The villa was the original seat of the museum. It was built in 1970, on the top of a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
The villa, which is completely free, bears the name of the philanthropist and oil tycoon Paul Getty, who hoped to make everyone enjoy and experience art. He used to collect many items that included antiques and paintings, photographs, sculptures and prints. In fact, Getty was one of the richest Americans and established quite a few important institutions like the Research Institute and the Conservation Center and Foundation.
In his youth he visited Italy, where he met the Papirios Villa - a villa full of pools and fountains of various sizes and shapes. He fell in love with the idea and decided to make a copy of the place in California - where the pools and fountains would also occupy a central role. And so he did. Getty was able to allow visitors here to experience the same experience hehad in Italy.
The villa was invested with $275 million and the museum became very popular and highly illustrated. It was renovated and reopened in early 2006 after an 8-year renovation. Today you will find a research campus dedicated to the preservation of Roman, Greek and Etruscan antiquities. In addition, treasures from an antiquities collection containing some 44,000 works owned by Getty are displayed. Thousands of visitors come to it each year.
Today there is an educational center and a museum dedicated to the culture and art of Greece, Rome and ancient Arturia. Pay particular attention to two interesting statues in the museum: one is "Lansdowne Herakles", a larger than life statue of the god from 125 AD and the other is "Victorious Youth", a Greek bronze sculpture (from the surviving life-size stories) of an Olympic victory.