Located in a former synagogue, once home to Miami Beach’s first congregation, The Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU is one of the city’s top attractions. Stories about are told the Jews who came from diverse lands to help develop parts of Florida while maintaining cultural traditions. Here’s what first-time visitors can expect:
The 1936 Art Deco building and 1929 original synagogue are both on the National Register of Historic Places.The walls are adorned with nearly 80 colorful stained glass windows. The main Art Deco building also features a copper dome, chandeliers, marble bimah, and sconces.
The focal point of the museum is the ‘MOSAIC: Jewish Life in Florida’ exhibit. This core display is ongoing and depicts over 250 years of Florida Jewish history. It includes more than 500 photos and artifacts that depict the lives of Jewish people in Florida since 1763, as well as three films and a timeline wall of Jewish history. Guided tours with trained volunteers are available to all visitors.
Bessie’s Bistro and Museum Shop
The museum store includes a wide range of items such as toys, souvenirs, cards, books and more. You’ll also find many traditional Jewish objects like challah covers, seder plates, and Chanukah neckties. After stopping by the gift shop, take a break at Bessie’s Bistro, the museum’s onsite restaurant, which offers coffee, tea, and small snacks.
General admission is $6.00 for adults, $5.00 for seniors, and only $2.50 for students. For more information about parking visit the website. The Jewish Museum of Florida is only an eight-minute drive from The Winter Haven Hotel.