Location: St. Augustine, Florida
Years Active: 1883 – 2003, 2008 – Active
Villa Zorayda (also known as the Zorayda Castle) is a house at 83 King Street in St. Augustine, Florida. Built in 1883 by the eccentric Boston millionaire Franklin W. Smith as his winter home, it was inspired by the 12th-century Moorish Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain. Smith named it “Villa Zorayda”, after one of the princesses in Washington Irving’s Tales of the Alhambra.
The building and part of Franklin Smith’s art and antique collection were sold to Abraham Mussallem, a rug and antiquities merchant originally from Syria, in 1913. On September 23, 1993, it was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. The Villa Zorayda Museum is still owned by the Mussallem family and contains the original art and antique collection assembled by Franklin Smith and Abraham Mussallem.