Want to feel like you have All the Money in the World? Visit the Getty Villa in Malibu! The movie recounts a crisis within the Getty family, the richest family in the world in the early 1970s, the period depicted in the film. The magnificent villa they built depicts what some of their largesse could bring to life: ancient opulent worlds of Greece and Rome amid the splendor of modern-day Malibu.
Situated at a café table with a glass of sparkling Prosecco in hand, you gaze down the steps of the amphitheater between the magnificent maroon and white Corinthian columns. Your feet tap along the marble tiles as you glide toward the entrance. Greeted by a fountain and reflecting pool, you find a penny to toss into the water. You can afford it!
Confident that your wish came true, you pass through the inner peristyle into a ravishing courtyard and garden. You gaze out at the reflecting pool flanked by statues of bronze goddesses. Your eyes gaze up to a ceiling dressed in rosettes. You proceed into the East Garden where a fountain decorated in civet heads stands in front of a fountain made entirely of shells. You can relax in this space as long as you wish. You decide to reenter the museum to learn more about the rich history present within the walls. The Etruscan room exhibits many vases with sphinx imagery. As you enter the Temple of Hercules, the ornate marble mosaic floor is almost as impressive as the towering statue of the deity himself.
Finally, you enter the Basilica, perhaps the Villa’s most spiritual and humbling space—a breathtaking room dressed in marble from head to toe. The ceiling and floor details are as ornate as the statues. Muses stand proudly on pillars and form an aisle leading to the Roman goddess Venus, who is shown with a dolphin beside her. You exit this sacred space and waltz into the herb garden, where you dance among the herbs as a breeze fills the air with the savory scent of fresh lavender and sage. All the money in the world couldn’t have bought you a more incredible day!
TIP: The Café at the Getty Villa has lovely salads, wraps, flatbreads, and burgers—plus beer and wine—that you can savor in the Villa’s opulent atmosphere, while the Coffee Kiosk has a full menu of espresso drinks and sandwiches.
Take Pacific Coast Hwy. to Getty Villa Dr. Note that access is only from the northbound lane of PCH. The Getty Villa is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; closed on Tuesday. While admission to the villa is free, parking is $15 ($10 after 3 p.m.). You must make a parking reservation at the Getty website. No walk-ins permitted unless you arrive via public transportation. No dogs.