In 1902 Richard Strauss travelled to England to conduct an all-Strauss concert given by the Queen’s Hall Orchestra.


A year later he returned to London, this time for the first British Richard Strauss Festival, a three-day celebration of his music. And in both years Strauss headed to the Isle of Wight with his wife Pauline and son Franz for a traditional British seaside holiday.

Staying in the Ocean Hotel in Sandown – once a popular Victorian seaside resort – Strauss recalls his son ‘Bubi’ ‘running all day in the hot sand, and going in and out of the sea.’

And, perhaps inspired by the sunny, sandy haven, it was on the Isle of Wight that Strauss began his orchestral depiction of a day in the life of his family, the Symphonia Domestica.

Visitors can still stay in the Ocean Hotel today, and enjoy the same views over six miles of sand that Strauss looked at over a century ago.

Where is it?: Sandown, Isle of Wight
By ferry: from Portsmouth, Southampton or Lymington
Tel: +44 (0)1983 402 351
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Image: Ocean Hotel


Related links:
Fishamble Street, Dublin
The Cobbe Collection, Surrey