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OPULENCE & SPLENDOUR

Luxury and the arts

From houses to cars and from Hockney to van Dyck, a profile of the best and the worst

June 26, 2017

Virgin Virginia

by Matthew Steeples

Unrestored Virginia estate owned by the same family since 1740 for sale for the first time ever   A 410.18-acre estate in Virginia that has been owned by the same family since 1740 has gone on sale for £1.53 million ($1.95 million, €1.75 million or درهم7.16 million).   Completely unaltered and on the National Register … Continue reading “Virgin Virginia”

June 25, 2017

In For A Penny…

by Matthew Steeples

Poundland founders slash asking price for their gaudy Shropshire mansion by 39%   As with many classic rags to riches tale, good taste doesn’t necessarily follow. Proof of such is provided in the somewhat over-the-top home bought by two of the founders of discount chainstore Poundland in the wake of their sale of that business … Continue reading “In For A Penny…”

June 24, 2017

Look – It’s a Lagonda

by Matthew Steeples

Lagonda originally owned by actor Sir Peter Ustinov to be sold; he was photographed in it by Norman Parkinson   A Lagonda originally owned by the actor Sir Peter Ustinov, CBE FRSA (1921 – 2004) is to be auctioned with a guide of £70,000 to £90,000 ($89,000 to $114,000, €80,000 to €102,000 or درهم327,000 to … Continue reading “Look – It’s a Lagonda”

June 23, 2017

Pricey Pickhurst

by Matthew Steeples

130 acre Surrey estate with gardens by Arabella Lennox Boyd for sale for £28 million (or £13 million more than it was marketed for in 2013)   A Surrey estate has gone on sale for 87% more than in was offered for four years ago.   Featured in Country Life in 2013 whilst for sale … Continue reading “Pricey Pickhurst”

June 22, 2017

Laid Out To Lawn

by Matthew Steeples

Vast Georgian mansion in Gloucestershire for sale for just £111 per square foot; it seems incredibly cheap compared to One Hyde Park in Knightsbridge, London, where flats once sold for £7,000 per square foot   A substantial 7,895 square five-storey house in North Woodchester, Gloucestershire has gone on sale for £875,000 ($1.1 million, €992,000 or … Continue reading “Laid Out To Lawn”

June 20, 2017

John Brown Marches On

by Matthew Steeples

Tiny but picture perfect Gloucestershire cottage for sale for ambitious sum; it is named ‘John Brown’s Cottage’ but has nothing to do with the American slavery abolitionist   A picturesque 17th century  Cotswold stone Gloucestershire cottage has gone on sale for £500,000 ($635,000, €569,000 or درهم2.3 million) in spite of having just one proper bedroom. … Continue reading “John Brown Marches On”

June 19, 2017

The Pumpkin House

by Matthew Steeples

Eccentric Hudson Heights, New York cliffside residence for sale for £3.33 million; at certain times of day it resembles a pumpkin   16 Chittenden Avenue, Hudson Heights, New York certainly doesn’t sound like an inspirational place to live. Though mention of this address won’t set pulses racing and despite one previous owner joking: “It’s not … Continue reading “The Pumpkin House”

June 18, 2017

Mind Your Art

by Matthew Steeples

£9.4 million of art stolen in New York; owner hadn’t checked on his collection in months and separately was involved in an incident where he kicked a child in 2016 (and then fled to the Guggenheim)   On Friday, the New York Daily News reported that a 62-year old Upper East Side based inventor has … Continue reading “Mind Your Art”

Going Dutch

by Matthew Steeples

Vast “architecturally rich” Knightsbridge apartment for sale for £8.5 million   A Knightsbridge triplex with a truly extravagant interior has gone on sale for £8.5 million ($10.9 million, €9.7 million or درهم39.9 million).   Spread over the ground, basement and first floors of a Grade II listed portered building in Pont Street, SW1X, the apartment … Continue reading “Going Dutch”

June 15, 2017

Peaking in Pacific Heights

by Matthew Steeples

Indication of booming realty market in San Francisco provided in the form of a Pacific Heights pad offered for sale for 1,503% more than it sold 20 years ago   A detached house in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights that dates to 1906 has gone on sale for a sum £9.8 million higher than it sold … Continue reading “Peaking in Pacific Heights”

June 10, 2017

Empire State of Knightsbridge

by Matthew Steeples

Penthouse with tower in prominent Knightsbridge landmark for sale for £8.25 million   A penthouse with a tower in a Grade II listed landmark triangular ‘flat-iron’ building on the border of South Kensington and Knightsbridge has gone on sale for £8.25 million ($10.51 million, €9.39 million or درهم38.62 million).   Created in 1991 to designs … Continue reading “Empire State of Knightsbridge”

June 8, 2017

A Villa In The Sky

by Matthew Steeples

Gargantuan Mayfair aprtment goes on sale for £30 million; it has eighteen windows facing Hyde Park and is in a building designed by the architect of Broadcasting House   A vast maisonette, described as a “villa in the sky”, on London’s Park Lane has gone on sale for £30 million ($38.8 million, €34.6 million or … Continue reading “A Villa In The Sky”

Flop or Fly?

by Matthew Steeples

London estate agents launch three properties priced over £25 million each on General Election day   Pundits may be referencing worrying times ahead in Britain’s post-Brexit economy, but London’s top tier estate agents have come out all guns blazing on General Election day and launched a series of jaw droppingly priced properties.   In Knightsbridge’s … Continue reading “Flop or Fly?”

