Posted by: gardner310 | March 6, 2010

Getty Villa, California

View from the Villa with Joanne and Ruth Ann

I had my first visit to the Getty Villa because the big Getty Museum is closed on Mondays.  As it turned out that was fortuitous because I absolutely loved the Villa.  It is in Pacific Palisades near Malibu right with a fabulous view of the ocean.  Mr. Getty had the villa built as an exact replica of an Italian villa in Herculaneum, Italy that was destroyed with the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius along with Pompeii.

Backyard at the Getty Villa

The villa belonged to a Roman senator who just happened to be Caesar’s father-in-law so the home was very impressive.    The Getty Villa has wonderful marble work on walls and floors along with marvelous mosaic work.  The garden pool has a view of the ocean and you can just picture the guests at the roman garden party thrown by the senator.

Inside, of course, there is an impressive collection of artifacts from sculpture to coins and jewelry.  There are 5 bronze maidens in the inner courtyard garden that are rare because bronze does not last.  These maidens happened to be crated by the senator while they were working on the house when the eruption happened, thus preserving them for the Getty Villa.

Bronze Maidens , Inner Courtyard

The grounds are immaculately landscaped with the Italian cypresses and other native flora.  Mr. Getty is buried on the grounds where he has a commanding view of the Pacific Ocean from his favorite house.  If you are looking for a delightful day of culture, history and scenery this is the spot.  Enjoy the sunshine while eating at the café.  Admission is free but you must reserve a time and parking is $15.00.  Molto bene.

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