See why the Grey's Anatomy star ended up moving into the guesthouse

By Megan Stein
May 30, 2017 02:00 PM

Ellen Pompeo’s operations are usually restricted to the OR on Grey’s Anatomy. But the actress found herself performing a surgery of sorts on her “modern barn” home in the Hamptons.

Pompeo, 47, bought her retreat in the village of Sag Harbor with the goal of transforming it into a guest house, and building a new, larger abode next door. Her plan quickly changed, however, when she fell in love with and purchased another property on the West Coast.

“A house in Malibu that I had fallen in love with became available, so I abandoned the original plan, and I don’t know if I will ever end up building the main house in Sag Harbor,” she tells Architectural Digest.


Now that it was to serve as the main living space, Pompeo had to look at the smaller house in a different light when it came to construction and design.

“Originally, I was given the advice to build on the original footprint of the cabin, because it would save time and money,” she says. “Well, it didn’t save either.”

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After parting ways with her first designer, who was also the architect, Pompeo teamed up with celeb-approved Estee Stanley (who also counts Pompeo’s former TV flame Patrick Dempsey as one of her clients), and together they rehabbed the space with a beadboard treatment, black walls and lots of throw pillows.

“She loves throw pillows,” Stanley says, “We’re not exactly on the same page with them, but we laugh about it. She’s literally so fun to work with.”


Although a far cry from what she originally envisioned, Pompeo still considers the property a success, as it captures the modern aesthetic she wanted from the summer retreat.

“It’s decorated in a way that’s a fresh look compared to those Hamptons places that all look like they’re owned by 60-year-old Hamptons billionaires, with the shingles and the light columns,” she says. “They all put me to sleep.”

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