The Turner Prize winning Artist Damien Hirst has applied for further planning permission to build a mega basement under his Grade I listed Regent’s Park mansion, which has been nicknamed ‘San Simeon’ after W. R. Hurst’s castle in California. Hirst, 50, has filed a new planning application to accommodate a swimming pool, spa, yoga room and art gallery. It is thought to be the largest ever basement project in London. Hirst purchased the Regent’s Park house and the mews house behind it for almost £40 million in 2014.
The application lodged with Westminster council has applied for further consent to the plans under his John Nash-designed Regency house. The original plan was for a 150 foot double-height gallery for his art collection, which includes works by Picasso, Francis Bacon and Andy Warhol. However, he has now requested that the plans include a swimming pool.
Hirst recently opened a notable private art gallery in Newport Street near Vauxhall bridge. The YBA already has a permanent space to house and display his vast art collection. From the conservation standpoint it could be harmful for the art to be exposed to the moisture and the chlorine fumes of a swimming pool. But as the worlds richest artist I’m sure it can be sorted out by throwing enough money at this pickled white elephant.