Homes gossip

Ruby Wax is leaving behind her Cape Town holiday home and will be keeping her Holland Park home as her main base.
Ruby Wax
© Getty Images
Ruby Wax

Ruby moves out of Africa and into life coaching

TV Comedienne Ruby Wax has sold her three-bedroom Cape Town holiday home for an estimated £240,000 through Kapstadt International Properties. The house is discreetly hidden in the villagey Bo-Kaap area, an oasis of chic restaurants, bars and boutiques, with views of Table Mountain from her roof terrace.

“I get out there only at Christmas, so it’s ridiculous to have a property for just one visit a year,” says the Chicago sausage manufacturer’s daughter. “I’ll still go out there, but I’ll stay in a hotel.” Her main base remains Holland Park, where she lives with her third husband, TV director Ed Bye, and their children, Marina, Madeleine and Max.

Ruby, former scourge of Sharon Stone, Imelda Marcos and the Duchess of York, recently reinvented herself as a life coach, advising senior civil servants on leadership and communication.

Houses and flats for sale in Holland Park
Houses and flats to rent in Holland Park

Ed Miliband
© Reuters
Ed Miliband

If Gordon Brown loses the general election and Ed Miliband is elected Labour leader, Dartmouth Park could become the party’s new Islington. The Energy Secretary recently moved into a four-bedroom Victorian terrace house in the anonymous Camden suburb with his partner, barrister Justine Thornton, and their baby, Daniel.

“Dartmouth Park is the poor man’s Belsize Park,” reports a local. “But you get more bang for your buck.”Ed, whose older brother (and leadership rival) David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, lives in pukka Primrose Hill, admits he has “barely seen” his new home because of long hours and constant travelling.

Houses and flats for sale in Dartmouth Park
Houses and flats to rent in Dartmouth Park

Lionel Shriver
© Rebecca Reid
Lionel Shriver

It’s taken American novelist Lionel Shriver three decades to stop “torching money on dour rentals” and buy her own home.

She has bought in edgy Southwark within easy jogging distance — she runs nine miles every other day — of foodie favourite Borough Market and cut-price Walworth Road.

“When I was younger I wanted money for adventure,” explains the North Carolina-born, Presbyterian minister’s daughter, who is married to jazz drummer Jeff Williams. “Now my old age is far less abstract. I want money to be safe.” Shriver moved to London in 1999 after living in Israel, Kenya, Thailand and Belfast.

Houses and flats for sale in Southwark
Houses and flats to rent in Southwark

James Hewitt
© David Crump
James Hewitt

Princess Diana’s former lover James Hewitt is having difficulty selling his ground and basement maisonette in South Kensington. He put the two-bedroom red-brick Victorian property on the market through Wedgewood Estates last summer.

There have been no takers but the major refuses to budge from his £865,000 asking price. He rents a two-bedroom Puerto Banus apartment near Marbella where he runs the Polo House club/restaurant. “Property is beginning to move in London and I think the price is realistic,” insists Hewitt, who plans to spend the proceeds on a Spanish flat or a “finca in the campo as I love the mountains”.

Houses and flats for sale in South Kensington
Houses and flats to rent in South Kensington

Follow us on Twitter @HomesProperty and Facebook