The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a cultural and educational institution that features exhibitions of modern and contemporary arts. Constructed in the mid-20th century, the museum is one of the most fascinating buildings of that era. Visitors and patrons enjoy access to special exhibits of impressionist, post-impressionist, modern, and contemporary arts from different artists worldwide. As the museum is an educational and cultural centre, art lecturers are available, including special sessions with popular artists. 

The circular building is famous for its modern design that makes it distinct from other attractions in the city. The length of the building is around 95 feet, and it consists of 7 floors. Most visitors tend to spend an hour to 2 touring the modern artwork. Visitors are mostly lovers of art, but you don’t have to be an art connoisseur to enjoy this gallery.

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York - one of the highlights of 10 Places to Learn Something New in New York (Read all about New York here)

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum highlights

A visit to the Guggenheim Museum gives you exposure to contemporary artwork, unlike other museums that focus on antiques and older paintings. You get to see exhibitions of some of the best artwork from around the world. The artwork you will find in the museum is mostly from within the last century, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim collections.

When you visit the UNESCO site, you will discover that it is more than just a museum. It is a cultural and educational centre where artists and critics give lectures about contemporary arts. There are classes for everyone, including adults and teens. Performances and film screenings also take place in the museum. You can enjoy tours by trained guides who will show you all around the building.

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History of Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

The Guggenheim Museum is one of the most impressive buildings of the 20th century. It was named after Solomon R. Guggenheim, a wealthy art collector who had a passion for contemporary designs. In 1937, he founded the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation for the promotion of modern arts. Before establishing the foundation, he was already displaying his impressive collection at the Plaza Hotel in New York.

The first venue for the museum opened in 1939. In a short while, the art collection surpassed the venue’s capacity. Guggenheim and Hilla Rebay, the founding director, assigned architect Frank Lloyd Wright to build a befitting structure to display the artwork in 1943. It took Wright 15 years to make it. In 1959, the museum was opened to the public. 

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Good to know when visiting the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Monday is the day when many New York museums do not open, but the Guggenheim Museum does. However, the crowds are massive on these days, so try to avoid a Monday visit when planning your trip. If Monday is a must, try to visit around 10 to 11 am when the crowd hasn’t built up yet. You can also enter the museum for a less expensive price on Saturday evenings on a “pay what you wish” policy. Note that crowds are prevalent at this time, and it is better to schedule to finish your tour before 4 pm.

Other nearby attractions in the area include the Jewish Museum and the Neue Galerie. While touring, take the lift up and move from the top down to make it a more seamless visit.

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Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York

Location: 1071 5th Ave, New York, NY 10128, USA

Open: Thursday–Monday from 11 am to 6 pm

Phone: +1 212-423-3500