OPULENCE & SPLENDOUR - Luxury and the arts

24
Oct
2014
Tara and Nana FI

A network for Knightsbridge’s mums

Social network Knightsbridge Village celebrated its first anniversary with a party at Theo Fennell in London   On 7th October, Knightsbridge Village, an invitation only social network for the “discerning mothers of London’s most prestigious neighbourhoods”, celebrated their first anniversary at Theo Fennell in Fulham Road, South Kensington.

24
Oct
2014
Swinsty Hall FI2

Fortunes and footballers

Gareth Southgate markets his £3.25 million Grade I listed Yorkshire home   Footballers are not generally noted for living in tasteful homes so it is somewhat surprising to find that the former England player turned Middlesborough manager Gareth Southgate’s current home is a Grade I listed “Elizabethan style” hall on the banks of Swinsty Reservoir, nine miles west of Harrogate. He and his wife Alison have owned it since 2006 but have been trying to sell it since June 2013.

23
Oct
2014
A gate fit for a Queen FI

A gate fit for a Queen: The Queen Mother’s Gate

Basia Briggs recounts her role in the building of the Queen Mother’s Gate as a painting of it comes to the market   I was instrumental in fundraising for the Queen Mother’s Gate in 1993 and now with the sale of a painting of them by the British artist Beverley-Jane Stewart, I was reminded of what a mammoth and worthy task it was especially given I had no previous experience of organising such a feat.

18
Oct
2014
Daria Radionova with the car in Basil Street Knightsbridge FI

A crystal wheeler

Britain’s tackiest car, a crystal covered Mercedes, sells for just under £155,000   A previous Wally of the Week, Daria Radionova, might not be such a fool after all given that she has just sold her Swarovski crystal covered Mercedes CLS 350 for the astonishing figure of £154,600.

18
Oct
2014
Multiplied FI

The multiplying factor

Christie’s annual Multiplied fair is well worth a visit   October is the month when London’s art event calendar is busiest and aside from Frieze in Regent’s Park and PAD in Berkeley Square, there is also Multiplied at Christie’s in South Kensington.

15
Oct
2014
Finance FI

Fashion, finance and four floors

Financier and fashion designer duo Pierre Lagrange and Roubi L’Roubi place their four floor £12.75 million penthouse on the market

13
Oct
2014
The attics of Albany FI

The attics of Albany

An opportunity to rent a ‘set’ in the ‘Paradise of Piccadilly’   Albany is a little known building off London’s Piccadilly that is akin to Manhattan’s smartest co-operative buildings in the way it is run. So exclusive is this block that its residents are called ‘proprietors’ and its flats are known as ‘sets’.

11
Oct
2014
Sunshine Sol FI

Sunshine Sol

Cheyne Walk home of Sol Campbell comes to the market for £25 million or £15,000 per week just as he takes on Labour’s proposed ‘mansion tax’   Sol Campbell will certainly get more than a ray of sunshine if he sells his Cheyne Walk townhouse for the £25 million figure it has just been launched onto the market for through agents John D. Wood. A sale now would also help him offset a costly bill if a future Labour government were to come to power and introduce the proposed ‘mansion tax’ this former footballer so loathes.

08
Oct
2014
Northern glory FI2

Northern glory

Reconfigured Lancashire estate for sale for £4.25 million   Businessman Martin Higginson and his wife Maggie have reversed what has happened to most English country estates in buying back properties and land around their Lancashire home, Hay Carr at Bay Horse, near Lancaster. They are now selling the whole property with a price of offers over £4.25 million.

08
Oct
2014
Hillside Friends FI

Hillside Friends

‘Friends’ actor Matthew Perry sells his Malibu hillside home   Actor Matthew Perry, most famous for his role in the cult series Friends, paid $6.55 million (£4.079 million) for his hillside home in Malibu, California is 2005. He’s periodically been trying to sell it since 2011 at prices as high as $13.5 million (£8.408 million) but has now relaunched it on the market at $12.5 million (£7.785 million).

07
Oct
2014
One more FI

One more

Another Lennox Gardens flat on a one year lease for sale for another extraordinary price   Last week, we reported on a bidding war that erupted on a one bedroom flat in Lennox Gardens, Knightsbridge that eventually sold for £550,000 on a guide price of just £150,000. Plainly seeking to capitalise on that, agents Plaza Estates have just brought another to the market for £205,000.

