The Museum of Fine Arts and Lace is "Musée de France" certified and is steeped in over 150 years of history. In fact it is the successor to an initial museum that opened within the walls of Alençon Town Hall on 15 July 1857. The institution was founded to house a number of encyclopaedic collections together: paintings, a graphic arts collection, archaeology, a natural history collection, then ethnology, militaria and lace.
Today, the former Jesuits' college, built in the 17th century, provides a showcase for the museum's 25,000 or so exhibits.
The visitor route through the permanent collections takes in three departments: Fine Art, Cambodia and Lace.
The museum also regularly lends its exhibits to others for exhibitions all around the world.