Middle Eastern buyer snaps up former embassy in Mayfair for £25m

Six-year average sales price in the ultra exclusive London neighbourhood now stands at £20.3m

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A Middle Eastern buyer has paid out £25 million for a former embassy building in Mayfair in London's West End.

The 8,435 square foot, five-bedroom mansion on Park Street was home to the Cypriot embassy for decades and was recently refurbished and modernised.

The six-floor property has four large reception rooms, a passenger lift and access to Green Street communal gardens.

It underwent an extensive renovation before the latest sale.

It was purchased by an international buyer who wanted a family home in Mayfair, property agents Wetherell said.

“It’s been immaculately done, the proportions are fantastic,” Robert Dawson, sales director at Wetherell, told The National of the property.

Research by the Mayfair-based agent shows the six-year average sales price in Mayfair now stands at £20.35 million, making it the most expensive of London's exclusive neighbourhoods.

Knightsbridge follows closely in second place, with an average price of £19.95 million, Kensington at £19.11 million, Belgravia at £16.4 million and Chelsea at £14.6 million.

Mayfair attracts buyers from all sides of the globe – and it’s top of the Monopoly board!” said Mr Dawson.

“It’s the prime place in London.”

The Park Street property was placed on the market in August 2023 unfurnished, which is unusual for properties priced above £15 million, as they tend to be fully dressed and interior designed.

Wetherell turned instead to virtual staging to showcase its potential, taking photos of empty rooms which were dressed with furniture and accessories using CGI, which the company said made a key difference.

“It is a very good way of visualising the property,” said Mr Dawson. "It’s a bit more cost-effective and it gives buyers, international and domestic, a way of seeing how it could look being furnished."

Originally built in 1913, the fit-out of the mansion was delayed by the First World War, meaning it was not ready for occupation until 1925.

It was bought by wealthy British tobacco tycoon, Sir Louis Bernhard Baron, and his wife, Elsie, Lady Baron.

She sold the property in 1959 to what was then the newly formed government of Cyprus. It served as an embassy for decades but reverted to a private residence when the Cyprus High Commission relocated to 13 St James’s Square.

Last year, about £527 million worth of homes were sold in Mayfair, according to Wetherell’s 2024 Mayfair Market Report.

Buyers from the Middle East and India were typically purchasing large houses and mansions, while people from Britain, western Europe, India and Pakistan bought the most apartments.

Updated: March 12, 2024, 6:15 AM