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Darling Point time-capsule apartment sells $800,000 above highest expectations

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by August 25, 2016 General

Was it the plush blue carpet up the walls? The funky light fixtures? Or the circular bed straight from an Austin Powers movie set?

It might have been the lack of high-end apartment stock and panoramic harbour views that packed Wednesday night’s auction room at which 16 buyers registered to buy the 1970s time capsule.

One of those well-heeled registered to bid on the apartment at 18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point was luxury car dealer Neville “Croaky” Crichton-Brown, although he never raised his bidding card before it sold for $6.3 million to a local buyer from China.    

18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.

A guide of $5 million to $5.5 million had been set by Michael Dunn, of Richardson & Wrench Double Bay, and it was called on the market by the time it crossed the $6 million mark.

The five-bedroom double apartment was almost stripped of its iconic ’70s touches ahead of the campaign in favour of more muted touches, until the Richardson & Wrench agents intervened and recommended they remain in place.     

The garish blue living room with built-in fish tank, green dining capsule room, and orange themed living space with elaborate bar and mirrored walls were left as highlights of the apartment’s original decoration in 1980 when it last traded for $475,000 when purchased by the late Singapore property tycoon Cho Poon Chow.

18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.

Following Chow’s death in 1997 the apartment was left to his wife Grace and son Chow Kwok Ching, and has remained vacant for about 13 years while the affairs of the estate were settled by the trustees.

Despite panoramic views across Sydney Harbour, a double garage and expansive 265 square metres of living space, the apartment’s original finishes may have accounted for some of the strong buyer interest.

Or at least the option to use it as a blank canvas for a refurbishment.

A similar apartment above it that had been renovated throughout sold late last year for $6.6 million.

18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.
18A/21 Thornton Street, Darling Point.

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