Handel, Hendrix and Van Gogh, oh my!

Jimi Hendrix bedroom at Hendrix and Handel House, London. Photo: Bill Young

If you find yourself in London during the holidays, here are a couple off-the-beaten path places to check out that you just, quite frankly, don’t find on a regular basis when traveling to another city. Given the potential of you never know what you will find around the corner, this is why London is a brilliant place to visit.

Handel and Hendrix House Museum

Handel Hendrix House

If you get the opportunity, head over to Mayfair for a little music history than spans several hundred years with a visit to the Handel and Hendrix House Museum. Separated by a wall and 200 years, the first two floors comprised the home of German-born baroque composer George Frideric Handel in the mid-1700s.

Handel and Hendrix House, London. Photo: Bill Young

The upper floors of the neighboring property on Brook Street was the home of rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix in 1968–69. Unfortunately, the home is currently closed for renovations but looks to reopen in May 2023. But, you can still witness greatness and see the outside where magic was made for over 200 years and photo-op the Blue Plaque until then.

Vincent Van Gogh House

Then, down a small side road in Stockwell (South West London, just a short walk from the Stockwell tube station), you’ll find the unlikely spot for an artistic great, the home, for a while of Vincent Van Gogh. The Vincent Van Gogh House is a must-see visit while in London.

Vincent Van Gogh House, London.

The house is the result of a major conservation project has a mission to share the history of 87 Hackford Road where Vincent van Gogh lived from 1873-1874. The home is open to the public and celebrates Van Gogh’s legacy by hosting artist residencies in addition to guided tours, exhibitions and events.

As the story goes, Van Gogh took lodging in a house in Stockwell. He then moved to Paris, returning to London in later years. While no letters were found with the exact address, a drawing was found in 1973 to where scholars were able to pin down the address on Hackford Road. The house then gained a blue plaque in the same year, fell into disarray but was purchased and refurbished in 2012 around the time of the London Olympics with the idea of creating the living museum and artist residencies.

When in London, look for the Blue Plaques as you walk around the city. You’ll find some pretty cool finds that, otherwise, would go completely unnoticed.

In: Locations,Odds & Sods