Museo de Malaga – Not just another museum in town

customs house museo de malaga

Last December, 12th, here in Malaga, we had our latest museum opened to the public. But our brand new “Museo de Malaga” is nothing about another cultural equipment on the city’s list. On the contrary, there is nothing about it that could be considered as ordinary. Just a quick look at the figures involve in this project gives an idea of the special museum Malaga has just uncovered.

It is already the fifth greatest art gallery of Spain. The building has 18.400m2 (around 200.000 square foot) and the Ministry of Culture has invested 40 million euros in its restoration. They are exhibited 2.700 works of art, although the institution keeps nearly 17.000 of them.

hall museo de malaga fine arts
Access hall to the Fine Arts exhibition
museo de malaga stairs customs house
New staircase after the restoration at Museo de Malaga

Thanks to this inauguration, two different milestones have been achieved.

On one side, the restoration of the building itself, a magnificent neo-renaissance palace. It was a shame it was left with no use in the late 20th century. Conceived as a Customs House, this new one was going to substitute the existing one at Puerta del Mar. That was the end of the 18th century. Little time had that function, as a Customs House, as the park was built at the end of the 19th century and the port got further away.

The building had originally a pitched tiled roof. However, a fire destroyed it in 1922, and from then, the roof came to be flat. This has been a wise choice in the building’s restoration, regaining the pitched roof. But this time it has been covered by a unique panel system that has been registered as a patent by its creators.

customs house roof model malaga museum
Scaled model of the new roof of the Customs House Palace

On the other side, the Fine Arts Museum of Malaga was homeless since 1997, when the Palacio de Buenavista was acquired for housing the Picasso Museum. Since then, a big warehouse outside the town has kept all these marvelous pieces of art out of the public view. But even if the Fine Arts collection was significant by itself, it has also kept works from Prado Museum, which are now exhibited in the Customs House Palace.

In addition, they have restored more than 450 archaeological pieces for its perfect exhibition in the Museo de Malaga. In fact, the National Archaeological Museum has completed the Loring collection (the base of the archeological collection) as we had premiered in a previous post. And to complete the joy, a big space has been opened, the storeroom, where you can see many works of art not displayed on the exhibition rooms.

store room malaga museum
Storeroom for visit at Museo de Malaga
display cabinets museo de malaga customs house
Display cabinets at the storeroom

Thanks to this opening, we not only can enjoy a great museum but a great building like no other in town. The grand central patio invites to stay and relax, admiring its architecture. Its inner spaces are so generous they look like they’ve been made for giants.

patio customs house museum malaga
Central Patio at the Customs House Palace (Museo de Malaga)
statue patio aduana customs house museum malaga museo
Detail of statue at the central patio

We want to show our sincere congratulations to the people of Malaga, for having won a historic landmark as they were the ones who fought to become real this Museo de Malaga, and they have the duty (and the privilege) to keep it and, of course, enjoy it.

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