Inside a London penthouse inspired by the Cullinan diamond – in pictures

The duplex apartment is part of The Broadway development by Abu Dhabi Finance Group and Northacre

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The Broadway in London has three big-name players backing it: the project is a collaboration between Abu Dhabi Finance Group and Northacre, the property company behind The Lancasters in Hyde Park and The Bromptons in Chelsea; while the architect is Squire & Partners, which has London's Bulgari Hotel and Mayfair House, and Dubai's Vida Downtown hotel and apartments in its portfolio.

Diamond histories 

Another stellar trio that Broadway’s developers looked to are the Sancy, Cullinan and Paragon diamonds.

The Sancy, which is of Indian origin and now sits in the Louvre Paris, is a 55.23-carat pale yellow stone that has belonged to various royals, including King Manuel of Portugal, Henry III of France and James I and VI of England and Scotland. The latter set it into the Mirror of Great Britain, a jewel created to mark the union of the crowns of the two countries.

The Paragon was mined in Brazil and acquired by jeweller Laurence Graff, who transformed the rough stone – thought to be the largest flawless diamond in the world – into a seven-sided, kite-shaped, 137.82-carat jewel.

At 3,106 carats, the Cullinan is the largest gem-quality diamond ever found.

The rough diamond, mined in South Africa, was cut into nine stones, including the 530.40-carat Cullinan I, also known as the Great Star of Africa, and the 317.40-carat Cullinan II, which sits centre-front on the Imperial State Crown of the UK.

High-end homes

The three stones inform the residential towers within The Broadway, the shimmering facades, oversized windows and entranceway ironmongery of which are influenced by the facets of the diamond they seek to reflect. Within, the colour palettes of the apartments emulate the way light reflects off each stone: light for the Sancy, medium for the Cullinan and a darker palette for the Paragon.

This penthouse, for instance, has bronze aluminium window frames, grey marble accents, engineered oak floors, full-height timber doors and lacquer-finished wardrobes, all in shades that reflect the “diamond” that the home sits within. The duplex apartment has six-metre-high ceilings, four bedrooms and four bathrooms. The kitchen comes with Bardiglio marble worktops and splashbacks, and appliances from Gaggenau and Miele. More Italian marble can be found on the walls and floors of the bathrooms, which also come with Corian baths and basins, Cova lighting, anti-mist mirrors and glazed shower screens.

The penthouse takes up the 18th and 19th floors of Cullinan West, one of six residential towers on The Broadway's 1.72-acre site, which will include a 20,000-square-foot pedestrianised square, a 26,000-square-foot retail street and 118,000 square feet of office space, upon completion in 2021. Residents will have access to several private landscaped gardens, a spa, a fitness club with a 25-metre swimming pool and a vitality pool, plus a games room, cinema, meeting rooms and banquet halls. A 24-hour concierge service will oversee matters ranging from housekeeping and travel itineraries to organising theatre tickets, restaurant reservations and even a constant supply of fresh flowers.

Overview High west to east terrace. Courtesy Northacre

The Broadway has some of London’s most celebrated sites for its neighbours, including the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, the London Eye, and Big Ben, the Buckingham Palace, and is and Horse Guards Parade and St James’s Park.

Its own shops and eateries aside, the property is over the bridge from the retail streets of Knightsbridge and is within walking distance of Strutton Gound Market, Regency Cafe and the Michelin-starred Quilon, plus the National Gallery and National Theatre.

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