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The Cristóbal Balenciaga Museum

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What to do > Cultural heritage > The Cristóbal Balenciaga Museum

Visita museo Cristóbal Balenciaga

Guided tour of the Balenciaga Museum

Cristóbal Balenciaga was a revolutionary Spanish fashion designer whose impact on the industry is unquestionable. Born in 1895 in Getaria. Balenciaga began his career as an apprentice tailor at an early age, which allowed him to hone his skill and artistry in dressmaking.

In 1919 he opened his first boutique in Donostia/San Sebastian, Spain, and subsequently expanded his business. During the Spanish Civil War he moved to Paris, where he established his fashion house in 1937.

This move marked the beginning of Balenciaga as a mainstay of haute couture in the capital of fashion.

Balenciaga is known for his innovative designs and technical perfection. He revolutionised the silhouette of women’s fashion with voluminous, architectural shapes, moving away from the tight-fitting waist typical of the time. He introduced innovations such as the tunic dress, the sack dress, and the baby doll dress, as well as his famous wedding dress and his unparalleled skill in handling fabrics.

His influence extended beyond his own creations; he mentored other great designers such as Hubert de Givenchy and Oscar de la Renta. Despite his retirement in 1968 and death in 1972, the Balenciaga brand has continued to evolve, remaining a significant influence.

Today it is possible to visit his Museum in his native town, Getaria. You can enjoy both free and guided tours. For approximately one hour you will learn about the characteristics of Cristóbal Balenciaga’s work, and about his crucial contribution to the history of fashion and design.

Further information and bookings