View from the top: penthouse living
Since at least the 1960s, living life at height has enjoyed – or suffered – mixed reviews.
Post-war high-rises, originally meant to be “streets in the sky”, all too often turned out to be upright slums.
And yet – as ever in the property world – location was everything; high buildings didn’t have to mean low expectations.
In fact, then as now, if you build high in a sought-after area, with great views, you end up with some of the most desirable property in town. Just ask Donald Trump.
The epitome of high-class, high-rise living is the penthouse. Often with a separate lift, and with no-one above you, the penthouse has been a by-word for urban glamour ever since “living life at the top” was “invented” in 1920s New York.
In the Harrogate district, there are few high-rises – or “purpose-built apartment blocks” – and even fewer penthouses.
The following four properties are all at the top (or very nearly) of their respective buildings and crucially, all command superb views.
Number 121 Park Place is at the very top of one of the tallest buildings in Harrogate.
The 12th-floor Park Parade apartment has two bedrooms and has recently been refurbished throughout.
On the ground floor, it has a small lockable store and a single garage with remote-controlled door, as well as access to communal facilities such as the laundry and gardens.
To say it has fantastic Stray views is something of an understatement; from up here you can see right across the Vale of York to the Hambleton Hills.
In fact, you might also be able to wave to the owners of 7 Byron Court, on Beech Grove.
This two-bedroom flat is on the fifth floor of a six-floor building that stands in one of the best locations in town.
The centre of the apartment has been opened out to create a large living area (about 37’ x 24’), which includes a lounge area overlooking West Park Stray and leading onto a good-sized balcony.
It also has a sophisticated lighting system, with downlighters controlled from a central console.
Outside, it has a large double garage and access to the communal gardens.
Number 16 Micklethwaite Steps is not a penthouse either, but it is on the upper floor of one of the most elevated buildings in Wetherby centre.
Perched high above the River Wharfe, it has enviable views across the weir and towards the bridge, bandstand and town centre.
It has two bedrooms, and its master bedroom has double doors opening onto a balcony overlooking the river.
Finally, 26 Esplanade Court, on St Mary’s Walk in Harrogate, is a true penthouse apartment, with all the luxury the term implies.
The three-bedroom property has underfloor heating, full-height windows, sun deck, double garage and a bespoke spiral staircase leading to the upper levels.
Importantly, it also has stunning panoramic views of Low Harrogate, across the Stray and the Montpellier Quarter towards Bettys and the town centre.
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