West Hill Villa
West Hill Villa is probably the most beautifully situated house in Hastings Old Town. An historic Grade II Listed property with views over the rooftops and shoreline and across the sea, the house also backs onto the lovely open spaces of the West Hill and is a short walk into the centre of the historic Old Town.
Built Circa 1800, the house is constructed of brick and built into the sandstone bedrock of the West Hill. The old Hastings Pottery was located in the lower part of the house, which opens into vaulted caves. These very beautiful and historic caves have now become an extraordinary bathroom space and meditation area.
A 90ft orangery forms the west wing of the property and houses a fish pool as well as grapevines, banana trees and other exotic plants some of which are reputed to have been brought by Captain Cook and the orangery used as a safe haven for plants found on his voyages before being transported to Kew Gardens. The orangery is a wonderful soaring space which is heated year-round by the sun.
The garden is south facing and spans across the width of the rear of the property with a lawned terrace, vegetable garden and raised seating area with sea views. There is a single garage accessed from Exmouth Place.
While West Hill Villa sits at the heart of Hastings Old Town, it is a quiet and secluded home with discrete entrances and a sense of privacy. This is a home unlike any other and has a romance about it – partly because of its history and partly because of its unique position and remarkable internal accommodation.
Approximate gross internal floor area 2928sq ft (270sq m)
West Hill Villa was originally built as two separate homes and could be divided again into two living areas with their own front doors. As a single property it is a beautiful and unique home with flexible accommodation and an intriguing mixture of period and contemporary features.
The ground floor reception / kitchen area features four very tall south facing round-arched windows with uninterrupted sea views. This room also gives access to the Orangery. To the rear are the historic caves and bathroom space and to the front the peaceful gardens.
A spiral staircase takes you to the first floor galleried mezzanine with the potential for a study/office area and second reception area. There is a separate WC on this level. A “secret” staircase ascends to the third-level floor with one/two bedrooms, both with sea views and the potential for a kitchen or a dressing room/bathroom to be created. These bedrooms have a pretty iron balcony on cast iron brackets with 2 canted bays of sashes. There is a separate WC. Leading from the kitchen/bathroom area is an internal courtyard with wine store and cool storage spaces. There is also access to the Orangery from this level.
Another staircase leads to the fourth-level floor with a further two double bedrooms with original Georgian features and remarkable sea views from the sash windows with louvred shutters Also on this floor is a storeroom with natural light from a skylight, a spacious bathroom and utility room.
The top floor has dormer windows with views across the West Hill to the rear and to the sea from the front. This versatile space could offer another two bedrooms or become a studio/office space.
Hastings has good access to London by train (London Bridge, Charing Cross, Waterloo East, Canon Street, Kings Cross) as well as to Brighton and Ashford International. The town itself has seen new restaurants and pubs opening in recent years as well as the traditional eating and shopping amenities such as the fresh fish shops and well-established pubs and independent retailers.
Hastings Independent Gallery draws world-renowned artists and exhibitions and is a great response to the rich artistic community of the town. Musicians, designers, film makers, writers, artists and performers have made Hastings and St Leonards their home over many years and enjoy the discrete atmosphere of the town which retains their privacy whilst also appreciating the stimulating backdrop that the town offers.
The town continues to change, as it always has. Yet it keeps its very particular and slightly eccentric personality.
West Hill Villa, TN34