On the market for £400m - Inside the most expensive row of houses in the world
03 December 2010
There are prime properties, and then there are sprawling, historic, super prime properties based in Regent's Park - which may explain why a row of terraced houses there has gone on the market for a collective price of £400 million.
Cornwall Terrace Mews is made up of eight double-fronted mansions, which are each valued at between £29 million and £60 million, and even the official press release concedes that they are targeted at the ‘super-rich'.
The address has been called the most prestigious in London by excited luxury property bloggers, who enthuse that this will most likely be the only property of its kind to ever come on the market.
Formerly leased to British Land as its headquarters, it was snapped up by property developer Oakmayne Bespoke just over two years ago when the lease ran out.
The luxury residences belonged to the British nobility for 150 years, and are still part of The Crown Estate, meaning interior designers hired by Oakmayne were under strict supervision from English Heritage and The Estate whilst giving the Grade I listed properties ‘a tasteful makeover'.
This makeover includes a monochrome colour scheme, glass accents and artwork on the walls by Picasso, Serra, Francis Bacon and Damian Hirst, as well as state-of-the technology - such as ‘multi-room iPad-controllable audiovisual and lighting systems' and a silent, custom-designed lift.
Overlooking the rowing lake at Regent's Park, every property has five to seven bedrooms - which are each the size of a typical London flat, according to the brochure - and an accompanying two-bedroom mews house, ‘Bentley-sized' garage, spa and gym.
Whereas conventionally built houses take around 16 weeks to build, the eight mansions have taken a team of over 250 craftsmen two and a half years to build - with each house gobbling up 83,000 man-hours to create.
If you're wondering what took them so long, laying the ‘hand crafted marble floors and finishes', using ‘nine different types of the finest Italian marble' doesn't sound like an easy task...
A multi-million excavation project, employing a team of men to ‘dig by hand' to a depth of up to two metres below the original basement floor level in order to create lower ground floors for the spa, gym, home cinema and staff quarters also took 12 months.
The largest of the eight properties, Boswall House, which stands at 14,409 square feet and comes complete with its own ballroom and swimming pool complex, is set to be sold next year. Two more properties are up for sale for £29 million and £39 million, whilst the rest will be put on the market later next year.
The mansions can be purchased without contents, or fully dressed, although buyers requiring a fully interior designed property have been advised to allow for a separate budget of £1.5 million to £2 million.
What's more, prospective buyers could have to cough up around £2.5 million in stamp duty, but should be reassured that the City of Westminster, where the mansions are situated, has the capital's second lowest council tax rate.