Ilana Goor Museum – Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel - Atlas Obscura
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Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

Ilana Goor Museum

A modern-day cabinet of curiosities housed in a 300-year-old inn. 

Ilana Goor is an Israeli self-taught artist and lifelong collector, who long dreamed of establishing her own museum to showcase her art collection. In the 1980s, she and her husband bought a 300-year-old building in Jaffa and began the process of restoring it to its original glory. It is now a modern-day curio cabinet full of artistic wonders, a secret world hidden on a Jaffa side street.

The historic building was first constructed in 1742 as an inn for Jewish pilgrims to the holy land. Over the centuries, it served as a soap factory, a synagogue, and an apartment building. At the time Goor purchased it, it had been largely neglected. The couple transformed it piece by piece into the gallery that stands today. Goor designed everything herself, down to the door handles.

In 1995, the museum finally opened. It’s a unique hybrid of art museum and home, as the couple lives in a private apartment above the museum. Much of the art is Goor’s own work, displayed alongside her eclectic collection of art from all over the world. The collection spans from Roman times to the present day, and art is still being added all the time. The sculpture garden on the museum rooftop offers incredible views of Jaffa and the Mediterranean Sea.

Know Before You Go

You can enter through the gift shop on Louis Pasteur St. or the main entrance on Mazal Dagim.