It’s the world’s most expensive apartment block, where properties come at £6,000 a square foot, and its owners have always shied away from admitting they have keys to a One Hyde Park flat.
But an investigation by tax haven expert Nicholas Shaxson for Vanity Fair has revealed the owners of the £1bn development.
Features of the Knightbridge luxury apartment block include an exclusive private cinema, 21-metre “ozone” swimming pool, squash court, eye-scanners in the lifts, and 24/7 room service from the next door Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park Hotel.
So who are the cagey owners who have spent millions, but don’t like owning up to it?
First up, the least secretive of them all – Christian and Nick Candy, the developers of the property.
Nick and wife Holly Valance own a penthouse in the block and Christian owns separate flats worth £31m and £26.2m on the 10th floor.
Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, Prime Minister of Qatar and partner in the Project Grande consortium, the firm behind the project, owns a £12m apartment spread over three floors.
Ukraine’s richest man Rinat Akhmetov is also believed to own an apartment, and Naomi Campbell’s boyfriend and Russian real-estate king Vladislav Doronin has also purchased one.
Kazakh singer Anar Aitzhanova and British Insurance broker Rory Carvill bought a property each, and Malaysian retail tycoon couple Desmond Lim Siew Choon and Tan Kewi Yong are known to have an £8m home in the complex.
Other high-profile owners include Vladimir Kim, chair of the London-listed Kazakh copper giant Kazakhmys plc, Bassim Haidar, founder of Nigerian telecommunications company Channel IT, and oil baroness Folorunsho Alakija who has bought five apartments in the block.
Media reports from last year revealed that Mohammed Saud Sultan al-Qasimi, head of finance for the government of Sharjah, snapped one up for £11.5m and Irish property honcho Raymond Grehan bought another for £3.75m.
Other rumoured buyers include pop artist Kylie Minogue, Kazakhstani copper billionaire Vladimir Kimand and Russian property honchos Kirill Pisarev and Yuri Zhukov – they are not cited in Vanity Fair’s article, but previous media reports have named them as owners.
Shaxson, the author of the Vanity Fair article, told LondonlovesBusiness.com last year, “One Hyde Park is like a pack of cards that can fall anytime, in the short term someone can imagine flipping their house for a profit but it’s crazy to expect a return on the property in the long run.”
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