The Dunes
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The Dunes


The DunesThe Dunes Review

The Hamptons is one of the top vacation destinations in the country, maybe even the world. So it’s no surprise this serene, beautiful beach side setting is also home to a luxurious residential treatment facility known as The Dunes of East Hampton. The inspiration for The Dunes arose in 2007 from Joe McKinsey, a successful businessman in New York City with 27 years of sobriety under his belt. When he was asked for help in arranging high-quality addiction treatment for a friend in dire need, he directed the person to a rehab in California. When that friend expressed dismay and anxiety at the prospect of cross-country travel while already in an extremely fragile state, McKinsey realized comprehensive, private care services in the New York metropolitan area were definitely lacking. Thus, The Dunes was born.

Treatment at The Dunes is truly individualized; each of the nine clients is provided with his or her own personal road map for recovery in the sylvan splendor of the Hamptons.

Accommodations and Food

Located on a beautifully sculpted estate, The Dunes is accessorized with a pool, tennis court and multiple Jacuzzis—clients can definitely count on a secluded, tranquil place to get sober. Mimicking the decor of a luxury hotel, The Dunes is decorated with fine, comfortable furnishings. All bedrooms and bathrooms are private, spacious and opulent, stocked with high-quality linens and toiletries. Some even come equipped with fireplaces and steam baths. A full-service housekeeping staff cleans and restocks the rooms every day.

Diet is a lifestyle, not a restrictive eating plan at The Dunes. Meals are healthy but prepared with the gourmet in mind. Fresh seafood is a regular item on the locally sourced menu. Eggs come from a nearby farm and a lot of the produce is harvested nearby too. Meals often feature multiple courses, and can include such dishes as truffled eggs and tuna carpaccio over avocado. The chef works with the resident nutritionist and dietician to ensure meals are health-conscious as well as restaurant-quality. The Dunes can also, of course, accommodate specific dietary restrictions.

The Dunes is no stranger to high-profile clients. In order to maintain client anonymity, cell phones, cameras and computers are strictly prohibited upon admission. Clients are allowed to use the house phone upon request.

Treatment and Staff

Staff members at The Dunes conduct medical and psychological pre-admission evaluations of each client to determine whether the facility is the best fit for his or her needs. Detox is not one of The Dunes’ services so potential clients must address that as needed before beginning treatment. Clients can stay as long as they are able and willing, but The Dunes does offer a 30-day program if that is the maximum amount of time the resident can devote to inpatient treatment.

With each person’s individualized, holistic plan, the goal is to identify the root causes of addiction. The Dunes uses a therapy called “Behavior-Focused Protocols” to identify the client’s negative internal dialogue in the hopes of replacing destructive habits with positive solutions. Another core component of The Dunes’ programming is The Syndrome Model of Addiction, which was developed by an affiliate of Harvard Medical School. Through this model, the potential life-altering events that spawned addiction and the trauma resulting from actions taken during active drug or alcohol abuse are identified and dismantled. Each resident ends up with his or her own daily treatment schedule, including dual diagnosis support. Twelve-step recovery is also incorporated into treatment; clients are regularly transported to local community meetings.

The Dunes recently starting offering Intensive outpatient Programs (IOPs) based on the Syndrome Model of Addiction. It operates an additional sober living home where clients may live while attending the IOP. Occasionally, when appropriate, clients are referred to other outpatient treatment programs while still residing at The Dunes as part of aftercare planning.

The staff-to-client ratio at The Dunes is three-to-one, a serious perk and virtually unheard of in the average treatment facility. The clinical team of nine includes two PhD-level addiction experts, a medical director, two Master’s-level therapists, a social worker and a licensed nutritionist and dietician. There is also a Reiki master practitioner and an Oriental medicine and Asian bodywork therapy specialist. The Dunes believes in healthy spiritual maintenance, so it employs a spiritual counselor, too. It’s also worth noting that the employees at The Dunes are all in recovery themselves.


Reiki, Shiatsu, acupuncture, yoga, meditation, guided nature walks, and music, art and equine therapy are also all additional perks regularly implemented as part of the treatment program here.

In Summary

The luxurious setting, diverse and highly qualified staff and above all exceptionally individualized treatment make The Dunes a unique and deeply personal approach to sobriety and hopefully long-term recovery.

The Dunes Location

201 Fort Pond Blvd, #1
East Hampton, NY 11937

The Dunes Cost

$50,000 (30 days). Reach The Dunes by phone at (877) 818-5539 or by email at Find The Dunes on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest

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