June 6, 2017

A House of Hide

by Matthew Steeples

Grade II* listed Kent townhouse for sale for just £166 per square foot; a similarly sized property in Knightsbridge would set you back £2,000 per square foot   A freehold 2,500 square foot detached 15th century timber framed house just 23 miles south of London has gone on sale for the lowly sum of £166 … Continue reading “A House of Hide”

June 5, 2017

Not So Little Italy

by Matthew Steeples

Vast “Italian style” oceanfront mansion in Orange County, CA relaunched for sale for £42.7 million; it has failed to sell at prices as high as £53 million   An 18,000 square foot barn of a residence described as “the finest oceanfront home in SoCal” has been relaunched to the market this month at a price … Continue reading “Not So Little Italy”

June 3, 2017

The Art of The Price Rise

by Matthew Steeples

Former artist’s studio in South Kensington for sale for a sum 229% higher than it achieved in 2007   Situated within a building known as ‘The Art Club’, a north facing former artist’s studio in Roland Gardens, SW7 is for sale for £2.3 million in spite of having just one bedroom on a mezannine level … Continue reading “The Art of The Price Rise”

June 1, 2017

Sail Away

by Matthew Steeples

Georgian house in Emsworth, Hampshire complete with its own private dock for sale for £3.4 million   A symmetrical, yellow brick early 19th century house complete with its own private dock has gone on sale for £3.4 million ($4.4 million, €3.9 million or درهم16.1 million).   Grade II listed Wharf House in the small town … Continue reading “Sail Away”

May 30, 2017

Mucking Up A Manor

by Matthew Steeples

“Grand” Grade II* listed Midlands manor for sale for just £350,000; it comes with a 49-seat cinema and several unexpected catches   Where there’s muck, there’s money and a late 18th century Midlands manor house currently for sale for just £350,000 ($451,000, €402,000 or درهم1.65 million) provides an example of the tale of the progress … Continue reading “Mucking Up A Manor”

May 27, 2017

Anything But A Steel

by Matthew Steeples

Renovated Pacific Heights, San Francisco residence with Danielle Steel as a neighbour for sale for sum 652% higher than it sold for in 1994   A buyer wishing to live just to the north of Danielle Steel’s architecturally striking ‘Spreckels Mansion’ home can now purchase 1994 Jackson Street in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights.   For … Continue reading “Anything But A Steel”

A Costly Capri

by Matthew Steeples

‘Refinished’ 1987 Ford Capri 280 Brooklands for sale for a sum that will wow; it’s affectionately known as ‘Oscar’   The car of choice of boy racers, the Ford Capri was dubbed ‘The Pratmobile’ by Rodney after Del Boy bought one in the BBC series Only Fools and Horses. Those that kept such vehicles, unlike … Continue reading “A Costly Capri”

Wealthy in Wiltshire

by Matthew Steeples

Classically proportioned Wiltshire village house for sale; it’ll supposedly appeal to “your typical wealthy Briton” (whatever that might mean)   Primarily built between 1620 and 1760, a classically proportioned four-storey house in the Wiltshire village of Seend has been placed on the market this week for £4.5 million ($5.8 million, €5.2 million or درهم21.2 million). … Continue reading “Wealthy in Wiltshire”

May 26, 2017

A Refuge for the Reds

by Matthew Steeples

‘Withnail and I-esque’ former farmstead, in an area of North Yorkshire where red squirrels remarkably thrive, for sale for the same price as a studio in Chelsea, SW3   A Grade II listed former farmstead dating to the 1680s in North Yorkshire has recently come up for sale. Though “in need of refurbishment” and having … Continue reading “A Refuge for the Reds”

May 23, 2017

Belgravia in Bloom

by Matthew Steeples

Grand Belgravia apartment – complete with a garden that wouldn’t look out of place at the Chelsea Flower Show – for sale   As thousands of garden lovers visit the Chelsea Flower Show this week, an individual with £8.95 million ($11.63 million, €10.39 million or درهم42.71 million) to spare could acquire a more permanent horticultural … Continue reading “Belgravia in Bloom”

A Cool Limo

by Matthew Steeples

Lincoln Continental limousine once owned by Steve McQueen to be auctioned in California in June   “King of Cool” Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980) is best remembered for having driven Ferraris, Ford GT40’s, Jaguars and Porsches but now a 1965 Lincoln Continental limousine owned by him during the 1970s is to be auctioned by RM … Continue reading “A Cool Limo”

