The museum of the Medici Chapels is located in the Basilica di San Lorenzo, one of Florence’s biggest and oldest churches. Book your tickets in advance and ensure your entrance to the Chapels without wasting time at the ticket office. You can skip the line and start your exploration of the Medici tombs and chapels as soon as you arrive. This ticket will give you access to the Sagrestia Nuova (New Sacristy from the 16th century), the Chapel of the Princes, the Lorenese Crypt, and a section of the Treasure of San Lorenzo’s Basilica. With this ticket, you can also see temporary exhibitions.
The Medici family was one of the most powerful families in the city’s history. The Basilica di San Lorenzo was built thanks to their support and the financial responsibility they took over the construction. The Sagrestia Nuova was designed by Michelangelo in the 16th century and was to be a mausoleum to members of the Medici family. The famous artist also designed many of the tombs that are found in the New Sacristy. More than 50 members of the Medici family have tombs in the New Sacristy and in the Chapel of Princes. Surmounted by a great dome, the Chapel of Princes was a true expression of court art, being the result of the collaboration of artists and lords alike.
The Treasure of San Lorenzo’s Basilica and the Cripta Lorenese
Until recently the Treasure of San Lorenzo was carefully preserved behind closed doors but now the underground floors of the Medici chapels have been carefully prepared to have parts of the Basilica’s treasure on display. Special focus is given to some works of art that were recently restored – like the Christ by Michelozzo, a silver statue completed in the year 1444 or the Bust of Saint Peter in wood and painted gold, that dates back to 1552. The Cripta Lorenese is the crypt of the Lorena family that succeeded the Medici family in the city’s administrative role. They also had their family mausoleum built in the Basilica di San Lorenzo between the tomb of father Cosimo Patrie and the Medici Sepulcher.