Lightner Museum: From Museum to Art

Lightner Museum in St Augustine is a must-see for anyone interested in art, history or architecture. The museum is housed in a beautiful 19th-century building that was once a luxury hotel.

The Lightner Museum is an American decorative arts museum located in the former Alcazar Hotel in St Augustine, Florida. The museum was founded in 1948 by Otto C. Lightner, who collected Victorian artifacts from America’s Gilded Age.

History of the Lightner Museum

In 1887, Otto C. Lightner purchased the Alcazar Hotel in St. Augustine, Florida. The hotel had been built in 1883 by Henry Flagler and was one of the grandest hotels of its time. Lightner saw the potential to turn the hotel into a museum and began collecting art from around the world.

Lightner continued to add to his collection over time and by 1946 the Lightner Museum was home to more than 10,000 pieces. Many of these works were on loan from other museums or private collectors, and Lightner frequently hosted visiting dignitaries and celebrities.

Lightner Museum Augustine Inside

After Otto Lightner’s death in 1953, his wife sold the museum to the city of St. Augustine. Today, the Lightner Museum continues to operate as a museum and is one of St. Augustine’s most popular attractions.

Exhibitions at the Lightner Museum

The museum’s collection includes furniture, glassware, pottery, metalwork and many decorative objects from the late 1800s. The majority of the pieces in the collection were made in America, but there are also many European pieces.

Lightner Museum Augustine Outside
Tranquiligold Jin
Lightner Museum Augustine Tiffany Glass

The Lightner Museum houses a large collection of American and European art as well as an extensive collection of Tiffany glass. In addition to its permanent collection, the museum has a rotating program of temporary exhibitions of American art and culture from different time periods. You can follow the current exhibitions on their website.

Where is the Lightner Museum and how to get there?

The Lightner Museum is located in historic downtown St Augustine, Florida. It is one hour from Jacksonville and Daytona Beach and two hours from Disney World, Epcot Center and Cape Canaveral.

Lightner Museum Augustine Architecture

Located in St. Augustine, Florida, the Lightner Museum can be visited between 9am – 5pm. If you wish, you can visit the museum in much more detail and meaningful with a guided tour. The tours last about an hour and reservations can be made. The museum is open every day except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Lightner Museum Augustine Gallery
Lightner Museum Augustine Gallery 2

Lightner Museum is a must-see for anyone visiting St Augustine. With its unique collection of antiques and interesting artifacts, the museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the past. Whether you are interested in art, history or just want to see something different, the Lightner Museum is sure to impress.