Featured Property: The Estate of Margaret “Pat” Breen
The Estate of Margaret “Pat” Breen
A mother to six sons, a grandmother to nine grandchildren, a beloved friend and a loving wife for 55 years to the late Dan Breen, Margaret “Pat” Breen lived a remarkable life and was adored by those around her. Her family and friends remember her quick and infectious smile, seemingly boundless energy and her love of life and people.
In David Netto’s tribute to Pat Breen in Town and Country, he writes, “I don’t recall ever seeing her without a smile, even when she walked into a room alone.” Netto continues, “Character, like elegance and smiles, fell from Pat’s sleeve.”
Pat was born in New York, but raised in Dublin, Ireland, where her father, a prominent lawyer for the Catholic Church, was based. She attended the Academy of Sacred Heart and then attended college at the University College of Dublin, the University of Fribourg, Switzerland and graduated from Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart in Purchase, New York. After college, Pat pursued a modeling career in New York City, where she met Dan. After a year-long courtship, they were married at St. Patrick's Cathedral.
The Breen family relocated from New York to Houston when Dan accepted a position as partner at Fayez Sarofim & Co. The family continued to summer in East Hampton, New York to stay connected to their New York roots. Pat loved her new community and pursued her interests in cultural activities and philanthropy. She enjoyed a rich volunteer life, with board activities that included serving as a Trustee and on the Board of Governors and Executive Committee of the Houston Grand Opera, as well as head of Special Events and Board Member of the Houston Ballet Foundation. She was also a board member for The Hobby Center for the Performing Arts and chaired the opening of the Center. In areas of medicine, she served as a Board Member of The University of Texas Health Science Center, Board Member of the University of The Texas Partners School of Nursing, longtime Board Member of The Gathering Place as well as chairing a gala for The Brookwood Community.
Pat also chaired the Houston Grand Opera Ball, the Houston Ballet Ball and numerous fashion shows, luncheons and dinners. In 2005, Pat served as co-chair for the Houston Chronicle Best Dressed Luncheon benefitting the March of Dimes and in 2007, she was inducted into the “Best Dressed Hall of Fame” after being honored three times. Pat was also honored as one of Houston’s Women of Distinction and with the Queen of the Nile award in 2015 at the Winter Ball benefitting the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation.
The Breen residence in River Oaks was richly appointed with fine art, antique and modern furniture, porcelain and more by Tice Alexander, a rising star in the interior design world. Early in his career, Alexander worked closely with Albert Hadley of Parish-Hadley Associates (1980-1986) before establishing his own firm. Completed in the early 1990s, the Breen project would be one of Alexander’s last. The furnishings in the Breen home reflected the timeless elegance for which Alexander was known.
New Orleans Auction Galleries is honored to offer paintings, sculpture, fine furniture, porcelain, jewelry and more from the Estate of Margaret “Pat” Breen.