UK - Carlyle Group has acquired a joint-use residential and commercial property from the Crown Estate for £36.5m (€43.4m), giving the investment manager a 250-year headlease for the listed building.

The Grade II-listed property in London's St James's Street was put up for sale by the administrators of the previous headlease owners, with Carlyle making the purchase through CEREP III, one of its European real estate funds.

The Crown Estate will retain the property's freehold lease.

It currently houses 11 apartments, as well as 14,000 square feet of retail space, with Carlyle intending to file plans shortly that would see it redeveloped into a high-end residential-only building.

Robert Hodges, managing director of the group, said he was "extremely excited" to return property to its former position as one of the capital's "finest" residences.

"Opportunities to acquire properties that lend themselves so perfectly to prime redevelopment in such a world-renowned location are extremely rare," he said.

Anthea Harries, head of St James's portfolio at the Crown Estate, added: "This sale has secured significant investment in an important St James's property to bring forward additional residential space in line with our long-term strategy to increase the number of homes in St James's."

In other news, the £8.6bn West Midlands Pension Fund is to proceed with plans for a redevelopment of its Regent Street property, also on a long lease from the Crown Estate.

The local authority fund said the Grade II-listed Carlton House, rebuilt in 1994 with its façade kept in place, would be stripped out ahead an "extensive" refurbishment of all seven floors, including its ground floor retail unit.

According to the contract award notice, the scheme has selected BW Interiors to complete the work and hopes to achieve the highest BREEAM certificate.

West Midlands, which, according to its most recent annual report, has property assets worth £748m, did not return calls for comment at time of publication.

Crown Estate properties have proven popular with institutional investors, with Norway's Pension Fund Global seeking out its first real estate exposure through a £448m investment in Regent Street.