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BBC The Apprentice mansion where candidates escaped Lord Sugar’s wrath is on the market for £16.5M

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The Apprentice mansion where candidates escaped Lord Sugar‘s wrath during filming for the BBC series is on the market for £16.5 million – and comes with six bedrooms, a cinema and a steam room. 

Victory House in Hampstead, north London, was used by the aspiring entrepreneurs to relax between challenges during filming for the 2016 series of the hit BBC show.

Across its four floors, the 10,409 sq ft home boasts its own private wellness centre with an indoor spa pool and an outdoor reflection pool.

Built in 1882, the property is up for sale following a seven-year ‘restoration and modernisation’ project and also features four reception rooms, a cinema and steam room across its five floors.

The mansion provides accommodation over the garden, ground and two upper floors, with a large hall on the ground floor giving access to the main drawing room with a deep bay, family room and formal dining room. 

Victory House’s dining room comes with ‘hand carved’ oak panelling and a bespoke feature fireplace, with double doors leading into a kitchen and breakfast room that comes fitted with bespoke units and a large walnut topped central island.

The rear of the property in Hampstead, north London, showing the landscaped garden and floor to ceiling glazing that provides access to the 'garden room'

The rear of the property in Hampstead, north London, showing the landscaped garden and floor to ceiling glazing that provides access to the ‘garden room’

The interior of the garden room, adjacent to an outdoor pool, which doubles as a relaxation area and a room used to entertain a large number of guests

The interior of the garden room, adjacent to an outdoor pool, which doubles as a relaxation area and a room used to entertain a large number of guests

Victory House has its own wellness suite that comes with an indoor spa pool (pictured), a steam room and two changing rooms

Victory House has its own wellness suite that comes with an indoor spa pool (pictured), a steam room and two changing rooms

The cinema room on the first floor of the property comes with a huge 2.8-metre screen, while it can also be used as a sixth bedroom

The cinema room on the first floor of the property comes with a huge 2.8-metre screen, while it can also be used as a sixth bedroom

A large hall on the ground floor gives access to the property's drawing room (pictured) which features a deep bay, family room and a formal dining room

A large hall on the ground floor gives access to the property’s drawing room (pictured) which features a deep bay, family room and a formal dining room

A large family kitchen and breakfast area which is fitted with bespoke units, including a large walnut wood topped central island

A large family kitchen and breakfast area which is fitted with bespoke units, including a large walnut wood topped central island

Victory House was used by candidates between challenges during filming for the 2016 series of the BBC's The Apprentice, eventually won by Alana Spencer

Victory House was used by candidates between challenges during filming for the 2016 series of the BBC’s The Apprentice, eventually won by Alana Spencer

On the garden floor is a 50ft ‘garden room’ which doubles as a relaxation and party room, with huge floor-to-ceiling glazing providing access to the rear of the property.

Adjoining the garden room is the air-conditioned gym accompanied by a steam room and twin changing rooms.

On the ground floor is a studio flat that comes with its own open-plan kitchen-living area, bedroom and shower room. This is located immediately behind the family kitchen. 

Moving up, the main bedroom is found on the first floor with a bathroom that contains a freestanding sculptural bath, walk-in shower and walk-in dressing room.

There are two further bedrooms on the first floor along with the cinema room, that can also be used as a sixth bedroom, boasting a 2.8-metre screen.

Each bathroom has hand-carved stone basins cut from the same slab as the flooring and freestanding baths.

The house also comes fitted with state-of-the-art computer controlled lighting, entertainment, sound systems, security and electric blinds throughout.

To the front of the property, is a west facing topiary garden, while the main south facing garden to the rear comes with a sweeping lawn, mature trees and planting.

Stairs lead up to a large terrace located off the drawing room, while a reflection pool borders the lower garden room.

The front of the property, which was used by contestants during the 2016 and 2018 versions of the BBC's hit show The Apprentice

The front of the property, which was used by contestants during the 2016 and 2018 versions of the BBC’s hit show The Apprentice

The principal bedroom, located on the first floor, comes equipped with a freestanding sculptural bath, a walk-in shower and a walk-in dressing room

The principal bedroom, located on the first floor, comes equipped with a freestanding sculptural bath, a walk-in shower and a walk-in dressing room

Victory House in on the market with joint sole agents Aston Chase and Savills. 

Mark Pollack, co-founding director of Aston Chase said: ‘Victory House is one of the finest residences on the southern slopes of Hampstead and is superbly located for thriving Belsize Village which, during the pandemic, has become a hugely valued amenity for local residents. 

‘The house is also situated only three minutes from the highly regarded South Hampstead High School in addition to numerous other excellent private schools. 

‘The house represents an outstanding opportunity for anyone looking to buy a substantial lateral family home only moments from St John’s Wood and Primrose Hill, yet arguably representing better value for money.’

Stephen Lindsay, head of office, residential at Savills, added: ‘Victory House has been refurbished and finished to a superlative level of quality, with bespoke craftsmanship and the highest quality stone, wood and glasswork used throughout. 

‘After seven years of restoration the Victorian grandeur of this large house has been embellished with flair and imagination to create a stunning 21st century Hampstead home of exceptional quality and style.’

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Bluewater grows its entertainment offer (GB)

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Landsec has announced the opening of a third ‘UK first’ attraction at Bluewater, Kent as the destination expands its partnership with Hangloose Adventures. Skydive, a free-fall experience not found anywhere else in Europe, and the UK’s only outdoor skydive machine has opened at the centre. It follows on from Europe’s biggest purpose-built giant swing, standing at 46-metre tall, which opened at Bluewater earlier this month.  

