- Validity: 1 day
- Priority access
- Photos without flash
What to expect
- See beautiful art works made of semi-precious stones
- Admire the section of the tools and techniques used
- Skip the line and don't waste your time
- Once entered, spend inside the museum all the time you want
The charm of the semi-precious stones
The Museum is dedicated to the traditional art of the Florentine mosaic (or inlaid work) in semi-precious stones. That ancient art, brought to new life thanks to the Medici family, was already known by the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans who created mosaics using marble and semi-precious stones (quartz, chalcedony, jasper, lapis-lazuli).
For many centuries, Florentine craftsmen have skilfully cut the naturally coloured stones into shapes, fitting them together to create magnificent architectural decorations as well as the most precious objects.
The Opificio delle Pietre Dure (Semi-precious Stones Workshop) was officially founded in 1588 by Ferdinando I de’ Medici. For more than three centuries most of the work has been dedicated to the decoration of the Chapel of the Princes, the Medici mausoleum, under the direction of architects and sculptors, such as Bernardo Buontalenti, Matteo Nigetti and Pietro Tacca.
The workshops, once located in the Casino Mediceo and then in the Uffizi, were moved to the present site in 1796. The museum, next to the workshop, has gradually begun to work from the late 19th century, when the Opificio started to attend to artworks restoration.
In 1995 the museum was renovated and enlarged with an educational section dedicated to the history of the workshop and workmanship.
The museum displays a big collection of semi-precious stone works (the so called “Florentine mosaic”), real “stone paintings”: portraits, coats of arms, abstract decorations, landscapes, stories, architectures. An important section is dedicated to nature subjects, in particular flowers, often together with fruits and birds, very fashionable between 17th and 18th centuries.
Among the works on display there are mural decorations, tables, vases, caskets, small sculptures, cameos, cabinets and other pieces of furniture, often decorated with ebony and gilded bronze. The section dedicated to the Laboratory of semi-precious stones shows 18th century work benches, tools, hundreds of samples of the most precious stones used by the craftsmen.
- Medici Lorraine Crest, tender stones and mother of pearl, late 16th century
- Red marble head of Cosimo I, by Bernardo Buontalenti
- Semi-precious stone reliefs for the altar in the Chapel of the Princes, early 17th century
- Table cabinet, ebony and semi-precious stones, Prague workshops
- Bedroom holy water stoup, semi-precious stones and gilded bronze, early 18th century
- Cosimo III’s big cameo, early 18th century
- View of the Pantheon, semi-precious stone, about 1797
- Tables with birds, flowers and fruits, 19th century
What is included
- Entrance with priority access
- Full-time entrance and you stay how long you want
- Reservation fees
- Access to temporary exhibitions
What is not included
- Guided tour
The following options can be purchased in addition to the tickets in the booking Wizard on this website.
- Guide Book: available in Italian, English, French and German
- European Community citizens between 18 and 25 years old (valid identity document needed at the entrance)
Free Ticket (it is still required to pay the presale to skip the line) :
EU and not EU citizens under 18 years old (valid identity document needed at the entrance)
Any handicapped person accompanied by the certificate of disability and the escort
The ticket is valid all day until closing time of the Museum starting from entrance time.
The entrance time written on the tickets may be subject to small changes depending on the actual availability of the Museum.
For a satisfying experience it is recommended to reserve at least 1 hour to visit the Museum.
The tickets will be sent via email within 24-48 hours after purchase (on weekdays) with instructions on how to get there and what to do to enter.
We inform you that, once booked, the date and time selected are binding. Please pick up your ticket at least 15 minutes before the reserved entrance. Who does not respect the time booked will not enter.
The Museum has a maximum capacity of people, in some periods of the year or special days you may experience short delays or waits not dependent on the Museumor Italy Tickets.