The Hinduja Group and Obrascon Huarte Lain Desarrollos (OHLD) have announced an extension to their partnership with Raffles Hotels & Resorts.
An agreement was signed in 2017 for Raffles to operate a 125-room and suites flagship hotel at the iconic Old War Office building in London.
A further agreement has now been signed confirming Raffles as operator for the 85 residences at this landmark destination on Whitehall.
This latest agreement ensures that the service hallmarks of the prestigious Raffles brand will be delivered seamlessly to owners of the Owo Residences by Raffles.
The residences will be the first Raffles-serviced residences in the UK and Europe, further reinforcing the uniqueness of the offering.
Along with the signing of Raffles, the Hinduja Group and OHLD officially unveiled the new name for the project, ‘the Owo’, at a topping out ceremony marking a significant milestone towards the project’s opening early 2022.
The new name is distinctive while celebrating and respecting the history and spirit of the Old War Office.
The Grade II listed Old War Office building, originally completed in 1906, is steeped in history.
This architectural masterpiece has witnessed world-shaping events while influential political and military leaders including Winston Churchill, David Lloyd George, and Lord Kitchener held office.
Its transformative journey began in 2017 when the Hinduja Group and OHLD announced plans to restore and redevelop the iconic building into a new destination of 760,000 square feet comprising 125-room and suite Raffles hotel, 85 private residences, nine restaurants and bars, a destination spa and boutique retail.
With its transformation now well underway, the topping out ceremony is an important moment for the project as it marks reaching the highest point in the building.
Gopichand Hinduja, Hinduja Group co-chairman, said: “This is an exciting and momentous day for the Old War Office as we reach the highest point of the building and announce the official name of the project as ‘the Owo’.
“After an exhaustive process, Raffles were selected above other leading global hotel brands as our partner to deliver a world-class hotel experience of peace and warmth.
“We are delighted to announce Raffles as operators of the branded residences; the first of their kind in Europe.
“The level of servicing Raffles will offer to future residence owners is unparalleled and will set a new benchmark in London.”
The project is being developed by the Hinduja Group and its joint venture partner OHLD through their special purpose vehicles.
Madani Sow, previously chief executive at Bouygues Construction, has been appointed as chief executive officer to oversee the development management of the project.
The project has been designed by UK-based EPR Architects, with the hotel interiors designed by New York-based designer Thierry Despont, and the residences designed by 1508 London.
The principal contractor is Ardmore Group, with Toureen Group completing the structural works, and structural engineers are Elliott Wood.