I lived in Southern California for a handful of years. In that time, I never once visited the Getty Villa. Anytime I would drive through Malibu, I’d see the sign for the villa, but I didn’t really know what it was. I also never looked it up to plan a visit. The visit a few weekends ago was somewhat unexpected as my original thought for the day was to possibly check out the Getty Museum in Brentwood. While I was looking up the Getty’s parking info, I came across the Getty Villa ticketing.
There seemed to be plenty of tickets available, so I booked us for I brought along my most recent obsession - the Moment Superfish lens. In one word, it’s amazing. I love the perspective it gives in the photos. There is a bit of distortion, but it’s an interesting effect to the eye, rather than an annoyance. At least to me. :)
Ryan and I generally approach museums in two ways. We either check out the exhibits ourselves in a fairly quick pace, or we find a guided tour. Luckily for us, the Getty Villa has an extensive tour schedule. There are architecture tours, garden tours, general tours and exhibit-specific tours.
Since we weren’t really in a hurry to be anywhere else, we took a few different tours. Our first tour covered some of the mosaics of the latest exhibit. We were two of three on the tour, so it was almost a personal tour. Our second was a bit larger. It was a tour of the garden, and this time, we were handed audio devices, so the guide could speak to the entire group without yelling at us.
After the garden tour, we checked in to see if we might be squeezed into Tea by the Sea, a Thursday and Saturday afternoon tea service at the Getty Villa. Even though we hadn’t made advanced reservations, they were able to seat us, so we enjoyed our tea for two. It ended up being outside of the main dining area, so it was almost like VIP service.
Their house lavender/pine tea was delicious, and we left the tea service more stuffed than we expected to be. There was an additional garden tour included with the tea, so we stuck around a little longer.
By the time we were finished, it was already the mid-afternoon. The Outer Peristyle was still under renovation during our visit, so I know we’ll have to revisit. For $15 parking, it’s a lovely way to spend several hours of the day.
Visit the Getty Villa
17985 Pacific Coast Highway Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Admission is free - timed ticket entry required.
More info: website