SouthYork the sequel: Fourteen years after oligarch paid £3m over the asking price for Prince Andrew's marital home and razed it to the ground, an ultra-modern mega-mansion is born

  • Prince Andrew’s for­mer mar­i­tal home in Ascot, Berkshire was razed six years ago by its new owner
  • Sunninghill Park’s replace­ment is near com­ple­tion, with six en-suite bed­rooms and a 25m swim­ming pool
  • It was bought by Timur Kulibayev, son-in-law of the for­mer pres­i­dent of Kazakhstan, in 2007 for £15m

When Prince Andrew’s for­mer mar­i­tal home was razed six years ago by its new own­er, few design con­nois­seurs would have lament­ed its loss.

Sunninghill Park had been com­pared to both a Tesco super­store and Southfork Ranch, JR’s vul­gar pile in Dallas, and it had gone to wrack and ruin after lying emp­ty for eight years.

Now its sprawl­ing replace­ment is near­ing com­ple­tion at long last – and while the jury is out on whether it is any eas­i­er on the eye, its lux­u­ri­ous and ultra-mod­ern cre­den­tials can’t be denied.

As well as six en-suite bed­rooms, it boasts sweep­ing glass bal­conies, tow­er­ing French doors and a 25-metre swim­ming pool.

Timur Kulibayev, son-in-law of the for­mer pres­i­dent of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, bought Sunninghill Park in Ascot, Berkshire, in 2007 for £15million.

Curiously he paid £3million more than the ask­ing price, even though the prop­er­ty had been on the mar­ket for five years.

It was lat­er report­ed that the Duke of York had been act­ing as a fix­er in Mr Kulibayev’s busi­ness deals. Andrew – who is close to the tycoon’s father-in-law, enjoy­ing goose-hunt­ing trips with him – denied any impropriety.

The oil and gas tycoon left the house, which was only about 30 years old, emp­ty and it fell into disrepair.

Demolition work began in 2015 after bats that had been roost­ing in the roof were found a new home, and plan­ning per­mis­sion for a new prop­er­ty was granted.

Left: Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson. Right: Timur Kulibayev, son-in-law of ex-Kazak President Nursultan Nazarbayev

This is the first time a pho­to of the appar­ent­ly com­plet­ed rear exte­ri­or has been seen.

The main build­ing is brick with stone cladding to cre­ate ‘a mod­ern inter­pre­ta­tion of a coun­ty house’, accord­ing to plan­ning documents.

There is also a huge split-lev­el ter­race for enter­tain­ing, a sun deck, foun­tain, chil­dren’s play area, as well as a walled kitchen garden.

Further afield there are ten­nis courts, while out­build­ings include a four-vehi­cle garage, guard­hous­es at the entrance and staff quarters.

Architects HOK, behind the BBC’s New Broadcasting House in cen­tral London, are report­ed­ly the designers.

Inside, the lux­u­ry con­tin­ues. On the ground floor there is a gym with steam, ice and sauna rooms, a games room, library and guest bedroom.

The upstairs is split into a chil­dren’s wing, where there are two en-suite bed­rooms and anoth­er for a nan­ny, and an adult wing, with two grand mas­ter bed­rooms, plus dress­ing rooms and a liv­ing room.

The pre­vi­ous house, which had 12 bed­rooms, was a gift from the Queen to Andrew and Sarah Ferguson after they mar­ried in 1986, and they moved in to the new-build in 1990.

It was nick­named SouthYork after the ranch in the 1980s TV show Dallas. The cou­ple’s mar­riage end­ed in 1996 and the house was put on the mar­ket for £12million in 2002.

Andrew moved to Royal Lodge in Windsor Great Park two years lat­er, while Sarah and daugh­ters Beatrice and Eugenie stayed on at Sunninghill until 2006.

It is not known if Mr Kulibayev intends to move into his new house, sell or rent it.


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