Lightner Museum

Currently Closed
  • Address: 75 King Street, P.O. Box 334, Saint Augustine, Florida 32085, 32084, St Augustine, United States
  • Timings: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm Details
  • Phone: +1-9048242874
  • Fax: +1-3034498858
  • Ticket Price: 10 USD
  • Time Required: 03:00 Hrs
  • Tags: Art And Culture, Museum, Landmark, Family And Kids, Architecture , Social, Arts, Museums

Lightner Museum - Review

Hotel Alcazar was built in 1887 in the Spanish Renaissance style architecture to provide luxury and comfort to wealthy patrons vacationing. Railroad magnate Henry M. Flagler commissioned architects Carrere and Hastings to give it a touch of splendour and glamour which summed up the atmosphere in this hotel. The hotel boasted a steam room, massage parlour, sulphur baths, gymnasium, a three-storey ballroom, and the world's largest indoor swimming pool. However in 1932 the hotel closed down, and in 1948 it was open to the public as the Lightner Museum.

Chicago publisher, Otto C. Lightner, purchased the building to house his extensive collection of Victoriana in 1946 and opened the museum two years later. He gave the museum to the city of St. Augustine. The building is an attraction in itself, highlighting the open courtyard with palm trees, and a stone arch bridge over a fishpond. On display at the Lightner Museum are artefacts from the 19th century. There are three floors to the museum, all of which are filled with relics of America’s Gilded Age.

Costumes, furnishings, mechanical musical instruments all give you a glimpse into the daily life of that era. And to represent this are collections of items like lighters, pipes, and glasses. Paintings from around the world are all exhibited. Each room is restored to its inventive splendour so guests can feel like they are walking back in time. The Museum is housed in the former health facilities of the hotel, including the spa and Turkish bath, and in its three-storey ballroom.

The museum's first floor houses a Victorian village, with shop fronts demonstrating emporia selling period wares, a Victorian Science and Industry Room exhibits shells, rocks, minerals, and Native American articles in beautiful turn of the 20th century cases, as well as stuffed birds, a small Egyptian mummy, model steam engines, elaborate examples of Victorian glassblowing, golden elephant bearing the world on its back, and a shrunken head. The Music Room, filled with mechanized musical instruments—including player pianos, reproducing pianos, orchestras, and others—dating from the 1870s through the 1920s.

The second floor contains examples of cut glass, Victorian art glass and stained glass work of Louis Comfort Tiffany's studio. The third floor, in the ballroom's upper balcony, exhibits paintings, sculpture, and furniture, include a Grande escritoire created for Louis Bonaparte, King of Holland, in the period 1806-1810.

The Lightner Museum is located in the historic downtown district of St. Augustine across from Flagler College.

Lightner Museum Information

  • Include in your visit lunch at the Cafe Alcazar directly behind the museum in the former hotel indoor swimming pool.
  • Alcazar Cafe serves delicious food at affordable prices, service is outstanding. They serve lunch daily.
  • Lightner Museum provides a spectacular setting for special events. Corporate functions, award ceremonies, dinners and dances can be outstanding evenings held in the Museum's elegant environs.
  • The affluence of a golden era provides a unique milieu for weddings and wedding receptions.
  • Events ranging in size from 50 to 400 guests can be accommodated. Rates vary according to the size and type of event. The Museum is available for events after 6:00 pm any day of the year except on Christmas day.
  • Other areas in the museum are available for a more intimate setting. The Museum will try to accommodate you as best as possible and tailor the evening to your special event.
  • Even the exterior courtyard can be rented as well.
  • The Museum appreciates financial gift and donations but suggests you consult a financial or tax advisor to help you decide.
  • You can fund a specific project or exhibit. Or you can work as a volunteer.
  • If you have an object the museum might want, please describe the object: its size, age, condition, and history. If you can, send them a photograph. They will be happy to discuss it with you.

Lightner Museum Ticket Prices

  • For Adults $10
  • For Children (12-18): $5
  • Children under 12 entry is free.
  • Active military with ID $6:College student with ID $5
  • Tour group rates: 10 or more, reservations required; Adults $6.00; Children $5.00

Restaurants Near Lightner Museum

  • Reflections Bistro: Sandwiches
  • Old City House Inn and Restaurant: International
  • The Corazon Cinema and Cafe: Hamburgers, Hotdogs, Cafes
  • Casa Monica: Armenian

Love this? Explore the entire list of things to do in St Augustine before you plan your trip.

Fancy a good night's sleep after a tiring day? Check out where to stay in St Augustine and book an accommodation of your choice.

TripHobo Highlights for Lightner Museum

  • Lightner Museum Address: 75 King Street, P.O. Box 334, Saint Augustine, Florida 32085, 32084, St Augustine, United States
  • Lightner Museum Contact Number: +1-9048242874
  • Lightner Museum Timing: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm
  • Lightner Museum Price: 10 USD
  • Best time to visit Lightner Museum(preferred time): 09:00 am - 04:00 pm
  • Time required to visit Lightner Museum: 03:00 Hrs
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  • Plan a Trip to Lightner Museum using our free St Augustine Trip Planner
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Things to Know Before Visiting Lightner Museum

  • 70.84% of people who visit St Augustine include Lightner Museum in their plan

  • 55.83% of people start their Lightner Museum visit around 11 AM - 12 PM

  • People usually take around 3 Hrs to see Lightner Museum

Monday, Wednesday and Sunday

59.35% of people prefer walking in order to reach Lightner Museum

People normally club together Flagler College and Whetstone Chocolate Factory while planning their visit to Lightner Museum.

* The facts given above are based on traveler data on TripHobo and might vary from the actual figures

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Lightner Museum, St Augustine Reviews

  • Always a favorite place for our family, our daughter was married here in the Chapel, using the wedding coordinator. She hired a photographer and reserved the center Atrium, which is the perfect backdrop for wedding pictures. Besides the beautiful wedding Chapel there is also an amazing museum of area art and historical pieces. We took one day (several hours) and really enjoyed the whole experience. There are a few shops, one serving coffee and light fare and some specialty antiques. Make sure you leave time for pictures in and outside front gardens! And the architecture is amazing!!

  • If you like collections, then you will need two or three days to go through this Museum to take in all of the exhibits that are there. Mr. Lightner was a fabulous collector, and there is something for everyone in these collections. Additionally, in the courtyard there is a linen store that has antique Linens very reasonably priced. I was able to get a christening gown cheaper than online, and considering it was an antique I thought I got a real bargain. Also, the gift shop sells umbrellas that are replicas of the Tiffany chandeliers hanging in the dining room of Flagler College.

  • Parking meters in St. Augustine take coins still! The front desk at the museum was happy to trade me for coins and I spent several hours here. Perfect if you enjoy antiques, as many of the pieces are from a family's personal collection. Beautiful details in every corner. The staff is pretty laid back and friendly which is refreshing for a museum.

  • Very old fashioned museum in that they offer little to no interpretation of the objects on display. The few labels there were offered opinion, not facts. It was not worth $15. The building is beautiful. The third floor exhibit was being changed out, so I hope that space is used in a more effective, educational way. Good if you love antique glass, though I learned almost nothing about the hoard of glass objects on display. I was also disappointed that only 1/4 of the building houses the museum. The rest is offices and shops (considering the high cost of admission).

  • Lots of cool Victorian stuff on the first floor, and plenty of cool things to look at. The second floor was all glass and not very impressive for a "museum". A glass blowers shop has more interesting glass. There was a music demonstration where some of the old automatic instrumental machines were played. The staff was knowledgeable and nice.

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