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Bankside & Gallery Lofts has always been one of our favourite developments in all of London. No two apartments are the same in this Manhattan Lofts Development Corporation, situated right next to Tate Modern and it continues to be one of the most sought after developments in London.

 

Normally, there is little available for rental at any one time, but the planets appear to have aligned and four apartments have all come up at the same time for rental – from £475 per week up to £800 per week. All different shapes and sizes but each with the benefit of 24 hour concierge & security along with use of the Resident’s only gymnasium and communal decked gardens.

 

History of the Bankside area:

Bankside stretches from Blackfriars Bridge to London Bridge. It has, in recent years, become one of central London’s most popular riverside destinations.bankside-lofts-exterior1

Bankside is one of the oldest settlements in Britain, taking its name from a medieval causeway built to hold back the Thames. When the Romans founded Londinium on the river’s north bank, a bridge was built near present day London Bridge and the surrounding area has been inhabited ever since. In Elizabethan times the area was London’s finest theatre district – as well as being well known for its brothels. Some of England’s greatest writers and actors, including William Shakespeare, lived and worked here. During the late 18th century Bankside industrialised: docks, warehouses and breweries proliferated. Following industrial decline after the Second World War, the area remained largely undiscovered until its 1990s renaissance.

Regeneration alon52-gallery-lofts-externalg this part of the river has created a magnet for Londoners and visitors. Tate Modern, Millennium Bridge, Globe Theatre, Borough Market and the Bankside Frost Fair have all helped to shift London’s centre of gravity east. In recent years, Bankside has been propelled into the premier league.

Bankside & Gallery Lofts sits on an unusually shaped land parcel. The acute turn at the top of Hopton Street and the resulting curve of the property follows the line of a large mill-pond that existed for centuries, possibly till the 1800s. The site was originally occupied by a glassworks.  Archeological work undertaken prior to construction revealed many fragments of glass and ceramics, some of which can be seen on display in the reception area.

Nell Gwynne’s House at 67 Hopton Street is a restored 17th Century cottage;  one-time home to the manager of the original Bankside cocoa warehouse.

Designed by award-winning architect Piers Gough, the heart of the development is a former Victorian cocoa warehouse. To the north is a converted 1950s office building of similar height, curving round the street line. This has been extended upwards and sideways to form a distinctive, yellow ochre terraced tower. There are single and double height lofts throughout, with commercial premises at ground level.111-reception-to-kitchen-small1

bankside lofts 1 bed loft @ £500 pw

bankside lofts 2 bed loft @ £695 pw

gallery lofts 1-2 bed loft @ £under offer pw

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Are you ready to be bored once more with gushing accounts of how you can get more space for your money in the East End than you can in West London? How it might not be Fulham or Battersea, but it’s a darn sight cheaper and offers the opportunity of authentic loft living instead of a silly Victorian conversion flat somewhere posher?

 

Well, we’ve heard that story many times before and have no real desire to hear it again, but we do have a wonderful anecdote about what else is available at a particular converted factory complex in Limehouse. And that is community.1-external-rear

 

Now, you’ve probably heard tell of other people living in your current building, and you may even have seen them out the window. But do you actually know them? Do they provide you with nourishing conversation and company? Or is it anonymous corridors and silence in the lift?

 

At the former Spratt’s Factory on the Limehouse Cut canal, life is a thoroughly cosy affair. Spratts was the very first maker of dog food, setting up a factory in High Holborn in 1860. James Spratt, though from English family (an Admiral James Spratt fought at Trafalgar), was born in Ohio. He worked as an electrician and came back to England to sell his patented lightning rods.A dog-lover, Spratt was struck by the packs of half-starved dogs that hung around the docks to be fed on ship’s spoiled hard tack biscuits. He soon patented a ‘Meat-Fibrine dog cake’, shaped like a bone and made of wheat, vegetables and beef blood. However, he encouraged the idea that his biscuits used buffalo meat by putting up adverts showing American ‘Indians’ hunting bison – the first use of billboards in London. His factory thrived, expanding into America in the 1870s (though Spratt died in 1878) and building a new factory in Poplar in 1897 – ‘The Biggest Dog Biscuit Factory in the World’. As it grew, it diversified into feeds for other animals, as the gable wall advert shows, veterinary medicine and other products for pets, such as kennels and collars etc. The company was bought over by Spillers in 1960, who still make dog-shaped ‘Bonio’ biscuits, and the trademark survives.

