Almóada Eclectic Boutique Home
São Brás de Alportel, Faro, Portugal
Slow-Living in the Algarve
Landlocked near the Algarve village of São Brás de Alportel, this combination of house and barn has been gently updated, creating a timeless destination where life moves in the slow lane.
Slow-Living in the Algarve
This lyrical country farm was once home to a father and son, cultivators of the fields around the 100+-year-old homestead before leaving it abandoned. The timeless rural residence has been revived—sparkling and whitewashed anew—with shady pergolas and a plunge pool completing its easygoing, modern farmhouse aesthetic.
Vintage furnishings and eclectic knickknacks and artworks give the bright space a bohemian splash, while bright whitewashing, cheery textiles, an open country hearth and modernized kitchen put the focus on unwinding. The pool is heatable and chlorine-free. Pergolas for dining and lounging are shaded and serene, and the overall vibe is low-key, farm-to-table, easy country living—a casual retreat and calm base for easily exploring the buzzier Algarve coast.
Chef Paula Rocheta Miguel, who is a member of the exclusive Slow Food Cooks' Alliance (one of only two such chefs in the Algarve), provides all meals (with information on the ingredients and recipes provided) and an exclusive wine-tasting experience. Private concerts, massage and yoga can also be arranged. There is also an honesty bar and a secret room (built around a huge native rock) that hides a wine cellar, an art gallery, and even an erotic shop.
A classic Algarve small city, located inland from the busy Algarve coastline, São Brás de Alportel is often referred to as a “typical” southern Portuguese town. The community’s low white houses merge with more ornate facades, the buildings dating from the town’s legacy as the cooler summer residence of bishops from the 17th century onwards. From the 19th century, the area’s vast cork-oak plantations created a new economy in the area, and the small city was at one time the world’s largest cork-producing municipality. Tours of the Novacortiça factory detail the history and uses of cork, harvested from a tree unique for its regenerative bark. Almond, fig, carob and pomegranate trees also grow in the hills amid the cork oak, and the vast rural area is known locally as the “barrocal,” a place of small villages tucked into the hills and trees.
São Brás itself is home to a 15th-century church and the former Episcopal Palace, now a garden, dating from the 17th/18th centuries, plus a pretty town square surrounded by classic tile-covered buildings. Farming buildings and ethnographic museums (locales showcasing regional costumes, handicrafts, and farm equipment) make up the town’s cultural offerings, and the region is best known for its picturesque villages and out-of-the-way valleys, among them Mesquita with its traditional watermill, Gralheira, and Vilharinhos and the higher elevation Cova da Muda, Javali, and Cabeca do Velho. The Parque da Fonte Férrea is a pine- and eucalyptus-forested recreational area with a river, picnic areas, and several easy walking trails. Less than a half hour lands you on the Algarve coast, where the fishing port of Olhao, the Ria Formosa Natural Park, and the islands of Armona and Culatra await, along with \more urban offerings in and around Faro.
São Brás de Alportel, Faro, Portugal. Nearest airport: Faro (25 minutes)
BEST TIME TO VISIT: March to October
Here’s what you can expect during your stay:
- Outdoor Barbecue
- Wine Cellar
- International Electricity Adapters
- Electronics Charging
- Board Games
- On-site Parking
- Enclosed Parking Space
- Outdoor Parking Space
- Air Conditioning
- Indoor Fireplace
- Wheelchair Accessible
- Limited: main area - living room, master suite and kitchen
- Suitable for events