Niall Hobhouse is the sort of client who explicitly sets himself a cultural task. This is expressed in the way he manages Hadspen, a large estate in South West England his family has owned for generations. Hobhouse has invited architects such as Peter Smithson, Cedric Price, Alejandro Zaera-Polo and Peter Zumthor to make creative contributions to the estate. He approaches these contributions as works in progress, in which the dialogue between client and architect is of utmost importance: as important as the result, as it were. Hobhouse has precise, clear-cut ideas and at the same time gives his architects a great deal of freedom. This article is based on parts of a correspondence between Hobhouse and British-based architects Florian Beigel and Philippe Christou of the Architecture Research Unit (ARU) as well as between author Christoph Grafe and Hobhouse.