From the good folk at The Modern House comes Inigo, an estate agency dedicated to exquisite historic homes.

Since 2004, The Modern House has been quietly revolutionising the world of estate agency. Rather than viewing its raison d'être as purely transactional, it has trained the spotlight on design, elevating what it does from simply selling to an art. As noted by Merlin Wright, design director at Plain English when we interviewed him last year, The Modern House is ‘a brilliant idea: an estate agent which only deals with cool properties. Has now expanded to include publishing and a magazine, but the website itself is better than most design magazines anyway.’

Indeed. And that latter point is attested to by the fact that its Instagram account is followed by close to 400,000 people, all covetous of the beautiful properties contained therein for our viewing pleasure, to sigh over and to covet shamelessly. And now, for all those regularly found salivating over its gorgeous Georgian renovations or masterpieces of mid-century minimalism, the team behind The Modern House is about to unveil another outlet through which we may indulge our unseemly house-lust, and it comes in the form of Inigo.

Launching this spring, it will have all the design standards of The Modern House, but this time specialising solely in Britain’s most marvellous historic homes. Architectural historians will note that its name is taken from one of the country’s most revered – and indeed self-taught – design geniuses, Inigo Jones. In the first half of the 17th-century, Jones was the most influential architect in the country, not least for being the trailblazer who brought the principles of classical architecture from the Italian Renaissance to Britain. He is credited with championing the still-adored Palladian style of architecture and applying Vitruvian rules of symmetry through his work. His surviving buildings include the Banqueting House in the Palace of Whitehall, Queen’s House in Greenwich and Lincoln’s Inn Fields Square.

The brainchild of The Modern House founders, Albert Hill and Matt Gibberd (do look out for his guest edit coming next week), they say, ‘At Inigo, we believe a beautiful home is a pleasure that never ages. We connect discerning individuals with extraordinary spaces, no matter the price or provenance. Covering urban and rural locations across Britain, our team combines proven experience selling distinctive homes with design and architectural expertise. We unlock the true value of every cottage, coach house and conversion we represent by telling its story with in-depth features and magazine-quality photography.’

Architectural integrity is everything to both The Modern House and now Inigo, their work championing the idea that beautiful spaces, good materials and great design make life better. As such, Inigo’s staff looks a little different to that of a traditional estate agency. Indeed, it has a content editor who is a former interiors reporter at Dezeen; its new business coordinator is a qualified architect whose perfect home would be a Tudor cottage; its database researcher is a fine art and photography grad with a taste for Victorian renovations; its head of sales is another trained photographer with a background in location acquisitions for film and TV; and of its two senior directors, one previously worked in the wine industry and publishing, while the other has a Masters in art history from the Courtauld. Pretty impressive, no? Together, their collective muses for Inigo range from ‘the freewheeling creativity of the Bloomsbury group to the fashion houses of Gucci and Issey Miyake, and, of course, the grand classical visions of Inigo Jones himself.’

When Inigo says it is more than an estate agency, that is a literal truth as well as an ideological one; its editorial section is as good as anything you’ll find in an interiors magazine. Want to read more on the man who is their abiding inspiration? Check out the article on the enduring classicism of Inigo Jones’ Queen’s House. How about reading the story of No Feature Walls blogger, Laura Hunter? Do so here. In other pieces, you can get lost in the beguiling beauty of Charleston Farmhouse; or fall in love with the exquisite Georgian Mile End home of cultural historian and former Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Arts, Charles Saumerez Smith and his jeweller and artist wife Romilly. And this is just the beginning.

To underline the sheer pedigree of this new launch, Inigo has what it calls ‘The Guild’, a collection of luminaries at large whose collective sensibilities chime with its own. Described as ‘a select group of creatives and thinkers united by their eclectic taste and eye for the extraordinary. In their inspired ideas and creative pursuits, they exemplify what we’re about,’ these consultants are the design crème de la crème. They span the great Katie Fontana, creative director of Plain English; Penny Martin, editor-in-chief of The Gentlewoman; the aforementioned Charles Samaurez Smith; interior designer Sophie Ashby; and her husband, fashion designer Charlie Casely-Hayford. It is an eclectic and peerlessly talented bunch, all of whom hint at the quality we can expect to be filling up its little squares imminently.

Keep a watchful eye on Inigo’s Instagram account for news of the official launch. And be warned: you may lose many, many hours of your life to this exquisite site.

By Nancy Alsop
February 2021

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Nancy Alsop


Nancy is a magpie for the best in design and culture.