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01. Juni 2012     Print Print 

Somerset Place enters a period of restoration

Sommerset Place
An entire Grade-I listed crescent in Bath (Somerset, England) has been acquired by a single owner, the Strategic Iconic Assets Heritage Acquisition Fund (SIAHAF). Somerset Place was purchased in February 2012, after years of institutional use; this world-class landmark entered a 60 million British Pounds period of restoration this month which will see the complete crescent reborn as a series of luxury residences for sale through Savills.

The development will comprise a number of elegant crescent houses lateral apartments and mews houses, and is due for completion in 2014. The development team will be led by Future Heritage Group comprising award winning ORMS architects and internationally renowned architect, Paul Davis who has been involved in a number of significant projects across South East Asia such as the Grosvenor Estates. The city of Bath was inscribed as a World Heritage site in 1987. Designed by John Eveleigh and constructed between 1790 and 1820, Somerset Place represents an important part of its heritage. Very few crescent houses ever come up for sale, so an entire crescent is quite an event. Previously owned by the University, the crescent has survived as something of a time capsule, full of original Georgian plasterwork, fireplaces and original detailing, in need of sensitive restoration and modern comforts. The single ownership is unique, meaning the development has full planning permission for building and restoration, and once completed will offer a dedicated on-site concierge team, catering for the estate, gardens and purchasers’ every need, providing the convenience of modern day living in a Georgian Grade I listed property.

At the core of the renewal, Somerset Place boasts nine Grade 1 listed crescent houses, each retaining their original period features as part of a meticulous restoration programme. Due to the high level of market interest, a number of the 9 original crescent houses have been released to the market at a developers finish. Owners then have the opportunity to design the property's interior to match their particular tastes in terms of finishes and fittings. Accommodation ranges from 3,100 to 5,700 sq ft. and prices are starting from circa 2 million British Pounds for crescent houses purchased to a developers finish and once fully completed are expected to fetch circa 3 million British Pounds.

The crescent will also include a number of apartments, each with a Grade 1 listed facade but with a flexible internal configuration. The floor-plates vary, from ground floor maisonettes with beautiful gardens, to upper floor maisonettes with roof terraces and lateral apartments with large windows and plenty of light. Somerset Place set in an elevated location commands fine south and westerly views of the city and its surroundings, emulating the style and sinuous line taken by nearby Lansdown Place. Set above the hubbub of busy tourists with its own private parking, its positioning makes it perfect for commuters with excellent links to the M4, as well as ideal for families who will enjoy access to some of Bath’s top local private schools.

Johnny Sandelson from SIAHAF, the developers said: “We have had a number of enquiries from purchasers interested in buying up the crescent houses prior to development completion. Some clients are enlisting the help of our architectural partners RedBook who can help buyers put their own unique stamp on their property. From a modern contemporary interior to an art deco or authentic period restoration, purchasers have a rare opportunity to make this historic property truly their own and write the next chapter in the book. This world class restoration will be built to the highest specification, and is already attracting local and international investment to the city of Bath.”

Luke Brady, from Savills said: “Somerset Place is a one off. It’s rare that crescent properties come to the market and nowhere else offers you the choice of 9 individual crescent houses with planning permission consented. Purchasers looking to buy these at a developers finish will enjoy all the fun parts of designing a property with none of the headaches. You could pay 20 million British Pounds for a crescent house in Notting Hill or 2 to 3 million British Pounds for one at Somerset Place, with 100ft private gardens, I would consider great value for money.”