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How to update a townhouse: meet the restaurateur who doubled the value of his Georgian Belgravia home with a high-tech futuristic transformation

Gutting a Georgian house is rarely possible in London because so many have been listed, making alterations difficult. But if you can find one in an unlisted terrace with no original interiors left, the transformation can be spectacular — as it has been in the home of Sardinia-born London restaurateur Mauro Sanna and his English wife, Ashlea.

Even so, once the entire insides of their property had gone, and all Ashlea could see were four walls, sky, and “a bloody great house-sized hole” she couldn’t quite believe it would ever be “home” again.

Mauro, 58, and Ashlea, 49, bought their 2,150sq ft, five-storey house in a Belgravia back street in 2010, lived in it for four years, then in 2015 went for broke with a total transformation, creating something with hints of the Thunderbirds. It is gung-ho in its technological adventures yet still in the spirit of the 18th century,

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