Evening Standard New Homes Awards 2013: inventive design, good value and wow factor interiors
Judged by readers from a shortlist of 127 entries, this year’s London Evening Standard New Homes Award winners have everything that buyers want — inventive design, wow-factor interiors, eco-friendly features, glamour — and great value.
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Best family home and Grand Prix Award
Winner: 3 Lime Grove Mews, Stowe Road, Shepherd’s Bush, W12 — by St James
Forward-thinking developers challenge the traditional idea of the house as a box with rigidly defined room uses. Modern lifestyles demand flexible interiors and fresh design ideas, not least of all a free-flowing multi-use family space — for living, dining and relaxing — that seamlessly unites with the garden.
This has been achieved with panache at Lime Grove Mews, a gated scheme of townhouses built on a former council depot site in Shepherd’s Bush.
The Regency-style five-storey houses have 2,494sq ft of space and a thoughtfully-designed layout that manages to incorporate a light-filled family room in the basement with bi-folding doors opening on to a patio, a laundry room, a study, four bedrooms and a delightful winter garden with hideaway terrace at the top of the house.
Generous concealed storage is another highlight, while the double-width entrance door and hallway provides a true sense of arrival. Prices from £1.75 million (only the gatehouse remains). St James is building similar family-friendly accommodation in other parts of London, including Putney and Fulham. Call 020 3002 9460 or visit berkeleygroup.co.uk
In the past, Shepherd’s Bush was where people rented or bought a flat or small house before the patter of tiny feet pushed gardens, extra space and schools up the priority list.
“For these, the next stop was Chiswick or Ealing but over the last three years the area has become much more desirable for families. Westfield has had a huge impact and it is the smaller openings too, such as Ginger Pig butchers (other branches in Marylebone and Borough),” said Henrietta Redgrave, manager of the local branch of the Douglas & Gordon estate agency.
Winner: The Grosvenor, Convent Mews, Wimbledon, SW9 — by London Square
Wimbledon Village is the debut development of London Square, whose architectural template is inspired by traditional garden squares — “elegant and timeless,” said chief executive Adam Lawrence.
Ten impressive houses have been built on the site of a former convent overlooking the playing fields of King’s College School at Ridgeway, a sought-after address, close to the village and riding club and stables. Thoughtfully designed, the homes have a sense of grandeur plus relaxed, family-friendly interiors and modern-day creature comforts.
This 4,420sq ft house, The Grosvenor has a light-filled basement complex combining courtyard, open-plan kitchen and family space plus utility room, cinema, gym and study.
A spiral staircase connects the courtyard to the tastefully landscaped garden above. A bespoke oak-and-glass staircase runs through the house, while a dumb waiter serves the ground-floor dining room from the kitchen. Two upper floors have six bedrooms with dressing rooms and bathrooms. And there is a detached double garage as well as off-street parking. Sold for £4.3 million. Others available from £2.95 million.
Coming soon are developments in Fulham and Putney. Currently for sale are penthouses at an apartment scheme at Leonard Street on the City fringe. Visit londonsquare.co.uk.
Best first-time buy
Winner: Victory Pier, Medway Waterfront, Gillingham, Kent — by Berkeley Homes
Victory Pier on the Gillingham waterfront is part of ambitious regeneration transforming Kent’s historic Medway towns — a co-ordinated project aiming to transform eight miles of riverfront into an 8,000-home “linear city”.
Having 780 listed buildings and 26 conservation areas, the Medway towns are lobbying for Unesco World Heritage status. Docklands-style living is available at an affordable price.
Victory Pier is a residential and retail scheme on the site of a former chemical works and will have 775 homes, a hotel, moorings and a floating art gallery. Prices at The Boathouse, the first phase of 124 apartments, started at less than £100,000. Marina Heights, the next phase, launches next week. Prices from £114,950. Call 01634 565000 or visit victorypier.com.
Winner: The Garden Quarter, Caversfield, Oxfordshire - by City & Country
City & Country specialises in heritage conversions and its latest project is the officers’ mess and quarters at former RAF Bicester, Oxfordshire.
Renamed The Garden Quarter, there are 196 homes (apartments and cottages) set in 23 acres of parkland, part of a self-contained conservation area with 18 listed buildings. Prices from £175,000. Call 01869 253999 or visit cityandcountry.co.uk.
Best small development
Winner: Essex Mews, Rockmount Road, Crystal Palace, SE19 - by Solidspace
Winner: The Move, 154 Loudon Road, St John’s Wood, NW8 - by Origin Housing
Best large development
Winner: Marconi House, 336 Strand, WC2 - by Galliard Homes and Frogmore
Marconi House is neighbours with several auspicious buildings in the Strand-Aldwych conservation area - the Australian and Indian high commissions, Somerset House, the Royal Courts of Justice and Bush House, former BBC World Service headquarters.
