Located in a beautiful and central 19th century palace, in the district of Argüelles in Madrid, the Cerralbo Museum displays the collections gathered by the 17th Marquis of Cerralbo, Don Enrique de Aguilera y Gamboa (1845-1922), politician, archaeologist and passionate collector, where his family residence was. It is therefore a house-museum.
A museum of atmospheres
The Cerralbo Museum is one of the few examples in Madrid that shows the original decorative ambience of an aristocratic residence of the late nineteenth century. Its majestic, preserved to perfection decoration creates a space in which time seems to have stopped to show its visitors how it was to live at the time.
This setting has been recovered in the first decade of the 21st century, offering the disposition that the Marquis himself chose, living in this palace antiques, painting and sculpture and decorative arts from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century. The palace also has a secluded garden in the center of the city.
This area was home to the private rooms of the marquises. It has a winter wing and a summer wing, from which you can go out to the garden. On this floor you can visit some of the rooms where the daily life of the family passed and relatives and close friends were received. In it, the public reception area and a temporary exhibition room are located, where samples are periodically organized.
The second floor of the palace was used for the great social gatherings so common in high society of the nineteenth century. With a sumptuous decoration that was intended to reflect the social position of its owners, the main floor of the house is the largest of the palace’s treasures, reflecting in its distribution the nineteenth-century mentality in which appearance prevails over comfort. It constitutes the original nucleus of the museum since it was there where the Marquis distributed its collections harmoniously.
Ideal for all audiences
The Cerralbo Museum allows us to approach a particular moment in the history of Spain, and is a clear example of what was the residence of an aristocrat and collector who lived between the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.