From Costa to McDonald's - the high street stores ‘owned’ by the Queen

All of these retailers have stores located on Crown Estate-owned property

Queen Elizabeth II talks with residents in the new Appleton Lodge care facility run by the RBLI during a visit to the Royal British Legion Industries village to celebrate the charity's centenary year on November 6, 2019
(Image credit: Photo by Richard Pohle - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The Queen’s property portfolio is understandably pretty impressive, though royal fans may not be aware of how extensive this is outside of the historic royal palaces.

It’s all too easy to think of the Queen’s property portfolio as being the beautiful historic palaces such as Buckingham Palace, Balmoral, and even Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s UK home, Frogmore Cottage. But it seems there’s far more to the 94-year-old monarch’s property portfolio than you might imagine. 

Royal fans might not ever get to witness the Queen enjoying a Nando’s or McDonald’s meal, but it turns out that she actually ‘owns’ several of them - in a matter of speaking, anyway. Bankrate.com has looked into the Queen’s property and land portfolio and it reportedly expands to retail parks and even shopping centers. 

The Crown Estate is owned by the reigning monarch “in right of the Crown”, with the Queen owning it for the duration of her reign, before it passes to her successor, though the Queen is not involved in management decisions. The amount of property and land owned by the Crown Estate is substantial.

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Retail parks and shopping centres may be poles apart from the grand castles and palaces we typically associate with members of the Royal Family.

But with a reported 450,786 acres of land ownership - the equivalent of Greater London in size - the Queen ‘owns’ retail premises that thousands of people visit every year.

What retail stores are located on Crown Estate-owned property?

High-street giant M&S seems to be the most often seen retailer on Crown Estate-owned property, with 15 of their stores located there. Popular British coffee chain Costa also features regularly, as does clothing and homeware store, Next, both with 12 stores on Crown Estate-owned property. 

And the Queen won’t go hungry as there are also reportedly 8 McDonald’s and 7 Nando’s located on her land and if the monarch ever finds herself broken down, there are 5 Halfords stores to choose from on Crown Estate-owned property.

Other familiar stores that are understood to feature frequently on Crown Estate-owned property include everyone’s favourite global coffee chain, Starbucks, as well as high street health and beauty retailers, Boots and Superdrug.

So the next time you visit one of these popular chains, it might turn out to be ‘owned’ by the Queen.

Who’d have thought it!

Emma Shacklock
Emma Shacklock

Emma is Senior Lifestyle Writer for Goodto.com, womanandhome.com and Myimperfectlife.com and she loves sharing the latest lifestyle, royal, celebrity and entertainment news. Before joining Future, previously TI Media, Emma was a Freelance Editor and before that a Publisher for an independent digital publisher. When she’s not writing about the next big lifestyle trend, she enjoys cooking, long walks and watching as many crime dramas as she can!