The decision to create the Museum of the Americas, or as it is known in Spanish, the Museo de América, was made in the year of 1941. The idea was to gather all the archeology and ethnology collections formerly owned by Spanish kings and display them in a space where the public could visit and admire them.
Two years later, architects Luis Martínez Feduchi and Luis Moya were hired to design the Museum’s building, which finished construction in 1954. The museum was created as a historicist building with a Neo-Colonial style. It has a beautiful interior cloister with a garden and fountain.
The Museum of the Americas started remodeling works in 1980, closing its door to the public in December of the following year. There was only one room that remained open, featuring temporary exhibits, but that too was closed to the public in 1986. The museum tripled in size, and finally opened its doors again in October of 1994.
Museum of the Americas collection
Today the Museum of the Americas collection contains over twenty five thousand pieces found through the centuries in the South American and North American continents. The collection contains pieces that date back to the Paleolithic area, covering several centuries, until today. A large number of the pieces were first part of the collection of the Real Gabinete de Historia Natural, having later been moved to the Museo Arquológico Nacional. The Museum of the Americas collection is formed not only by the collection that used to be housed by the archeology museum, but also by pieces from the Museo de Ciencias Naturales (Natural Science Museum), donations, deposits and newly purchased items. There are pieces from countries like Brasil, Canada, the United States of America, Peru, Mexico and Colombia.
The museum organizes a variety of activities for children, adults and families, like workshops, guided tours and augmented reality exhibits. Adults can attend classes and conferences at the museum, like Pasado y presente de la Quinoa, La nueva historia de los Mayas de la Antiguedad, and Oceanía: una historia contada a través de los objetos. The Museum of the Americas also organizes concerts, shows and thematic days from time to time.
Museo de América is located at Avenida de los Reyes Católicos 6. It is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 9:30 am to 3 pm, Thursdays from 9:30 am to 7 pm, and Sundays from 10 am to 3 pm.