This museum promises "a fresh look" at "950 years of city history." It was closed for three years in the late 1990s, and reopened in the year 2000 with "a new concept" and "26 completely redesigned museum rooms, the new exhibition forum and the large Nuremberg multivision show NORICAMA."
Like most museums in Nürnberg, the Fembo House provides you with an audio guide which is included in the price of admission. Unfortunately in their eagerness to provide a fresh and exciting look at the city's history they have tried to use the audio guide to dramatize some of the historical events.
For instance they have an imaginary radio reporter doing a live broadcast of a banquet celebrating the end of the Thirty Year's War. This can be an effective technique if it is done well (as in the 1940s CBS radio series Hear it now with Edward R. Murrow), but the Fembo House version is highly amateurish and even contains an obvious factual mistake. The reporter is allegedly looking out through the glass window and describing the scene in the street below, even though one of the exhibits in the same museum informs us that large windows in those days were always opaque. This was because clear glass had to be imported from Venice and was terribly expensive.
After this I decided to skip the multivision show NORICAMA. So if you see it, please let me know how it is.
The museum is located in what is Nuremberg's only remaining large late Renaissance merchant's house and show’s a view of the city’s last 950 years. Included in the entrance fee is an audio guide that takes you through the museum telling the history of the house and of two of its former inhabitants.
Tuesday to Friday: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Saturday to Sunday: 10:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Fembohaus is the only remaining renaissance house that survived the war more or less unharmed. It belonged to a family, or rather dynasty, of rich merchants who belonged to the city's "upper 10,000", rather upper 100.
The historical interior of the main halls is preserved and part of the museum. They give an insight in the lifestyle of its former owners.
Another treasure is the s-called "Beautiful Room" from the Prellerhaus, once Nürnberg's most splendid renaissance house. The house was smashed to pieces in World War II and is gone for good, but the woodcarved panels and painted ceiling of its most famous room were removed and stored in a safe place, and later installed in a room of Fembohaus museum.
Other parts of the house contain exhibitions about the history of the city from the middle ages to post-war.
Noteworthy: the models of the city. The attic presents a huge model of the old town which was made in 1939, shortly before the beginning of the war - the demolished synagogue is already missing in it. Two small models from the 16th century (originals!) show the city at the end of the middle ages. Further on you'll find a model of the old town in 1945 that shows to what enormous extend Nürnberg was destroyed in the war.
If you are scared of heights, better restrain from using the lift. It is a glass lift with a free view down into the courtyard that rises four storeys to the attic.
All practical information, plans of the exhibits etc. can be found on the museum's website.
The simple entrance to Fembohaus belies the excellent museum within, which could easily occupy multiple tips, fairly represents the pride of Nuremberg in its long independent history. Opened in 2000 after 3 years of re-development, 4 floors each with many fully period-furnished rooms examine Nuremberg's past in detail. On the upper level a wood and clay model of the medieval city prior to WWII features a strobe light corresponding with a 10 minute presentation of the most important tourist features and is called the Sounding City Model. On the next lower floors the history of Nuremberg is laid out in great detail, each with short oral presentations up to 10 minutes.
I regret that we did not see the Noricama, an hour long film presentation featuring interviews with famous residents of the past explaining life, culture, industry, and business during their lifetimes.
The Fembohaus is an historic monument itself - originally commissioned by a Protestant Dutchman who fled religious persecution in the late 16th Century, it was owned by a string of very wealthy businessmen. From 1750-1850 one of the world's most famous printshops was located here, especially renowned for maps. Georg Fembo bought the property in the late 19th Century, and it passed to the city in 1928, housing the city museum since 1950.
The major rooms are all decorated to the historic period being presented. Most striking are the ceilings - painted, carved wood, and stucco. The kitchen is 18th Century, fully furnished with human models, and very interesting.
For those with an abiding interest in Nuremberg's history, this complete museum is a must-see.
Nuremberg's new city museum, Fembo House, invites its visitors on an eventful journey through 950 years of city history. On center stage are animated models, room installations, audio-plays such as the "Dance of the Generations", and the most valuable refurnished original rooms. Nuremberg as an Imperial city, as center of trade and inventive craftsmanship will come alive. In Fembohouse you will also find the oldest panelled family hall as well as splendid stucco decorations by artist Donato Polli.
This is an exhibition centered around the history of the city of Nuremberg, and includes an hour long "multivision show" where actors play out the parts of famous people from the city's past, like Albrecht Dürer and Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. The house itself is of historical interest, and includes original 17th and 18th century room decors.
The Fembohaus is an old city merchant''s house from the late 16th century. Today, it is used to tell the story of Nürnberg's rich merchant past, in the way of old interiors. You will find interior design and furniture from the time, including pieces salvaged from houses wrecked in the war.