José Lázaro Galdiano was a publisher from a wealthy family who collected for 60 years while he lived in Barcelona, New York and Madrid. The collection is housed in his beautiful home, “Parque Florida”, which was on his death in 1947 left to the Spanish State, together with his entire collection. Opened to the public in 1951, José Lázaro Galdiano wanted future generations to enjoy and be educated by his treasures.
The Collection comprises almost 5,000 pieces on display, beautifully exhibited over 4 floors. Look out for well-known names — works by Bosch, Goya, Velázquez, El Greco, Reynolds, Constable and Murillo feature amongst others. It’s quite eclectic and as well as paintings from diverse classical schools, there are arms, jewels, icons, sculptures, fine furniture, ceramics and textiles.
I really love the quiet gardens of the house, which is set a little back on Calle Serrano in the opulent Salamanca neighbourhood. The paintings are great, but I admit I most coveted the gorgeous jewellery!
Top tip: you can enter free for the last hour every day.