'My personal success has less to do with millions of dollars or with the headlines in the media that are not always positive and also not with being clapped on the shoulder by Barack Obama and other world names,' he said. 'Personal success is the result of determination, hard work and stubbornness.
'For me, this is not only a museum,' he added, gesturing to the yellow-stuccoed house behind him. 'It is also a symbol of will ... everyone has a chance.'.
With Schwarzenegger was Patrick, his son from his marriage with Maria Shriver.
The museum displays photos of Schwarzenegger and Shriver in happier times, and Schwarzenegger described 'the marriage with Maria' as one of the days 'that I remember with great fondness.'
The couple announced their split earlier this year after it emerged Schwarzenegger had fathered a love child with housekeeper, Mildred Baena, 50.
Ms Baena was believed to be a close firend of the family, whose son would play with Shriver and Schwarzenegger's children not knowing who his real father was.
And the Terminator star only came clean about the sordid affair after Shriver told him she knew the truth about his 13-year secret.
But despite his troubled private life his fellow countrymen say they are still proud of him.
'We Austrians are proud of him and what he accomplished,' said Gottfried Karner, from the Upper Austrian city of Steyr. 'But there are certain things he did that one does not agree with.'
Most Austrians have stayed focused on Schwarzenegger's successes since he left for the United States in 1968, first as Mr. Universe, then as 'Conan the Barbarian' and the 'Terminator' - and finally his 2003 election as governor.
Even before his private life came up for criticism, however, Schwarzenegger's cult status in Austria took some knocks because of his support of the Iraq war and the death penalty as California's governor.
Criticism grew after he refused to pardon two convicted murderers in a row in 2005 to the point where he ordered city fathers in Graz - Austria's second largest city where he spent his youth - to strip his name from the Graz soccer stadium and sent back the city's highest award - its ring of honor.
Since then, the mood has swung back to adulation - and Friday's speeches reflected that. Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann, who opened the ceremonies, described Schwarzenegger as 'one Austrian known by everyone in the world, adding: 'We as Austrians are proud of you.'