Though the majority of the Thyssen- Bornemisza family collection resides in their namesake museum in Madrid, Carmen Cervera (formally Baroness Thyssen-Bornemisza), an avid art collector, decided to open her own galleries in Malaga. Situated in its galleries is perhaps the finest visual representation of Andalucian art, featuring noted artists ranging from Sorolla to Zuburán and Ezquerra, and spanning the 13th to 20th centuries.
The museum, which opened in 2011, is partially located in a 16th-century baroque palace—el Palacio de Villalón—a site worth seeing in its own right. In fact, the palace and its art aren’t even the most historic items here: when undergoing construction for the museum, Roman ruins were discovered below.
It is in the building’s old chapel where you’ll find the “Old Masters” collection, a display of works by the collection’s most prized artists. The palace portion of the museum is also home to a picturesque colonnaded courtyard, a quintessential architectural element found in southern Spain.
Other collections – including Romantic landscape and Costumbrismo, Précieux and Naturalist, and Fin-de-siécle – reside in the adjoining building, which was constructed specifically for the museum. Meanwhile, various rotating exhibitions go on display too.
The museum is centrally located in the city’s historic quarter. Note that it is closed on Mondays, and that visits to temporary exhibitions are not included in the ticket price.