Chinese billionaire to build huge London home at Hyde Park

Cheung Chung-kiu gets green light for build despite Westminster council drive to limit mega-conversions

Chinese billionaire Cheung Chung-kiu has been granted planning permission to build a huge private palace overlooking London's Hyde Park.

The green light for the eight-storey, 5,760 sq metre (62,000 sq foot) mansion comes months after Westminster City Council banned the construction of buildings that are oversized for their footprint.

The vast development is on the site of 2-8a Rutland Gate and once complete with the Hong Kong-based property tycoon's improvements is expected to be worth up to £500 million ($690m).

Hailing from a territory dominated by property magnates, Mr Cheung has built up his UK presence and is behind a series of high profile projects. Estimates of his personal fortune range between £1 billion and £1.5bn.

Known as CK to his friends, he is chairman of property company CC Land, which owns London's “Cheesegrater” skyscraper.

Westminster council said the billionaire's building project was allowable as the plans were to renovate a single dwelling.

The council also confirmed Mr Cheung would not be required to make any contributions towards building affordable homes in the borough as he plans to build a private family home.

A Westminster council spokesman said new affordable homes were a “priority” and 725 had been built since 2017.

The property is near Kensington Gardens and has a view of the central London park from 68 of its windows. It is in SW1, London's most expensive postcode.

Between January 2017 and April 2021, 253 £5m-plus property sales took place in the area — 17 per cent of all prime transactions in London during this period.

Updated: July 22nd 2021, 1:28 PM