06
Oct
2014
Montys Manor FI

Monty’s Manor

An unfortunately named farm would certainly suit Uncle Monty   A rather unfortunately named farmstead could be the perfect accompaniment to the Rolls-Royce we featured yesterday that was driven by Uncle Monty in Withnail and I. Priced at £275,000 and in a state of ruin, Cocklick Farmhouse at Slaidburn near Clitheroe in Lancashire is currently for sale through agents Armistead Barnett.

05
Oct
2014
I prefer everything FI

I prefer everything

Rolls-Royce originally owned by playboy Nubar Gulbenkian and later used in “Withnail & I” for sale   The “flamboyantly bearded”, monocle wearing eccentric Nubar Gulbenkian (1896 – 1972) took up driving at the age of 65 and when asked what he enjoyed the most, answered: “I prefer everything”. With the sale of one of his many cars, illustration of just that is provided.

02
Oct
2014
One up FI

One up

Britain’s smallest £1 million home for sale   If you’re annoyed to have missed out on the one bedroomed flat on a one year lease that sold for £550,000 that we featured, we have another option for you as agents Wetherell are selling what they term “Britain’s smallest £1 million home”. Thankfully, it’s on a lease of 100 years.

02
Oct
2014
One down FI

One down

Lennox Gardens flat with just one year left on lease sells for £550,000   Indication of London’s somewhat bonkers property market has been illustrated in news that a one bedroom flat in Knightsbridge’s Lennox Gardens has sold for a staggering £550,000 on a lease that had just one year remaining.

30
Sep
2014
Messing about in cars FI

Messing about in cars

A 2003 Bentley R-Type road racer is most definitely a car that would appeal to Toad of Toad Hall   Described as a “real road burner and hooligan’s toy”, a 2003 Bentley R-Type road racer built by Petersen Engineering is a car that most definitely would appeal to Kenneth Grahame’s Toad of Toad Hall. It is currently for sale through Vintage & Prestige Fine Motorcars for £420,000.

29
Sep
2014
Double power FI2

Double power

A double house on “the most politically significant rat-run in Britain” is for sale for £6.25 million   Described as “solid Tory” and “the most politically significant rat-run in Britain” in a 1995 article by Chris Blackhurst, Lord North Street in London’s Westminster was built between 1720 and 1725 and consists of thirteen properties that have been home to everyone from Prime Ministers Anthony Eden and Harold Wilson to controversial Conservative MPs Jonathan Aitken and Teresa Gorman. With the sale of one of the street’s most significant properties, it could once again become a “centre of power”.

28
Sep
2014
Ruling Pacific Heights FI

Ruling Pacific Heights

As J. Paul Getty’s grandson tries to sell his San Francisco home for $15.998 million, is this a sign that the area’s elite is changing?

25
Sep
2014
LAPADA FI

A lap of LAPADA

The highlights of the LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair 2014

25
Sep
2014
Country Life Fair FI

The country comes to town

‘Country Life’ magazine hosts its first fair in London this weekend   This Saturday and Sunday marks the first Country Life Fair at Fulham Palace. In essence, it’ll be a mini version of the CLA Game Fair in the middle of London

23
Sep
2014
Mercedes FI

Wally of the Week: Daria Radionova

Russian student spends £20,000 covering her £25,000 Mercedes in Swarovski crystals and then wonders why she is mocked

22
Sep
2014
Old and new FI

Old and new

One of San Francisco’s oldest houses for sale for $12 million   One of the oldest houses in San Francisco and one of the few to survive the 1906 earthquake – which destroyed 80% of the city – is for sale for $12 million (£7.3 million).

21
Sep
2014
Proper Kid Problems FI

Website of the Week: Proper Kid Problems

American lifestyle website Proper Kid Problems is a sartorial zeitgeist   We’ve previously featured a British website that celebrates red trouser wearing sorts and now we make an American sartorial zeitgeist our Website of the Week.

20
Sep
2014
San Domenico House Hotel, Chelsea, London, 2013

Sloane discretion

Matthew Steeples reviews Chelsea townhouse hotel San Domenico House   San Domenico House is a hidden secret; a small hotel that’s physically minutes from the bustle of Sloane Square yet literally a world away from it.

19
Sep
2014
POW FI

POW!

1989 ‘Prince of Wales’ specification Aston Martin V8 Volante for sale for £450,000   In 1987, an Aston Martin V8 Volante was built to the personal specifications of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. It proved so popular with Aston Martin fans, that the company decided to build a further twenty-one cars to the same specification and now one is for sale through the London dealership Nicholas Mee & Co.

