Perfect weekends begin with a solo ride out to my home in Southampton, Long Island, on one of my bikes – a KTM 1290 Super Duke R or my Triumph Speed Triple. It all depends on how sporty I am feeling.
Saturday morning opens with three cups of strong black coffee, before 9am, followed by a trip to Marders nursery to meet with garden designer Charlie Marder. He’s been running this institution since the 1970s and knows so much. They have all sorts of flowering fruit trees and a greenhouse shop too. Then I’ll typically spend two hours in my garden. We have a different flower for each month: forsythia, hydrangea, rhododendron, apple blossom. I’ll also tend to my five beehives – if you have more than 10 acres in Southampton you’re encouraged to keep bees because so many have been affected by mites.
Exercise is an important part of my weekend routine and Kip, my trainer, comes to work out with me for an hour before lunch. I was a gymnast in high school so I like the rings and parallel bars. Lunch is almost always a tuna melt from Sip ’n Soda, a classic 1950s diner, I might have two if I’ve worked out a lot.
Afternoons often involve picking vegetables from our garden for the meal Giangi, our property manager, will grill for dinner. I try to eat clean and we grow our own tomatoes, cucumbers, kale and celery. We’ll buy meat or locally caught tuna from gourmet market Citarella and swordfish from seafood specialist Clamman.
Every weekend includes tennis – at my home or the Bath & Tennis Club, where I like the low-key atmosphere. It’s just six clay courts and perfect for round robins. I always make our house guests play; it’s like Mao’s Long March. But it’s usually followed by a refreshing swim and massages by Kip for whoever wants one.
I don’t like to shop very much, but two exceptions are Tennis East – to get my rackets restrung and buy my tennis whites – and Book Hampton, a truly old‑fashioned bookstore. Late in the day, after the crowds have gone, I might go to Halsey Neck Lane Beach, primarily for my European guests who come to the Hamptons and want to see the ocean.
On Saturday night my wife Jane and I will host dinner for friends, as well as our nieces and nephews who come out from the city. It might be grilled lamb chops and lasagne prepared by Heidi, our chef, paired with wines chosen by my daughter, Isabelle. She is a sommelier and will select a bordeaux – from our wine cellar or from Domaine Franey, a first-class wine shop in East Hampton that specialises in French reds. Afterwards, we like to watch movies in our screening room – preferably happy ones that are an antidote to the rest of the crazy week. I’m a bit of a night owl, so I’m in bed anywhere between 12am and 2am.
Sundays start with the New York Post – I like the difficult 12-box sudoku and time myself. Then we might ride to Montauk with friends. We’ll stop at Gosman’s Dock, the famous fish place on the water with views of the boats in the harbour – I love the tuna tartare cones – before returning to Southampton for more tennis, swimming and apple-picking.
Weekends are for relaxing, so I don’t look at email or social media. The air on Long Island is so oxygenated I sleep well and get re-energised for the coming week. I’ll head back to the city on my bike about 3pm. My wife and daughter go by car and we’ll meet for dinner at Mr Chow; we have a special table as it’s been a family favourite for 25 years – we’ll share their speciality, Beijing duck. Or we’ll go to Sette Mezzo, a simple Upper East Side Italian with a lively atmosphere. I travel from 12 to 15 days a month, so Sunday nights are family time.