Keen homebuyers queued for up to 36 hours to snap up flats in Maine Tower, a new skyscraper under construction in Canary Wharf.
Over 200 flats were sold in less than four hours, with more than 150 people queuing at special exhibitions in London and Hong Kong to secure their properties. The total sales amounted to £140 million.
British families purchased half of the homes with foreign investors from countries including China, France, Italy and Greece buying the rest. The flats cost between £350,000 and £1.25 million but will not be completed until 2019 at the earliest.
Remaining unsold three-bedroom apartments in Maine Tower range from £1.1 million to £1.39 million. Penthouses, which have not yet been priced, will occupy the top three floors of the tower.
The average house price in Tower Hamlets rose by 13 per cent from January to May this year, and currently sits at £444,979, with terraced properties averaging £755,018.
Tower Hamlets has the UK’s highest rate of child poverty at 48.6%. In 2013 average household income was £30,805. Around one fifth of households had an income of less than £15,000.
Maine Tower is an “all-private” address, meaning no properties will be earmarked for social housing. Meanwhile, developers Galliard Homes promise “opulent reception foyers and a comprehensive array of elite lifestyle facilities” including a cinema, library and 24-hour concierge.
The construction of Crossrail, which will link Reading and Essex with a central hub in Canary Wharf is driving up interest in the area and causing a soar in housing prices.
Economic turbulence in China and the Eurozone has also renewed interest in London property as an investment asset, confounding reports that the capital’s housing boom is slowing.