What do the well-heeled really look for when house hunting? Postcode, for one; and then, it’s all about being surrounded by the best of the best. 60 Curzon, in the heart of London’s Mayfair, described at its inception as the first private residential building in Europe designed by legendary French architect Thierry Despont, is just that.
With exterior architecture by Lee Polisano of PLP Architecture, this highly anticipated project features 32 private residences ranging from spacious studios to five-bedroom duplex penthouses, all executed with the flair and precision one has come to expect from Despont. He is, of course, the mastermind behind some of the world’s most iconic landmarks including the Statue of Liberty, which he restored, and the Ritz in Paris—but he died unexpectedly just as the building was coming to its completion. Overnight, the first of its kind became the one and only.
Unsurprisingly, 60 Curzon has now become more than the sum of its elegant parts: a unique legacy offering residents an opportunity to own a slice of bespoke Despont-designed living. And now, this address is all set to be the new London home for A-listers from around the world. One-bedroom apartments start at $4.45 million, two-bedroom units are listed from $13.95 million, and the price tag on the penthouses is upon request.
Located within walking distance of both Green Park and Hyde Park, the building was formerly a red brick mansion block dating from the 1930s. For more than 70 years, the ground level was the home of Mirabelle restaurant which in its heyday was famous for its glitz and glamour, and frequented by celebrities, playwrights, and politicians.
The new 13-story building (eight above ground and five below) was built from scratch but with an eye on the unique history of the area and the buildings around it and employed the use of traditional techniques. Its eye-catching facade of handset Portland stone is accented with custom green hand-glazed faience tiles and solid bronze, seen on the canopy of the lobby and on the balconies. The Art Deco–inspired curvature was partly influenced by the ‘hidden’ Tyburn River on which it sits, cleverly constructed to echo the stream in the direction it would flow down the street.
“The design of the building is very much at home in Mayfair but also very reminiscent of some of the apartment buildings you'll see on Fifth Avenue or Park Avenue in New York,” notes sales director Alex Hardy. Indeed, a tour around 60 Curzon makes clear that Despont—equally revered for working on the prestigious private residences of illustrious names such as Bill Gates, Calvin Klein and Oscar de la Renta—has woven together the wealth of knowledge he possessed from both his grand homes and storied hotels to envision the new London home of the rich and famous. Despont’s hallmarks of symmetry and geometry are very much evident—apartments are meticulously laid out and all feature high ceilings, with dual, often triple aspect allowing a flooding of natural light. While never being ostentatious, Despont introduces his renowned refined elegance through luxurious details and focus on materiality.
The intimate-feeling lobby is brought to life with Despont design references like the custom-made fireplace, lacquered mahogany timber panelling, and polished Belgian marble floor. Sumptuous materials in rich shades of reds, chocolate, and ochre give a sense of decadence and are among the signature features that run through the common areas and apartments. Others are just as impressive: bespoke ironmongery, hidden pocket doors, and glass kitchen cabinets lined with French linen; the use of book-matched Calacatta gold marble and American black walnut timber flooring in a specially-created chevron pattern.
The four dressed residences, where all furniture was created bespoke by Despont and his team, give the opportunity for a turnkey purchase. The four-bedroom residence on the fifth floor for instance features silk-lined walls on entry, expansive living and dining space with cerused oak panelled walls, and a family room with a private balcony. Key accessories come from a collaboration with Abask, the online homeware platform that brings together artisans across the globe with an eye on heritage and craft.
Alongside the luxurious apartments are amenities that would not be out of place in a five-star hotel. Driving the point home is a 20-meter swimming pool, vitality pool, as well as a sauna and circular steam room.
There is more to be unveiled over the next year, most interestingly a brand new restaurant set across two floors in Mirabelle’s former home, details of which are being kept intriguingly under wraps for now. Even so, it will have little to prove. Already this building serves up a remarkable showcase of Despont’s incredible approach to interior architecture and further cements his legacy as one of the industry’s greatest designers of recent times.