Malm buys Chip Chop for just shy of $24 million

Diane Sawyer's compound in Tisbury was listed for $24 million earlier this summer -- Bob Gothard/ Wallace and Co. Sotheby's International Realty

The landmark Vineyard Haven property known as Chip Chop sold for $23.9 million on Friday.

The Dukes County Registry of Deeds recorded the sale of the two properties — 690 and 794 Chappaquonsett Road. Two trusts – Seven Nine Four Chappaquonsett Road Realty Trust and Martha’s Vineyard Holding Trust – were listed as the buyers.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the sale Friday morning, reporting that Island investor David Malm purchased the property. Malm owns several properties on Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard, including a home in Edgartown on South Water Street that was subject to controversy.

Chip Chop is an iconic Island property, and was owned by former ABC News Anchor, Diane Sawyer, before the sale on Friday. Sawyer and her late husband Mike Nichols were longtime seasonal residents of the Vineyard. The couple were married on the Island in 1988, and in 1995 purchased Chip Chop.

The Chappaquonsett property has a long history of hosting well-known dignitaries aside from Sawyer. It was built as a home for famed Broadway actress Katharine Cornell. Also, the Chip Chop property is painted into the mural in town hall in Vineyard Haven, at the Katharine Cornell Theater, painted by Island artist Stan Murphy.

The property has two separate lots — one 17.4 acres, and the other 2.84 acres. Sotheby’s says there’s a mile of private shoreline surrounding the property, “including 2,000 feet of sandy beach on the exquisite swimming waters of Vineyard Sound, and a large swath of sandy beach on Lake Tashmoo.” 

Sotheby’s writes that there are four homes on the property, a three-bedroom main house, a two-bedroom cottage, and two beach houses built in 2007.


  1. Congratulations to the real estate broker who nailed the listing price. Now that is someone who knows the market. Sold for asking price and in a very short time on the market. Very impressive.

  2. That’s $480,000 for the land bank.
    That’s the equivalent of the entire
    annual income of about 6 households
    on the Vineyard, 12 in Mass and
    and an entire years income for
    126 people in Gaza.
    I feel soooooo bad for the buyers
    of this property.
    But I will really appreciate the sacrifice
    of those who now own this property
    when I am taking a walk on a
    land bank trail.
    I fully understand that their tremendous
    suffering under this horrible burden will never
    be offset by the joy that thousands of people
    get when they can access some of the beautiful
    properties the land bank owns free of charge.
    But I hope they can find some solace while
    walking on their 2000 ft of private beach
    that most of us will never see.

      • Albert- I didn’t say anything that would
        imply I was against private property.
        Personally, I think beaches should be
        open to the public in some way.
        But they are not, so I get over it.
        I was merely expressing my delight
        that the land bank go a lot of money
        which they will use for the benefit
        of the public while acknowledging
        the sacrifice of the new owner.
        I mean , really, he could have used
        that 480 K to fly to Paris in his private
        jet ( I am opposed to that concept)
        to have lunch at his favorite cafe about
        16 times. Now he can only afford to get
        a few burritos from La Choza– which are
        really good, but not the same as duck coife
        or Foie gras served on the finest dinnerware
        and with the most exquisite cut crystal
        holding a $400 glass of wine in the finest
        of Parisian restaurants.
        I feel bad for him, don’t you ?

  3. It’s really depressing that a beautiful Vineyard property will now be “enjoyed” by a real estate investor rather than a person or family with a passion and love for the Island. What will all those “Private” and “No Trespassing” signs on the property be protecting now and for whom?

    • Mike– do you know something we don’t ?
      “poison” ? Do you think he is going to use
      “weed and feed” or some kind of herbicide?
      please explain.

  4. Buyer beware! I worked at the house years ago and no footings were ever installed prior to installation of foundation. When the tide is astronomically high the crawl space is salt water and sand slurry. Sand and plywood are holding foundation walls in place. Good luck. Who was the “qualified “ home inspector?

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