15
Sep
2014
Jaguar FI

Resplendent in red

Stunning carmine red 1953 Jaguar XK120 roadster heads to auction at the RM Auctions Hershey sale   The final scene of the 1999 film Cruel Intentions sees Reese Witherspoon driving out of New York in a 1956 Jaguar XK140 roadster. At the RM Auctions Hershey sale on 10th October, bidders have a chance to buy an earlier model of this iconic Jaguar classic.

14
Sep
2014
Cannon Hall FI

Travels with du Maurier

Travelex founder puts the childhood home where Daphne du Maurier allegedly conducted two of her most illicit relationships on the market for £32 million

13
Sep
2014
By invitation only FI

By invitation only

Aston Martin to launch a new ‘super-sedan’ (but only to an elite few)

12
Sep
2014
Docker FI

A magical Daimler

Legendary 1954 ‘Docker Daimler’ heads to auction   Sir Charles Dunstone recently took to the seas in his newly refurbished 65-metre yacht, the Shemara. The vessel, which dates to 1938, was once owned by the legendarily extravagant duo Sir Bernard and Lady Docker and this weekend Dunstone has the opportunity to add one of the couple’s famous ‘Docker Daimlers’ to his collection.

09
Sep
2014
Auction FI

Keep an eye on the auctions

An analysis of the results of the Christie’s Out of the Ordinary and RM Auctions Battersea sales

07
Sep
2014
Daimler DB18 Drophead Coupe 1939 Winston Churchill

Churchill’s ride

Daimler used by Churchill to star at RM Auctions Battersea sale   Between 1940 and 1950, the Daimler Motor Company loaned a 1939 Daimler DB18 drophead coupé bodied by the Carlton Carriage Company for special occasions. Its most notable loan was to Winston Churchill in 1944 and 1949 and it heads to auction on Monday 8th September at the RM Auctions Battersea sale.

07
Sep
2014
Argentina Eiffel FI

Argentina’s Eiffel

Salvage Europe sell part of Argentina’s contribution to the Exposition Universelle of 1889   To mark the 100th anniversary of the storming of the Bastille, between May and October 1889, Paris held a fair named the Exposition Universelle. The main symbol and the most iconic building at the Expo was the Eiffel Tower but now Salvage Europe are selling part of the first prize winning Argentine Pavilion with a guide price of £50,000.

05
Sep
2014
Governing a Merc FI

Governing a Merc

Arnold Schwarzenegger puts his Mercedes-Benz Unimog up for sale after replacing it with a Bugatti Veyron   Arnold ‘The Governator’ Schwarzenegger is a man who does it ‘large’. Aside from being built like a tank himself, this Austrian actor turned politician likes large cars and in putting his Mercedes-Benz Unimog up for sale and being spotted in a Bugatti Veyron this week, he showed his change in marital status hasn’t changed his tastes in how he likes to get around.

05
Sep
2014
Roald Dahl FI

Roald Dahl: Literary hero

James Murphy lauds Roald Dahl as a literary hero   My last article focused on Ian Fleming and Roald Dahl provides a natural sequel. Like Fleming, Dahl’s work continues to film and television from beyond his grave.

02
Sep
2014
Marshlands FI

Sun, sand and salt

 A £1.375 million house in a Norfolk village with connections to James Blunt   The summer is nearly over but many of you no doubt will find yourselves continuing to hanker after the sun and sand. A new house named Marshlands in the village of Cley next the Sea in North Norfolk could offer you just that.

01
Sep
2014
Conversation pieces FI2

Five of the Best: Conversation pieces

‘The Steeple Times’ chooses five unusual objects that will prove to be conversation pieces in any home   This week sees Christie’s South Kensington auction a selection of “unconventional” items in their second annual Out of the Ordinary sale. With the help of them, Salvage Europe and Bonhams, here we choose five of the best conversation pieces currently available

01
Sep
2014
Previewing Prive FI

Previewing Privé

Wednesday marks the start of one of Britain’s best automotive events, Salon Privé 2014   This Wednesday marks the event of the year for motoring aficionados in Britain as it is the opening day of Salon Privé at Syon Park, ten miles from Central London.

31
Aug
2014
A royal quarry FI

A royal quarry

Prince Charles puts a Cornish quarry up for sale   In London, £40,000 to £50,000 won’t buy even a parking spot. In Cornwall, if the auction guide price is met, it’ll get you a former slate quarry with an engine house and 45.88 acres of land that is currently owned by Prince Charles’s Duchy of Cornwall.