The site has historical significance, being the place where pioneering wireless company Marconi and the BBC broadcast the world’s first radio service. Behind the listed facade are 86 brand new apartments, ranging from “suites” to spectacular penthouses.
By incorporating a five-star hotel, Marconi House introduces a new ingredient to this location - top level designer homes with 24-hour concierge services and a fabulous entrance foyer. Such a package chimes particularly with international buyers (often parents of children studying at nearby universities), who see it as a prestige address. Prices range from £600,000 to £4 million. Galliard has several other central London sites. Call 020 7620 1500.
Winner: Seven Acres, Trumpington, Cambridge - by Homes by Skanska
In Scandinavia, Skanska is well-know for building green homes. It set up in the UK in 2010 and last year was named the UK’s Greenest Company. Seven Acres, its first residential scheme, brims with green design principles and manages to be architecturally beautiful at the same time.
Skanska’s “fabric first” approach means homes are energy-efficient before any new green technology such as solar panels is added. Homes are also space efficient, with contemporary open-plan interiors, high ceilings, built-in storage and lots of natural light.
Seven Acres is built on former green belt land south of Cambridge city centre, next to the expanding Cambridge Biomedical Campus, which already employs 8,000 professionals. More than 4,000 homes, schools, shops and community facilities are planned at new “settlements” such
Properties have green roofs and are grouped around tastefully-landscaped communal areas, with sales - shallow channels in the ground that help regulate surface water run off and provide a wildlife habitat - mini allotments and pocket parks. Four-bedroom townhouses are priced from £619,500. Call 0800 023 2395.
Cambridge academics who preferred to live in city centre Victorian and Edwardian villas are moving to this high-quality new-build development on the suburban fringe.
The easy commute to London, combined with excellent schools and a lively cultural scene, also makes Cambridge a popular choice for young families looking to move out of the capital.
Best development/Affordable homes sector
Winner: Brenley Park, Mitcham, Surrey - by Willmott Dixon and Notting
Winner: The Print House, 32 Aylesbury Street, Clerkenwell, EC1 - by
Millbank Homes and Form Design Architecture
Winner: Mote House, Mote Park, Bearsted, Kent - by Audley Retirement
Winner: House 20, Cornwall Terrace, NW1 - by Oakmayne Bespoke
One of eight ambassadorial-type residences on Regent’s Park’s Outer Circle, number 20 is the only one with a carriage drive and an underground spa. It also comes with two mews houses at the rear.
The sumptuous, art-deco inspired classic-contemporary interior extends to nearly 12,000 sq ft and is adorned with rare art works available to buy separately. A grand ballroom is one of the stand-out spaces, while 29 televisions are sprinkled around the property, including one in a marble-lined wet room.
The five-story house has everything you would expect - from beautiful finishes such as lacquered cabinetry to the high-tech media room and home cinema - and has been reduced in price from £48 million to £40 million. Call Knight Frank on 020 7861 5487.
Winner: Roehampton House, 177 Roehampton Lane, SW15 - by St James English Heritage describes Roehampton House as “among the capital’s most historically-important residential buildings”. A rare Palladian mansion, built in 1712 and enlarged in 1910 by architect Edwin Lutyens, it sits in two acres of private listed grounds in west London.
Following a painstaking restoration, Roehampton House was converted in 24
apartments priced up to £1.85 million.
Sections of precious wood panelling had to be numbered, removed, restored and reassembled, and intricate plasterwork replicated.
English Heritage will not accept “false history”, so anything that is reinstated has be as true to the original as possible.
Winner: Ruskin Walk, Westmoreland Road, Walworth, SE17 - by L&Q
The Aylesbury council estate in Southwark, reputedly Europe’s biggest, was famously chosen by Tony Blair to launch his urban regeneration plans hours after he was elected in 1997.
Sixteen years and two prime ministers later, the transformation of the estate has begun. Albany Place, the first phase, comprises four new buildings on the western edge of the estate.
The plan is to demolish the entire 70-acre estate - 2,700 flats in 40 concrete blocks - and replace it with a mixture of 4,200 “human scale” homes, a mix of private, shared ownership and social housing.
The new designs by architect firm Levitt Bernstein have lighter-looking brick facades with full-height glazing, open communal landings and landscaped inner courtyards with bike cages.
Ruskin Walk, one of the new blocks, overlooks 113-acre Burgess Park, which has a number of listed buildings and is upgraded with a new lake, entrances, pathways and recreational areas. The area, Walworth, is an almost forgotten district of London - unloved by estate agents but worthwhile hunting ground for first-time buyers. Prices from £220,000 Call 0844 406 9290 or visit ruskinwalk.co.uk.