What do you get when a military barracks in one of London’s most exclusive neighborhoods and a famous sports car designer hop into bed together? Luxury condos, of course! Twelve years in the making, Chelsea Barracks, a former military base in London’s ultra-ritzy Belgravia neighborhood, that’s undergone a $6 billion re-development spanning 13 acres, is gradually being unveiled. One of the jewels of the development is a bespoke five-bedroom unit which takes up an entire floor — that’s a mansion-sized 6,000+ square feet — and is currently on the market for just over $42 million. It features interiors inspired by one of the world’s most famed sports cars, the Porsche 911, which was penned by legendary Porsche engineer, Norbert “Norby” Singer.
The interior was actually crafted by London-based design studio Lawson Robb, who astutely took their inspiration from Singer. They even dubbed the home the “Singer Suite” using the glamour and nostalgia of the Le Mans, Daytona and World Championship winning Singer-designed Porsche 911 to help market the condo.
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Needless to say, the condo’s finishes and layout epitomizes the fast-paced panache of Porsche and the refined sophistication of luxury London living. (As high as the $42 million price may seem to mere financial mortals, the posh pad is not, however, the most expensive unit in Chelsea Barracks. One of the penthouses was listed earlier this year for a whopping $55 million.)
Chelsea Barracks was originally built in 1860 and was an active military base until 2007, when it was purchased by real estate investment company Qatari Diar for $1.3 billion. At the time, that was the most expensive real estate transaction in U.K. history. The development is slowly being transformed into a collection of condos, mews, townhouses and penthouses around landscaped gardens and green spaces that are open to the public.
When completed, the development will also feature restaurants, retail outlets and a public art gallery converted from a historic chapel, as well as a community vegetable garden. In addition, there will be a subterranean health club and spa, myriad sports facilities, a business center and a parking garage that extends six stories underground and is connected by a series of tunnels and passageways across the 13-acre site.
While much of the luxury global real estate market has tumbled in recent months, Chelsea Barracks has bucked the trend. Buoyed by foreign investment — West London attracts hordes of Russian oligarchs and Middle Eastern oil sheikhs — the high-priced development completed $111 million in transactions during the first four months of 2020, with over 90% of the available homes being sold.
Even in a pandemic, money appears to be no issue for the fortunate few. So, if you happen to be in that rarefied bracket with stacks of cash to spend on a premium London residence, act quickly before this place zooms away.