Short Hills/Millburn, NJ

Short Hills, NJ

When we moved the shop to Short Hills I knew we would be missing the picture perfect village of Maplewood, but I also knew from many years of projects in Short Hills that there would be plenty of compensations. Millburn/Short Hills is certainly one of the most appealing locations in New Jersey, and now that I spend my working days here, I’ve become an enthusiastic admirer of its many attractions. There is, for example, the sense of scale. Some of the most beautiful homes in New Jersey can be found in these gently rolling hills, yet the roads are relatively narrow, there are few ponderous mansions, and the overall feel is of sophisticated taste and well-trimmed elegance.

Millburn’s downtown has a relaxed, casual character and an eclectic selection of shops and services. Plus there is the Paper Mill Playhouse, one of the leading regional theaters in New Jersey. The historic Short Hills center, with its original Post Office across from the equally original train station was part of the community planned by Stewart Hartshorn in the mid 19th Century. With the adjacent tennis club this quaint area of Short Hills has much of the flavor of Mr. Hartshorn’s original attempt to create “a harmonious community for people who appreciated nature,” a community “where natural beauty would not be destroyed by real estate developments, and where people of congenial tastes could dwell together.”

Millburn/Short Hills is justifiably proud of its schools. The Millburn High School always measures at or near the top in New Jersey and indeed nationwide. And there are the well-respected private schools of Far Brook, Pingry and St. Rose of Lima.

No description of Short Hills is complete without mentioning The Short Hills Mall, an upscale Mecca for discerning consumers whose classy design mirrors the feel of Short Hills itself. Mr. Hartshorn might or might not be pleased to see this mercantile intrusion into his ideal community, but it certainly avoids the garish and overly commercial feel of many suburban Malls.

Belle Maison’s current location in Short Hills was originally a small home, and I think we’ve managed to keep a bucolic and yet sophisticated feel to our interior design studio, in keeping with this tasteful and appealing town.

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