Condé Nast, publisher of Vogue and GQ, to move out of historic Vogue House offices in London

 (Alamy)
(Alamy)

Condé Nast, the publisher of major titles including Vogue and GQ, is moving out of its historic London offices after 65 years, The Independent has learnt.

A representative confirmed that the company plans on moving all staff at its respective titles out of the seven-storey Vogue House in Hanover Square, Mayfair, to its Adelphi office in Embankment, possibly by January 2024.

“There’s no other way to say it – leaving our iconic Vogue House will be hard,” an email sent to staff, and seen by The Independent, said.

“After many attempts to find a way to expand and redesign the space to meet our needs, there were just too many challenges to be able to do so. Nevertheless, as we look forward to this next year, we will surely carry forward over 65 years of memories and milestones that made our brands what they are today.

“There is much to celebrate and commemorate together as we build a new exciting chapter for Condé Nast.”

Vogue House, the headquarters of British Vogue, was completed in 1958 and is owned by the Church of England. It has been the UK home of Condé Nast for 65 years.

It is where Anna Wintour first made her mark on the fashion scene, and where countless legendary names walked the halls, including Princess Diana, and supermodels such as Kate Moss, Linda Evangelista and Naomi Campbell.

Model Karlie Kloss leaving Vogue House after a Vogue signing in July 2019 (GC Images/Getty)
Model Karlie Kloss leaving Vogue House after a Vogue signing in July 2019 (GC Images/Getty)

The office move is said to be due to frustrations about running a modern editorial company in an old building, as opposed to a need for cost-cutting.

A 2005 feature in The Guardian observed how first-time visitors to Vogue House could be forgiven for feeling a “tinge of disappointment” upon arriving at the “small, brown 1950s office block that squats in the corner of Hanover Square”.

The Duchess of Cornwall and Nicholas Coleridge, president of Conde Nast International, during a charity tea party at Vogue House (PA)
The Duchess of Cornwall and Nicholas Coleridge, president of Conde Nast International, during a charity tea party at Vogue House (PA)

Inside, the article said, was a different story. The office of Condé Nast’s then-managing director Nicholas Coleridge included “tasteful black and white pics from Vogue hung on panelled walls, shelves filled with magazines and soft lighting”.

Vogue House at 1 Hanover Square, Mayfair, London (Alamy)
Vogue House at 1 Hanover Square, Mayfair, London (Alamy)

“Virtually every great magazine editor and publisher of the past seven decades has worked there – it is like the ravens leaving the Tower of London or the apes leaving the Rock of Gibraltar,” Coleridge wrote on his Instagram after the news of the move was announced to staff.

“I can’t help feeling nostalgic about this landmark HQ, perfectly positioned between Sotheby’s, Claridge’s and the Apple store. It is a 1950s building by Yates, Cook & Darbyshire, the Art Deco cinema architects, sadly unlisted, which means it will probably be demolished and replaced by something slicker and worse.

Mary Portas (centre), Sophia Money-Coutts (right) at Vogue House in 2016 (Getty/Mercedes-Benz)
Mary Portas (centre), Sophia Money-Coutts (right) at Vogue House in 2016 (Getty/Mercedes-Benz)

“There is glorious typography engraved on the architrave above the front entrance. The revolving doors are legendary; every celebrity and supermodel has revolved through them. The photography-hung boardroom is the scene of hundreds of memorable lunches and presentations.

“The view across the gardens of Hanover Square, named after King George 1st, Elector of Hanover, in 1714, was a glorious perk, beneficial to staff mental health. The lifts were frequently out of order. Happy days. Bon voyage Condé Nast to your new less-eccentric home behind The Strand.”