Country houses for sale

Beachfront opportunities

Enjoying Keira Knightley flirting with the Thirties in Atonement? Then here’s an opportunity to get with your inner pre-war elan at the launch of 279 one to three-bedroom apartments with sea views at the Grand Ocean Hotel in Saltdean, just six miles down the coast from Brighton.

Explore Living is refurbishing the sleek curved white 1938 building with its Grade II-listed Art Deco façade, where prices for apartments and penthouses start at around £220,000. The elegant building has played just as many roles as Knightley, from a fire service college to aid the war effort in the Forties, to a Butlins resort a decade later.

You’ll be reassured to know 21st century pre-wiring for Sky+, high definition television and fittings for wall-mounted flat screens are replacing hi-de-hi megaphones, however. And for those nostalgic Miss Marple moments, you are on the doorstep of the rolling Sussex Downs with period television drama views and quintessentially English villages.

Grand Ocean HotelGrand Ocean Hotel in Saltdean

As well as renovating the landmark hotel, new build apartment blocks in the style of the existing building also will be constructed along with communal gardens and underground parking.

‘The apartments are ideal for City executives, down-sizers or investors looking to capitalise on the rising popularity of the area,’ believes John Inglis, sales and marketing director of Explore Living.

Or perhaps they will appeal to romantics who fancy sashaying around in a Knightley-esque long silk frock while not having to worry about a disturbing lack of central heating and deep work surfaces in the newly kitted-out kitchens.

For more information on Grand Ocean, contact 0845 8739054,