Attractions - Museums

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts


As the first art school and museum in the United States, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) has celebrated the transformative power of art and art-making since 1805.

PAFA is home to a world-class museum of American art, located across the street from the Convention Center in the Historic Landmark Building (designed by Frank Furness and opened to the public in 1876) and the contemporary Hamilton Building. PAFA's collection and innovative exhibitions feature historic, 20th century, and contemporary works from artists like Mary Cassatt, Charles Willson Peale, Thomas Eakins, Barkley L. Hendricks, Henry Ossawa Tanner, and Njideka Akunyili Crosby. Private guided tours are available, as well as many public programs. 

The Museum Store is an excellent spot to find a unique gift or souvenir, and both PAFA buildings offer event spaces for intimate or large gatherings where you can find yourself surrounded by works from some of America's greatest artists. 

In addition to the Museum, PAFA offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts and continuing education courses for the artist in us all. 

Distance from Independence Visitor Center: 0.77 miles
Distance from Sister Cities Visitor Center: 0.32 miles
Distance from Pennsylvania Convention Center: 0.27 miles


Facility Amenities

  • Accessible by Public Transit
  • Handicap Access
  • Non Smoking
  • Onsite Kitchen

Facility Information

  • Family Friendly
  • Family Reunion Friendly
  • LGBT Friendly
  • Student Friendly

Venue Amenities

  • Food Service Facilities
  • Guided Tours Available
  • Coat Check
  • Permanent Dance Floor
  • Exclusive Caterer
  • Freight Elevator
  • Liquor License
  • Onsite AV Available
  • Permanent Stage
  • Rental Equipment Available
  • Vendors Preferred

Group Information

  • Group Friendly
  • Rose Alemi, Director of Events
  • 215-972-1609

Languages Spoken

  • English


Facility Amenities

  • Gift Shop


Hours Sun

  • 11:00 AM–5:00 PM

Hours Mon

  • Closed

Hours Tue

  • Closed

Hours Wed

  • Closed

Hours Thurs

  • 10:00 AM–4:00 PM

Hours Fri

  • 10:00 AM–4:00 PM

Hours Sat

  • 11:00 AM–5:00 PM

Hours Special

  • Holiday closures may affect regular hours. Check for updates.


Banquet Sit Down Capacity

  • 350

Outdoor Space

  • Outdoor Space

Reception Stand Up Capacity

  • 800

Venue Capacity

  • 1,000

Total Venue Square Feet

  • 11,000

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) boasts galleries and spaces to transform into incredible settings for any event imaginable—from luxury weddings to engaging corporate functions.

PAFA events break away from the traditional hotel ballroom mold, providing your guests an immersive and unique experience. Your event can take place in the elegant Historic Landmark Building, the contemporary Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building, or outdoors on Lenfest Plaza—all right in the center of Philadelphia.

Location is key and PAFA is just steps from Philadelphia's premier hotels, Convention Center, City Hall, and parking options.

PAFA's spaces can adapt to the needs of an event. From 10-person private dinners to 400-person corporate functions to 1,000-person cocktail receptions, our spaces can be used in creative ways to meet your needs.

You can feel good booking an event here—your rental fees go towards fulfilling PAFA's mission of educating tomorrow's artists.

Let our event staff and exclusive partners guide you through the process of planning an event bound to impress your guests.

With over 200 years of experience training artists, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) nurtures the artistic development of its students through degree programs in undergraduate and graduate fine arts education.

The School of Fine Arts offers a world-class professional education that focuses exclusively on the success of the emerging fine artist. Our priority is the quality, comprehensiveness, and relevance of a fine arts education to develop and pursue an artistic vision wherever it may lead.

Esteemed alumni include David Lynch, Mary Cassatt, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Thomas Eakins, William Glackens, Barkley L. Hendricks, Violet Oakley, Louis Kahn, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.

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