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Tabacalera Building (Automobile and Fashion Museum)

A Journey Through History: The Tabacalera Building

At the heart of Malaga's vibrant cultural landscape lies the Tabacalera Building, a testament to the city's rich industrial past and its dynamic present. This architectural masterpiece, once a bustling tobacco factory, has been meticulously transformed into a vibrant cultural center, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in a world of automobiles, fashion, and art.

Established in 1922, the Tabacalera Building stands as a testament to Malaga's industrial heritage. Its distinctive Neo-Mudejar architectural style, characterized by intricate brickwork and horseshoe arches, pays homage to the region's Moorish roots. Over the decades, the factory played a pivotal role in Malaga's economy, employing thousands of workers and producing countless cigarettes that found their way to homes across the country.

In the 1990s, as the tobacco industry declined, the factory faced an uncertain future. However, thanks to the foresight of local authorities, the building was spared demolition and underwent a comprehensive renovation. This transformation breathed new life into the historic structure, preserving its architectural integrity while adapting it to its new role as a cultural hub.

Location and Getting There

The Tabacalera Building is strategically located in the heart of Málaga, at Avenida de Juan Sebastián Elcano, Its prime position offers easy access to visitors arriving by various means of transportation.

For those opting for public transportation, the building is well-connected by bus routes. The nearest bus stop, "Tabacalera," is served by several lines, including the C1, C2, and Alternatively, the metro station "La Malagueta" on Line 1 is a short walk away, providing a convenient option for metro users.

For those arriving by car, the Tabacalera Building offers ample parking facilities in the adjacent streets. Visitors can find designated parking spaces along Avenida de Juan Sebastián Elcano and the surrounding area, ensuring a hassle-free visit.

Situated in the vibrant neighborhood of La Malagueta, the Tabacalera Building is surrounded by notable attractions. The iconic La Malagueta Bullring, known for its historic corrida events, is just a stone's throw away. Moreover, the beautiful Playa de La Malagueta, with its golden sands and refreshing Mediterranean waters, is within walking distance, inviting visitors to combine a cultural experience with a relaxing day at the beach.

Exhibitions and Collections

The Tabacalera Building houses a treasure trove of permanent and temporary exhibitions that captivate visitors with their diverse and engaging displays. Among the permanent highlights is the Automobile Collection, which showcases a stunning array of vintage cars, each representing a milestone in the history of automotive engineering. From sleek sports cars to iconic city vehicles, the collection offers a journey through the evolution of transportation design.

Equally impressive is the Fashion Collection, which presents a mesmerizing array of garments and accessories that have shaped the world of fashion. Visitors can explore the intricate details of haute couture gowns, admire the timeless elegance of vintage pieces, and discover the latest trends that are defining contemporary style.

In addition to these permanent exhibitions, the Tabacalera Building also hosts a variety of temporary exhibitions and special events throughout the year. These exhibitions delve into specific themes or showcase the works of renowned artists, designers, and photographers. Visitors can expect to encounter thought-provoking installations, immersive experiences, and unique perspectives on art, culture, and history.

Guided Tours

Visitors to the Tabacalera Building can enhance their experience by opting for a guided tour. These tours are conducted by knowledgeable and passionate guides who provide insightful commentary and anecdotes about the history, architecture, and collections of the museum. Guided tours are available in multiple languages, including English, Spanish, French, and German, ensuring that visitors from all over the world can benefit from this enriching experience.

The guides offer a deeper dive into the stories behind the automobiles and fashion exhibits, revealing the cultural and historical significance of each piece. They also provide insights into the restoration and conservation processes involved in preserving these valuable artifacts. Visitors can ask questions and engage in discussions with the guides, creating a more interactive and personalized experience.

Booking a guided tour is recommended for those who want to make the most of their visit to the Tabacalera Building. Tours can be booked in advance online or at the museum's ticket counter on the day of the visit. Prices vary depending on the tour type and duration, but discounts are available for students, seniors, and families.

