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Four contenders for exclusive flats

CONTRACTS

FOUR firms are eyeing up a £14 million residential development in London's exclusive Belgravia district.

HBG, Multiplex, Sir Robert McAlpine and Skanska all submitted bids yesterday (Wednesday) for the scheme, which is designed by architect Foster & Partners.

The contract to build six luxury apartments has been dubbed Project Lateral by developer Candy & Candy because most of the apartments will occupy a single floor.

The site is owned by one of the two brothers who run Candy & Candy, which is being employed as project manager and agent.The plot offers a rare opportunity for a new-build development in an area where planning regulations are notoriously tight.

In April, Candy & Candy bagged the highest price ever paid for an apartment when it offloaded a flat in nearby Chelsea for £27 million.

The four contractors are pricing the job with and without interior work, although all of the apartments will be sold fully fitted.

The high price tags for Candy & Candy apartments are due in part to the firm's interior design, which uses a lot of marble and tropical wood.

Multiplex is considered the favourite to take the deal, having worked for the developer before, most notably on the recordbreaking Chelsea scheme.

The six-storey building will occupy the site of a former telephone exchange in Chesham Place and will include private terraces and a 250 sq m roof garden for the penthouse. Initial estimates value the apartments at up to £18 million each.

Laing O'Rourke and InteriorExterior were both interviewed for the job but failed to make the final cut.

A decision on preferred contractor is expected in August, with demolition starting on site in September.