Museo Fournier de Naipes de Alava, Vitoria-Gasteiz

#1 of 10 in Museums in Vitoria-Gasteiz
Specialty Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
The Museum of Fournier de Naipes is a playing card museum located in Vitoria, Spain. It originated as a private collection in 1916 by Félix Alfaro Fournier, the grandson of the founder of Naipes Heraclio Fournier. It was bought by the government of Álava and was declared Bien de Interés Cultural in 1984. In 1994, it moved to its current location in the Bendaña palace which it shares with the Álava Museum of Archaeology.BuildingThe Fournier Museum of Playing Cards is located at the Bendaña Palace, whose courtyard is the beginning of this tour. This Renaissance building was built in the first half of the 16th century. In 1525, Juan López de Arrieta ordered its construction on a piece of land belonging to his family, on the place that once was the defensive medieval tower of the old House of Maestu. Although it was built in the middle of the Renaissance, the building shows some elements of the late Gothic period, such as the pointed-arch gate of the main façade at Cuchilleria Street or the starred octagonal vault on the inner stairs. The organisation and the Renaissance decorative shapes are found mainly in this courtyard, which is a typical example of residential palaces of that time, with three floors of open arched corridors.CollectionThe collection of the Fournier Museum of Playing Cards was started by Félix Alfaro Fournier in 1916, when he succeeded his grandfather Heraclio Fournier in the factory after his death.In 1984, the Alava Provincial Council purchased the collection, that at that time included approximately 3,400 decks of cards, which they exhibited at the Fine Arts Museum of Alava, located at the Augustin Palace. From that moment, the funds of the collection continued increasing and so did the necessity for a bigger space. So, in 1994, the collection was moved to the Bendaña Palace.
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  • If you like playing cards, it's a very recommendable place to visit. It is showed the process of creation and the history of cards. Besides this, the entrance is free. It's a good place to stay while....  more »
  • A must see museum in vitoria! Its the museum of cards and the archeaological museum. You can see the history of spain in this museum  more »
  • Impressive playing card museum housed in an old building. Note that there is little English but the cards speak for themselves. It's free entry
  • Excellent free to enter museums. Not loads of information in English but helpful staff, audio guides and good facilities.
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