26
Aug
2014
Squalor in South Ken FI

Squalor in South Ken

The worst property particulars ever?   Estate agents often use clever photography to promote properties and urge sellers to tidy up and brew hot coffee before viewings. The brochure for a one bedroom flat in Stanhope Gardens in London’s South Kensington, however, is an example where an agent has done anything but.

25
Aug
2014
A future classic FI

A future classic

Former Brunei royal household Bentley Turbo ‘S’ heads to auction just as Kim Kardashian lifts her boycott of The Beverly Hills Hotel   The Sultan of Brunei might be worth £12 billion but he certainly isn’t a popular man right now. As the boycott of his hotels – including The Dorchester in London and Coworth Park near Ascot – continues, he must be delighted to have learnt that Kim Kardashian is no longer steering clear of another of his properties, The Beverly Hills Hotel in California. Meanwhile at Syon Park in west London at The Salon Privé sale by Silverstone Auctions on the 4th September, one of his household’s cars is headed to be sold.

24
Aug
2014
Range Rover FI

Range One

Range Rover Chassis #001 to be auctioned at The Salon Privé sale by Silverstone Auctions on 4th September   Today, Range Rovers are the favourite vehicles of everyone ranging from the Queen to Kim Kardashian but the first Range Rover produced was a far more simple vehicle. It is to be auctioned at The Salon Privé sale by Silverstone Auctions on the 4th September.

24
Aug
2014
Out of Ordinary FI 2

Out of the Ordinary

Highlights from the second annual Christie’s South Kensington sale of unusual items and objects, ‘Out of the Ordinary’   On 3rd September Christie’s South Kensington will auction “an eclectic selection of art and ephemera celebrating the joy of the unconventional”. Here, The Steeple Times selects a few highlights

22
Aug
2014
Inspiring the Wraith FI

Inspiring the Wraith

1951 Rolls-Royce Silver Dawn coupé by Pininfarina that inspired the design of the current Wraith model heads to auction   A one-off 1951 Rolls-Royce Silver Dawn coupé by Pininfarina was the most expensive car in the world when built in 1951 and more recently it inspired the design of the company’s popular Wraith model. The vehicle is due to be auctioned at The Salon Privé sale by Silverstone Auctions on the 4th September.

21
Aug
2014
Cold Ashton Manor FI

Citizen of the Manor

Manor house owned by one of the McAlpine family comes to the market   The McAlpine family have construction in their blood. They’ve built everything from The Dorchester to the Millennium Dome and one of the current generation, Cullum McAlpine, is no different. His Cotswolds country house, Cold Ashton Manor, is currently for sale for £4 million and its architectural features are stunning.

16
Aug
2014
From Spite to Hope FI

From Spite to Hope

Scottish castle for sale for just £28.90 per square foot   They say that owning a grouse moor is equivalent to burning £50 notes but the buyer of the 41,433 square foot Carbisdale Castle in Sutherland will take on an altogether bigger burden.

15
Aug
2014
A church coupe FI

A church coupé

1932 MG F-type Magna Salonette for sale for £70,000   In 1932, an MG F-type Magna Salonette would have set you back £289 or the equivalent of £17,602 in today’s money. Given only 390 were built and that few still exist, the one for sale through Richard Biddulph of Vintage & Prestige Fine Motorcars in Grays, Essex seems remarkable value at £70,000.

13
Aug
2014
Knickers Forever FI

Knickering a realtor

Knight Frank take an unusual tack to promote a property   Knight Frank is known as the estate agent to the rich and famous. Like other realty firms, of course, they pepper their brochures with superlatives such as “exemplary”, “spacious” and “glorious” but in the marketing of 33 Portland Place, they truly take the biscuit.

12
Aug
2014
A Glorious Roller FI

A Glorious Roller

Rolls-Royce hunting vehicle for sale for £198,000   Today marks the start of the grouse season and whilst the BBC gave far too much airtime to those who are anti this fine sport, we very much join with those celebrating the Glorious Twelfth. Suitable for someone heading off to the moors is an amazing Rolls-Royce that was built as a hunting vehicle for the King of Morocco in 1980.

11
Aug
2014
Lynnewood Hall FI

America’s Downton

An opportunity to buy an American equivalent of Downton Abbey   Downton Abbey returns to our screens this autumn and one has to ask whether its writer Julian Fellowes was at all influenced by the story of the story of Peter Widener of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania whose son and grandson both died in the sinking of the RMS Titanic.

