The multi-billionaire Hinduja Brothers – Gopichand and Srichand – have snapped up London’s Old War Office building, one of the capital’s most iconic properties.
The brothers’ company, The Hinduja Group in partnership with the Spanish investment firm Obrascon Huarte Lain Desarrollos, reportedly paid £300 million for the property.
The Old War Office boasts more than 1000 rooms.
The site, situated on London’s Whitehall, was the scene where Winston Churchill coordinated Britain’s war effort against Nazi Germany
Some reports suggest that the Hinduja Group will turn the property into a luxury hotel and residential apartment complex complete with private function rooms and a leisure facility.
The brothers, the wealthiest Asians in Britain, have also pledged to build an outdoor public space which would provide access to the building which was previously inaccessible to the public
Srichand P Hinduja and Gopichand P Hinduja, on behalf of the company, said, “We will make every efforts to honour the heritage and restoration of this national monument, elevate its status and reconnect it with the public.”
“We will forge a new future for the site, creating a vibrant and sustainable destination that retains and enhances the historical importance of the building. We are proud to be playing such a crucial role in this new chapter for the Old War Office,” the Hinduja brothers said.
The gigantic, 580,000 sq ft, Grade II-listed building was built in 1906 at a cost of £1.2 million.
It was sold as part of the Ministry of Defence’s cost-cutting programme and is expected to be valued at more than £1 billion once the redevelopment is complete.
The Hinduja Brothers have previous experience in developing heritage properties.
In 2006 they paid $95 million for Carlton Terrace, in the heart of Central London and walking distance from Buckingham Palace, before spending the same amount again to transform the historic property into a family home.