This is a prime example of how money can’t buy taste – it takes a certain type of person to dedicate their lives to accumulating money and possessions, quite often the type who wouldn’t know good taste if it hit them in the face with a Rembrandt. Britain’s most expensive home might appeal to some, those for whom gaudy ostentatiousness and tacky chandeliers in every room counts for class – others might describe it as “a giant tasteless monstrous vulgar tumor on the landscape”. An artist friend of mine, who has dealt with millionaires who like to impress with their wealth and trinkets, said he felt like saying to them, “your belief that rocco is the pinnacle of taste and sophistication makes me feel physically sick”.
THE asking price for Britain’s most expensive house has been slashed by a staggering £35million.
Stunning 14-bedroom Heath Hall first went on the market for an eye-watering £100million.
But a lack of interest in the Grade II listed pile has seen billionaire property mogul Andreas Panayiotou drop it to a “more realistic” £65 million.
While the immaculate property might be out of reach for most of us it is expected to attract a huge amount of interest from foreign investors eyeing it up as an investment.
Incredibly, the drop in the asking price alone is enough to buy 215 average UK homes.
The buy-to-let magnate then spent £40million lovingly transforming Heath Hall
Mr Panayiotou, 47, snapped up Heath Hall, which was built in 1910 for sugar magnate William Park Lyle, after years of neglect.
The buy-to-let magnate then spent £40million lovingly transforming it into one of the most impressive homes on The Bishops Avenue, or “Billionaires’ Row”, as the exclusive road in Hampstead, north London, is known as.
The gated mansion is set in 2.5-acres of manicured gardens and boasts six reception rooms, a drawing room, dining room, family room, sun room and snooker room.
Inside the 27,000 sq ft palace is a library, cinema, steam room with sauna, fully-equipped gym indoor and outdoor swimming pools and a climate controlled wine cellar.
Twelve types of Italian marble and seven types of wood were used to create the luxury bathrooms while the snooker room, office, bar, library and grand staircase are all clad in Oak.
All of the carpentry and hand-carved marble basins were prepared in Italy before being transported to the property.
It also offers a panic room and parking spaces for 40 vehicles.
Self-made Mr Panayiotou left school with no GCSEs and still struggles with illiteracy. He made his £400million fortune building up one of the country’s largest property empires.
The Bank of China took over Heath Hall in the 1950s and housed its staff in communist conditions, turning the mansion into a hostel with workers sleeping on bunk beds.
Mr Panayiotou bought the property in 2006 and immediately set about transforming it into one of the UK’s finest homes.
The East London-based businessman employed 120 tradesmen on the renovation project.
It was reportedly put up for sale because Mr Panayiotou’s wife Susan prefers the couple’s 20-acre estate in Epping Forest, Essex.
Naturally, the neighbours – including several members of the Saudi Royal Family – are all multi-millionaires.
Last night, Grant Alexson, of upmarket estate agent Knight Frank, said: “The £65 million price is more realistic. It is not a bargain, but there is no house like it.
“It is beyond ambassadorial, it is the sort of home which is perfect for kings or princes.
“It has a terrific plot and is one of the largest houses in the area.
“It has the largest front of any home on The Bishops Avenue and this is important.”