09
Aug
2014
Cassillis House FI

Confusing a castle

Confused.com founder puts castle on market for £1.5 million less than she spent on it   “Wild haired” Kate Armstrong, the Australian founder of Confused.com, bought the medieval Scottish castle Cassillis House in Ayrshire from the Kennedy clan in 2009 for £3 million. She spent four years and £3.5 million updating and improving it but is now selling it at a loss for just £5 million.

07
Aug
2014
Dunnellen Hall FI

A mean mansion

Former residence of Leona Helmsley comes to the market   Leona Helmsley didn’t do “little”. She lived by the belief that “only the little people pay taxes” and housed herself in a vast mansion on a 40-acre plot in Connecticut. Helmsley died at the house in 2007 and it is now once again for sale

05
Aug
2014
Gillhams FI

A rake’s progress

Businessman Peter Burrell solves the problem of keeping gravel level   Gravel drives are a joy and a nightmare at the same time. A crunchy drive, according to The Independent’s Jeff Howell is something that most would have on their bucket list at a “dream home” but with one, you get the problem of weeds and moss and the need to rake constantly. Now, there’s a solution – The Gillhams Gravel Rake.

05
Aug
2014
Trebling gold FI

Trebling gold

Third gold wrapped vehicle spotted in Knightsbridge   The Ferrari wrapped in gold foil that bubbled up and peeled off was eclipsed in its ridiculousness last week by a gold and black Bugatti Veyron. Now, the collection has expanded with the arrival of a gold Range Rover.

04
Aug
2014
Skugging FI

Skugging the Kings Road

Skin care muggers shockingly set up shop the Kings Road   What on earth is Earl Cadogan thinking? Two companies anyone sensible would avoid have been allowed to open up opposite one another on the Kings Road. How on earth did the area’s biggest landlord allow this travesty to happen?

02
Aug
2014
Veyron FI

Picture of the Week: As bold as gold

A gold and black Bugatti Veyron has eclipsed the gold Ferrari owned by Iraqi kick-boxer named Riyadh Al-Azzawi in terms of being the most gaudy car on the roads in London this summer   This summer Iraqi kick-boxer Riyadh Al-Azzawi has reveled in the attention he’s received as he drove around the streets of Chelsea and Knightsbridge in his gold Ferrari. Despite the £4,000 foil wrap bubbling up and peeling off, the Iraqi kick-boxer cruised around thinking he was the King of the Hill. His reign is over as now the mantle for London’s most gaudy car has been stolen by a gold and black Bugatti Veyron.

30
Jul
2014
Perfectly British FI

Perfectly British

An opportunity to create your own version of Downton Abbey in the Cotswolds   For a mere £27 million you can currently purchase a 6-bedroomed mews house in Reeves Mews in Mayfair. Alternatively, a buyer with the same sum to hand could splash out on something a little grander, a 774.32 acre Cotswold estate complete with a mansion, two entrance lodges and eleven cottages.

29
Jul
2014
Larry and Leigh FI

Larry and Leigh’s love nest

Small, unmodernised former home of Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh for sale for the extraordinary figure of £7.5 million   Built in 1850, Durham Cottage in Christchurch Street, Chelsea is a house “hidden behind a high dusty brick wall” that was the love nest of Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh between 1937 and 1956. Now, in totally unmodernised condition, the house is for sale after failing to sell at auction (despite a bid of £6,980,000).

29
Jul
2014
FI 2

Taking in a Panorama

A £6.9 million home in “Britain’s Monte Carlo”   Whilst London has “Billionaires Row” in the form of Kensington Palace Gardens, the coastal county of Dorset has an equivalent in the form of the Sandbanks Peninsula – known locally as “Millionaires Row”. Property prices here are said to be the fourth highest on the planet

26
Jul
2014
Conor Mccreedy FI

Beating his blues

Conor Mccreedy work sells for £100,000   Aged just 27, South African artist Conor Mccreedy has pulled off an extraordinary coup in selling a painting for just shy of £100,000 (R1.8 million ZAR).

25
Jul
2014
Upstairs downstairs

Upstairs rather than downstairs

Chelsea revealed to be London’s most popular residential address and not just “a place where servants live”   Whilst in March, estate agents Beauchamp Estates announced that Chelsea is “a place where servants live”; a more recent analysis by local firm Russell Simpson has found quite to the contrary and provides proof that it is “London’s most popular residential address”.

