walking distance to the train, you have another option as well, I am going to show you that one in a bit.
Next, we are going to head over to Contentment Island, which is in the neighborhood of Tokeneke.
It’s connected to land by a small bridge and offers some stunning waterfront real estate. Homes here don’t sell very often, but when they do you should expect to pay between $3MM and $10MM, and some of the finest examples have the potential to go for north of $10MM.
The two islands just off shore are crab island and fish islands. Let’s take a moment to appreciate the stunning coastline.
This is the private Tokeneke Club. It prides itself for being a family oriented club. As I am sure you can imagine, the setting is absolutely beautiful. Adjacent to the tokeneke club is Butler’s Island. It’s much smaller than Contentment Island, but you will find it to have a similar island-like feel, along with similar pricing.
Closeby will also be Tokeneke Elementary School. You can use the link on the screen to go to our Darien page and look up current school ratings in our Darien Buyers guide, as well as other information about moving to the area.
Homes in Tokeneke typically sell between $925k and $4.15MM, with the finest examples having the potential to sell for north of $5MM.
Long Neck Point
This is where Andrew Carnegie spent some of his summers. As you can see, it’s a long peninsula flanked on each side by waterfront estates. This is a great location if you are looking for a home with a private beach and or dock. It’s also where you will find one of the major beaches in town, Pear Tree Point Beach
Right next door is Darien Boat Club, the marina can accommodate boats up to 28 feet in length
Homes in Long Neck Point typically sell between $3.15MM and $6.4MM, with the finest examples having the potential to sell for north of $7MM.
Great island is a sixty-three Acre island owned by one family and it can be yours. It includes a 13,000 SF main residence with water views from nearly every angle, it has an equestrian center, with a grand prix ring and riding trails. It also has a private beach, and a yacht basin that is able to accommodate a 100 ft yacht. It is one of the finest examples of real estate on the east coast. Although it’s not currently listed, qualified buyers can call my office to submit financials and request a showing.
Right next door is the smaller, yet no less stunning Hay Island. Hay Island is more than eighteen acres, and is also owned by one lucky family.
Next, let's head over to the neighborhood of Noroton, or more specifically the southernmost part of the neighborhood, the peninsula, often referred to as Noroton Neck.
These two islands are Nash Island and Pratt Islands. Either of these islands are an excellent location if you are looking for a waterfront home because of their expansive, open views of the long island sound. That is, if you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to buy one. Only about one home sells here every five years.
Noroton Yacht Club may be your place if you are a sailboat captain. In the Summer, the waters in the gut, as it’s called, are filled with moored sailboats. You can hear the sounds of the sailboat rigging clanking, and the smell of salt is most certainly in the air.
Weed Beach is the primary public beach in town and could be considered more of a fitness park. With its tennis courts, a fit trail that allows you to work out, and its junior sailing team, it is truly an original and exciting concept to be enjoyed.
Adjacent to Weed beach is Brush Island. Most of the homes here face Holly Pond, which is a large brackish body of water. Access from boats that are not docked in Holly Pond is limited, making this a great place for owners of Holly Pond waterfront Homes to enjoy watersports.
Homes in the southern part of the Noroton Neighborhood typically sell between $1.95MM and $5.75MM. With the finest examples having the potential to sell for north of $10MM.
Next, let’s head over to the northern part of the Noroton neighborhood.
This is Hindley elementary School. You can use the link on the screen to go to our Darien page and look up current school ratings in our Darien Buyers guide, as well as other information about moving to the area.
Darien Public Library was founded in the late 1800’s and is the only Connecticut public library to receive the Library Journal’s national 5 star award.
Located inside the Darien Town Hall is the Darien Arts Center. If any member of your family is interested in dance, music, visual arts or theater, the Darien Arts Center is the place for them to explore their passion.
Nearby the Darien Arts Center, you will find Baker Park. It has a small playground and is a great place for kids in the neighborhood to blow off some steam.
