How Harry And Meghan's CA Home Is Different Than Their Royal Home

Since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle officially stepped down from their royal duties in March 2020, they have lived on some pretty spectacular estates. After moving from the UK, the couple spent time on Vancouver Island, Canada in a secluded 11,416-square-foot mansion worth $14.1 million, per Lonny. And according to BBC, the famous couple also temporarily resided in Los Angeles on an estate owned by Hollywood Director and Producer Tyler Perry before finally settling down in the Montecito neighborhood of Santa Barbara, a beautiful and quiet coastal city that celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Ariana Grande call home.

Stepping back a bit to right after their famous royal wedding, the couple lived at Nottingham Cottage on the property of Kensington Palace near Prince William and Kate Middleton. They then moved to Frogmore Cottage in April of 2019 before having their firstborn son Archie (via House Beautiful). The 17th-century Frogmore Cottage was a serene country escape built for Queen Charlotte and her unwed daughters. Now, if you are wondering where the name Frogmore came from, word has it that the name was inspired in 1875 while Queen Victoria was eating breakfast on the marshy property and quickly observed lots of little "quite disgusting" frogs, as she put it, according to USA Today.

Let's take a closer look at Frogmore Cottage, owned by Her Majesty the Queen. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Santa Barbara retreat is vastly different from their royal home located on the Windsor Estate in the UK.

A look at Frogmore Cottage

In the early 21st century, Frogmore Cottage, situated on the Windsor estate, became a multi-unit dwelling for estate workers. As a result, the property was in need of renovations in 2019 to make the residence suitable for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle before their first child, Archie, was born. After stepping down from their royal duties, though, drama ensued, because renovations were initially paid for by taxpayers. The couple addressed the situation by agreeing to fully pay off the debt (via The Week). However, as Royal aide Sir Michael Stevens noted, "The property had not been the subject of work for some years and had already been earmarked for renovation in line with our responsibility to maintain the condition of the occupied royal palaces estate."

According to House Beautiful, Frogmore Cottage is Grade II listed and features 10 bedrooms post-renovation. Other aspects of the renovation included updating the electrical system and plumbing, refurbishing flooring, and putting in new ceiling beams (via The Week). As for the decor at Frogmore? The Duchess of Sussex was inspired by the members-only Soho House Cotswolds outpost, Soho Farmhouse, so she hired interior designer Vicky James to do the project, per House Beautiful. But its biggest perks? The privacy the lands provide! It has lush gardens and a relaxing lake that make it ideal for raising a family.

While Frogmore Cottage isn't your everyday run-of-the-mill cottage, we can say that the couple's Santa Barbara Mansion is way more lavish.

The couple's Santa Barbara mansion is incredibly lavish

Hello! gives several reasons why the California estate is more lavish than Frogmore Cottage. Number one on the list is the stunning swimming pool. The outlet also noted the mansion's impressive wine seller — a perfect location for Meghan Markle to sip her go-to Italian red, Tignanello, which inspired a blog she used to have called The Tig.

According to Variety, the mansion came to be in 2003 and is situated on 7.4 acres. It features nine bedrooms, 16 bathrooms, a gym, a tennis court, a library, and more. There's also a two-bedroom guest home on the property, which is great for royal visits. The Sussexes have no reason to leave the Montecito home they purchased in 2020. The couple took out a $9.5 million mortgage to buy the $14.7 million property from Sergey Grishin, a businessman. Grishin originally purchased the home for the higher price of $25.3 million in 2009.

Archie and Lilibet Diana will surely love the game room, arcade, and theater as they grow up, and especially the chicken coop with the sign "Archie's Chick Inn," which was unveiled during the enthralling interview with Oprah. During the discussion, the couple noted they want a "down to basics" lifestyle (via People). Basic? We aren't so sure, considering all of the luxe aspects of their estate. However, we hope the couple considers adding another sign on the chicken coop that says "Liibet's Chick Inn," so Lilibet Diana has one, too!