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Oprah Over Spielberg: The Hamptons Take Bronze In Luxury Olympics

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Barron's has just come out with their subjective rankings of the Top Ten Best Places For Second Homes and the Hamptons place third, behind Maui and Kiawah Island, South Carolina. We'll concede the gold to Maui with its I'm-always-sunny-and-tropical-and-Oprah-loves-me thing, but, call us homers, we'll take Steven Spielberg and the Hamptons over Kiawah Island and some old football dude named Dan Marino. Before we get too worked up about it, let's recognize this list for what it is: a bit of journalistic fluff designed to be devoured while you wait for the dentist.

3. The Hamptons: Long the favored retreat of high-powered New Yorkers, the Hamptons are a just now experiencing a fresh jump in home sales, realty brokers say. Credit the revival in Wall Street bonuses. Southampton, bastion of old money, is known for its grand estates, but lovely homes can be found in what not long ago were potato fields. In chic East Hampton, the choicest real estate is on Georgica Pond. Alas, most of the area's finest properties never come to market. Once you own a home in the Hamptons, you own it forever. Median Price: $1.5 million
Drop from Peak: 30%
Neighbor: Steven Spielberg

· Top Ten Best Places For Second Homes [Barron's, subscription required]