The Househunter 12/2/16

Morning Househunters, are you ready to poke about some houses?


St Pancras is one of my favourite buildings in London and I couldn’t resist the chance for a snoop inside – fancy it? I do love modern and contemporary too but there’s just something about this completely OTT Victorian Gothic architecture that draws me in.


The penthouse is one of 67 apartments in the building and has three bedrooms, two receptions and spreads over 3,000 sq feet making it considerably bigger than my entire house. So, it won’t entirely surprise you to know that it’s on the market for £6,250,000 (with Knight Frank via

And that’s another reason why we need to have a look around now because with prices like that I don’t see us getting in any other way. Not unless someone wins the lottery PDQ and invites us all round for tea.


The developers have kept the original features as far as possible and some of the ceilings rise to 44ft – which, if my maths serves me right, is about five times the normal height.

And worrabout that grand bathroom? Like it or loathe it, it is definitely quite something isn’t it?

Now where can we go after that? Well we’re going to stick with the penthouse theme – look it’s February and it’s cold and miserable, a little dreaming never hurt anyone. Besides, this one is amazing.


It’s on the market with CBRE Residential (via ) for £3,975,000 (see we’re already cheaper than the last one) and I wanted you to see the clever use of black accents. Firstly round the door in the kitchen above, and see the shapes echoed in the table next do it.


Then look at this staircase. Now I appreciate that not all of you (!) will have a similar stair arrangement to this, but it’s about thinking creatively with your paint and seeing if there is a way to add interest and drama to a space in a cost effective way.


I’m always banging on about adding a touch of black and you can really see how it defines the space in this apartment. The gold sofa and metallic elements also work really well with the black and white palette, which might otherwise be a little stark.


Basically, as things go, I could live in this one. There’s also a private terrace and balcony, in case you weren’t sure, and is located in fashionable Bloomsbury – which I often think sounds nicer than it actually is but hell, as locations go you could do worse.

Talking of locations we’re heading north for our last property. Last week we looked at a castle used by Henry VIII and his time we’re going to see one that was visited by Mary Queen of Scots. If the properties above are to be my pieds a terre (I’ve got two pieds, stands to reason I’ll need two a terres) then this is for my weekend retreats.


It’s Kirby Knowle Castle, near Thirsk in Yorkshire and is on the market for £4,00,000 but the good news is the current owners have done some of the boring work such as re-wiring and installing central heating so, assuming the roof is ok, you get to spend the fun money – on things like the kitchen.

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You’ll like this bit though: the brochure describes it as “a statement house, large but not too large, a comfortable family home surrounded by beautiful grounds”.

In case you weren’t sure what a “comfortable family home” should consist of, I should  just point out that there are 12 bedrooms, two kitchens (each with a four oven AGA) a self-contained apartment, a separate cottage and 37 acres.


Could you be comfortable in that? I mean if pushed?

So there you have it for this week. Who’s moving where then?

Kate Watson-Smyth

The author Kate Watson-Smyth

I’m a journalist who writes about interiors mainly for The Financial Times but I have also written regularly for The Independent and The Daily Mail. My house has been in Living Etc, HeartHome and featured in The Wall Street Journal & Corriere della Sera. I also run an interior styling consultancy Mad About Your House. Welcome to my Mad House.


  1. that comment is brilliant ‘a comfortable family home – large but not too large’…..12 bedrooms, 2 kitchens……

    i’ve got ceiling envy from your post today

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