The Lightner Museum offers visitors an immersive experience of art, architecture, and history.
Founded by Chicago Publisher Otto Lightner in 1948, the museum presents compelling exhibitions and programs as well as Lightner's unique collection of Americana, fine and decorative art, and natural history specimens.
The museum is housed in the former Alcazar Hotel. Constructed in 1888 by Henry Flagler, the Alcazar was the railroad magnate's second grand hotel in St. Augustine. Designed by Carrère and Hastings, the Spanish Renaissance Revival hotel hosted thousands of guests who enjoyed its remarkable recreation facilities — including the world's largest swimming pool, Turkish and Russian steam baths, tennis courts, and a gymnasium. The Alcazar closed during the Depression, and in 1947 Otto Lightner purchased the museum and gifted it to the city. Lightner transformed the former Gilded Age resort hotel into an eclectic museum to house and show the art and artifacts he had collected for years.
Today, the heart of the Lightner Museum is its diverse and extraordinary collection, including lamps by Louis Comfort Tiffany, American and European paintings, geological specimens and shells collected from all over the globe, and mechanical musical instruments of the Victorian era.
In addition to its permanent collection, the Lightner Museum presents an active schedule of exhibitions, events, and educational programs for visitors and the local community to enjoy.
The Lightner Museum is located at 75 King Street in the historic downtown district, just across from Flagler College.
The museum is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., with the last admission at 3:30 p.m. The Ballroom Gallery closes at 4:30 p.m. They are closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day.