Russell-Cooke's corporate and property teams were at the forefront of the recent sale and purchase of 99 Kensington High Street, home to the iconic Kensington Roof Gardens which celebrate their 75th anniversary this year. Led by Corporate & Commercial Partners Jonathan Thornton and David Webster and Property Partner Arnold Isaacson, Russell-Cooke acted for the purchaser, a private family investment vehicle which has been a client of the Firm for many years. Dentons acted for the sellers, a Singapore joint venture. The building was built for the Derry & Toms department store in 1933. The current tenants include Sony Records, Marks and Spencer, Gap and the luxury Equinox gymnasium as well as Virgin, the operator of the roof garden restaurant and nightclub
The famous roof gardens presented some interesting and unusual technical challenges to the transaction teams. Apart from title to the flamingos (!) the legal implications of an acre and a half of garden with stream, pond and light woodland several storeys above High Street Kensington tube station don't come up very often. Close liaison was required with the team from Savills, acting for the purchaser, regarding the arrangements for repair and maintenance of the "membrane" which protects the rest of the building from the garden.
Jonathan Thornton, Head of the Corporate & Commercial Team, commented 'This sale represents a successful collaborative conclusion to a particularly technical matter. The strength of our corporate and property teams working closely together throughout reinforces our best placed expertise in high value business sales and property acquisitions. This transaction is evidence of a broader trend of increasing demand for high profile buildings in sought after areas.'