Could Bayswater be the new Chelsea? As (another) glamorous development overlooking Hyde Park nears completion so this once-downmarket patch of west London is lifted into the property stratosphere.
Over the past year you would think there was only one luxury apartment block built in London recently - One Hyde Park in Knightsbridge. But it’s not the only property development in the Capital with park views and sky high prices. Spare a thought please for the equally glamorous (but less brash) and statelier development called ‘The Lancasters’.
Standing in Bayswater, West London, the developers Minerva and Northacre have taken five years to transform the former rundown hotel into 77 serviced apartments complete with the stunning Grade II listed facade which belies its original status as a row of stucco-fronted ambassadorial apartments.
Rows of grand houses take up much of Bayswater which 150 years ago was a wealthy middle class haven. Now paint is peeling and the area is yet to regain the glamour of its neighbours south of the park. However, with apartments priced between £900,000 and £17 million, and a luxurious spa and concierge service, The Lancasters will kick start a wealthier influx.
Still unfinished, amazingly 70% are already sold, the developer claims, and with two deliciously designed apartments to show off, PrimeLocation went to seek out The Lancasters appeal.
Once through the gated topiary-filled front gardens and past the jovial door man (or should I say men, security is a high priority at The Lancasters) the show apartments decorated by Linley and Lawson Robb are stunning and show off the building’s craftsmanship.
‘You can see the quality of the build just by the thickness of the doors and the painstaking detail seen in the remodelled cornicing – if we didn’t think something was done to the highest standard, we had it redone’ says Minerva director Mark Cherry.
While colours range from caramels to aubergines, textures are abundant, ‘we tried not to make it too girly and have added different fabrics and materials to create a very luxurious interior’ says publicist Alanna Burns as we sweep through corridors lined in crushed silk and panelled antique glass. Linley’s Art Deco influences are evident from the sharp outlined furniture, mirrored furnishings and his iconic Aston Martin chair which all shriek roaring 20s opulence.
If all this sounds traditional, it’s not – up in a mezzanine bedroom we were in awe of the ‘Privilite’ glass balcony which turned from opaque to clear at the flick of a button, revealing a view over the double height living room and out the windows onto the park. The spa was no less swish from its entrance of a glass bridge to the dark tiled pool with sofa style loungers.
So who could afford such splendour? At such high prices the developers make no secret that they are trying to appeal to an international market with multiple properties; of course it would be silly not to with 80% of prime London properties over £5m selling to overseas buyers.
With new, colossally wealthy residents moving in, Bayswater is now a development hotspot, with rundown properties ripe for returning to their past grandeur.
The Lancasters’ apartments are for sale through Savills and Hamptons International.
The developers make no secret that they are trying to appeal to an international market