The neoclassical country house built by Hamburg Senator Martin Johan Jenisch 1831 – 34, stands in its own extensive park next to the Elbe and, with much of its original interior intact, it gives us a vivid impression of the grand lives led by well-to-do Hanseatic merchants in the middle of the 19th century. The upper floors are now used for special exhibitions, mostly covering art or architecture from the early 19th century or about the relationship between landscape design and architecture.
The White Hall
The large hall to the left of the entrance hall originally served as a grand dining room. Its walls and ceilings are decorated with ornamental plasterwork. Three full-length windows open up to the east with a view of the park. The parquet flooring is part of the original fittings as well. The chandelier was designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel and comes from a stately home in East Holstein. The simple stove standing in the corner of the room is also part of the original fittings.
The Jenisch Room
This room, probably originally designed as a tea parlour or reading room, is now furnished with articles associated with Caspar Voght and Martin Johan Jenisch. It has two full length windows, one looking south towards the Elbe and the other eastwards to the park. The parquet floor was laid according to a design by the architect Franz Gustav Forsmann (1795 – 1878). Square panels of oak parquet frame the central area which is also square in shape. The inlaid circular motif with palms, wreaths and ribbons is partly formed by coloured pieces of wood and decorative nails.
The Lower Elbe Room
The three almost room-height windows in this room open out into the portico on the south side of the house. This allows people to step out onto the terrace or even down the stone steps to the park, so it is also described as the Garden Room. The fittings in the room are mainly from the time of the French Empire (around 1800) The group of seats with black lacquered and gilded wood in the middle of the room was originally in the house belonging to Georg Friedrich Baur on Palmaille in Altona. The chairs with the sphinx figures on the arm rests and curved back are based on a design by Percier & Founaine, important architects and interior designers of the Empire style in Paris.
The Music Room
This room is furnished with musical instruments appropriate for its original purpose. Taking pride of place is the unique Erard fortepiano from the year 1838 which was kept in excellent, playable condition by Prof. Andreas Beurmann. A music stand with an adjustable tray for sheet music is placed right next to it. Above a square piano there hangs a photograph of Candida Höfer (born 1944), mirroring the view out of the window to the Elbe. On the other wall there is a portrait of Alice Boué (nee Parish) (1766 - 1837) by Jean-Laurent Mosnier (1743 – 1808).
Exhibition about Caspar Voght (1752 - 1839)
The west wing of the first floor is dedicated to a permanent exhibition about the life and work of Caspar Voght. This Hamburg merchant, together with his friend and business partner Georg Sieveking (1751-1799) controlled one of the largest trading companies in Hamburg in the second half of the 18th century. Voght was also a key figure as society developed in the Hansa town around 1800.
The Upper Elbe Room
The room above the Lower Elbe Room was the former study or smoking room of Marin Johan Jenisch the Younger. This is where he withdrew when he wanted to escape from his visitors. The fittings are not actually original. The large group of furniture in the middle consists of an extendable table with sturdy lion’s feet, ten chairs and two armchairs. The table, which came from a Schleswig-Holstein stately home, dates from 1830 to 1840 and can be extended from its original 128 cm circumference to a length of approx. 470 cm by adding its eight leaves. The leaves – like the chairs and armchairs – are made of mahogany with light decorative marquetry work.
The Altonaer Room
Auch dieses Zimmer war ursprünglich ein Privatzimmer der Jenischs. Es führt mit einem Fenster zu Südseite des Parks. Das Zimmer ist heute vollständig mit sogenannten Altonaer Möbeln ausgestattet. Sie zeichnen sich durch ihren auf den Rück- oder Unterseiten angebrachten Zollbefreiungsstempel aus Siegellack aus (Altonaer Fabrik Waren Stempel). Er bewirkte zwischen 1766 und 1839 unter den dänischen Königen Christian VII. und Friedrich VI. den zollfreien Export in die Herzogtümer Holstein und Schleswig sowie nach Dänemark.
The Biedermeier Room
Originally used as a guest room for the Jenisch family’s visitors, this room has two windows to the north and the east. Today it is furnished as a late Biedermeier drawing room with furniture of the time, which were almost all manufactured in Altona using mahogany veneer, a typical material in this coastal region at the time.
The museum is closed on 24th / 25th December, 31st December and 1st January; on all other public holidays the Altonaer Museum is open from 10.00 – 18.00.
The Jenisch House is only partially accessible to wheelchair users. The toilets are located in the basement and can only be reached by stairs.
7 € for adults
5 € for groups of more than 10
5 € for vocational college students over 18, students under 30, apprentices and trainees, job seekers, social security recipients, young people doing voluntary work in their gap year.
Free admission for children and younger people under 18, members of the press, carers accompanying a disabled visitor, members of the Deutscher Museumsbund, member of council members of the state museums, ICOM, BVGD, members of the Friends of the SHMH, members of the Verein für Hamburgische Geschichte, BBK, Verband Deutscher Kunsthistoriker.
Eat & drink
The Jenisch Haus Museum Café is located in Senator Martin Johann Jenisch’s former billiard room on the ground floor of the Jenisch Haus. The café is also open to people who are not visiting the museum itself, and there is no entry fee. The menu includes coffee and cake, quiche, soups, and a selection of good wines. When the weather is good, you can sit outside to enjoy your refreshments.
Monday 11.00 - 17.00
Wednesday - Sunday 11.00 - 17.00
On the ground floor of the Jenisch Haus, and right next to the ticket office, there is a bookshop. This is where you can buy catalogues, exhibition publications, posters and postcards. The bookshop is also home to a small specialist bookshop, where you will find a comprehensive range of publications about horticulture, garden design and architectural history.
For more information about the bookshop and the programme please contact Ute Mohr / Elke Sambewski