London's Qatari Quarter expands with wealthy Arabs snapping up £1billion of real estate including thousands of the capital's most valuable properties
London’s Qatari Quarter expands with wealthy Arabs snapping up £1billion of real estate including thousands of the capital’s most valuable properties
- Investment by Qatari royals and other nationals forms exclusive district
- Area in London’s Mayfair is said to cover about a quarter of its 279 acres
- Landmark building is £200m 17-bedroom Grade II-listed Dudley House
- Ruling Qatari family also own townhouses which are worth nearly £250m
A £1billion ‘Qatari Quarter’ including some of Britain’s most expensive buildings has been created in London’s most prestigious area, a study revealed today.
Huge investment by the Qatari royal family and other rich nationals has formed an exclusive district in London’s Mayfair which is said to cover about a quarter of its 279 acres and 4,300 homes.
The landmark building is the £200million Grade II-listed Dudley House on Park Lane, a 17-bedroom property that was allegedly once said by the Queen to make Buckingham Palace ‘look a bit dull’.
The mansion, owned by Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah al-Thani who is a cousin of the current emir, is one of many in the Qatari Quarter, according to West End-based estate agent Rokstone.
The ruling Qatari family also own townhouses on Park Street, Mount Street, Davies Street and Curzon Street which are worth nearly £250 million, according to The Times.
Also included in the Qatari Quarter is the £40million former Brazilian Embassy on Green Street.
Rokstone says that the area has borders running from South Street and the Dorchester Hotel to North Row, and with Grosvenor Square and Carlos Place to the west and Duke Street to the east.
The agent’s managing director Becky Fatemi said north-west Mayfair has become ‘the West End address of choice for Qatari and other Gulf state end-user buyers and tenants’.
She added: ‘The “oil royals” and wealthy families from the Middle East view Mayfair as a luxury village and their favourite place in London, alongside Knightsbridge, for luxury shopping, dining out and leisure.
‘Over two-thirds of Mayfair residents typically eat out three to four times per week and Middle East residents spend on average £1,900 per shop.’
Rokstone believes Qatari buyers make up 5 per cent of all those purchasing property in Mayfair each year – and more than half of all purchasers for homes priced at more than £10million.
He told The Times: ‘The ability of rich individuals and sovereign wealth funds to acquire such large parts of London is based on their ongoing wealth, and the interesting thing for the Qataris is that with the oil price where it is, my understanding is their buying power has been severely limited.
‘It would be interesting to see whether they are net buyers or net sellers over the next 12 to 24 months.’