May 22, 2017

Making a Manor

by Matthew Steeples

Refurbished Surrey manor house with connections to Detmar Blow and Gertrude Jekyll for sale for £2.55 million   Reduced in price by £200,000 since when it was previously on the market in June 2015, a Surrey manor house is again for sale – but this time for £2.55 million ($3.32 million, €2.96 million or درهم12.20 … Continue reading “Making a Manor”

May 20, 2017

Faded Grandeur

by Matthew Steeples

Knightsbridge flat for sale for £3.75 million in spite of needing complete renovation and having a lease with just 9 years remaining   A lateral flat – with an interior that could be described as ‘Miss Havisham-esque’ in terms of its faded grandeur – at 16/17 Ennismore Gardens, SW7 has gone on sale for £3.75 … Continue reading “Faded Grandeur”

May 19, 2017

A Highly Priced Hall

by Matthew Steeples

Queen Anne house in South Yorkshire for sale for punchy sum of £1.2 million   An architecturally striking four-storey Queen Anne house in South Yorkshire is for sale for £1.2 million ($1.6 million, €1.4 million or درهم5.7 million) in spite of standing on a small plot that is overlooked by its now converted former outbuildings. … Continue reading “A Highly Priced Hall”

May 18, 2017

Problems at The Plaza

by Matthew Steeples

New York apartment for sale for a sum 21% lower than the current owner paid for it in 2008; it has a controversial past, links to a dictator and was once ‘sold’ for just $1   One of 164 units in 1 Central Park South – better known as The Plaza Hotel – in New … Continue reading “Problems at The Plaza”

May 16, 2017

Making a Maisonette

by Matthew Steeples

Maisonette within building redesigned by eccentric architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis for sale for £6.75 million   Bladon Lodge in Boltons Place, SW5 was built in 1836 and remodeled by the acclaimed eccentric and architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in 1928.     At one time home to an Austrian ambassador to London and the Swedish singer … Continue reading “Making a Maisonette”

May 14, 2017

Spirit & Speed

by Matthew Steeples

Chelsea studio house built for “spiritual artist” Arild Rosenkrantz and later home to the extremely eccentric lesbian heiress and powerboater ‘Joe’ Carstairs for sale for £8.95 million   “Spiritual seeker” and artist Baron Arild Rosenkrantz (1870 – 1964) was born in Denmark, studied in Rome and married his Scottish cousin, Louise Mackenzie, in 1901. His … Continue reading “Spirit & Speed”

May 13, 2017

A Fashionable Bargain

by Matthew Steeples

£39 million summer house on Lake Geneva that was designed by one of the architects of the Eiffel Tower to be sold at auction without reserve   Built in the Belle Époque style on the north shore of Lake Geneva, Château de Promenthoux is a 13,988 square foot house on a plot of 9 acres. … Continue reading “A Fashionable Bargain”

The Best 4x4xFar

by Matthew Steeples

Immaculate 1993 Land Rover Range Vogue for sale; its price will astound but its condition will impress   An immaculately presented twenty-four year old Range Rover has gone on sale for £42,500 ($54,800, €50,100 or درهم201,200).   Offered by West London based Graeme Hunt, the 1993 Land Rover Range Rover Classic Vogue LSE 4.2-litre is … Continue reading “The Best 4x4xFar”

May 12, 2017

Fun at Faringdon

by Matthew Steeples

£144,000 per year sought for Oxfordshire mansion that was the scene of a most curious ménage-a-trois; it is owned by the writer Sofka Zinovieff   “Tall and willowy” writer Sofka Zinovieff inherited Faringdon House in Oxfordshire at the age of 25 from her eccentric, bisexual uncle, Robert ‘The Mad Boy’ Heber-Percy, partner of the owner … Continue reading “Fun at Faringdon”

May 10, 2017

Rich Pickings

by Matthew Steeples

Trophy house with a “dictator interior” in The Boltons has nearly £10 million sliced off its asking price; iceberg home behind reduced by £5 million   A house in London’s second most expensive street has returned to the market at the much reduced price of £30 million ($38.8 million, €35.5 million or درهم142.6 million) in … Continue reading “Rich Pickings”

May 9, 2017

Tito’s Toy

by Matthew Steeples

Ex-President Josip Broz Tito 1964 Fiat 500 Jolly by Ghia to be sold at auction in London   Josip Broz Tito liked cars. It appears he didn’t care if they were little or large and someone without the means to purchase his £2.5 million ($3.1 million, €2.9 million or درهم11.4 million) 1971 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman … Continue reading “Tito’s Toy”

May 8, 2017

Take Me To The Titanic

by Matthew Steeples

Apartment in mansion block in Sloane Square for sale for £6.2 million in spite of needing updating; it is within the building from which a Mayor of Chelsea lived and departed to his death on RMS Titanic   A third floor flat in a portered mansion block on Sloane Square has gone on sale for … Continue reading “Take Me To The Titanic”

Marlene’s Motor

by Matthew Steeples

1948 Talbot-Lago T26 Grand Sport cabriolet to be auctioned; it attracted the attentions of Marlene Dietrich and has a Hermés interior   In October 1949, the chameleon-like actress and singer Marlene Dietrich (1901 – 1992) was photographed “descending elegantly” from a custom-built T26 Talbot Grand Sport by coachbuilders Franay at the Paris Salon. That car … Continue reading “Marlene’s Motor”

