Government Spends £12m On New York Penthouse

The UK Government has spent £12m on buying a penthouse apartment in New York which is to become the official residence of Antony Phillipson, the UK trade commissioner for North America and consul general in New York.

The penthouse in the 50 United Nations Plaza building takes up the whole of the 38th floor – around 6,000s q. ft. – and has separate living and dining areas with panoramic views, seven bedrooms and six bathrooms including staff accommodation.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office told the Guardian newspaper, which broke the story: “We have secured the best possible deal and value for money on a property that will help promote the UK in the commercial capital of our largest export market and trading partner.

“As well as being the consul general’s residence, it will also be used to support his work to help British businesses as Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for North America. We are in the process of selling the consul general’s current residence.”

The newspaper suggests that, being so close to the United Nations headquarters, the penthouse has been purchased to help Phillipson to court foreign dignitaries and secure trade deals in a post-Brexit world. Buying an expensive luxury flat seems an odd way of going about that but, who knows, in diplomatic circles maybe the size of your trade deal is judged by the size of your house.

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Source The Guardian
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