One Year After Fully Vacating Frogmore Cottage, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Are On the Hunt For a “Permanent” Home In the U.K., Royal Author Says

No, they’re not moving back—just looking for a safe and reliable place to stay when visiting.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle gaze away from the camera while in Australia
(Image credit: Getty)

Almost one year exactly since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle fully vacated their former U.K. home, Frogmore Cottage—located on the Windsor Estate—royal author Tom Quinn said that Harry is looking for a “permanent” U.K. home to stay in when he visits his native country, as he did last month (and ended up staying in a hotel after reportedly declining an offer from his father, King Charles, to stay at a royal residence).

Prince Harry

Harry, seen here in the U.K. last month for the Invictus Games' 10-year anniversary celebrations.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Quinn told The Mirror that Harry—who, with Meghan and their two kids, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet, now call the U.S. home, specifically Montecito, California—“misses some aspects of his old life” back in London. “Inevitably, the honeymoon period where everything in the States is new and exciting is coming to an end, and Harry is looking back at the past through rose-tinted spectacles,” Quinn said. (The Sussexes moved to the U.S. in 2020, four years ago.)

Specifically, Harry misses his friends from Eton and his Army friends, who haven’t made the trek across the Atlantic to come see him. “Harry is determined to find his own permanent home in the U.K., which is partly why he’s continuing his legal action to get the British taxpayer to pay for his security,” Quinn said.

Security was deemed the reason why Harry reportedly turned down Charles’ offer to stay at a royal residence, rumored to be St. James’s Palace, according to The Daily Mail, which reported the Duke of Sussex “is said to have declined his father’s offer because it did not come with any taxpayer-funded personal security provision, which would leave him staying in a ‘visible location with public entrance and exit points and no police protection,’” the outlet reports. According to The Telegraph, “Instead, he chose to stay at a hotel—presumably with members of the public—because it means he ‘could come and go unseen.’” 

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (wearing a Household Division regimental tie and medals including his Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order cross) attends The Invictus Games Foundation 10th Anniversary Service at St Paul's Cathedral on May 8, 2024 in London, England.

Had Harry opted to stay at a royal residence instead of a hotel, he would likely have been able to see his father because of St. James's Palace's close proximity to Charles' home, Clarence House.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Telegraph added that Harry “remains devastated” about the withdrawal of his automatic right to police protection, which he is still fighting the Home Office over in the British courts. Currently, Harry has to give the Metropolitan Police 28 days’ notice before coming to the U.K. if he wishes to apply for security provision, The Daily Mail reports, “with each request assessed on an individual basis by RAVEC, the committee which oversees the protection of royalty and public figures,” the outlet writes.

Buying a permanent home in the U.K. would, at least, take the guesswork out of where Harry (and, hopefully someday, Meghan and the kids) would stay upon returning to the U.K. The King began the eviction process of the Sussexes from Frogmore in January 2023, coincidentally (or not) the same month that Harry’s tell-all memoir, Spare, hit shelves; the Sussexes were fully moved out of Frogmore by June, one year ago, and about one month after Charles’ Coronation on May 6.

“Meghan has said she’s only prepared to return to England if she and Harry have a place of their own and the security they both feel is essential,” Quinn told The Mirror. He added “If the couple manage to find a permanent home and sort out the security issue, they will certainly want to bring their children to the U.K.,” though Quinn did admit that “it’s going to take a lot of diplomacy” to get to the point where Archie and Lili could establish a “genuine and warm relationship” with the Prince and Princess of Wales’ three kids. 

Shots of the exterior of Frogmore Cottage

Frogmore Cottage, Harry and Meghan's former U.K. home.

(Image credit: Getty)

Britain's Prince Harry (2ndR), Duke of Sussex, and Britain's Meghan (R), Duchess of Sussex, react as Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu (unseen), gives a speech at the State Governor House in Lagos

Harry and Meghan left Frogmore and the U.K. four years ago, in 2020, to forge a new life for themselves in the United States.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Any future U.K. property would add to the impressive real estate portfolio Harry and Meghan already have in the form of their $14 million Montecito home, which Page Six reports has nine bedrooms, 16 bathrooms, a pool, a tennis court, and a two-bedroom guesthouse.

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.