While NYC is just getting used to increasingly commonplace $100 million listings, global demand for London property has long pushed asks four or five times that. But even for posh London, the billionaire Hinduja brothers’ $500 million mansion at Carlton House Terrace is something special.
At the center of Westminster near Buckingham Palace the 67,000-square-foot, 25-bedroom estate consists of four interconnected six-story white Georgian houses and was the 18th-century boyhood home (since demolished and rebuilt) of King George IV, who considered it for his palace before settling on Buckingham.
The houses were also occupied by infamous Victorian prime minister William Gladstone, before being transformed into offices by the British Red Cross, the National Portrait Gallery, and for a short time a casino.
Together the secretive owners, Srichand, Gopichand, Prakash and Ashok Hinduja, control the Hinduja Group, a multinational conglomerate with interests in real estate, oil, automobiles, banking and media. In 2006, they purchased the houses from the Crown Estate, which manages the royal property portfolio, for a mere $95 million. Almost immediately they poured another $95 million into renovations that attempted to “return the house to its former glory,” Sandie Altman, Weldon Walshe’s managing director, which handled the renovation, told Forbes.
The brothers also own a four-floor, 25,000-square-foot townhouse across the street from Carlton House Terrace, whose 50,000-square-foot neighbor at number 18 has hit the market asking $400 million. Based on the skyrocketing values in the neighborhood, Eliza Leigh, property partner at Knight Frank in London, values Carlton House Terrace at more than $500 million – not bad for a $190 million investment. [Forbes] –Christopher Cameron