Museum Month Offer
Villa Finale: Museum & Gardens offers free admission to self-guided tours (10:00am to 1:00pm; Tuesday through Saturday) for members of participating Museum Month organizations or their employees. Please show your membership card or work ID for admission.
Villa Finale was purchased in 1967 by preservationist Walter Nold Mathis, the 12th owner in a procession of increasingly colorful inhabitants. The home was built by hardware merchant Russell Norton in 1876 as a one-story, four-room house. By 1904, modifications by subsequent owners fashioned the Italianate style mansion that you see today. Mathis spent nearly two years restoring Villa Finale (so named as it was his final residence) and years thereafter filling it with the extraordinary collections, including European furniture and artwork, American silver, and art by popular Texas artists such as Julian Onderdonk and Mary Bonner, that still occupy the home. Villa Finale is perhaps most noted for its very large collection of memorabilia related to Napoleon Bonaparte, a historical figure of great interest to Walter Mathis.
Upon the death of Mr. Mathis in 2005, the house and the collections were bequeathed to the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the home was opened to the public in 2010. Mr. Mathis had realized his dream: his “villa finale” had become a museum open to all.
Visitors to the home may learn about the preservation legacy of Walter Mathis and enjoy the astonishing collection of fine and decorative arts through guided or self-guided tours. Guests may also experience the beauty and history of Villa Finale through educational evening and weekend programming for children, teens, and adults. The lush formal gardens are open to the public free of charge and professional outdoor photography permits are available for purchase. The gardens of Villa Finale are available to rent for weddings, receptions, and parties.
Villa Finale memberships and memberships in the “Friends of Villa Finale” program are available and are an excellent way to support quality educational programming at Villa Finale.
Villa Finale: Museum & Gardens is a National Trust for Historic Preservation co-stewardship site and is the only National Trust property in Texas.
Villa Finale: Museum & Gardens provides public tours of the home, guided and self-guided, Tuesday through Saturday, as well as a variety of engaging programs and events created for audiences of all ages. Please check www.villafinale.org for more details.
Villa Finale: Museum & Gardens
401 King William
San Antonio, TX 78201