Situated within the municipality of Sintra, Quinta da Regaleira is a 19th-century estate deeply embedded in culture and mysticism. It originally belonged to the Viscountess of Regaleira, part of a wealthy Porto family, but derives its values from its next owner, Brazilian millionaire António Augusto de Carvalho Monteiro. This guide covers Quinta Da Regaleira's interior and what you shouldn't miss on your visit to this UNESCO site.
From the luxurious rooms to dark caves, every corner of Quinta Da Regaleira has something to say about Carvalho Monteiro and his search for the truth.
Quinta Da Regaleira complex is spread over nearly 10 acres, with several interesting sites. The Palace of Regaleira, the main building of the Quinta Da Regaleira complex, is among the more popular sites. It has a fascinating exterior that shows Carvalho Monteiro's love for Renaissance and Classical architectural styles.
Inside are five floors, although you can only access the first floor. Still, there's a lot to see. You can explore the ground floor, which was the meeting area for the Monteiro family, and the first floor, which had the family's private rooms, bathrooms, and playrooms. Additionally, you can access the Hunting Room, Renaissance Room, Kings' Room, and Smoking Room.
The entrance to the Palace of Regaleira is an attraction in itself. You enter the Palace through the Porch, an entrance carved in limestone. It depicts various discoveries by the Portuguese and has similarities with Jerónimos Monastery and the Tower of Belém. Both the structures are located in Lisbon and, like Quinta Da Regaleira, are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
After you pass the Porch, you enter the Foyer. Its main attraction is a floor-to-ceiling mosaic and limestone accents.
The Hunting Room, or the Dining Room, is one the most beautiful places in Quinta de Regaleira. It is richly decorated, with most visitors drawn to its polychrome Venetian mosaic that features natural themes and wild animals.
The Hunting Room's enormous fireplace, made by sculptor Rodrigo de Castro, is equally fascinating. It shows hunting scenes and features a huntsman ("Monteiro" in Portuguese) on top. The huntsman is a reference to Carvalho Monteiro, the enigmatic owner of the Quinta Da Regaleira.
All royal families had stunning living rooms that beamed with luxury. The Renaissance Room, also called the Living Room, was no different. It was the Monteiro family's pride, with its decoration reminding you of the Italian Renaissance.
Although designed by Luigi Manini, the Renaissance Room features beautiful paintings by several Portuguese artists, including Jlio da Fonseca. His work hangs on the oak wood coffered ceiling in the Renaissance Room.
Females dominated the Music Room at Quinta Da Regaleira. Carvalho Monteiro's wife, Perpétua Augusta Pereira de Melo, along with her female friends and family members, were the primary visitors to this room.
As a result, its interior is inspired by the rocaille style, which emerged in France at the beginning of the 18th century. Ornamentation with pebbles and shells is the hallmark of the rocaille style, and it is visible throughout the Music Room. Even the chestnut wood ceiling and frescoes on the walls have elements inspired by the rocaille style.
Named so because of the 24 portraits of the Kings and Queens of Portugal hanging on its walls, the Kings' Room in Quinta Da Regaleira originally functioned as the Billiard Room. A massive billiard table existed in the center of this room, but it doesn't today.
However, you will find four coats of arms beside the portraits. They belong to the most important cities in Portugal: Braga, Coimbra, Lisbon, and Porto.
The Music Room was dominated by the ladies, while the Smoking Room was exclusively for the men. It served as an accessory to the Billiards Room and had no great use during the time.
But today, exhibitions dedicated to Carvalho Monteiro are held in this room. Hence, it is also called the Carvalho Monteiro Room.
The Palace of Regaleira is impressive, but Quinta Da Regaleira is more popular because of its massive garden. Spread over several acres, the garden looks more like a forest with several places of interest.
You'll also see several stone statues throughout the garden complex. Statues dedicated to Venus, Hermes, Dionysus, and other Greek gods and goddesses will grab your attention as you explore the garden. But wear comfortable footwear as you'll be on foot mostly, and the terrain is mountainous.
By far the most intriguing place in Quinta Da Regaleira, the Initiation Well will give you the chills. It goes 90 feet beneath and comprises nine levels, reminiscent of the nine circles of Hell described in the poem "Divine Comedy" by Dante Alighieri.
Interestingly, the WellWell has 139 steps. Add the numbers, and you get 13, which symbolizes death and rebirth. Chilly, right? There's more! You'll find a compass rose drawn at the bottom of the WellWell. It is a symbol of the Rosicrucian Order, which is made up of a group of philosophers studying natural laws.
Quinta Da Regaleira is a 19th-century estate shrouded in mystique. Its owner, António Augusto de Carvalho Monteiro, was an enigmatic personality and a big believer in the spiritual realm. He built Quinta Da Regaleira as a portal between the physical and the metaphysical.
Yes. You can tour Quinta Da Regaleira and explore its interior, gardens, and mysterious spots.
Quinta Da Regaleira is spread over nearly 10 acres.
Yes. You can take pictures for personal use inside Quinta Da Regaleira. Commercial photography and videography are prohibited.
No. You need a valid ticket to see the interior of Quinta Da Regaleira.
Yes. Quinta Da Regaleira is a worthwhile attraction. It offers insight into Carvalho Monteiro's brilliant personality and his unique views of the universe.
Italian architect Luigi Manini designed Quinta Da Regaleira.
Quinta Da Regaleira is located in the Portuguese municipality of Sintra.
Quinta Da Regaleira was built in the 19th century.