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The Queen's great-great-grandmother's seaside holiday home had its own private beach

The monarch bought the property in 1845

the queen house
Bridie Wilkins
Senior Health & Fitness Writer
August 29, 2022
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Queen Elizabeth II's great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria had a beautiful holiday home on the Isle of Wight that she visited until her death in 1901.

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The monarch and her husband Prince Albert purchased Osborne House in 1845 as an escape from life in London and Windsor. Located in East Cowes, Victoria said: "It is impossible to imagine a prettier spot." The royal residence boasted its own private beach, a museum, a chapel, a Swiss lodge for the children, and interiors inspired by Albert's love for Naples in Italy. 

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After Victoria's death, King Edward gave the home to the state, and part of the grounds became the Royal Navy College, Osborne until 1921. But several parts of the home remained private until 1954, when Her Majesty the Queen gave permission for Victoria and Albert's rooms to be opened to the public. Take a tour inside...

The Swiss Cottage

swiss cottage

An Alpine-style chalet known as the Swiss Cottage was built for the royal children in 1854 to help them learn about domestic life, including how to cook, harvest produce and entertain. It has a balcony running around the upper level where the Duchess of Cornwall and Judi Dench were pictured in 2018.

Inside, it has its own kitchen and pantry with pots, pans and crockery, as well as a dining room with a wooden table and chairs and wall hangings.

The drawing room

the queen house drawing© Photo: Getty Images

The Grade II-listed property is designed with ornate furniture and fine art. The drawing room follows a yellow colour scheme, with duchess satin sofas and armchairs, and matching curtains. There are grand high ceilings with several marble plinths, and the ceiling is decorated with intricate carvings of gold.

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the queen house piano© Photo: Getty Images

At the far end of the room, there is a wooden antique grand piano with two stools. A bookcase sits in one corner, and there are various paintings and photographs hanging in gold frames on the walls.

the queen house drawing room© Photo: Getty Images

There is a circular coffee table in the room with a glass top, and two enormous jewelled chandeliers amplify the majestic aesthetic.

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The dressing room

the queen house dressing© Photo: Getty Images

Queen Victoria's dressing room was painted pale pink. There are brown and cream floral carpets, and wooden furniture including a dressing table positioned in front of a large sash window with floral curtains, a matching stool, and a chest of drawers in one corner. Victoria positioned a large mirror above a white log fireplace.

The sitting room

the queen house main sitting© Photo: Getty Images

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert's sitting room features the same carpets as seen in Victoria's dressing room. The walls are painted canary yellow, and there are three floor-to-ceiling sash windows with cream and red floral curtains. Victoria kept several paintings and artefacts arranged on a long wooden table and a separate circular table.

The second sitting room

the queen house sitting© Photo: Getty Images

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert also had a second sitting room inside Osborne House. This one features olive green walls with red floral carpets, and a small circular table in the middle of the room with green chairs positioned at either side.

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The bedroom

the queen house bedroom© Photo: Getty Images

Queen Victoria's bedroom featured a canopy bed with floral curtains at either side. It has a green headboard and a wooden frame, and a floral chaise longue sits at the end of the bed. There are also two matching floral armchairs, and a white log fireplace at one side.  

prince albert room

Prince Albert's room, pictured in 1954, features a patterned carpet, a desk topped with books and a wooden side table with lots of paintings hanging on the wall above. After the royal passed away in 1861 followed by the monarch in 1901, the room remained largely untouched. 

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