The Hinduja Group has acquired the historic Old War Office building opposite Downing Street from where former prime minister Winston Churchill took key decisions during World War II.
G P Hinduja, co-chairman of the Hinduja Group, told HT on Saturday that the building, with nearly 1,100 rooms, would be converted into a 5-star hotel and residential apartments.
It’s not known how much the group paid for the building but it is one of the costliest properties in London due to its heritage status and prime location opposite the PM’s residence. The Hinduja brothers were ranked the richest in Britain in 2014.
Based at 57, Whitehall, the building covers 580,000 sqft across seven floors and is connected by more than 3km of corridors. The Hindujas acquired the building in partnership with a Spanish firm Obrascon Huarte Lain Desarrollos.
The ministry of defence confirmed the acquisition. Defence secretary Michael Fallon said: “... the purchaser will be granted a new 250-year lease to ensure that the heritage and security of the building is well managed”.
Hinduja said: “We will make every effort to honour the heritage and restoration of this national monument, elevate its status and reconnect it with the public… we are proud to be playing such a crucial role in this new chapter for the Old War Office.”