St John's Orchard: new terrace houses and flats in Grove Park, Camberwell
With no Tube, Camberwell remains fairly low profile. However, this pleasant inner suburb, barely three miles from Trafalgar Square, has Camberwell Grove — a conservation area of late 18th-century homes — plus Grove Park and its pretty hilltop square with unexpected sweeping east-west vistas, and clear views of the London skyline from the Eye to Canary Wharf.
A former convent in Grove Park has been rescued from dereliction and turned into a terrace of 4,000 sq ft houses, with new flats alongside.
Meticulously restored as St John's Orchard, its handsome exterior draws the visitor in. At the heart of each house is an exceptional family living space with a kitchen and dining area below a dramatic double-height void, all framed by a six metre-high window and sliding door, with views on to the garden. A bespoke oak staircase is the spine and leads up to a retracting door giving on to a roof terrace with panoramic views.
Interiors have a Scandinavian quality — light-filled with concealed storage and a mix of modern and traditional textures such as polished plaster and timber-clad walls.
Ty Tikari of the architect-developer Bespoke Homes describes the design theme as "Romantic Modern", a craft-based approach that brings a balance of old and new, retreat and immersion — in short they are delightful family homes with four bedrooms, a music room and library, and sunken basement terrace. The old convent's orchard has been reinstated to provide 50 metre-long, south-facing gardens. Prices from £1.92 million. Through estate agent Harvey and Wheeler.
Clapham South: 41 new apartments
A "drum tower" was the starting point for a scheme of 41 new apartments alongside Clapham South Tube station. The listed tower once provided access to deep-level Underground tunnels that were used as air raid shelters during the Blitz.
The cylindrical-shaped drum has been done up and its trademark Thirties architecture used as a design reference for the new apartment building — crisp and contemporary, with sleek white finishes outside and in.
The Ipsus07 flats are above average in size, with generous outside space. Prices from £510,000, through Hamptons International.
Albany Place, Burgess Park: 261 new homes for first-time buyers
Burgess Park, with its listed buildings and 113 acres of space running between Peckham and Walworth, is one of London's green zones, blessed with mayoral investment and £6 million from Southwark council. The park, with its Victorian church, library, baths and artisan cottages, has been upgraded with a new lake and 90,000 new plants and trees.
The area is a good hunting ground for first-time buyer homes close to central London. Albany Place has 261 homes, some facing directly on to Burgess Park. Prices start at £92,000 for a 40 per cent share (full price, £230,000). Buyers get free Zipcar membership. Call 0844 406 9290.