Reader Offer – ‘Un Ballo in Maschera’ by Verdi at Winslow Hall

by General

Winslow Hall Opera’s ‘Un ballo in maschera’ by Verdi to be performed in Buckinghamshire in July   Between 7th and 16th July, a production of Giuseppe Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera will be performed in the grounds of Winslow Hall in Buckinghamshire.   The opera in three acts will be conducted by Oliver Gilmour, Winslow … Continue reading “Reader Offer – ‘Un Ballo in Maschera’ by Verdi at Winslow Hall”

May 7, 2017

I Capture the Castle

by Matthew Steeples

12th century castle and romantic ruin in Herefordshire for sale for £1.495 million; a title to go with it is available also   A part restored castle on the English-Welsh border is back on the market after its buyer pulled out at the end of last year. Wilton Castle-on-the-Wye at at Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire’s story … Continue reading “I Capture the Castle”

May 6, 2017

A £70k Shed

by Matthew Steeples

Pint sized studio house for sale for £70,000; it’s unmortgageable and undoubtedly “one of Britain’s smallest detached properties”   A glorified garden shed in Edgeley, Stockport has gone on sale for £70,000 ($90,900, €82,600 or درهم333,800). Available only to cash buyers as it is “not deemed a suitable security for mortgage lending purposes”, the 176 … Continue reading “A £70k Shed”

A Glory in Green

by Matthew Steeples

Restored 1954 Aston Martin DB2/4 to be sold at auction; it was built for “connoisseurs of sports cars not limited by financial considerations”   A left-hand drive 1954 Aston Martin DB2/4 will be sold at auction this month. The stunning sporting coupé on offer was described by Autocar in 1953 as “a car of rare … Continue reading “A Glory in Green”

A Georgian Gem

by Matthew Steeples

Grade I listed Georgian mansion in Worcestershire for sale for the first time since the 1720s   Few houses remain in the ownership of the same family for three hundred years, but an example of such, Ombersley Court at Ombersley in Worcestershire, has just been placed on the market for £3.5 million ($4.5 million, €4.1 … Continue reading “A Georgian Gem”

May 4, 2017

A £5 Million Fixer-Upper

by Matthew Steeples

17th century Buckinghamshire farmstead requiring complete renovation for sale for £5 million   A 17th century farmhouse just 28 miles from Central London has gone on sale for £5 million ($6.5 million, €5.9 million or درهم23.7 million) in spite of being “in need of updating” through agents The Frost Partnership.   Dean Farm at Jordans, … Continue reading “A £5 Million Fixer-Upper”

A Kinky Car

by Matthew Steeples

1960 Bentley S2 currently owned by musician Sir Ray Davies to be auctioned; he wrote the hit song ‘Apeman’ on its back seat   A 1960 Bentley S2 owned but rarely used by Sir Ray Davies CBE – best known for hits with The Kinks that included You Really Got Me and All Day and … Continue reading “A Kinky Car”

May 3, 2017

Little Italy

by Matthew Steeples

English country house style flat in Earl’s Court complete with Italianate garden for sale   A ground and basement maisonette in Earl’s Court with a garden reminiscent of Tuscany has gone on sale for £2.25 million ($2.90 million, €2.66 million or درهم10.65 million).   The 1,503 square foot flat in Penywern Road, Earl’s Court is … Continue reading “Little Italy”

May 2, 2017

Tall Poppy Syndrome

by Matthew Steeples

Asking price for America’s tallest single-family residence – a 124-foot tall tower in Phoenix, Arizona – slashed by 74%; it is somewhat dated but costs nearly nothing to heat and nearly nothing in property taxes either   They say “the bigger, the better” but in the case of Falcon Nest at Prescott in Arizona, it … Continue reading “Tall Poppy Syndrome”

May 1, 2017

Domesticity Above A Canal

by Matthew Steeples

Conversion of “one of Europe’s first purpose-built office blocks” for sale; £3.5 million Grade II* listed Georgian house in Bath literally straddles a canal   Some people dream of living beside a lake or a river, but a Grade II* listed detached property recently placed on the market in Bath gives anyone with £3.5 million … Continue reading “Domesticity Above A Canal”

April 30, 2017

A Marmite Aston

by Matthew Steeples

One-of-one left-hand drive 1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage convertible in ‘Fury Yellow’ to be sold; it is a prime example of 1980s excess and a car you will either love or loathe   A 1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante Zagato that was the only left-hand drive example produced is to be sold by auction … Continue reading “A Marmite Aston”

A Pointedly Pricey Plot

by Matthew Steeples

Seriously expensive waterfront building plot goes on sale outside San Francisco; it comes with plans for the perfect home for a tech titan   14.5 acres of forested land with 2,000 feet of frontage to San Francisco Bay shoreline has gone on sale for what could be one of the highest prices ever for a … Continue reading “A Pointedly Pricey Plot”

