London apartments with a royal pedigree
Demand for new apartments in upscale areas of London is leading to a steady supply of refurbished properties in the English capital.
This trend includes four luxury apartments in a former office building close to St James’s Palace – the former home of Princess Diana and now the residence of a number of minor royals – and Buckingham Palace.
The luxury residential developer Amazon Property launched off-plan sales of its Pall Mall Collection in St James’s this week. The apartments are ready for purchase, with prices starting from £5.9 million (Dh34.6m).
The project is expected to be ready in January.
Two buildings on Pall Mall will be converted into one featuring the private residences – three three-bedroom apartments and a four-bed duplex apartment spread over five floors.
The smaller apartments will be 1,762 square feet in size while the duplex will offer 2,575 sq ft of space, including a 549 sq ft outdoor area.
Thomas Gainsborough, a co-founder of the Royal Academy of Arts, once occupied the address in the 18th century. He was one of the popular landscape and portrait painters of the period.
While the old facade will be maintained, inside the design will be modern with an open plan kitchen. The floors will be made from oak wood and the apartments will be fitted with antique bronze ironmongery and have touches of Italian Calacatta Michelangelo Marble.
The three-bedroom apartments will feature an en suite bathroom, a main bathroom and a separate shower room, while the penthouse will have two en suite bathrooms, a main bathroom and shower room.
The developers are expecting quick sales thanks to the building’s location – it is close to the upmarket department store Fortnum and Mason, The National Gallery, The Royal Academy and The Ritz hotel.
Chris Lanitis, partner at Amazon Property, offers the lowdown on the Pall Mall Collection in London’s St James’s area
Why is there such a spurt of development in this location?
International developers and buyers have been ploughing capital into Mayfair, causing land values in Grosvenor Square, for example, to rise by 314 per cent since 2000. With almost all new developments in the pipeline set to achieve £5,000 (Dh29,350)/square feet and upwards, it is becoming a less viable and less desirable investment opportunity. Mayfair now offers little to those seeking new opportunities. As investors and developers tire of getting burnt in an overheated market they are turning their attention elsewhere. Its neighbour St James, on the other hand, has been largely overlooked and significantly undervalued but it is ready to steal the limelight.
Why are you selling the properties off plan?
Many developments, both refurbishments and new builds, sell well off plan because there is such strong demand for good quality residential investments in London.
What similar properties do you expect to launch in the next year?
Amazon Property has a number of developments in the pipeline in the next 12 months. These will be located in sought-after areas of prime central London, including Park Crescent in Marylebone.
Published: November 6, 2014 04:00 AM