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Henry B. Plant Museum, Tampa

4.5
#1 of 11 in Museums in Tampa
History Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
The Henry B. Plant Museum (Plant Museum) is housed in the south wing of Plant Hall on the University of Tampa's campus, located at 401 West Kennedy Boulevard in Tampa Florida. Plant Hall was originally built by Henry B. Plant as the Tampa Bay Hotel; a 511-room resort-style hotel that opened on February 5, 1891 near the terminus of the Plant System rail line, also forged and owned by Plant. The Plant Museum's exhibits focus on historical Gilded Age tourism in the Tampa Bay area of Florida, the elite lifestyle of the hotel's guests, and the Tampa Bay Hotel's use during the Spanish–American War. As such, the Plant Museum is set up in the Historic House Museum style. Exhibits display artifacts in a manner that reflects the original placement and usage within the related historic building.

The Tampa Bay Hotel was designed by architect J.A. Wood, who also designed the Old Hillsborough County Courthouse in 1892 in Tampa, Florida, as well as the Oglethorpe Hotel and the Mahoney-McGarvey House in Brunswick, Georgia.

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Henry B. Plant Museum reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
805 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • We discovered the Plant Museum on a day trip to Tampa. Built in 1891 by railroad magnate Henry B. Plant and a friendly competitor of Flagler, it was known as the Tampa Bay Hotel, now part of the...  more »
  • Nice museum that talks about the rich history of Plant Hall on the campus of the University of Tampa. It was much bigger than expected and was very educational. I would recommend going if you live in....  more »
Google
  • It's a wonderful piece of Tampa's history. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable. The first Friday of every month from 5-7 p.m. the museum is free with a guided tour. They have live music. This month they featured a jazz trio. They had lemon water and a variety of cheese and crackers, mixed fresh fruit to enjoy while listening to the music on the front veranda. The hotel was innovative, (having electric lights and an elevator) unique, lavish decorations. A must see.
  • This is a beautifully maintained piece of history! Back to the luxurious days when the building was the Grand Bay Hotel. Rooms are decorated with original pieces and placed as they were when guests were in residence. Very interesting to learn about the impact this man (Henry Plant) had on the state of Florida. Lovely gift shop with unique items. Admission is free with a N.A.R.M. membership.

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