Homes in the Northern Part of the Noroton neighborhood typically sell between $1.1MM and $1.75MM, with the finest examples having the potential to sell for more than $2MM.
This is also an excellent location to walk to the Noroton Heights Train station, which we will explore next. Let's head over to the Noroton Heights Neighborhood. Not to be confused with the Norton neighborhood that we just explored.
This is the Noroton Heights Train Station. The fast train will get you to Grand Central in about 60 min.
The town has major plans to redevelop this area and the redevelopment is underway. Although COVID caused some financial challenges for the project, I have no doubt that this will one day be one of the best walking neighborhoods in Fairfield County.
Every walking neighborhood needs a grocery store and Palmers Market delivers. It’s a long time staple and town favorite. There are also several banks, gas stations and a Walgreens already in place.
The planned redevelopment will add more retail and residential space, and may even include a renovation to the train station itself. This is truly an exciting time to be in the Noroton Heights Neighborhood.
If you get hungry while you are in the area you might want to try Vavala’s Deli or Jake's place. Both are highly rated.
A few hundred feet down the road from the redevelopment, just behind the Noroton Heights Fire Department is McGuane Fields. The Darien little league raised the funds to build and renovate the fields. There are concessions, a picnic area, indoor batting cages and a playground. This is a real asset for the neighborhood.
Another real asset for the neighborhood is Woodland park and nature preserve. You can take your dog for a walk or a run along the one and a half mile loop inside this sixty-four acre park. Closeby you will also find the Middlesex middle school.
Homes in the Noroton Heights Neighborhood typically sell between $535k and $1.7MM, with the finest examples having the potential to sell for north of $3MM.
Just over the town line in New Canaan is the Talmadge Hill train station. It's another option for Darien commuters. Trips from this station to Grand Central can be as short as 70 minutes, but may require a transfer at the Stamford station, which will add time to your commute.
There are three Country Clubs in Northern Darien:
Woodway Country Club: It’s a private course which requires a sponsor. Depending on the tee, the course has a rating between 68.0 and 77.1 and a slope between 129 and 146. One of the things that makes Woodway unique is access to the beautiful Woodway Beach Club, which is located off site, in Stamford.
Country Club of Darien: Depending on the tee, the course has a rating between 60.9 and 72.6, and a slope between 121 and 134. It’s an exclusive course, and membership is available by invitation only.
Wee Burn Country Club: It’s a notoriously private club. Its course is said to be one of the toughest and most beautiful in the northeast, membership can also include the beautiful Wee Burn Beach club in Rowayton.
Cherry Lawn Park is a great place to let the kids blow off steam after school. It has a playground, community garden, baseball diamond, and tennis courts. It is also home to the Darien Nature Center, a community funded project dedicated to teaching children about our natural world.
Homes in Northern Darien typically sell between $805k and $2.85MM, with the finest examples having the potential to sell for north of $4MM.
If you are still exploring living in Darien CT, check out my website where you will find my raved about local buyers guide, and all of the homes listed for sale in Darien.
I hope you enjoyed this tour as much as I enjoyed making it for you. When you are ready to start shopping, call me, I’ll help you find a great home.
I look forward to hearing from you!
About the Author:
Charlie Vinci, the Founder and Lead Agent of the Charlie Vinci Team has become a mainstay in Connecticut’s real estate market, earning accolades as one of the top 3% of realtors within the state. Fueled by a dedication to the success of his clients and an ever-growing assortment of area-specific resources, the business continues to thrive in the constantly evolving real estate marketplace. An informative YouTube presence has been the primary driver/focus for the team, as it has allowed Charlie to engage directly with his audience and provide a consultative approach to an often ambiguous process. Whether an international client seeking relocation to the US or a local homeowner considering the sale of their property, The Charlie Vinci Team has the market knowledge, resources, and expedient level of service that clients not only desire, but deserve.