Welcome to CanadianHedgeWatch.com
Saturday, July 20, 2024

Millionaire fund manager 'ordered to buy low cost housing for planning permission'

Date: Monday, April 27, 2009
Author: Telegraph.co.uk

A wealthy hedge fund manager has been ordered to pay for low-cost council housing in his neighbourhood in return for planning permission to overhaul his 20 million mansion.

Two years ago, Chris Rokos bought a run-down four-storey hotel for 18 million in the London suburb of Kensington with the intention of converting it into an eight-bedroom palatial home.

His extensive proposals included a gym, home cinema, third-floor open-air pool, internal climbing wall, subterranean garage with motorised lift for two cars and a library.

He also wanted to dig four storeys below ground to create a 16ft-deep swimming pool with a high diving board.

In his 168-page planning application, 38-year-old Mr Rokos - who also has a home in Manhattan - said he wanted to restore the Grade II-listed building to its "former splendour and original use".

The application was greeted with concern by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, but was finally approved with the proviso that he contribute 500,000 towards social housing.

Such conditions are normally only imposed on commercial property developers, but a council spokesman said the renovations were so extensive that the house fell into this category.

"It is such a large property that we have come to this agreement," the spokesman said. "It is the equivalent of 10 units of normal housing."

The council's consent form said: "Given the particular circumstances of this listed building conversion, this sum to assist with provision of affordable housing elsewhere is acceptable."

Mr Rokos made his name as a trader for Goldman Sachs in the 1990s and has a reputation as one of the most successful hedge fund managers in Britain.

This weekend he was ranked 600th in The Sunday Times Rich List, with an estimated fortune of 90 million, 10 million less than last year.

Despite his wealth and position as a senior partner at the investment group Brevan Howard Asset Management, Mr Rokos is known to be keen to stay out of the limelight.

When he launched a 500 million new fund in 2007, he refused to release a photograph of himself to accompany the promotional literature.

His salary for the last financial year is estimated between 20 million and 30 million.

A spokesman for Mr Rokos was unavailable for comment.