£3.5million for an EMPTY plot of land overlooking Britain’s most exclusive resort: Wealthy buyer purchases 30ft strip of grass with a view of Sandbanks and slipway into the sea

  • Half-an-acre plot of overgrown grass has one of finest views of Millionaire’s Row
  • It has a slipway for launching boats and runs down to the edge of Poole Harbour
  • Planning permission needs to be obtained and build cost would be over £1million
  • It comes as London-based buyers cast net further from capital due to Covid-19

A wealthy buyer has purchased a 30ft strip of grass with a view of the exclusive resort of Sandbanks for an astonishing £3.5million. 

The empty plot of land with overgrown grass and uneven concrete runs down to the edge of Poole Harbour in Dorset.

It has one of the finest views of the Millionaire’s Row – where mansion homes sell for up to £10million. It also has a slipway for launching boats straight onto the water.

The new owner who paid the full asking price for the plot will have to obtain planning permission before they can build their own luxury pad. It is thought the build cost would be in excess of £1million.

The empty plot of land with overgrown grass and uneven concrete, pictured, sits behind two houses and has one of the finest views of the Millionaire’s Row in Sandbanks, Dorset

An aerial view of the empty plot of land, highlighted, which sold for £3.5m after the new owner paid the full asking price for the area which has a slipway for launching boats into the water

The mind-boggling figures are par for the course for the Sandbanks area, which is the fourth most expensive place in the world to buy property – behind London, Manhattan and Tokyo.

And although this half-an-acre plot is about a mile from the exclusive peninsula, seafront properties around the harbour remain in huge demand.

It is thought the ongoing uncertainty of Brexit and coronavirus is leading to people looking to buy holiday homes here than abroad.

London-based buyers are also now said to be casting their net further from the capital as the Covid-19 pandemic has shown they can work from home.

Tom Doyle, of Sandbanks estate agents Lloyds Property Group, which sold the plot, said: ‘To anybody outside the area it might seem madness to pay £3.5m for a vacant plot of land.

‘But people pay a premium for water frontage property and houses on that road sell for between £6-£7m. It does attract high net-worth individuals.

‘It is a very vibrant market at the moment. Why is that? A lot of people are thinking seriously about not having a second home abroad and focussing on securing something exciting in the UK.

‘Working and living away from London is also a factor. The mindset seems to be to go into the city one day a week and then work from home for the rest of it.’

An aerial view of Sandbanks with the plot of land towards the top left, in the distance. It comes as London-based buyers are now said to be casting their net further from the capital

He added: ‘The new owner is going to build a house there himself to live in.. He will not be putting it back up for sale when it is complete. He already lives locally but he wants a house on the water which is what this will be.’

The plot is on Dorset Lake Avenue and faces south west.

On its website, Lloyds Property Group states that it is ‘prime waterfront location’ on the ‘gateway to Sandbanks’.

Prices in the area have soared, with prospective buyers even able to get more for their money in the exclusive London neighbourhood of Mayfair. 

Sandbanks’ popularity is attributed to its seclusion, and every home in the community is within just a few minutes’ walk of the beach, with most of them enjoying stunning views over the harbour or out to the English Channel.

An aerial view of Poole Harbour and the plot of land, pictured far right. The area is the fourth most expensive place in the world to buy property – behind London, Manhattan and Tokyo

Houses were first built on Sandbanks in the late 19th century, but it was not until the 1960s when a property boom saw the peninsula – measuring less than half a square mile – become more and more built-up, turning into a Millionaires’ Row filled with luxury beachfront mansions.

The property market on the peninsula has shot through the roof in recent years, with many houses being demolished and replaced with cutting-edge new properties to meet demand.

In July 2009 a 14,990 sq ft (1,393-square-metre) empty plot of land on the peninsula was put up for sale for £13.5million – the equivalent of nearly £10,000 per square metre.

In May 2014, a bungalow bought for just £1,000 almost a century ago (around £40,000 in today’s money) and now a luxury holiday home was reported to be now worth £5million – a 500,000 percent increase in value.

Earlier in 2014 a tatty 1950s three-bedroom Sandbanks bungalow which would be worth just £200,000 in most other parts of the country went on sale for an eye-watering £2.25million.

In 2013, 15 homes were sold for a combined total of £80million as Sandbanks’ reputation has continued to grow. 

