Royal Lodge – the 30-room, $40 million property is causing friction in the royal family

It's rumored King Charles wants Prince Andrew out, and that William and Kate want to move in

Prince William and Princess Kate next to Royal Lodge Windsor
(Image credit: Getty / Alamy)

Royal Lodge, the 30-bedroom Windsor home of Prince Andrew, is the royal residence attracting attention at the moment. Rumors abound – unconfirmed by the Royal Family – that King Charles is keen for Prince Andrew to vacate the property he's lived in for 20 years so that Prince William and Princess Kate can move in. 

Prince Andrew, who is brother to King Charles and uncle of Prince William, and who shares the house with ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, is allegedly unwilling to move out of his home, which he is renovating currently. Sources originally said that he would be unlikely to be able to afford to continue living there in future if the King cuts his $320,000 annual allowance, which he is reportedly considering, and had been offered the five-bedroom Frogmore Cottage, which Prince Harry and Meghan Markle vacated when they moved to the States.

However, Prince Andrew was left money by the late Queen so that he could stay at Royal Lodge, reports OK! magazine. Meanwhile, Prince William and Princess Kate live nearby in the much more modest four-bedroom Adelaide Cottage with their growing family. Both homes are a short distance from the late Queen's beloved Windsor Castle. 'The Palace originally wanted Andrew out of Royal Lodge so that the property could be renovated and prepared for new lodgers,' a source shared with OK!.

Royal Lodge Windsor

(Image credit: Alamy)

And while the Prince and Princess of Wales are rumored to love their Windsor home, it is said to be too small for them, with no room for staff nor guests. 

Royal Lodge, on the other hand, has 30 rooms, including seven bedrooms and a large drawing room, known as The Formal Room (below), and a saloon. The gardens of the house add up to around 98 acres.

The house, which is in Windsor Great Park just 3.2 miles from Windsor Castle, originally dates from the mid-17th century. By the 1800s, George, Prince of Wales (later King George IV) had asked famed architect John Nash to alter and add to the house, and it became known as Prince Regent's Cottage, later 'King's Cottage'. From the 1820s, by which time Sir Jeffry Wyatville was architect, the house had become known as Royal Lodge, and was almost entirely demolished and rebuilt. 

Royal Lodge was home to the late Queen's mother, Queen Elizabeth from 1952 until her death at the house at the age of 101 in 2002. Before that, from the 1930s, she and her husband, King George VI, had used the house as a country retreat, adding wings to either side of it in the 1930s. The late Queen Elizabeth and her sister Princess Margaret spent time there as children.

Then, in 2003, Prince Andrew took on the lease of the property, which belongs to the Crown Estate. The property includes the main house; six cottages; Y Bwthyn Bach (a small cottage in the grounds given in 1932 to the late Queen when she was a child by the people of Wales); police accommodation; a gardener's cottage; and the Chapel Lodge. The 75-year lease, it is said, requires Prince Andrew to repair and renovate the property at his own expense. It's believed he has spent around $9 million on renovations.

The exterior of Frogmore Cottage

(Image credit: Alamy)

The Prince's family, including this two daughters Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice, and ex-wife Sarah, moved into Royal Lodge in 2004. Princess Eugenie, who currently lives in Frogmore Cottage (above), celebrated her wedding at Royal Lodge in 2018. However, since Prince Andrew stepped down from royal duties in 2019 following revelations of his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, his future there has been in doubt, and it has even been mooted that the property could be rented out commercially, if not to the Prince and Princess of Wales. 

A painting of Adelaide cottage

(Image credit: Caleb Robert Stanley / Wikimedia Commons)

'I’m not sure William and Catherine will be that fussed,' royal expert Jennie Bond told H&G's sister title Marie Claire. 'They chose Adelaide Cottage (above) because they wanted to give the children a more normal lifestyle. Of course, they still have the apartment at Kensington Palace, and they have a large house in Norfolk (Anmer Hall) … so they are well acquainted with a grand lifestyle, and perhaps living in a relatively normal four-bedroom house (surrounded by thousands of acres of wonderful Windsor estate countryside) isn’t such a bad option.'

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.