Seller Wants $158 Million for London Billionaires Row Home

House on Billionaires Row Offered for More Than $158 Million
A general view of houses along Kensington Palace Gardens in London. Photographer: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

A home in the U.K.’s most expensive neighborhood is being offered for more than 100 million pounds ($158 million), according to the broker handling the sale.

The neo-classical house is located at 6 Palace Green in Kensington, one of London’s few private roads where no passing traffic can enter, Aylesford International Managing Director Louise Hewlett said. The 16,000-square-foot (1,486-square-meter) home is owned by Tamzen Ltd., a closely held company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands, according to the U.K. Land Registry.

“This is considered the best address in Europe, not just London,” Hewlett said by e-mail. While declining to disclose the value of the property or its owner, she said its price would exceed 100 million pounds.

Palace Green is on the southern section of Kensington Palace Gardens, one of two London streets known as Billionaires Row; the other is Bishops Avenue in Hampstead. Luxury-home prices in Kensington have gained about 110 percent since 2004, said Grainne Gilmore, head of U.K. residential research at Knight Frank LLP.

Noam Gottesman, chairman of hedge-fund manager GLG Partners Inc., is listed in the Land Registry as a previous owner of 6 Palace Green. Gottesman sold a property on Palace Green to Lakshmi Mittal, chief executive officer of steelmaker ArcelorMittal, the London Evening Standard reported in 2008. The price was 117 million pounds, the newspaper said.

‘Diplomatic Protection’

Mittal bought 18-19 Kensington Palace Gardens in 2004 for 57.1 million pounds, according to the Land Registry. The property is on the same street as the Russian and Nepalese embassies.

The tree-lined street is mostly occupied by foreign embassies and ambassadors, which helps to restrict the volume of traffic and vehicles accessing the area, said Noel de Keyzer, a director at Savills Plc’s Sloane Street branch.

“One of the huge attractions has been the sense of security,” de Keyzer said in an e-mail. “As a result of the checkpoints and the presence of Diplomatic Protection Group officers, the wide road, where no parking is allowed, has little traffic.”

An unidentified Russian buyer purchased the U.K.’s most expensive home for about 140 million pounds, the Financial Times reported in August, without saying where it got the information.

Nomadic Wealthy

Overseas buyers are driving London’s luxury home values, which have performed better than other parts of the U.K. real estate market. Prices have gained for 14 straight months as investors compete for a smaller number of homes for sale and seek safer assets amid geopolitical and economic instability.

Russian investors increased their share of luxury-home purchases in London’s most expensive neighborhoods more than any other group in the fourth quarter, Hamptons International said in a report today. These buyers now account for 16 percent of the total, the same as investors from the Middle East.

The U.K. capital has 5,955 “ultra-wealthy” people, the most of any European city, according to Wealth-X, which works with luxury brands and banks to build a database of people who together hold around $10.7 trillion

“The ultra-wealthy are mobile and nomadic,” CEO Mykolas Rambus said in an interview at the company’s Mayfair office. “London is a place for culture, history and financial services. You name it and you can get it in London.”

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