Sheikh Hamad al-Thani, of the Qatari ruling family, is reported to be the buyer of one of London’s real-estate crown jewels — a stand-alone mansion at 10 Harkin Street in the heart of London’s Belgravia, a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace — at an intitial cost of some $270 million. The Sheikh’s new 20-plus-bedroom pied-a-terre is one of those rarest-of-the-rare listed houses in London, set back from the road on an acre of the most prime real estate in the world, that little jammed-up triangle of earth between Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park. The plans to refurbish the mansion — with parking for 32 vehicles, a basement cinema, and the obligatory gym with a couple of plunge pools — have been estimated at another $190-plus million, which, arguably, will value it as London’s most expensive private home, pushing a staggering $465-million price tag. What’s undeniable is that, with the exception of the al-Thanis’ neighbor the Queen’s Buckingham Palace, which is very much not currently on the market but which was low-balled at a value of some $1.2 billion in 2012, there will be few homes in London that can match the sheer volume of outlay that 10 Harkin Street has engendered.
The Napoleonic-era pile was originally built by noted architect Sir Robert Smirke in 1810 for the fifth Earl of Oxford, expanded in 1824 and subsequently in 1912 for a series of owners. Sheikh al-Thani bought it from the renowned Barclay twins, Frederick and David, the very agile property and media magnates (owners of the Daily and Sunday Telegraph) who, themselves, had snapped up the old place quite recently, at some point between 2010 and 2013, with the idea of returning it to private use (for a half-century it had been the headquarters of the arcane Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders). What the London brokers call ‘stamp duty,’ or tax, on the most recent transaction has been estimated to be grazing the bottom side of $30 million.
Here is even more about it. (Maybe we can find out what it is REALLY worth sometime, $465M, $300M, $270M, $44M, $30M?)
Read more starting at ‘And then, just to give the deal that special London twist: there is the reported $44-million lease that al-Thani also had to buy from the Barclays.’ at
At An Estimated $465-million, Sheikh Hamad Al-Thani’s Mansion Can Be London’s Most Expensive House