April 28, 2017

Gilded Glory

by Matthew Steeples

New York’s “last intact Gilded Age mansion” for sale for £38.75 million; it comes with a room that cannot be wiretapped   An Upper East Side “Beaux Arts palace on a small scale” described as “Manhattan’s last intact Gilded Age mansion” has gone on sale for £38.75 million ($50 million, €45.96 million or درهم183.65 million) … Continue reading “Gilded Glory”

April 27, 2017

A River Runs Through It

by Matthew Steeples

Attractive Grade II listed riverside residence at Marlow goes on sale   A charming Grade II listed 19th century riverside townhouse at Marlow in Buckinghamshire has been put on the market just before the 162nd annual Marlow Regatta.   The Lodge on St Peter Street boasts what selling agents Hamptons refer to as “one of … Continue reading “A River Runs Through It”

April 26, 2017

A Big Priced Basement

by Matthew Steeples

Cadogan Square flat for sale for a sum that, if achieved, could make it the most expensive subterranean home in London; it is offered at a price that equates to £2,130 per square foot   Created from the merger of two flats, one of which was marketed for £3 million ($3.8 million, €3.5 million or … Continue reading “A Big Priced Basement”

April 24, 2017

A Serious Shed

by Matthew Steeples

South Kensington flat with ‘summer house’ shed for sale for £3.25 million   An apartment in Malvern Court, SW7 has gone on the market for £3.25 million ($4.2 million, €3.9 million or درهم15.3 million). It comes with an extra one wouldn’t expect to find with a pre-war mansion block flat just by South Kensington Underground … Continue reading “A Serious Shed”

April 23, 2017

Living Large

by Matthew Steeples

New Jersey mansion, complete with 58 rooms, for sale for equivalent sum to what it cost to build in 1909; the £37 million house’s original owner was a man whose extravagance knew absolutely no bounds   George Crocker (1856 – 1909) makes F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Jay Gatsby seem like an amateur. Born in Sacramento and … Continue reading “Living Large”

April 21, 2017

Hidden in Hans

by Matthew Steeples

Hidden house in Knightsbridge for sale for £1.595 million; it might suit those with an aspiration to live like Julian Assange   A cleverly refurbished ‘hidden house’ behind 163 Pavilion Road in Knightsbridge has been brought to the market by Savills.   699 square foot Hans Cottage has its own private front door, a patio … Continue reading “Hidden in Hans”

April 20, 2017

A Homely Castle

by Matthew Steeples

Britain’s smallest castle is for sale; it comes with 10 acres, a 44 million gallon moat and a narrow boat   Last marketed in 2003 for £1 million (the equivalent of £1.45 million, $1.86 million, €1.73 million or درهم6.83 million today), what is allegedly Britain’s smallest castle is back for sale for the slightly higher … Continue reading “A Homely Castle”

April 17, 2017

High & Low

by Matthew Steeples

“Penthouse to rival any other penthouse in the world” in converted brewery next to Tower Bridge for sale for £12.5 million   Described as “a penthouse to rival any other penthouse in the world” despite its somewhat pedestrian decoration, a £12.5 million ($15.7 million, €14.7 million or درهم57.6 million) five floor apartment next to Tower … Continue reading “High & Low”

0800 Rolls

by Matthew Steeples

Custard yellow Rolls-Royce complete with ‘0800’ numberplate takes to the streets of Knightsbridge   Each year a bevvy of Arab and Russian owned supercars arrives in London and each year they get more outlandish. An especially fine example has just descended in the form of a bright yellow Rolls-Royce Phantom coupé complete with the registration … Continue reading “0800 Rolls”

Gone is the Garage

by Matthew Steeples

Purpose-built Upper East Side, NYC Beaux Arts garage reduced in price by 41%; it will still cost around £40 million to buy and turn into a vast single family residence   Purpose built in 1906 to house the cars of wealthy (but not quite so wealthy enough to have their own carriage houses) Upper Eastsiders, … Continue reading “Gone is the Garage”

Checkmate

by Matthew Steeples

Former Lancashire farmhouse for sale for £1.69 million complete with giant chessboard   Until recently used as a holiday cottage rental, Low House at Eskrigge in Lancashire is described by selling agents Matthews Benjamin as “a joy to behold”.     Dating to the late 17th century and originally a farmhouse and barn, this 4,490 … Continue reading “Checkmate”

April 16, 2017

A Federal Find

by Matthew Steeples

Federal-style New York townhouse for sale for £3.982 million; the West Village was previously the Home of the Sons and Daughters of Israel   A 2,212 square foot townhouse dating to 1833 on sale in New York comes with quite a history. Built in the Federal-style by a cartman named John C. Blauvelt, the property … Continue reading “A Federal Find”

April 15, 2017

Witchfinders and Watermills

by Matthew Steeples

Picturesque watermill used in ‘The Witchfinder General’ and ‘Dad’s Army’ for sale   Witches and water don’t have an affinity – with dunking being a common form of punishment for suspects in the 16th and 17th centuries – and at The Watermill on the River Black Bourn at Ixworth in Suffolk, just such activity occurred … Continue reading “Witchfinders and Watermills”

