The station was opened on 19 September 1932 as the most northerly on the first section of the Piccadilly Line extension from Finsbury Park to Cockfosters. It was the terminus of the line until services were further extended to Oakwood on 13 March 1933.
It was designed by the great Charles Holden as were other fantastic stations on this line.
Arnos Grove was built in a modern European style using brick, glass and reinforced concrete and basic geometric shapes. A circular drum-like ticket hall of brick and glass panels rises from a low single-storey structure and is capped by a flat concrete roof. The design was inspired by the Stockholm City Library and Swedish architect Gunnar Asplund.
A similar design was employed by Holden for the rebuilding of Chiswick Park on the District Line (also in 1932), although the drum there is supplemented with an adjacent brick tower. The centre of the ticket hall is occupied by a disused ticket office (a passimeter in London Underground parlance) which houses an exhibition on the station and the line.
In July 2011 Arnos Grove became a Grade II* listed building.