Anglewood House

James Packer’s ex-mate Matthew Csidei buys $8m historic house

PHOTO: The 1890s-built mansion Anglewood House comes with 13 bedrooms, nine bathrooms and an indoor swimming pool.

As the woes of troubled casino billionaire James Packer were splashed across newspaper front pages this week in the wake of damning findings against Crown Resorts and its suitability to run a Sydney casino, the fortunes of his former right-hand man Matthew “Ched” Csidei have taken a markedly more upbeat turn.

Csidei, previously known as the “Minister of Fun” given his role overseeing the construction and care of Packer’s prized toys, superyachts and luxury homes, has purchased the historic Southern Highlands mansion Anglewood House, listed last year for more than $8 million.

Justin Hemmes and Matthew Csidei at Gourmet Traveller Awards for SHD Diary 31 Oct Annette. Pic by Janie Barrett.
Matthew Csidei purchased the historic residence for more than $8 million.

This is the imposing Queen Anne Revival-style residence that was built in the 1890s for federal politician Arthur Smith, KC, and appropriated by the state government in 1943 for a children’s home.

The home closed in 1992 and the property was left in disrepair throughout much of the 1990s until 1998, when it was sold for $2.61 million to Valdis​ Berzins​, owner of the pure spring water distributor Spring Alive, on condition that he restore it and undertake a 15-lot subdivision of adjoining land.

The grand 13-bedroom, nine-bathroom residence with an indoor pool on two hectares is just the project for Csidei, given the impressive work he has undertaken on some of his former landmark homes, including his nearby Mittagong home Kennerton Green and its prized garden.

Csidei’s former London home was a Grade II-listed townhouse, Ormonde House, near Sloane Square. It also sold in a rundown state when it last traded in 2015 for £8.75 million, but after a very Csidei-style renovation, it was put up for sale last year for about £12 million.

It was a similarly opulent renovation that Csidei and his lawyer wife Lauren Roscoe undertook on their Sydney home in Watsons Bay – a 1920s-built former Masonic Temple – before they sold it in 2015 for $6.25 million to fashion designer Collette Dinnigan.

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