History emanates from every wall at this Oxford shop and townhouse, dating from the medieval and Georgian eras but updated with minimalist fittings and contrasting dark and light spaces.
The four-storey Oxfordshire home was requisitioned during the Civil War by the royal court’s entourage and remodelled in the Georgian period. In the 1950s it was the home of Kenneth Ball’s legendary Elizabeth restaurant. Then, in 2007, conservation architect Julian Harrap revamped it, taking a minimalist approach while retaining its historic atmosphere.
St Aldates has an abundance of original wooden features, and they take centre stage in Harrap’s serene design. The dining room, fully panelled in dramatic dark wood, looks unchanged from the late medieval period. The reception room above it has panelling in a rich cream and is lined with deep bookshelves. Both rooms have open stone fireplaces. The kitchen, meanwhile, brings in pale high-gloss and stainless-steel surfaces.
Soft light cascades in through sash windows all around the three-bedroom timber-framed stone home. The rear windows offer views of Christ Church college and its lawn grounds. It’s now on sale for £1.75 million with Inigo with the shop floor currently rented out to an Oxford varsity shop. It can be obtained at one month’s notice if required.