This magnificent mansion stands adjacent to a small plaza dominated by a statue of Lord Napier astride his horse.
The property was built by Sir Samuel of Samuel Montague Bank from 1873-75, and employed one of the most famous architects of the time, Samuel Whitfield Daukes.
At the turn of the century, it housed the head of the Sassoon family. When the Sassoons moved their Bombay headquarters to London, company chairman Albert Sassoon followed his brothers Reuben and Arthur and acquired Kensington Gore, which boasted two white-and-gold Louis XVI drawing rooms. Sassoon furnished the dining room with Jacobean furniture and a tapestry portrait of Queen Victoria. Woodwork in the house was carved and inlaid with ebony and ivory, which had been salvaged from the Prince of Wales’ pavilion at the Paris Exhibition.
Albert’s son, Sir Edward, married Aline de Rothschild from Paris, and after Sir Albert retired to Brighton, they moved into the Kensington Gore mansion. Aline became influenced by Margot Tennant Asquith and joined the Souls, a coterie of wits and statesmen formed to offset the raffish Marlborough House circle. When Sir Albert died, Edward succeeded to the baronetcy and became chairman of the firm. He had tired of Kensington Gore by then, however, and bought an imposing mansion at 25 Park Lane near Rothschild Row.
In 1985 Albert’s property company managed to persuade the Royal Commission for the Exhibition 1851 to sell them the freehold of the building and spent more than five years of restoring and renovating the estate to its original glory.
The building has six stunning reception rooms, a billiard room, a dining room that can accommodate 32 people for dinner, 8 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, 4 kitchens, an indoor swimming pool with three showers, 4 guest powder rooms, a magnificent gym, wine cellar, and a gated private drive. The roof garden overlooks Kensington garden and Hyde Park.
The historic house will be open to the public daily from May 1-31, 2019 at 2-3pm. The tour duration is approximately 30 minutes, with tea, coffee and cake served at the end. Visitors will have access to see six reception rooms located on the ground and first floor of the house.
Advance booking is required. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07958 955 742.
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By tube, the nearest stations are High Street Kensington or South Kensington, and by bus routes 9, 10, 52, 452 & 70.
Parking is available on the street at a cost of £4.90 per hour
A charge of £14.50 per person will apply (concessions £10).
Baronet Albert Sasson persuaded the Prince of Wales to purchase his magnificient Panel Room in 1879. He then spent a year to alter 25 Kensington Gore in order to house the panels.