Following the United Kingdom’s momentous referendum vote to withdraw from the European Union (‘Brexit’), estate agents in the UK reported a mild contraction in local buyer interest, and volume, due to uncertainties arising from the referendum decision and it's uncertain outcomes. However, for overseas buyers seeking to purchase property in London and it’s surrounds, the consequent drop in the value of the British Pound has presented a unique and exciting buying opportunity.
Perhaps London’s best known neighbourhood for bourgeois glamour, this high-end housing hotspot has managed to weather the recent uncertainty with aplomb. Newly-registered prospective buyers jumped 16.3% in this fashionable borough. Home to 29 Michelin-starred restaurants and a staggering 44 5-star hotels, it’s no wonder that Mayfair currently wears the crown in luxury central London real estate. Exciting new developments are also in the pipeline, expanding the supply of luxury housing in the W1 postcode; examples include the wonderfully decadent 20 Grosvenor Square, by one of my favourite developers, Finchatton.
Interest from foreign buyers remains robust heading into 2017. Smart buyers are using their foreign exchange 'discount' to stock up on blue chip and period properties, with a high scarcity value.
Part of the aforementioned Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, the Kensington area is undisputably one of the most attractive places to live. Known for it’s classic English look, it is home to large number of Roman-style villas, and elegant white stucco terraces. The elegant proportions of the homes here are a huge draw - wide rooms, high ceilings and period charm.
A house here could easily set you back £20 million or so, however more affordable apartments and homes are also on offer.
The attractiveness of the local area is a huge part of it’s appeal. The area is dotted with beautiful garden squares, and also claims the famous Kensington Gardens within it’s border; a public park surrounding Kensington Palace, featuring Italian and Dutch gardens with stunning scenery, plant life, and monuments.
The Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Palace, and The Victoria & Albert Museum are just a few other landmarks that attract the wealthy to this cozy & elegant borough.
This central London neighbourhood is best known for housing Buckingham Palace, as well as other famous attractions including The London Eye, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, and Westminster Abbey. With all this going on it might seem that Westminster is more ‘tourist trap’ than ‘great neighbourhood to live in’...but you’d be wrong. Westminster continues to be highly popular, and much development has taken place in this area, and continues to do so, particularly by the riverside.
Westminster provides residents with the London trifecta: beauty, green spaces, and great transport links. It can’t be denied that Westminster is well positioned for getting around the city. It’s residents also enjoy the beauty of Green Park, and a wealth of amenities, restaurants and things to do, all within walking distance. A notable example of the standard of luxury development in the area is Abell & Cleland, by Berkely Homes - a chic development offering concierge services and 5 star amenities to it’s upscale residents. A 4 bed apartment in this development will set you back around £8.5m.
Belgravia straddles 2 London boroughs: the City of Westminster, and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. It also happens to be one of the wealthiest districts in the world, with a high concentration of wealth, from British ‘old money’, to celebrities and the globe-trotting super rich. Much of the area’s prestige real estate forms part of the Grosvenor Estate, the family property company belonging to the Duke of Westminster’s ‘Grosvenor Group’. Homes and apartments here range from around £2 million, up to £50 million and more. Despite it’s uber rich resident profile Belgravia has a surprisingly neighborhoody feel, and some charming local areas to shop and dine, including Elizabeth Street, just below the famous Eaton Square. The architecture is truly beautiful, and features some of the most attractive garden squares in the city.
Positioned just to the south-east of London, Surrey has seen it’s star rise dramatically over the past 2 decades. Unlike Mayfair, which was glam from the get-go, Surrey was a leafy upper-middle class enclave, that has recently begun to experience a steady influx of the super wealthy. As central London became more congested, Surrey’s appeal (green, charming, and commuting distance from the capital) grew. Surrey has seen a significant increase in the number of large luxury homes and mega-mansions being built, and has now cemented a reputation as an area beloved by celebrities, athletes, and even members of the Royal Family.
Check out this video tour (below) of King's Chase, in Oxshott, Surrey. You can see how homes like this might successfully lure Londoner's out to the lush villages of Surrey and Richmond.