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’. One has recently become available to rent for what sounds like a very reasonable sum of just £395 per week – but for that, you get little more than what Roy Brooks would term “room to swing a cat”.
The Steeple Times explored the history of Albany – which the ill-educated mistakenly call ‘The Albany’ – in detail in November 2012 and what is on offer to those who make the grade currently is a 372 square foot third floor ‘set’ that includes a reception room and a bedroom on a lease of up to four years. There is a communal bathroom and “subject to consents, a kitchenette addition may be permitted”.
‘Proprietors’ at Albany have variously numbered Lord Byron, Sir Edward Heath, J. B. Priestly, Sir Terence Rattigan and Sir Denis and Lady Thatcher. Whoever takes Set A5 Attic Albany, however, should note that this is not a pad designed for entertaining on a grand scale given that Savills, the agents marketing it, go as far as to point out that it “would make an ideal reading or writing day room or an occasional bedroom for a pied-à-terre in prime central London”.
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