Evening Standard - 17 December 2014
Developers are opening up this Christmas to offer buyers
the chance of choosing a new home for the year.
Like beautifully wrapped Christmas gifts, show homes are
intended to tempt buyers. If you are going to buy anyway – and you like the
designer’s style – then the show home could save you a lot of time and money.
You can pick up extra furnishings, fixtures of even commissioned art, at
above, in Brentwood, Essex, is a fabulous redevelopment of a former Victorian
asylum by City & Country, who are experts at restoration building.
There are 131 homes carved out of the listed buildings
and cloisters. Decorative stonework, Gothic arches, cast-iron columns, timber
beams, oak staircases, mouldings and fireplaces have all been retained and restored,
while the original garden designs have been reinstated.
Former needlework blocks have become loft-style
apartments and even the deconsecrated chapel is now a special triple height
Just launched are flats in the clock tower featuring roof
trusses and exposed brick walls – and ceilings high enough to accommodate a
very tall Christmas tree.
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