25
Jul
2014
From Docker to Dunstone FI

From Docker to Dunstone

Norah Docker’s yacht, Shemara, has found a saviour in Charles Dunstone   When spendaholics Sir Bernard and Lady Docker took ownership of a 65-metre yacht, the Shemara, in the 1950s, little did they know that it would ultimately become part of their nemesis. The very same boat – after languishing for many years – has now been fully restored and is now in the ownership of the telecommunications titan Sir Charles Dunstone.

24
Jul
2014
Plated IX FI

Plated IX

15 more of the best plates spotted by readers of ‘The Steeple Times’   Continuing our series, below we feature 15 more unusual, laughable and entertaining number plates

23
Jul
2014
Throttling a cocktail FI

Throttling a cocktail

A studio apartment with a difference in Mayfair’s Mount Street   Estate agent Roy Brooks became famous in the 1960s for the derogatory descriptions he gave to the properties he marketed and such phrases as “not enough room to swing a cat” were amongst his most frequently used. His advertisements were chronicled in two books, Brothel in Pimlico and Mud, Straw and Insults, and he’d have had a field day if he’d taken on a £625 per week studio flat in Mayfair

23
Jul
2014
It's cricket FI

It’s cricket

The perfect English country house comes to the market for £11 million complete with its own cricket pitch   A house that has been in the same ownership for 30 years normally would be described by estate agents as “requiring some updating”. Stanton Court in the north Cotswolds is an exception.

21
Jul
2014
The Hermitage FI

The house that time forgot

House where items lay untouched for 100 years remains on the market for over a year   The Hermitage in Hexham, Northumberland is a “small stately home” that truly is a time warp. Rented by the Morant family for nearly 100 years, this Grade II* listed, 14 bedroomed mansion was barely touched during that period.

19
Jul
2014
Romantic heroes FI

Romantic heroes: Ian Fleming and James Bond

James Murphy examines his romantic heroes, Ian Fleming and James Bond   I was privileged to attend the recent Masterpiece art and antiques fair in Chelsea. For me, the undoubted highlight was coming face to face with the letters of Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, on Peter Harrington’s stand.

17
Jul
2014
Messing about in boats FI

Messing about in boats

Thameside cottage where ‘Lewis’ was filmed for sale   Two episodes of the Inspector Morse sequel, Lewis, were filmed at Thatched Cottage at Mile End Reach, Henley-on-Thames. The cottage – last sold in 2000 for £1,075,000 – is now on the market for £3,600,000

11
Jul
2014
Drugs and Dents FI

Drugs and Dents

A Cumbrian mansion built by opium traders and more recently used by cannabis growers comes to the market for just £1.5 million   Built by the well-known Dent family, who made their fortune trading both tea and opium, Flass is a vast 23,000 square foot Palladian mansion on the outskirts of the village of Maulds Meaburn in Cumbria. Ironically it was also the setting for one of the country’s biggest drug raids in May 2012.

08
Jul
2014
Puff FI

Reader offer: ‘Puff’ by John Agard

An invitation to the London finale of John Agard’s new satire   Readers of The Steeple Times are invited to ‘Puff’, a new play by John Agard, on Wednesday 9th July at London’s newest literary and arts private members’ club, LIBRARY on St Martin’s Lane

05
Jul
2014
Flying trees FI

Flying trees

Petra Stunt flies in mature trees from Holland for the grounds of her new London mansion   The daughter of billionaire F1 mogul Bernie Ecclestone, Petra Stunt, is never one to do things by halves and in her alterations to the £70 million Sloane House in Old Church Street, Chelsea she’s certainly pulled the stops out.

04
Jul
2014
Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman FI

Limo Communism

Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman once owed by Communist Party commander Chen Yi goes to auction   Communist and dictators are amongst the well-known to have purchased Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman limousines and one fine example is about to go to auction with Bonhams on 12th July

04
Jul
2014
Jucy Couture FI

A fond farewell to Juicy Couture

Claire Rubinstein laments the closure of Juicy Couture’s US stores   When I heard the news that the clothing brand Juicy Couture – famed for the much maligned rhinestone bedazzled tracksuits – had shut down all its US Stores at the end of last week I was somewhat surprised.

01
Jul
2014
Reducing an island FI

Reducing an island

Buy a private island in Scotland’s Summer Isles for a knockdown price   The Scottish independence campaign has been in the main funded by EuroMillions winners Chris and Colin Weir. If their desire doesn’t come to fruition, however, there’s another option for them: They could buy themselves a private island.