April 13, 2017

An MP’s Manor

by Matthew Steeples

Norfolk manor house owned by anti-Brexit Conservative politician Lord Prior of Brampton for sale for £3 million   David Prior – now The Rt. Hon. The Lord Prior of Brampton – undoubtedly was a decent and able Member of Parliament. Educated at Charterhouse and Cambridge, he became first an investment banker with Lehman Brothers and … Continue reading “An MP’s Manor”

Balancing Bedrooms

by Matthew Steeples

Converted Hampshire coach house for sale; it extends to 6,222 square foot but has just two bedrooms   A 6,222 square foot Hampshire coach house that was converted to a residential dwelling in 1987 is for sale for £2.5 million ($3.1 million, €2.9 million or درهم11.4 million).   Hildon House at Broughton is Grade II … Continue reading “Balancing Bedrooms”

April 10, 2017

Taking the Tito

by Matthew Steeples

Ex-Marshal Tito Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman Landaulet for sale for staggering sum 1,598% higher than similar examples owned by other dictators   “Benevolent communist dictator” Marshal Josip Tito, 1st President of Yugoslavia (1892 – 1980) had use of a Boeing 727 plane, a private train and a 55-foot yacht but now the 1971 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman … Continue reading “Taking the Tito”

81 Miles From New

by Matthew Steeples

1996 Mercedes-Benz SL500 that has been driven just 81 miles and stored in a Knightsbridge garage since new to be auctioned for 1,000% more than a normal example of its age   A Mercedes-Benz with a difference is to be auctioned on its twenty-first birthday on 12th April. The car to be offered is an … Continue reading “81 Miles From New”

April 9, 2017

Living Eyre

by Matthew Steeples

“Gentleman’s manor house” that inspired Charlotte Brontë’s Thornfield Hall in ‘Jane Eyre’ available to rent for just £14,400 per year; alternatively you could take a tiny studio in SW3 for the same sum   Described by Charlotte Brontë (1775 – 1817) as being “three storeys high; a gentleman’s manor house; battlements round the top gave … Continue reading “Living Eyre”

April 6, 2017

Billionaire Battersea

by Matthew Steeples

Historic Battersea mansion for sale for the same sum it was marketed for in 2011; it has been mostly empty throughout the intervening period and was renovated by the late billionaire Malcolm Forbes   Billionaire publisher Malcolm Forbes was a man who liked to live large. He had a huge yacht named The Highlander, threw … Continue reading “Billionaire Battersea”

April 3, 2017

Over-Engineered

by Matthew Steeples

Essex “neo Georgian Palladian” residence created from an ordinary detached house marketed for £5.4 million; it is a bit of a mish-mash and described as “over-engineered”   Estate agents normally wax lyrical about properties they are marketing but in the case of £5.4 million ($6.7 million, €6.3 million or درهم24.8million) Threshers House at Threshers Bush, … Continue reading “Over-Engineered”

April 2, 2017

A Dutch Delight

by Matthew Steeples

New York’s “most impressive” Dutch colonial house for sale for £2.59 million in spite of needing updating   Built in 1735 and listed as a designated New York landmark in 1966, 126 West Drive in Douglaston, Queens is considered to be New York’s “most impressive architectural remnant of the early Dutch Culture”. It has just … Continue reading “A Dutch Delight”

March 31, 2017

A Blank Canvas

by Matthew Steeples

Chelsea “studio with living rooms” built for Augustus John and later owned by Dame Grace Fields DBE available to rent   Though the Pembrokeshire born artist, bohemian and pacifist Augustus John (1878 – 1961) was best known for his portraits of Lawrence of Arabia and Dylan Thomas, he is also said to have fathered as … Continue reading “A Blank Canvas”

March 30, 2017

Narrow in Knightsbridge

by Matthew Steeples

Tiny 2.5-foot deep Knightsbridge “corridor house” sells for £810,000 at auction   Yesterday, at an auction in London, a 2.5-foot deep (at its minimum) and 3-foot deep (at its maximum) mews house sold for £810,000 ($1 million, €936,000 or درهم3.7 million) despite being nothing more than a very long corridor.   Extending to 275 square … Continue reading “Narrow in Knightsbridge”

March 29, 2017

A Treble Two

by Matthew Steeples

Miss Marple-esque thatched cottage for sale for a sum 129% higher than it achieved in 2014; it has 2 reception rooms, 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms   Sold last in October 2014 for £175,000, Fussells Cottage in the “unspoilt” Wiltshire village of Wedhampton is again for sale for £400,000 ($497,000, €460,000 or درهم1.8 million).   … Continue reading “A Treble Two”

March 23, 2017

Painting & Poetry

by Matthew Steeples

North Yorkshire mill house complete with its own valley for sale; Wordsworth waxed lyrical about its setting and Turner painted it   Described as “a delightful and delicious valley” by the Romantic poet William Wordsworth (1770 – 1850) in 1799 in a letter to his friend and fellow poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772 – 1834), … Continue reading “Painting & Poetry”