 

 

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Originally converted into shell apartments by a bunch of enterprising artists in the 1980s including the Queen’s tapestry restorer Ksynia Marko, a packaging firm, Roger Law of Spitting Image fame, sculptor Michael Green and ceramicist Elizabeth Fritsch, the buildings have since become home to a varied and sociable mix of creatives and city types looking not just for space to swing a few cats, but a sociable, neighbourly vibe.

 

Ed Hall runs a graphic design agency as is a typical example: he wanted to work from home, ditch the commute, have a separate living and office space, at least 1000 sq ft and not spend too much. In trendy wherever he’d have just managed his space requirements, but here he got 1700sq ft and a large terrace to boot. Needless to say, he’s a happy chappy.

 

Then there’s Rachel Clark, and abstract artist of note, whose partner has an apartment here from where she loves to paint. “When I look at this place from across the canal, I always think: if I wasn’t part of that community, I’d want to be.”

 

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And today’s final example is Bruce, whose apartment we are currently offering for sale. He came in the 90s as a project manager on the Jubilee Line Extension but has stayed far longer than planned, in no small way down to the sheer amount of space and environment. His place is a real box-ticker of what you need in a proper loft: 1350 sq ft, 12ft ceilings, exposed brickwork, high ceilings, loading bay doors, open-plan, fantastic light, wooden floors, flexible space… there are two parking spaces as well.  And the asking price of £630,000 is a lot less than you’d pay in Fulham or… Oh it seems we just can’t help ourselves!exterior-small

 

Half way between the DLR at Devons Road and Langdon Park, Spratt’s is just 3 stops from Stratford, 4 from Canary Wharf and 6 from Bank. So basically not very far from anywhere, but way more individual, inspiring and downright cool than a West London anything at the same price.

 

Go see it.5-view-to-reception-small

 

PATENTHOUSELOFT@£630,000

 

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Just being finished and and available for immediate rental, a selection of 1, 2 & 3 bedroom apartments and penthouses from an inspiring local developer – and equally exciting architect – in a radical new building on the canal between Shoreditch and Dalston.

City and Suburban Homes have a long history of stylish and groundbreaking developments in around Islington, with their standard-setting and design flair keeping their creations as firm favourites in their locale.

Ivy Waterside is the latest addition to their trophy cabinet; designed by the cutting edge ph+ architectural practice, it’s a delicious slice of cutting-edge mastery directly on the Regent ‘s Canal. Inside are a series of seriously smart apartments, duplexes and penthouses, most of which have full-width glass across the living room wall leading out to a balcony directly on the waterfront.

The use of materials in the construction is a dizzying mix of medieval and modern building methods, with an emphasis on the natural environment and eco-friendliness: gabion walls are planted with honeysuckle and clematis; high performance solar-powered hot water reduces the energy load; futuristic Corten steel cladding gives the building a dynamic waterside façade.

 

The specification? Equally excellent. Slick hi-gloss kitchens with Corian worktops and Siemens appliances; under-floor heating with beautiful engineered wenge timber planks; fantastic bathrooms with large format tiling and integrated cabinets; built in wardrobes; video intercom; custom made window shutters… It’s an impressive list of what you’d want and expect from such a beautifully imagined and realised project.

 

Does the local lifestyle really need any introduction? Shoreditch, Old Street, Dalston, Broadway Market, London Fields, Islington… On the doorstep, around the corner and within a wander is London life at its best with more places to hang out, have fun, eat, shop, drink, get fit and be entertained than is possible to get down here.

 

Guide prices:

1 bedroom from £350pw

2 bedrooms from £450pw

3 bedrooms from £600 pw

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Yes, it’s monthly state-the-obvious time.

 

In fact, no it’s not. What it actually is, is the start of a new feature on our blog and newsletter. Surrounded as we are by good design, and always on the lookout for beautiful things and gadgets and whatnots, we’re going to share what we find we you, our illustrious readers out there.

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Today’s find is the rather splendid website thabto.co.uk (thabto stands for Two Hands Are Better Than One, so everything should now become clear around this article’s intriguing headline).

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From the ‘jpeg’ coat hook – made from clothes pegs – to the RayBan wall mirror and grenade-shaped salt’n’pepper shakers, everything at thabto is firmly tongue-in-cheek and designed to raise a smile. And having things that make you smile is surely what life is all about, no?

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Founded by college chums Steven and James, who graduated in product design from Central St Martins in London (recommendation enough for anyone), they released their first product (the knuckleduster-handled mug) in 2008 and have since got their products into many a respected retailer.

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We love checking back every now and then to see what’s new on their site and are pretty sure that, before too long, we’ll be seeing their stuff popping up regularly in the homes of our clients.

 

thabto.co.uk

 

 

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