01
Jul
2014
Mastering Moss FI

Mastering Moss

Painting of Sir Stirling Moss for sale at Masterpiece   As Masterpiece 2014 comes towards it conclusion on the 2nd July, we feature another fine work on display there – an oil on canvas painting of Sir Stirling Moss with an Aston Martin DBR1 and a CC100 concept car

27
Jun
2014
Masterpiece tickets FI

Win tickets to Masterpiece

Reader offer: Galerie Dumonteil offers five pairs of tickets to Masterpiece 2014 to readers of The Steeple Times   Franck Laverdin of Galerie Dumonteil is one of the stalwarts of Masterpiece and a great friend of all at The Steeple Times. He has kindly provided five pairs of tickets to this art and antiques fair for our readers.

27
Jun
2014
American masters FI

American masters

Two works from American galleries on display at Masterpiece   Business on the opening day at Masterpiece 2014 was brisk with one dealership, Symbolic & Chase, selling a 1912 Cartier corsage for in excess of $20 million (£11.75 million). Our friends at Apter-Fredericks, equally, were delighted to sell an important mirror in the first hour and the pair of pagoda top cabinets we featured for a seven figure sum later in the day.

27
Jun
2014
John Stoddart FI

A window on John Stoddart

Photographer John Stoddart exhibits at Ransom   Dapper sniper turned photographer John Stoddart has been a busy man lately. Not only has he exhibited in the former Olympic Village in London’s East End this week, he’s also currently the star of the window of the renowned Pimlico Road gallery Ransom.

25
Jun
2014
Masterpiece 2014 FI

Masters of Masterpiece

The Steeple Times chooses six of the best items on display at Masterpiece 2014   Thursday marks the official opening of the fifth annual Masterpiece art and antiques fair featuring over 150 leading galleries from across the world. To accompany today’s preview, The Steeple Times asked six of the exhibitors to choose their highlight from their stands

21
Jun
2014
Living it large FI

Living it large

Brooklyn’s largest and most expensive waterfront residence is anything but modest   Built for a self-proclaimed “titan of the business world” named John Rosatti in 1989, 2458 National Drive in Brooklyn’s Mill Basin is a property with an equally large ego. Standing on a 60,000 square foot plot complete with two substantial residences with a total internal floor space of 23,000 square foot, here is a property where everything has been done to excess.

19
Jun
2014
Mansions for £1 FI

Mansions for £1

An English country house that sold for a £1 and a Scottish mansion with an asking price of just £1   Downton Abbey addicts take note: For the same price as a double cheeseburger on McDonald’s saver menu you could live like the Earl and Countess Grantham if you bought a Georgian mansion in Chirnside in Berwickshire

18
Jun
2014
Range Rover Sport FI

Cannabis Sport

Older Range Rover Sport models targeted by cannabis growers   Spotted recently by a reader in Parson’s Green in London, a pair of Range Rover Sports are telling of a trend that has spread throughout Britain: Especially prevalent in West Yorkshire – where at least 40 vehicles have been successfully targeted – gangs have been stealing the powerful LED lights from these 4x4s in order to use them to grow cannabis.

12
Jun
2014
Veni Vici FI

Conquering fashion

Claire Rubinstein meets Zak Tyler of Veni Vici Couture   Zak Tyler is a man with a vision. His aim is to turn fledgling label Veni Vici into the number one luxury European couture brand. And if his track record is anything to go by, this dream is already on the fast track to becoming reality.

03
Jun
2014
All that glitters FI

All that glitters

Gold Ferrari disintegrates   The gold Ferrari that has plagued the streets of Kensington and Chelsea in recent months is disintegrating.

02
Jun
2014
Old Friars FI

Cinematic bliss

Former home of film director Richard Attenborough for sale for £12.75 million   The Academy Award winning actor, producer and director Lord Attenborough is best known for his roles in such hits as The Great Escape, Gandhi and 10 Rillington Place but it was at Old Friars, his home of many years in Richmond, Surrey, that he was able to enjoy watching films in privacy due to the house having its very own private cinema.

22
May
2014
Chelsea blooms FI

Chelsea blooms

‘The Steeple Times’ visits the Chelsea Flower Show   The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is probably one of Britain’s most iconic events. Now in its 92nd year, the opening of this year’s garden show was peppered with the presence of everyone from the Queen to fictional characters such as The Archers’ Lynda Snell and Lillian Bellamy.