March 19, 2017

A Musical Roller

by Matthew Steeples

Rolls-Royce previously owned by musicians Kenney Jones and Vangelis to be auctioned   A 1965 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III drophead coupé complete with ‘Chinese Eyes’ quad headlights that was owned by the drummer Kenney Jones and the electronic musician Vangelis is to be sold at auction next week.   The mid-metallic blue with beige hide … Continue reading “A Musical Roller”

March 18, 2017

Red Rollers

by Matthew Steeples

Pair of striking red Rolls-Royces with Scottish connections to be auctioned at the Imperial War Museum Duxford   Rolls-Royces tend to be noticed wherever they go but a pair to be auctioned later this month are especially stand-out examples in that they both come in especially bold shades of red.   The first car, a … Continue reading “Red Rollers”

March 14, 2017

Nelson & Nintendo

by Matthew Steeples

Georgian mansion, where Admiral Lord Nelson lived with his lover and her husband, for sale for £4.25 million; it was renovated by a former Nintendo executive   One would expect a senior executive of a tech company to live in a slick, modern home in Silicon Valley, but since 2004, Matthew Hill, for many years … Continue reading “Nelson & Nintendo”

March 12, 2017

Large in Lowndes

by Matthew Steeples

Vast Knightsbridge penthouse with two terraces and a double garage for sale for a sum 478% higher than it achieved in 2000   A penthouse across three buildings in Knightsbridge that sold for £5.1 million (the equivalent of £7.9 million, $9.6 million, €9 million or درهم 35.3 million today) in November 2000 has gone on … Continue reading “Large in Lowndes”

An Economical Plate

by Matthew Steeples

Rare 1952 Austin A90 Atlantic to be auctioned complete with plate ‘GDP 137’; it is a fine example of an affordable and quirky classic   Described as an “unrestored oily-rag example”, a 1952 Austin A90 Atlantic saloon to be offered for sale by Classic Car Auctions has a design that echoes a 1946 Pininfarina bodied … Continue reading “An Economical Plate”

March 9, 2017

Barbed Manors

by Matthew Steeples

Grade II* listed Kent manor house for sale for £3.95 million; the purchaser will get a controversial £107.9 million EuroMillions jackpot winner as their neighbour   Sold last in 2009 for £1.9 million (the equivalent of £2.3 million, $2.8 million, €2.2 million or درهم 10.3 million today), Waystrode Manor at Cowden, near Edenbridge in Kent … Continue reading “Barbed Manors”

March 5, 2017

Tarts & Trump

by Matthew Steeples

Ex-Donald Trump limo and Range Rover with the perfect plate for the “pussy grabber” to be auctioned side-by-side at Goodwood in March   Donald Trump might now be best known as the 45th President of the United States of America and a man known for tweeting odd claims that his predecessor hacked his telephone lines, … Continue reading “Tarts & Trump”

Plaques & Palladiums

by Matthew Steeples

Estate agent fails to mention the “historical significance” of an Eaton Square property that was home to a paeodphile for 40 years   Those in the property business like to wax lyrical about the merits of particular locations but none in their right mind would willingly mention, for example, that 79 Gloucester Road in London’s … Continue reading “Plaques & Palladiums”

March 4, 2017

The Honeymoon Express

by Matthew Steeples

Romantic “Rolls for two” for sale for £1.1 million to £1.5 million; it’s just one of two made and it was designed with honeymooning couples in mind   Featuring just two seats and an oversized boot to house a week’s luggage, a “radically designed” 1958 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud I drophead coupé is to be sold … Continue reading “The Honeymoon Express”

March 1, 2017

Missenden Murders

by Matthew Steeples

Georgian house used in several TV series for sale for £3.95 million; it comes complete with a garden by a Chelsea Flower Show gold medal winner   The most popular TV drama series in the world, Midsomer Murders, was originally going to be called Missenden Murders in reference to one of its most regular filming … Continue reading “Missenden Murders”

February 27, 2017

You Can Say That If You Like

by Matthew Steeples

Belgravia apartment in building where Diana, Princess of Wales’ maternal grandmother lived, plotted and died for sale for a sum 165% higher than it sold for in 2003   The residence of brewery baron and Unionist politician The Rt. Hon. George Younger, 1st Viscount Younger of Leckie (1851 – 1929) in the 1920s, 36 Eaton … Continue reading “You Can Say That If You Like”

February 26, 2017

A Charitable Crib

by Matthew Steeples

Ex-Bear Stearns banker places £47.7 million New York mansion for sale at a sum 1,123% higher than its 1996 sale price – all profits from the sale to go to charity   A third of the width of an NFL football field, 11 13 West 10th Street in Greenwich Village, New York was until recently … Continue reading “A Charitable Crib”

February 23, 2017

A £5m Fixer Upper

by Matthew Steeples

Belgravia flat offered for £4.95 million in spite of featuring collapsed ceilings, ripped out light fittings and holes in the walls   Before putting a property on the market and having it photographed for a sales brochure, most would clean up and make the space look appealing. In Belgravia, however, the owners of a £4.95 … Continue reading “A £5m Fixer Upper”

