The Prado and the Reina Sofia are must-see museums when in Madrid, but the often overlooked Museum of Lázaro Galdiano has been called “the best kept art secret” in the city. The elegant mansion housing the collection was once the home of José Lázaro Galdiano, a 19th-century Spanish publisher, entrepreneur, and art collector. Galdiano gifted his exquisite collection of almost entirely Iberian art — including works by Goya, El Greco, Velazquez, Zurbarán, and Murillo — to the state upon his death in 1947.
Today it is an impressive display of more than 13,000 works of art ranging from sculpture and furniture to jewelry and ceramic, among some of Madrid’s finest paintings. You’ll also find the work of French, Italian, and English painters on the second floor. The room dedicated exclusively to Goya’s work is particularly special, though the house itself with its fresco ceilings and magnificent ballroom is worth a visit alone.
The museum is located on the Calle de Serrano in the Salamanca neighborhood of Madrid. To get there, take the metro to Gregorio Marañón. It is open Monday and Wednesday to Saturday from 10 am to 4:30 pm, and Sunday from 10 am to 3 pm (closed Tuesdays.) Descriptions are listed in both Spanish and English, so it is easy to follow along. Admission costs €6 for adults, and is free for children.