Kemp Town is famous for its graceful Regency architecture looking over the English Channel and Lewes Crescent is a jewel in our crown, its elegant symmetry designed by Busby and Wilds. Residents still enjoy the acres of exclusive gardens and glorious sea views, and this uniquely beautiful three/four- bedroom maisonette within it also has a finely wrought balcony from which to appreciate them. Inside, the current owner has breathed new life into this spacious home, deftly balancing impressive Regency proportions and period features with the demands of contemporary entertaining, whilst the quiet bedrooms are focused on luxurious comfort. There’s a secret to be discovered at the back whilst at the front, the manicured grounds have a tunnel to the beach. Local cafes, restaurants and shops cater for your every need, Brighton Marina with its health club, cinemas and restaurants is within walking distance, the designer shops and theatres of the Georgian Lanes are five- minutes by cab and, close to buses to the city centre and station, life’s easy for home seekers or weekenders. Near to the hospitals, law courts, Queen’s Park and some of the best schools in the country, including Brighton College, this historic home will also appeal to investors.
Style: First floor maisonette in Grade I Regency Crescent
Bedrooms: 3/4 double
Living rooms: 2/3 spacious
Area: 222.6 sq m 2396 sq ft
Outside: SE balcony, garden enclosures with tunnel to beach
Parking: Permit H zone
Location: Kemp Town
why you’ll like it
Designed by Busby and Wilds and built by Thomas Cubitt, this stately development was one of the first built in Kemp Town and the ornamental façade was completed by 1827. Exclusive for its location on the edge of the Downs and known at the time as Belgravia by the sea, it has stood the test of time with generations of custodians caring for these exceptional homes. Today, set back from the English Channel behind acres of manicured gardens with a private tunnel to the beach, this magnificent Grade I listed Crescent is still one of Brighton’s finest addresses.
The imposing front door, secured by an entry phone, introduces the scale of the building and opens into an impressive hallway with Regency detail and shared by only two other homes. The entrance to this apartment is on the first floor and opens to a warm and welcoming hallway, lined with discreet storage, where Travetine marble conceals underfloor heating.
Spanning the whole of the front of the building and with the delightful Regency proportions carefully undisturbed, the reception was designed to impress, and certainly fulfils its brief: The rolling waves of the English Channel are brought in with the sunshine by three sets of tall French doors which stretch all the way up from the gleaming walnut floor to a ceiling adorned with handmade friezes. Opening to a delicately wrought balcony where friends can join you to enjoy the magnificent views of the gardens and the sea, the doors have also kept their original shutters which shelter the room from winter storms as well as providing security if you want a lock up and leave. There’s ample space to relax or to entertain, and to your right, a stately marble fireplace now has a wood burning stove installed within it
Central doors to the reception keep your options open, and the graciously proportioned kitchen area has plenty of space for a central table. There’s a fine frieze high above your head and you can enjoy the wonderful sea views as you create sumptuous suppers. The skilfully hand built kitchen, by Arundel Bespoke, is in a traditional style and proportionate to the space. Painted in the subtle hues of Little Green, the units provide ample storage and have beautiful Italian marble surfaces. The fabulous Bertazzoni range could stay, as could the ice dispensing fridge freezer, subject to circumstance and negotiation, and the high spec dishwasher is integrated beneath a large window which looks across to the bedrooms of the apartment, so this room is unusually private for guests. The attention to detail continues with ambient lighting above the top cabinets as well as over the counter tops, so all you need to do is to choose your mood and add good food and company.
the guest room/snug and cloakroom
Ideal for guests or for an au pair, the underfloor heating continues into this bright and cheerful room which is near to the front door so they could come and go without disturbing the main house. A generous double, there’s a wall of fitted wardrobes which conceal shelving and plugs for a t.v., so this room could serve as a spacious family snug, especially as there’s a chic cloakroom opposite.
two double bedrooms and family bathroom
Step up and into the 21st century when you climb a staircase with led lighting set into the wall to a landing with glass, sliding walls, the subtle change of pace making this part of the property feel very private. The light touch of the designer has created two restful double bedrooms on a more human scale, so although still unusually spacious, they also feel nice and cosy. One of the quiet bedrooms looks across the broad light well to the kitchen, whilst the second bedroom on this floor looks over the quiet lane at the back and the characterful black flint mews houses built to serve these grand homes. Both bedrooms have softly coloured décor and are ready to move into, so there shouldn’t be any “lively discussions” as to allocation. Opposite, the family friendly bathroom has clean lines and practical flooring. The contemporary suite is white, there’s a shower above the bath, plenty of hidden storage and a heated rail for towels.
the master suite
Peaceful and private on its own floor, you’ll sleep well in this comfortable and stylish room. Light and airy with windows to each side, this space is nevertheless not directly overlooked. There’s a glamorous walk in closet as well as a built in wardrobe with plumbing for a washing machine (although there’s a separate utility elsewhere). Tucked away beyond the central wall panel is a spa like en suite where you can bathe in glory in the magnificent baignoir, which has a shower attachment and waterfall tap. Twin sinks rest on Japanese inspired cabinets, there’s a wet room style shower with a dual head system and there’s underfloor heating to keep toes cosy.
Tucked away, a rare to find back door leads to the quiet street behind, giving even swifter access to the local amenities, and more stairs take you to the lower level of the main house where a door opens to an immense cavern which we’re told has been fully tanked. Ahead is plumbing for utility machines, to your left is a storage space, so large you can’t see where it ends, and to the right is a room with a window and power, currently used as a private study
the garden enclosures
Covering several acres and beautifully planted, the manicured gardens are for the exclusive use of the residents of the Busby and Wilds original design of Arundel Terrace, Sussex Square, Lewes Crescent and Chichester Terrace, and the secret tunnel to the beach is said to have inspired Lewis Carol's rabbit hole in his novel 'Alice Through the Looking Glass'.
bear in mind
You have the best of all worlds as the Downs and the beach are nearby, local shops, cafes and bistro pubs serve your every immediate need and the enclosures have a lovely sense of community, but you also have your own private balcony.
what the owner says
“The sea views are mesmerising all year round and we have enjoyed opening the living room to them and inviting friends out to the balcony. The bedrooms are cosy and quiet, and the location’s ideal for adults and children.”
what’s around you
Shops: Local 2- minute walk, The Lanes a 5 -minute cab ride
Train Station: Brighton Station about 15 minutes on the bus
Seafront or park: The beach is 5 minutes through the tunnel from the acres of garden opposite
Primary: St Marks
Secondary: Varndean, Dorothy Stringer
Private: Brighton College, The Steiner School, Brighton and Hove High
Brighton is a cosmopolitan coastal resort famous for its history and flamboyant Royal Pavilion as well as its beaches, Pier and glamorous Marina. Known for its festivals celebrating the arts and relaxed, café culture there are countless shops, restaurants and bars to explore along the seafront, in the characterful Georgian Lanes or in the fashionable central shopping districts and all are easy to reach from this Grade I listed home. This beautiful Regency Crescent is by the beach and you’ll have access to the gardens, and it’s just a stroll from the fashionable Kemp Town Village which hosts the hospital and good schools including the award- winning Brighton College. The Marina is a short stroll with a myriad of restaurants to choose from as well as cinemas and a health club. The law courts and Amex are within walking distance and the Downs, a park and 72 par golf course are just a short walk away. It is also close to several bus routes serving the city centre, coast and Brighton station, with its fast links to Gatwick and London and for those who need to commute by car, the A23 and A27 are both readily accessible and there’s no waiting list for permit zone H.