February 22, 2017

Take Me To The Gold Park

by Matthew Steeples

Outrageously over-the-top Beverly Hills pad complete with gold accessories galore goes on sale for £80 million; buyers will get a gold Lamborghini, a gold Rolls-Royce and 170 gold coloured bottles of Cristal   Sold last for £7.7 million ($9.8 million, €9.3 million or درهم36 million) in 2012 when it was a 5,926 square foot house, … Continue reading “Take Me To The Gold Park”

February 21, 2017

Fifty Shades of St John

by Matthew Steeples

Christie’s to auction the contents of the homes of the gloriously bonkers late Lord St John of Fawlsey and his late partner this Wednesday   The Rt. Hon. The Lord St John-Stevas of Fawsley, PC, FRSL (born plain old Norman St John and also known as Norman St John-Stevas, 1929 – 2012) was a “renowned … Continue reading “Fifty Shades of St John”

February 19, 2017

The Car & The Star

by Matthew Steeples

1977 Rolls-Royce Camargue originally owned by Sammy Davis Jr. to be auctioned   Thrice married, father of four Sammy Davis Jr. (1925 – 1990) led an exotic and varied life. Born in New York, he began his career in vaudeville at the age of 3, became a member of The Rat Pack with Frank Sinatra … Continue reading “The Car & The Star”

February 17, 2017

Trump Gold

by Matthew Steeples

Horrific £27.6 million apartment in Trump International Tower is struggling to sell; in this case its not the links to the POTUS that is the cause, it’s simply revoltingly decorated   “Don’t let the opulence distract you”, suggest the many agents marketing what could be quite possibly the gaudiest apartment at One Central Park West … Continue reading “Trump Gold”

February 14, 2017

Chocolate Box Perfection

by Matthew Steeples

Quaint medieval thatched cottage for sale; it is one of the oldest in Wiltshire   One of the oldest building structures in Wiltshire, The Old Cottage at Ogbourne St. Andrew, dates to medieval times and is now for sale for £630,000 ($786,000, €743,000 or درهم2.9 million).   Grade II listed and built from banded sarsen … Continue reading “Chocolate Box Perfection”

Courting Controversy

by Matthew Steeples

Grade I listed former court house reduced in price by 20% after owner is targeted by anti-English militants   Anglophobia is well known to be rife in certain parts of Wales and such organisations as Meibion Glyndŵr (Sons of Owain Glyndŵr), Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru (Welsh Defence Movement) and the Free Wales Army targeted English residents … Continue reading “Courting Controversy”

February 12, 2017

Mind Your Manor

by Matthew Steeples

Quintessential English manor house for sale   A typical English manor house has been placed on the market for £3.85 million ($4.8 million, €4.5 million or درهم17.7 million).   Grade II* listed The Manor House at Cholderton, near Salisbury in Wiltshire dates to around 1700 and is primarily built in red and blue brick in … Continue reading “Mind Your Manor”

February 10, 2017

Pint Sized

by Matthew Steeples

Chelsea’s smallest stand-alone house for sale; it is situated on the same street at two pubs   What could quite possibly be the smallest stand-alone house in Chelsea is for sale for £600,000 ($750,000, €705,000 or درهم2.8 million).   20 Britten Street extends to just 290 square foot in total and is situated next to … Continue reading “Pint Sized”

February 4, 2017

Anything Can Happen

by Matthew Steeples

5,000 acre Irish estate where “anything can happen” for sale for £24.1 million; its current owner would prefer a buyer who’ll allow him to use it for three months a year   Michael Jackson hid out at Luggala in County Wicklow, Ireland in 2006 for three months after being cleared of child molestation charges and … Continue reading “Anything Can Happen”

February 2, 2017

Viewing Auntie

by Matthew Steeples

“London’s best penthouse” for sale; it has a sad past   Reduced in price from £20 million ($25.3 million, €23.4 million or درهم93 million) to £17.95 million ($22.7 million, €21 million or درهم83.3 million), a flat for sale in Ambika House in Portland Place is described as “arguably one of the best penthouses in London”. … Continue reading “Viewing Auntie”

January 31, 2017

The Cherry on The Cake

by Matthew Steeples

1930s mansion in Surrey by eccentric master builder Oliver Hill offered for sale for a price 532% higher than it was marketed for in 2006   Offered for sale for £4.75 million in 2006 (the equivalent of £6.3 million, ($7.9million, €7.4 million or درهم28.9 million today), Cherry Hill – originally known as ‘Holthanger’ – on … Continue reading “The Cherry on The Cake”

January 22, 2017

A Happy House

by Matthew Steeples

Berkshire country house named “Gays” for sale   Not connected with the LGBT community in any way, but in fact named after a man named John Gays, “Gays” at Holyport, near Maidenhead in Berkshire dates to around 1456 and is currently for sale for £5.95 million ($7.36 million, €6.88 million or درهم27.05 million).     … Continue reading “A Happy House”

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