Millionaire’s Row: An exclusive stretch of real estate home to Harry Redknapp and Russian millionaire Maxim Demin that was once named the most expensive in the world

The Sandbanks peninsula in Dorset has become a millionaire’s playground in recent years, and continues to keep even the likes of Miami and Monte Carlo off the top of a list of ultimate waterfront destinations.

An 850ft stretch of road in one the UK’s most exclusive enclaves contains just 13 harbourside mansions that total a staggering £93million in value. 

The narrow plots measuring between 40ft and 60ft wide on Panorama Road previously made it the most expensive piece of coastline in the world in terms of price per square foot. 

Maxim Demin, the Russian millionaire owner of Premier League club AFC Bournemouth, lives in the luxurious area.

Former Tottenham manager and 2019 I’m a Celebrity winner Harry Redknapp also lives around the corner.

The 13 properties in Sandbanks which together are worth some £93m

The mansions on the peninsula in Poole Harbour, Dorset, offer unrivalled views over the world’s second biggest natural harbour. 

There is almost total privacy at the front of the properties while back gardens run down to the water’s edge.

Such is the ‘super-prime level’ of the Sandbanks market, two ultra-modern properties with indoor swimming pools were once snapped up in quick succession for a combined £15.6m.

One, a sprawling state-of-the-art mansion, sold for more than £8m, while the other sold for £7.5m before the sales brochure had come out.

Adrian Dunford, of Sandbanks estate agents Tailor Made, said in 2018: ‘We now believe this part of Sandbanks is the most expensive stretch of coastline on the planet in terms of price-per-square foot. 

‘The multi-million pound mansions in Miami and Monte Carlo will be on much bigger plots of land than you get on Sandbanks.

‘The thing about Sandbanks is that it is a peninsula and so we are hemmed in. You can’t increase the number of properties and so supply and demand dictate the prices.

‘That row of properties is located in the most enviable part of Sandbanks. The houses have direct water access and also overlook the busiest part of the harbour.

‘The south westerly aspect allows for sensational views to Old Harry Rocks, Poole Harbour, Brownsea Island and the Purbeck Hills.

‘Sometimes with the bigger, headline-priced properties you need two summers to sell them.

‘So to have two at the very top end of the market go as quickly as they have says an awful lot about the state of the local market.

‘The properties were bought by London-based buyers and that maybe a reflection of what is happening with the Brexit.’

The changing face of Sandbanks: How windswept wasteland cut off from the rest of the country became one of the world’s most sought-after addresses

Before the rich and famous moved in: Parkstone-on-Sea as it was then known, went from a deserted landscape to Britain’s answer to Monte Carlo

Just 100 years ago, before it became one of the world’s most exclusive and expensive addresses, the Sandbanks peninsula in Dorset was little more than a windswept wasteland, cut off from the rest of the country and unrecognisable from the glossy coastal resort that exists today.

And while the mega-rich now compete to build bigger and better harbour-front homes, snapping up plots whenever they become available, in 1880 the tiny enclave in Poole was only home to a solitary hotel on the southern tip of the peninsula, where guests could get away from the rest of civilisation.

Sandbanks, or Parkstone-on-Sea as it was known, has gone from a deserted landscape to Britain’s answer to Monte Carlo.

A proper roadway linking the peninsula to the mainland was only laid after the First World War at a time when many former servicemen returned from battle only to find themselves out of work.

The highway made Sandbanks more accessible and it naturally started to become popular among holidaymakers and daytrippers.

Larger houses started to be built on the previously unspoiled land, with a wealthy banker and father-of-eight, Dr Edward Andreae, becoming Sandbanks’ first property magnate by building eight homes on the peninsula – one for each of his children.

Descendents of the family still own one of the properties built by Dr Andreae, who was of German descent.

Another wealthy type who built and owned a principal residence was Lord Leonard Lyle MP, the chairman of sugar giant Tate and Lyle.

The sand dunes in the middle of the peninsula once stood at up to 100ft high but they were gradually flattened as bigger, permanent houses were built in the years between the two world wars.

However, the area’s progress was halted by the Second World War when it became a fortified military base and it took until the 1960s for development on the peninsula to really take off.

The remaining empty plots along the waterside were snapped up by buyers, and some of the older properties were demolished and built on.

Although Sandbanks was a very prosperous place, it remained relatively affordable to locals with flats selling for less than £100,000 in the 1980s.

But some canny marketing in the 1990s by local estate agents put Sandbanks on the world map and transformed it overnight from a picturesque coastal suburb to Poole to something of a millionaire’s row.

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