The Real Deal New York

At the desk of: Zachary Vichinsky

Bespoke’s co-founder on pricey Hamptons homes, the ‘big whales’ of real estate and keeping a Zen garden
By Kathryn Brenzel | July 01, 2017 01:00PM

Zachary Vichinsky (Photos by Michael McWeeney)

Zachary Vichinsky, who co-founded Bespoke Real Estate with his younger brother Cody, works out of what looks like a model summer home. The luxury residential brokerage’s office in Water Mill has a modern exterior with floor-to-ceiling windows, and meticulously arranged décor awash in a palette of white, beige and gray on the interior. Zachary and his brother, both alumni of the Corcoran Group on Long Island, started Bespoke in 2014. The firm lists Hamptons homes with a minimum price tag of $10 million and now exclusively represents more than $1.2 billion worth of properties, with an average listing price of $26 million, according to Zachary. It was a somewhat unlikely business for the two, who grew up in Stony Brook, Long Island, and rarely ventured to the vacation hamlets their firm now targets. “I think I went to Hampton Bays for my prom — that was like the farthest I’d been east as a child,” said Zachary. He started a painting and finishing business after graduating from high school and began investing in single-family properties in his early 20s. Zachary, 33, now lives with his wife, Nicole, and their two-year-old daughter, Ramsey, in Bridgehampton.

Missile launcher print 

This poster of two missile launchers is a gift from Cody. The weapons are a commentary on the sounds that come from Zachary’s office. “I’m here all day, and all anyone hears is this typing going on,” he said. “I spend my time all day sending missiles out via email.”

Harpoon

One Bespoke agent gave Zachary a large, fake harpoon after the firm opened its office. The harpoon is meant to be a riff on the firm’s exclusive focus on luxury properties, aka the “big whales” of real estate. The brokerage also has hats embroidered with a hunter ready to harpoon a large whale.

Tracing paper

Zachary considers himself something of a “wannabe architect.” He never attended college or formally studied architecture, but he enjoys sketching on tracing
paper and reimagining space,
both for clients and his own amusement. “Some people have outlets for themselves like painting or running or gardening. I thoroughly enjoy playing with schematics and layouts,” he said. “It’s a release for me.”

Helicopter

Bespoke prides itself on giving its clients a “concierge” experience. It often charters helicopter and limo trips to the Hamptons. Zachary said Bespoke also differs from other firms because while some of its brokers are paid through commission, others (who work in the corporate division) are salaried.

“Rich Dad Poor Dad”

Zachary’s father, who worked as a construction manager, gave him “Rich Dad Poor Dad” when he was 16. The book focuses on the different ways wealthy and poor parents shape their children’s attitudes about money and investing. Zachary rereads it every year. He considers his own beginnings “humble” and said that he and Cody were primarily raised by their father after their parents got divorced. “Our dad rented the worst house in the best neighborhood he could, so we could go to a decent school and surround ourselves with good people,” he said.

Elephant painting

His mother, a doctor, paints in her free time. A few months ago, she gave him a watercolor painting of an elephant entitled “Metta-Elephant.” The painting, which now hangs behind his desk, was part of a series of animal paintings she recently completed. “It reminds me of my family,” he said.

Vision board 

Zachary is surrounded by various “vision boards,” which feature photos of things he’s pining for. Currently on his wish list is a modern, wood-shingled Bridgehampton farmhouse and a 1980s Land Rover Defender. He owns a fleet of cars — mostly luxury sedans, sports cars and SUVs.

Cast-iron whale

Unlike the harpoon, the cast-iron whale is not part of a metaphor for big-ticket deals. Zachary picked up the small figurine last winter, when he and his family visited the Turks and Caicos Islands to watch humpback whales migrate to the Dominican Republic. His daughter loves whales, and there are pictures of the animal throughout their home.

Zen garden

Zachary’s wife, who he began dating when they were both 16, gave him a wooden mini-Zen garden for his desk last Christmas. He hasn’t used it much lately, but he said it’s intended to relieve stress and be “a little place to get distracted for a bit and play with sand.” He may find use for the garden soon: He and his wife are expecting their second child.