Behind Brighton’s bustling Western Road lies a gem of a building complete with its hidden ornate gardens.
Montpellier Hall , built to an Italianate villa design in 1846, has 22 rooms spread over four floors with 17 original fireplaces and 16 chimneys. Its notable former owners include Sir Joseph Ewart, a past Mayor of Brighton who had a street named after him. In 1891 he lived in Montpelier Hall with his daughter, cook, parlour maid and housekeeper, with a coach man living above the stables in what is now Waitrose car park.
Sir Joseph Ewart had the distinction of turning on the city’s first electric street lights in 1894 and is commemorated with a plaque on the seafront near the West pier.
Roger Amerena, 62, has been the owner since 1985 and is rightly proud of his role as the house’s present custodian. He’s kept it in as near its original condition as possible, resisting all offers to convert it into flats.
Roger believes passionately about conservation being a member of a number of the city’s societies and committees set up to protect our heritage from the developers’ eagle eyes.
Montpellier Hall is now run as a guest house as well as hosting numerous functions.