Trip Planner: USA / Florida / St. Augustine / Villa Zorayda Museum
The Villa Zorayda Museum has undergone an extensive renovation and is once again open to the public as a museum. On the National Register of Historic Places it was built in 1883 as the winter residence of Franklin Smith utilizing his method of construction of poured concrete and crushed coquina shell. It is built 1/10th the scale of a section of the Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain. This building set precedence for St. Augustine and began the Moorish Spanish revival of architecture that is seen throughout the city today.To visit Villa Zorayda Museum on your trip to St. Augustine, use our St. Augustine planner.
In 1913, it was purchased by Abraham S. Mussallem, an authority on Oriental rugs, fine arts and Egyptian artifacts. In the early 1900s, the Zorayda was leased out and turned into a club. In 1922, the Zorayda Club became one of the most fashionable places for casino gambling.
In the mid 1930s, it opened as a museum featuring the priceless antique collections of both Franklin Smith and A.S. Mussallem which are still on display today.
The 45 minute audio guided tour (available in English, Spanish, and French) gives an in-depth look at the historical significance of the building to the City of St. Augustine, the magnificent architecture, and descriptions of the many exquisite antique pieces, which are original to the home.
Please call 904-829-9887 for hours of operations and prices.
Besides being a museum, we also hold wedding services and private parties.
Wedding photos are located on our website; please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
During the Holiday Season, the museum opens its doors during the evenings. Our Candlelight Tours are on select dates. Please visit our website for more information about our Candlelight Tours.
Villa Zorayda Museum reviews
I agree with another reviewer that this attraction seems to get less attention than others in St. Augustine and that is a shame. It was closed in 2000 for extensive renovations and only reopened in...
I agree with another reviewer that this attraction seems to get less attention than others in St. Augustine and that is a shame. It was closed in 2000 for extensive renovations and only reopened in... more »
I think this is a gem that is often overlooked by its bigger and more well-known neighbors. Don't be one to ignore this fabulous house modeled on the Alhambra castle in Grenada, Spain. You'll see...
I think this is a gem that is often overlooked by its bigger and more well-known neighbors. Don't be one to ignore this fabulous house modeled on the Alhambra castle in Grenada, Spain. You'll see... more »
Small but interesting gilded age home museum. You hear a lot of the tour guides make light of the house and collection and I was afraid it would be over the top like a Ripley's Believe It or Not, but was quite the eclectic tour. Very informative. I enjoyed my visit.
Lovely little museum. Tonnes to look at and they have a little audio guide to go with the artifacts. Staff is friendly and knowledgeable. Would definitely recommend as quick stop.
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