Interactive Displays

The Tabacalera Building houses a range of interactive exhibits and displays that bring the history of tobacco, automobiles, and fashion to life. These interactive elements enhance the visitor experience by allowing them to engage with the exhibits in a hands-on and immersive manner.

One of the most popular interactive displays is the "Virtual Reality Time Machine." Visitors can use this virtual reality headset to travel back in time and experience the Tabacalera Building as it was in the early 20th century. Another interactive exhibit is the "Touch and Feel Collection," where visitors can handle and examine various types of tobacco leaves, fabrics, and car parts.

The museum also offers a variety of workshops and hands-on activities for visitors of all ages. These workshops cover topics such as car restoration, fashion design, and tobacco cultivation. Visitors can learn new skills and create their own unique souvenirs to take home.

By incorporating these interactive elements, the Tabacalera Building provides visitors with a truly immersive and engaging experience that allows them to connect with the history and culture of Malaga in a meaningful way.

Museum Shop and Bookstore

The gift shop at the Tabacalera Building is a treasure trove of souvenirs, books, and merchandise related to automobiles, fashion, and the history of the building itself. Here, visitors can find a wide range of items to commemorate their visit, including scale models of classic cars, vintage fashion accessories, and books on automotive history and design. The shop also offers a selection of unique gifts and souvenirs, such as locally-made crafts and products inspired by the museum's collections.

The items sold in the shop are carefully curated to reflect the museum's mission of preserving and promoting automotive and fashion culture. Visitors can find limited-edition prints of classic car advertisements, designer clothing and accessories inspired by the museum's collection, and books by renowned automotive and fashion experts. The shop also offers a range of educational materials, such as children's books, activity books, and educational toys, making it a great place for families to find souvenirs that are both fun and educational.


The Tabacalera Building is committed to ensuring that all visitors, regardless of their abilities, can enjoy their visit. The museum is wheelchair accessible, with ramps and elevators providing access to all floors. There are also accessible restrooms, as well as designated seating areas for visitors with reduced mobility. For visitors with visual or hearing impairments, the museum offers assistive devices such as audio guides, magnifying glasses, and sign language interpretation upon request. Additionally, the museum provides discounts and concessions for visitors with disabilities, making it an accessible and welcoming space for everyone.

Family-Friendly Activities

The Tabacalera Building is a great place for families to visit, as it offers a range of facilities and activities that cater to the needs of younger visitors. Children will enjoy the interactive exhibits and displays, which allow them to learn about the history of automobiles and fashion in a fun and engaging way. There are also hands-on activities and workshops offered throughout the year, which provide children with the opportunity to get creative and express themselves. The museum also has a dedicated children's area, where they can play and learn at their own pace. With its family-friendly atmosphere and educational programs, the Tabacalera Building is a great place for families to spend a day out together.

Photography and Videography

The Tabacalera Building welcomes photography and videography enthusiasts to capture the beauty and essence of its exhibits. Visitors are encouraged to document their experience through personal photographs and videos. However, to ensure a respectful environment for all visitors and to preserve the integrity of the artworks, certain guidelines must be followed.

The use of flash photography and tripods is strictly prohibited within the exhibition spaces. These restrictions aim to prevent potential damage to the delicate items on display and to avoid disturbing other visitors. Additionally, professional photographers and videographers who wish to use the museum's spaces for commercial purposes must obtain prior permission from the museum's administration.

Despite these restrictions, the Tabacalera Building offers ample opportunities for photography and videography. Visitors can capture the grandeur of the architecture, the intricate details of the automobiles and fashion pieces, and the vibrant atmosphere of the cultural center. By adhering to the museum's guidelines, visitors can create lasting memories of their visit while respecting the rights and enjoyment of others.

