The "George Enescu" National Museum is just a few minutes’ walk away from the Mercure Bucharest City Center Hotel, being a wonderful place to spend a relaxing afternoon. In the magnificent Cantacuzino Palace that houses the "George Enescu" Museum, you can admire documents and personal belongings of the famous musician.
The "George Enescu" National Museum was founded in 1956 and is housed in one of the most beautiful buildings in Bucharest, the Cantacuzino Palace. Easy to be recognized, thanks to the sumptuous entrance with a huge cover designed in a splendid Art Nouveau style, the building is a real architectural jewel built-in 1903 by Gheorghe Grigore Cantacuzino, called “Nababul” (the Romanian word for the nabob/nawob). Grigore Cantacuzino, was a politician and, for a very short period of time, he was also the prime minister. He was famous for his avarice. But, when the time for building his palace came, Cantacuzino did not compromise on quality and hired a very famous architect of that time, Ion Berindey. For the beginning, this house became emblematic, being recognised for the balls that took place here.
If you are wondering what do the lions at the entrance symbolize, you have to know that they are not just for decoration. At the end of the XIXth century, it was a fashion to link to the name of the royal family. So, Cantacuzino borrows the royal symbols and uses them at the entrance to his palace.
This was his way to link his name to the royal family.
Grigore Cantacuzino died shortly after the building of the palace finished. After his death, his son Michael and his wife Maruca (Maria) inherited the wonderful building. After the death of Mihail G. Cantacuzino, Maruca married George Enescu.
The love story between Maruca and George Enescu is, most of the time, a spicy and often discussed topic. The two met when Maruca, married with Mihail Cantacuzino, took piano lessons from George Enescu. An idyll was growing between them from the very beginning. When Maruca remains a widow, everybody is sure that they will get married. But Maruca had already had a crazy passion for Nae Ionescu, philosopher, mathematician and journalist. Even if they live a beautiful love story, Nae doesn't hesitate and leaves her for a young student of George Enescu. Maruca Cantacuzino has a fit of madness and throws vitriol on her face, leaving a strong mark. This was the moment when George Enescu showed his devoted love to Maruca: he married her.
Their life together was not easy at all. He was a civil servant and material deprivation was felt more and more acutely. That's why they decided to move into the back house which today is the Memorial House George Enescu. The palace was thus used only for concerts and important visits. Moreover, they will rent certain spaces in the palace in order to pay for their utilities. Inside the museum, you can see the portrait of Maria Cantacuzino, near the portrait of the artists of all times.
Following the death of the great composer, the building is transformed into a museum dedicated to the life and works of George Enescu, the famous Romanian composer. Among others, you can admire his first violin, the scores that made him famous all over the world, even his hands cast in plaster or his death mask.
Adults: 6 lei - 1,25 euro
Senior citizens: 3 lei – 0,63 euro
Tickets are free of charge for:
The entrance is FREE on the 26th day of each month.