The former home of the composer, where he lived for more than 30 years until his death in 1759, is a celebration of his genius. It's the first museum in London solely dedicated to one composer. In rooms decorated in fine Georgian style you can linger over original manuscripts (there are more to be seen in the British Library) and gaze at portraits—accompanied by live music if the adjoining music rooms are being used by musicians in rehearsal. Some of the composer's most famous pieces were created here, including Messiah and Music for the Royal Fireworks. To hear a live concert here is to imagine the atmosphere of rehearsals and "salon" music in its day (check the website for details of recitals and events). Handel House makes a perfect cultural pit stop after shopping on nearby Bond and Oxford streets, and if you come on a weekend, there is free admission for kids. The museum occupies both No. 25 and the adjoining house, No. 23, where another musical star, Jimi Hendrix,
lived for a brief time in the 1960s, as a blue plaque outside the house indicates. Until recently, Hendrix's flat housed the administrative offices of the museum and therefore was rarely open to the public. But from 2015 all that will change as Hendrix's flat will become a permanent museum. Phone or check the website for details.