A Sunday at the Museum

Sundays in Geneva are very quiet, with nearly all of the stores, supermarkets and restaurants across the city shuttered for the day. That’s why I was super excited to discover that, not only is Geneva’s Musée d’Art et d’Histoire  (art and history museum) open on Sundays, but it’s free and less than a five-minute walk from our apartment. The roof of the gorgeous building visible from the top of our loft? Yeah, it turns out that’s the museum.

So after a lovely homemade brunch Sunday, my husband and I set off. The museum is perched on top of a hill behind a park that, for all you Washingtonians, reminds me quite a bit of Meridian Hill in the district. From the street behind our apartment building, all you can see is a series of stone ramps and steps that take you up to some sort of platform. But once you reach the top, you’re in a picturesque park with a fabulous view of the city and Lake Geneva, just steps away from the museum.

My husband and I began our visit in the basement perusing cases of archaeological artifacts uncovered in Geneva before heading up one floor to look at collections from Egypt, Greece and Rome. Anglophones, be warned: Not much English in either exhibit.

Next, we climbed up to the top floor where we wandered through room after room of pastels, sculptures and paintings, with the oldest dating back to the 15th century. The collection includes an assortment of works by internationally-celebrated artists, but their most famous pieces are elsewhere. What makes the collection unique is its impressive assembly of local art, with the landscape paintings of Mont Blanc and Lake Geneva standing out as my personal favorites.

Back downstairs, my husband bravely attempted to start up some sort of installation of moving wheels before a loud (and hopefully totally normal) noise sent us scampering. We also meandered through the armory, as well as the furniture and stained glass window collections, before heading home.

I went for another walk through the park yesterday at dusk was greeted by a lovely view of the Jet d’eau actually turned on, which is a rare occurrence of late (maintenance work, it seems). You can see it below in the final photo of the post: Enjoy!

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