Ventnor Winter Gardens – Isle of Wight, England - Atlas Obscura

Ventnor Winter Gardens

In the 1930s, people used to take boats from the mainland to see this Art Deco venue. 


Looking out over the blue waters of the bay, Ventnor Winter Gardens now stands on the grounds of the original Ventnor Parsonage.

Purchased by the Ventnor Urban District Council in 1929, the Victorian stone parsonage with spacious gardens was transformed into a stunning venue that contrasted with the traditional Victorian architecture surrounding it, becoming a topic of controversy.

In its place, the sleek, modern Winter Gardens Pavilion emerged, designed by A. Douglas Clare, based on the designs of the De La Warr Pavilion at Bexhill-on-Sea in Sussex.

By August 1936, the venue’s Art Deco elegance, from curves and glass to green and mauve décor and a stunning dance floor, attracted many people from the mainland, who visited by boat.

Today, the Winter Gardens is one of the less well-known yet historically significant places to visit in Ventnor. Throughout the decades, Winter Gardens hosted acclaimed shows and concerts, including performances by The Who and David Bowie. Queen Elizabeth II even paid a visit in 1965.

Winter Gardens is still open today, serving as a combination of theatre, meeting space, restaurant, and bar for residents and visitors alike.

Know Before You Go

Winter Gardens is open Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

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May 15, 2024

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