Who is Harry's new billionaire neighbour?
PUBLISHED: 17:13 10 April 2008 | UPDATED: 14:57 07 September 2010
THE Ham&High exclusively reveals the new billionaire owner of Athlone House
THE Ham&High can exclusively reveal the new billionaire owner of Athlone House - Kuwaiti business mogul Nasser Al-Kharafi.
The 64-year-old, who is the world's 46th richest man reputedly worth $14billion, bought the house, set in five acres on the edge of Hampstead Heath, for £16million in 2006.
Mr Al-Kharafi, who is married with five children, is behind controversial plans to demolish the former Victorian nursing home and replace it with a neo-Classical pad inspired by Blenheim Palace and more than twice the size.
Until now the identity of the man who will move in next door to Heath tramp Harry Hallowes has been shrouded in mystery.
But it was revealed this week by Joey Esfandi, chairman of Dwyer which sold Mr Al-Kharafi the property two years ago.
Mr Esfandi denied reports in Monday's Evening Standard that he was the new owner and said: "They got it completely wrong and they are putting in a retraction. I sold the house to Mr Al-Kharafi, an extremely wealthy Middle Eastern businessman. He wants to build a family home - a pretty big family home."
The new house is expected to be worth £130million, making it the most expensive house in London.
Already an engineering and construction magnate, Mr Al-Kharafi also has exclusive franchise rights in the Middle East for Pizza Hut, TGI Fridays, KFC and Wimpy.