18
May
2014
NO 51LLY FI

Plated VIII

15 more of the best plates spotted by readers of ‘The Steeple Times’   Continuing our series, below we feature 15 more unusual, laughable and entertaining number plates

08
May
2014
Morley Hall FI

A fine classical country house

£8 million Morley Hall combines traditional style with a home fit for modern living   Morley Hall is a Georgian country house to the east of Ware in Hertfordshire. This fine residence is worthy of note as it was remodeled in the Palladian style by the renowned classical architect Raymond Erith

03
May
2014
Take Owen FI

Take Owen

Former home of Take That’s Mark Owen for sale   In 1996, at the age of just 24, Mark Owen paid £300,000 for Leck Hill House, near Kirkby Lonsdale on the borders of Lancashire and Cumbria. At the time, The Mirror described how he’d “fallen in love” with the house and we can see why.

28
Apr
2014
Plated VII FI

Plated VII

15 more of the best plates spotted by readers of ‘The Steeple Times’ Continuing our series, below we feature 15 more unusual, laughable and entertaining number plates

13
Apr
2014
From the ashes FI

From the ashes

One of England’s finest estates comes to the market for £25 to £30 million   The scene of the tragic deaths of the Conservative MP Michael Colvin and his wife Nicola in 2000 in a fire, Tangley House, near Andover in Hampshire subsequently had to be demolished. A new house was constructed on the site in 2005 by a property developer named Harry Marriott and now he’s put it on the market complete with 505 acres of land

11
Apr
2014
Footing the castle FI

Footing the castle

Own a castle (for just twenty years) for £850,000   Trematon Castle near Saltash in Cornwall is a house that I stayed in about ten years ago when it belonged to a friend of mine’s family. It was sold subsequently and now it is on the market once again.

09
Apr
2014
Ricci's Rambo Lambo FI

Ricci’s Rambo Lambo

Lamborghini LM 002 4×4 heads to auction   The Lamborghini loving Arabs who frequent Sloane Street could save themselves from having to purchase a Range Rover for their entourage by bidding on a baby blue Lamborghini LM 002 at Bonhams’ 28th April sale at London’s RAF Museum at Hendon.

05
Apr
2014
Living large FI

Living large

£27,500,000 for a flat in Knightsbridge   For the price of 110 average UK homes, a ‘high net worth’ individual can acquire an apartment in Lennox Gardens in Knightsbridge.

01
Apr
2014
Plated VI FI

Plated VI

15 more of the best plates spotted by readers of ‘The Steeple Times’   Continuing our series, below we feature 15 more unusual, laughable and entertaining number plates

31
Mar
2014
An average penthouse FI

An average penthouse

Renting a Knightsbridge penthouse for a month will cost as much as the purchase price of an average UK house   In February, the Office for National Statistics revealed that the average UK house price has hit £250,000 for the first time. For just a little shy of that figure, a super-elite renter could take a Knightsbridge penthouse for a month.

28
Mar
2014
The gold park FI

The gold park

A golden Ferrari is symbolic of the money park that is K&C   Today, financier and philanthropist Alan Miller spotted a gold metallic Ferrari in Pelham Street. This shiny hunk of metal is symbolic of what a ludicrous money park Kensington and Chelsea has become and of how utterly lacking in taste some of the non-residents of this area now truly are.

28
Mar
2014
Speedback FI

Speedback

David Brown Automotive’s Speedback is a stunning vehicle   David Brown shares not only his name with Sir David Brown of DB Aston Martin fame but also an ability to create the most stunning of cars. The contemporary Brown, though not related to Sir David or Aston Martin in any way, has plainly taken inspiration from his namesake in creating a new sports car that will be launched at the Top Marques show at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco on 17th April.

26
Mar
2014
Watering down FI

Watering down

Christie’s sell two bottles of water for £23,750   Today, Christie’s in South Kensington sold a ‘piece of art’ made up of two bottles of water for £23,750 and provided indication, surely, that the world’s gone mad.

25
Mar
2014
The Diagram of Dogs FI

The Diagram of Dogs

Fascinating diagram showing how every breed of dog is connected   When we came across a diagram that delineates nearly every standard breed of dog, we knew it would be something that our animal loving readers would be fascinated to see.

22
Mar
2014
The best of BADA FI

The best of BADA

A roundup of the art worth seeing at BADA   The BADA Antiques & Fine Art Fair on Chelsea’s Duke of York Square is an annual showcase of art and antiques that range in price from £100 to £1 million. Here, The Steeple Times picks three of our favourite items on display that suit a wide range of budgets.