The Wallace Collection
Free entrance, very few tourists and a beautiful interior. In the center of London, you can visit this stately town house with its impressive collection of art: The Wallace Collection.
In the eighteenth and nineteenth century, the wealthy Wallace family lived there, and they were keen art collectors. What they assembled during their lives, we can now enjoy in this museum. Walk through rooms filled with masterpieces from the Golden Age to the nineteenth century (Fragonard’s The Swing!), French furniture, porcelain, armour, tiny sniff-boxes and much more.
The presentation of the museum is what makes it so extraordinary. It is small, very accessible and beautifully decorated. The furniture, the curtains, the wallpaper – everything looks perfectly polished. I especially love the secret cabinets on the ground floor. In these covered glass cabinets, tiny icons and illuminated book pages from the middle ages are on display. You have to fold open the leather flaps and push a light button to enjoy these hidden gems. Some are hundreds of years old, but their colours are bright and they shimmer with gold foil.
Another highlight is the collection of snuff boxes: extravagant personal toys that were used for ‘snuff’, a kind of tobacco. They are miniature forms of art: with gold decorations and tiny paintings on the lids. Like being in a candy store!
The Monocle Café