If you are a fan of art, there is one museum which you absolutely must visit, and that is the Thyssen-Bornemisza. Founded in the year of 1992, the museum showcases the art collection that began with Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza, a baron that lived between 1875 and 1928.
The museum was is housed at Palacio de Villahermosa, an 18th-century building that was renovated in a neoclassical style by the architect Antonio López Aguado. But before becoming a museum, the palace was considered one of the most prestigious mansions in the city, having been the home of the Duque of Angulema, later becoming the headquarters of Banca López Quesada, with another renovation work that got rid of all of the beautiful halls, which were replaced with offices. The palace started being used as a museum when it Lopez Quesada went bankrupt and the building ended up in the hands of the state, being beautifully renovated, becoming what it is today.
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The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum has a collection of over 1,600 pieces of art from names like Duccio, Van Eyck, Caravaggio, Van Gogh, Mondrian, Gaudin, Kirchner, and Hopper. The works showcased span the history of art all the way back from the 13th century to the 20th century. Among the featured paintings you will find masterpieces such as Roy Lichtenstein’s “Woman in Bath”, Salvador Dalí’s “Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee around a Pomegranate a Second before Waking”, André Derain’s “Waterloo Bridge”, Paul Cézane’s “Portrait of Millicent, Duchess of Sutherland”. “Paul Gaugin’s “Mata Mua (In Olden Times)”, and Francis Bacon’s “Portrait of George Dyer in a Mirror”.
How to get to the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum
The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum is located at Paseo del Prado, 8, close to Parque de El Retiro, one of the city’s most beautiful green spaces, and Museo Nacional del Prado, another museum that is worthy of a visit. To get to the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, you can take line 2 of the subway and exit at Banco de España station; take buses number 1, 2, 5, 9, 10, 14, 15, 20, 27, 34, 37, 41, 51, 52, 53, 74, 146, and 150; or the train, exiting at Atocha or Recoletos station. There is also a spot to park nearby, at Marqués de Cubas, if you plan on being extra green and using the city’s bike rental service, BiciMad. Of course, if you plan to go to the museum by car, you will also find parking spots, with the closest parking being the Las Cortes one.
What are the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum’s working hours?
The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum has different schedules for its permanent collection and its temporary exhibits. The permanent collection can be visited from 12 pm to 4 pm on Mondays, and from 10 am to 7 pm during the rest of the week and during the weekend. The temporary exhibits are closed on Monday and can usually be visited from 10 am to 10 pm from Tuesday to Saturday, and from 10 am to 7 pm on Sundays.
The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum also opens its doors on December 24th and 31st but with a reduced schedule, from 10 am to 3 pm. The museum is closed on January 1st, May 1st, and December 25th.
As for the hours in which the private tours take place, the tours to visit the permanent collection happen from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm, and the tours to visit the temporary exhibits happen from Tuesday to Friday from 10 am to 6 pm, and on Sundays from 3 pm to 6 pm.
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How much does it cost to visit the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum?
If you buy a ticket to visit Thyssen-Bornemisza, you will have access not only to the permanent collection but also to the temporary exhibits. A general ticket costs 12€ per person, while reduced tickets cost 8€ per person for students, people over 65 years old, visitors with disabilities, members of large families carrying a large family discount card, Youth Card Holders, and Fine Art Teachers. Children under 12 years old, Friends of the Museum, and unemployed visitors can go into the museum for free.
You can either buy your tickets at the ticket office or save yourself the time you would have spent waiting in line and buy them online before going.
If you are planning to visit more than one of Madrid’s museums, you may want to consider buying a Paseo del Arte Card. This card allows you to visit not only Thyssen-Bornemisza but also Nacional del Prado Museum, Reina Sofia Museum, and the Arts Center. The Paseo del Arte Card is valid for one full year from the date of the emission of the ticket which means you will have plenty of time to visit each one. Bare in mind, though, that the Paseo del Arte Card, which costs 29.60€ per person, will only grant you access to the permanent collection at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, and not to the temporary exhibits.
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* Main photo by Joanbrebo via VisualHunt