Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Ashley Hicks to sell his London flat

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Ashley Hicks, the noted interior designer, selling his flat in the historic and iconic Albany, a three-story apartment building on Piccadilly.

The Albany was built as a mansion in the 1770s and divided into apartments known as Sets, in 1802. The mansion was originally owned by Viscount Melbourne.  After squandering his fortune in 1791, Lord Melbourne made arrangement to exchange homes with Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany, the second son of George III, who had recently married Princess Frederica of Prussia.  Within a few years, Frederick and his eccentric wife, who preferred her "menagerie of cats, dogs and monkeys," separated.  The Duchess of York and Albany moved to Oatlands and the duke, who was having financial difficulties was forced to see his home.  The property was bought by a developer, Alexander Copeland, who with architect William Holland, turned the mansion into small apartments for well-heeled (usually bachelors) men. 

Ashley's parents. the late interior designer David Hicks and his wife, Lady Pamela Mountbatten. bought the 2-bedroom apartment in 1979.

Three years after his father's death in 1998, Ashley, now 56,  moved into the apartment .  His mother, Lady Pamela, decided to live full time at their Oxford home, the Grove, as she no longer could "longer manage the steep stone stairway that leads to the front door."   Lady Pamela is the younger daughter of the late Earl Mountbatten of Burma.  She is a first cousin to Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

Ashley is in divorce proceedings with his second wife, American-born Kata Sharkey de Solis, by whom he has two young sons, Caspar and Horatio.  His first marriage to Italian designer Allegra Tondato also ended in divorce.  He has two grown daughters, Angelica and Ambrosia.

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 Ashley put his "own provocative stamp" when he redesigned the apartment, where he lived for nearly 20 years, most recently with his second wife, Kata.

The offering price for the 917 sq ft apartment is  £3,250,000.

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