Paris’s first arrondissement, home to the Louvre and the Palais Royal, played a cameo role in the Netflix blockbuster Emily in Paris, but the multiple attractions of one of the city’s oldest, most central (and most costly) districts are likely to be further underlined by the launch of its latest museum, the Bourse de Commerce in Les Halles. The official opening of the reinvented corn exchange – a project funded by the Kering luxury-goods billionaire and art collector François Pinault and designed by Japanese architect Tadao Ando – has been delayed by recent events, but the new contemporary-art venue should begin attracting crowds later this year. Those wanting a first glimpse should consider the proximate advantages of this 260sq m, grand-luxe 19th-century apartment (priced at €5.5m, through Savills, savills.com), which is not only within comfortable walking distance but also overlooks the Louvre.
Aspen at its peak
The benefits of fresh air and exercise far from the madding crowd have become commodities over the past year – to the advantage of many of the world’s leading ski resorts. The Aspen Snowmass area in Colorado has been a notable beneficiary, and sales here in the first nine months of 2020 outstripped the whole of 2019. Real-estate figures for the entire Aspen area topped a record $3bn in the same year, so properties such as this five-bedroom house attached to 97 acres are a rarity, reflected in the $30m price tag through Knight Frank (knightfrank.com).
Access all areas
Following the UK’s departure from the EU, British buyers are now vying with their international counterparts to gain freedom of movement within the 27 member states. For many, Portugal’s Golden Visa scheme, a five-year residence-by-investment initiative, is the answer. In Lisbon, a four-bedroom apartment in Amoreiras is €3.25m, through Cluttons (cluttons.com), but interested parties had better be quick, since changes to the scheme come into effect this summer.
As UK citizens do not require a visa to live or work in Ireland, boom-town Dublin has business benefits to rival Frankfurt, Paris and Amsterdam. The city’s top-of-the-range properties also offer refreshing sea breezes, as at this three-bedroom villa overlooking Killiney Bay in Dalkey (€3.9m, through Sherry Fitzgerald, sherryfitz.ie).
The Queensway Gambit
Located north of Hyde Park, eclectic Queensway never quite hit the mark for London’s elite buyers, but the long-delayed arrival of the Elizabeth Line at Paddington station – 23 minutes to Heathrow and three to Bond Street – should help transform the area. The high street has already been given an uplift by the renaissance of Whiteleys, one of London’s first luxury department stores. The star attraction of the reworked Grade II-listed emporium will be The Whiteley, 139 Foster + Partners-designed townhouses and apartments (from £1.5m; thewhiteleylondon.com) with their own spa, pool and co-working space. They accompany new shops and restaurants, a cinema and a carefully curated arts programme, as well as the flagship Six Senses Hotel and Spa with its own serviced residences (sixsenses.com).
Holland Park life
The fraternal duo of Candy & Candy defined London’s early 21st-century property boom, and their development One Hyde Park set a benchmark for prime property prices around the world. Those days seem a distant memory, but the launch of the latest Christian Candy creation at 80 Holland Park (80hollandpark.com) in Kensington should prove to be a useful litmus test of the capital’s attractions in a post-Brexit, post-pandemic landscape. Unusually, its 25 individually designed homes – from penthouses and loft-style apartments to duplex townhouses – will be sold fully complete (and fully serviced), with prices starting from £2.6m for a two-bedroom apartment through Knight Frank.
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