Baroque German composer George Frideric Handel and American rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix are two musicians separated by a single wall—and 200 years.
Both musical legends lived on London’s Brook Street, at numbers 25 and 23, respectively, and the would-be neighbors’ homes have since been faithfully restored and opened to the public as a museum.
A self-guided tour begins with Handel’s abode, recreated in detail based on an inventory written after his death, all the way down to the muted blue color on the walls. Handel was the first occupant of the residence and lived here for 36 years before dying in his bed on Brook Street in 1759. He is buried at Westminster Abbey.
It’s then a seamless walk right through to Hendrix’s flat next door. Based on photos and his former girlfriend’s memory, each room has been staged to look as it did when the rockstar lived here from 1968 to ‘69. Knowledgable and enthusiastic volunteers are present in each room, eager to answer any questions and point out their favorite tidbits.
One favorite fact is that the records displayed in Hendrix’s apartment are copies of records he actually owned, one of them being a classical Handel album. The original stairs Hendrix used to come in and out are on display, but too fragile for use. He died at the young age of 27, and is buried in Renton, Washington.
Know Before You Go
Centrally located in Mayfair, this museum is easily accessible by foot or public transportation. Entry to both homes is £10.