Bucharest’s Antipa Natural History Museum opened its gates on Saturday, 10am, after a nearly three year-long renovation process and hundreds of visitors queued to see an exhibition which was given a full make-over, complete with modern technology, yet one in which the old exhibits maintained their charm. Indeed, the visiting hours were extended by two hours on Saturday, until 10pm, to give all the visitors waiting in line a chance to see the museum. According to initial estimates provided by the museum representatives to Mediafax, over 3,000 people visited the Antipa Museum on Saturday, bringing in proceeds of over RON 30,700 from tickets, an amount which only includes the tickets paid in cash.
Hundreds of people queued on yesterday, the second day since the Antipa Museum was reopened, as well, as early as 10am, to see the restored museum. Around noon, there were reports that over 500 people were waiting in line, from the museum’s entrance along the sidewalk, all the way to the Romanian Peasant’s Museum, to visit the exhibition.
On a “full” day, before the renovation, the Antipa Museum was visited by approx. 1,000 people. On the other hand, on the Long Night of Museums, when exhibitions could be visited for free, approx. 19,000 people would visit the Antipa Museum in six hours. At the same time, if, in 2008, before being closed down for renovation, the Antipa Museum could boast 170,000 visitors a year, the museum representatives estimate an annual average of 250,000 visitors for the years to come.
Rehabilitation and modernization works on the Antipa Museum’s permanent exhibition started in February 2009, when the institution was closed to the public. The museum was to re-open in May 2010, but the works were delayed for various reasons, including delays in the transfer of funds from the Culture Ministry and in orders from abroad.