Cheung Chung-kiu in process of buying 45-room property overlooking Hyde Park
The facade of 2-8a Rutland Gate, which has interiors created by the acclaimed French designer Alberto Pinto. Photograph: AFP/AFP via Getty Images
A Chinese property tycoon has agreed to buy a 45-room mansion overlooking Hyde Park in London for more than £200m, making it by far the most expensive house to be sold in the UK.
Cheung Chung-kiu, who already owns the £1.15bn so-called “Cheesegrater” skyscraper in the City, is “in the process” of buying 2-8a Rutland Gate for between £205m and £210m.
The seven-storey property was built as four grand family homes before being converted into one vast residence in the 1980s. The previous owner had been Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz of Saudi Arabia who died in 2011. It has also been home to the billionaire businessman Rafic Hariri, who twice served as Lebanon’s prime minister.
When the sale completes in the next few weeks it will officially become the UK’s most expensive home. The record is currently held by Park Place, a stately home near Henley-on-Thames, in Berkshire, which was bought in 2011 by the exiled Russian billionaire Andrey Borodin for £140m. Last year, the US hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin, bought a Grade II*-listed Georgian mansion within sight of Buckingham Palace for £95m.
Cheung has yet to decide whether he will use the 62,000 sq ft mansion as his family home or divide it into a series of lateral apartments. If renovated and converted into apartments the property could be worth up to £700m, a spokesman said.