The South West
In 1901 Merton Russell- Cotes gave his wife Annie a dream house on a cliff-top, overlooking the sea in Bournemouth.
It was an extraordinary present - lavish, splendid, and with a touch of fantasy. The Russell-Cotes' filled this spectacular seaside villa with British art and beautiful objects collected on their worldwide travels, creating a unique atmosphere in a dramatic setting.
A home, an art gallery, and a museum. Then they sealed it in time and gave it to the future. With stunning views, a serene cliff-top garden and new outdoor terrace café, Merton's extravagant gift to his wife is one of Bournemouth's most intriguing visitor attractions.
The main hall has a remarkable collection of high Victorian and Pre- Raphaelite art, including many works by women artists. Other rooms in the house showcase souvenirs from the couple's travels, including the worldrenowned Japanese collection. There is a regular programme of exhibitions featuring both art and artefacts from the Russell-Cotes extensive collections, and talks and events take place throughout the year.