 

The announcement builds on a successful first year for Hangloose’s initial attraction Skywire, the longest zip wire in England, which has welcomed 30,000 guests since launching at Bluewater last June. Landsec will continue to work with Hangloose to expand its offering, with up to five more experiences set to open at the centre by 2024: a bungee tower, giant slide, clip and climb, waterdrop boulding wall, and Via Ferrata, a route-marked climb using metal rails and rungs embedded in Bluewater’s cliff walls.

 

Mark Warne, Brand Account Director F&B and Leisure at Landsec commented: “Delivering new experiences which are unique to Bluewater is central to our overall offer for guests. Hangloose’s innovative concept raises the bar when it comes to leisure attractions and draws guests from across the UK to Kent. By partnering with Hangloose to grow their business and create shared value, we’ll be able to give guests even more exciting experiences every time they visit.”

 

Brian Phelps, MD of Hangloose Adventure, said: “Since the beginning, we’ve worked closely with Landsec to grow our leisure concept and drive performance, putting us in a unique position where we’re able to expand our offer after only a year. We’ve enjoyed great success at Bluewater so far and are already thinking about how we can provide even bigger and better experiences in the future.”

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Author with immaculate house offers ten tips for a clean home

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Is this the secret to NEVER having to clean? Houseproud author claims she saves hours by sticking to a ten-step mantra – including banning chairs in bedrooms, wiping as you cook and only ironing shirts and dresses

  • UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she’s cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules – and making sure family members comply
  • She shared top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers
  • Among them are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom, not having a chair in the bedroom and cleaning  the kitchen while you cook

A houseproud author has revealed her ten essential tips for keeping a house spotless – saying simple ground rules for family members and cleaning as you go means never wasting time on dull chores. 

Writer Natali Juste Simmonds, who was born in the UK but now lives in the Netherlands, penned her top ways to keep on top of cleaning on Twitter, saying she has time to focus on her writing because she follows her own advice about dodging ‘thankless’ cleaning tasks. 

The author of a series of paranormal romance novels told her 20,000 followers on Twitter: ‘I know so many people who spend hours cleaning up after their family every day, but I refuse to. 

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UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she's cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules - and making sure family members comply

UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she’s cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules – and making sure family members comply

‘It’s boring and thankless. I prefer to write. Yet my house is spotless. Here are 10 ways to keep on top of s*** so you don’t have to clean for hours.’ 

Sharing her ‘tough love’ mantra, she said that the key to keeping a home clean is making sure every family member is engaged, saying learning how to tidy is a lifeskill that everyone needs – and no-one should get away with not doing it. 

Natali wrote: ‘Train everyone in the house to do the following (cats are the exception). After a while these habits will become routine, but you MUST stick to them and make sure no one is let off the hook.’ 

Among the tips are filling a bag with things that are in the wrong place at the end of every day and placing them back where they belong. 

Tidy home, tidy mind: The Netherlands-based writer shared her top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers on Twitter - saying that making sure everyone in the house pulls their weight is key (Pictured: An office area in Simmonds' home)

Tidy home, tidy mind: The Netherlands-based writer shared her top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers on Twitter – saying that making sure everyone in the house pulls their weight is key (Pictured: An office area in Simmonds’ home)

The writer also claims having a toilet brush doesn’t help keep a loo clean and dousing it with bleach instead is a more reliable way to ensure it’s sparkling. 

And getting used to wiping down mirrors after using a sink also helps, she claims, writing: ‘Keep a dry cloth next to the bathroom sink. Every time someone uses the taps or brushes their teeth, wipe down the counter and mirror. Takes literally 2 seconds. No cleaning toothpaste stains off counters.’

Teaching kids to pull their weight around the house is key to success, and equality reigns supreme in the Simmonds house. 

Among her top tips are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom - using just bleach instead; not having a chair in the bedroom - to prevent people leaving clothes on them - and cleaning the kitchen while you cook (Pictured: Simmonds' very tidy office)

Among her top tips are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom – using just bleach instead; not having a chair in the bedroom – to prevent people leaving clothes on them – and cleaning the kitchen while you cook (Pictured: Simmonds’ very tidy office)

‘If one kid lays the table, the other clears. If one hangs out the washing, the other collects. I don’t say “I need help with dinner” I say “who will chop the veg and who will wash up?” Its called a presumed close. I have no option, why should others in my house?’

The author, who has written books including the Indigo Chronicles trilogy and the Blood Web series, admits that having a cleaner is still useful…because they can help keep on top of areas where grime quickly builds, including fridges and ovens – but she suggests ditching a takeaway a week to cover the cost. 

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DIA Group closes 25 Minipreco stores in Portugal

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DIA Group has closed 25 Minipreco stores in Portugal, resulting in the loss of approximately 159 jobs. The retailer said the closures are the result of ‘the effort to adapt, modernise and balance the operations of DIA Portugal, with the aim of better preparing the company for current and future challenges arising from the current economic situation in the country,’ according to media reports. In the last two years, the multinational company operating in Spain, Portugal, Brazil, and Argentina, accumulated losses of over €620m.

 

In Portugal, net sales reached €283.1m in the first half, 4.5% below the €296.3m generated in the same period last year, due to the reduction of stores and mobility restrictions. DIA Group confirmed its intention to continue to invest in Portugal. The company hopes to adjust its operation to the current reality in order to ensure the future success of the company.

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