Food and Beverage Options

The Tabacalera Building offers a range of dining options to cater to the needs of visitors. The museum's main restaurant, "La Fábrica," serves a delicious selection of Mediterranean cuisine, with a focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients. The menu features a variety of dishes, including tapas, salads, pasta, and grilled meats, all prepared with a modern twist. For a quick bite or a refreshing drink, visitors can head to the museum's café, "La Cafetería." The café offers a selection of sandwiches, pastries, coffee, and tea, as well as a variety of juices and smoothies. Visitors can enjoy their meals in the museum's elegant dining room, which features high ceilings and large windows overlooking the city, or on the outdoor terrace, which offers a beautiful view of the surrounding gardens. The museum also has a snack bar, "La Taberna," which serves a variety of snacks and drinks, including beer, wine, and cocktails.

Opening Hours and Admission Fees:

The Tabacalera Building's doors are open to the public from Tuesday to Sunday, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the world of automobiles and fashion. On Tuesdays through Saturdays, the museum welcomes guests from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM. On Sundays and holidays, the hours are slightly shorter, with the museum operating from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. It's important to note that the Tabacalera Building is closed on Mondays, providing an opportunity for the staff to refresh and prepare for the upcoming week.

When planning your visit, consider taking advantage of the discounted admission fees offered to certain groups. Students, seniors, and visitors with disabilities can enjoy reduced rates, making the Tabacalera Building accessible to a wider audience. For those seeking a more in-depth experience, guided tours are available at an additional cost. These tours offer a personalized journey through the museum's collections, providing unique insights and anecdotes that enhance the overall experience. Whether you're a history buff, a fashion enthusiast, or simply curious about the stories behind the exhibits, the Tabacalera Building offers a captivating experience for visitors of all ages.

Events and Performances

The Tabacalera Building is not just a museum but also a vibrant cultural venue that hosts a diverse range of events and performances throughout the year. These events aim to engage and entertain visitors, offering a platform for local and international artists to showcase their talents. From music concerts, theater productions, and dance performances to film screenings, workshops, and conferences, there is something for everyone at this cultural hub. Visitors can check the museum's website or social media channels for upcoming events and performances. Whether you're an art enthusiast, a music lover, or simply seeking a unique cultural experience, the Tabacalera Building promises an unforgettable evening of entertainment and inspiration.

Educational Programs and Workshops:

The Tabacalera Building is not just a museum but also a vibrant hub for education and learning. It offers a diverse range of educational programs and workshops designed to engage and inspire visitors of all ages. These programs cover a wide spectrum of topics related to art, history, culture, and the automotive and fashion industries.

The museum's educational programs are tailored to different age groups and interests. There are workshops for children and families, where they can explore the museum's exhibits in a hands-on and interactive way. For adults, there are lectures, seminars, and workshops that delve deeper into the history, significance, and techniques of the automotive and fashion collections.

The museum also collaborates with local schools and educational institutions to offer guided tours, workshops, and educational resources. These programs aim to enhance students' understanding of art, history, and culture while fostering their creativity and critical thinking skills.

Participation in the educational programs and workshops requires prior registration and may incur a fee. Visitors are encouraged to check the museum's website or inquire at the information desk for more details on the upcoming programs and workshops and to reserve their spot.

Social Media and Online Presence:

The Tabacalera Building has a strong online presence and engages with its visitors through various social media channels. Follow the museum on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to stay updated on upcoming exhibitions, events, and special programs. The museum's social media accounts showcase stunning images, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and educational content that provides a deeper understanding of the collections and exhibitions. Visitors can interact with the museum's team, ask questions, and share their experiences using hashtags and tagging the museum. The Tabacalera Building also offers virtual tours and online resources on its website, allowing visitors to explore the museum's collections and exhibitions from anywhere in the world.

Insider Tip:

As a seasoned traveler, I always seek out hidden gems and unique experiences. At the Tabacalera Building, I stumbled upon a fascinating display of vintage advertising posters. These vibrant and colorful posters transported me back in time, showcasing the evolution of marketing and consumer culture. Whether you're a history buff, a design enthusiast, or simply curious about the past, these posters offer a glimpse into a bygone era. Don't miss this hidden treasure during your visit to the Tabacalera Building!

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