Mission San Juan Capistrano
Mission San Juan Capistrano was founded in 1776. Today it is known as the "Jewel of the Missions" for both its historic beauty and sacred tranquility. Originally docent guided tours directed the visitor experience, but after 230 years the Mission needed a master plan to create modern exhibits and a unified interpretive approach. Maple & Associates worked with the Mission's Director, staff, docents and Board of Directors to produce a vision for the Mission's future.
The first exhibit to be developed showcased the lives of the padres who lived in the South Wing of the Mission during the 18th century. Creating permanent exhibits in a historic structure without diminishing the historic ambiance and charm was quite a design challenge.
Mission San Juan Capistrano has been the home to many people over 230 years of history. Its history consists of memories and stories of its past inhabitants and present visitors. It is a place of historical, cultural, and religious significance, as well as a place of inspiration and education. The ten acres of museum rooms, exhibits, gardens, fountains and more provide a must-see destination for world-travelers and thousands of student visitors from local schools.
The Mission San Juan Capistrano story began in 1775 when Father Fermin Lasuen first founded the Mission, on October 30th. But just a few weeks after the party of padres and soldiers arrived, they received word of the revolt occurring in San Diego. The founding padres, and soldiers decided to leave San Juan Capistrano, and go back to San Diego to help there. Once things had settled in San Diego, Father Junipero Serra personally led a party to re-found Mission San Juan Capistrano on All Saint’s Day, November 1, 1776.