A Chinese property tycoon has agreed to buy a 45-room mansion overlooking Hyde Park in London for more than £200m, making it by far the most expensive house to be sold in the UK.
Cheung Chung-kiu, who already owns the £1.15bn so-called “Cheesegrater” skyscraper in the City, is “in the process” of buying 2-8a Rutland Gate for between £205m and £210m. Cheung, from Chongqing in south-west China, is the founder and chairman of CC Land Holdings, a Hong Kong-listed company that owns property in China and the UK.
The seven-storey property was built as four grand family homes before being converted into one vast residence in the 1980s. The previous owner had been Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz of Saudi Arabia. It was built in the 1830s, features approximately 45 rooms including grand staterooms, 20 bedrooms, a swimming pool, private health spa and gym and underground parking for several cars. There are also “several passenger lifts” and a wing of staff rooms. 68 of its windows have a park view.The record is currently held by Park Place, a stately home near Henley-on-Thames, in Berkshire, which was bought in 2011 by the exiled Russian billionaire Andrey Borodin for £140m. Last year, the US hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin, bought a Grade II*-listed Georgian mansion within sight of Buckingham Palace for £95m.
"A house may be large or small; as long as the neighboring houses are likewise small, it satisfies all social requirement for a residence. But let there arise next to the little house a palace, and the little house shrinks to a hut. The little house now makes it clear that its inmate has no social position at all to maintain, or but a very insignificant one; and however high it may shoot up in the course of civilization, if the neighboring palace rises in equal or even in greater measure, the occupant of the relatively little house will always find himself more uncomfortable, more dissatisfied, more cramped within his four walls." - Marx