Here’s the beautiful south

on Nov 1, 2019 in Automatic Pilot | No Comments

Wine tourism continues to grow in the Alentejo region, coming up with suprising places, and Herdade da Malhadinha Nova is a great example.

At Herdade da Malhadinha Nova – in Albernoa, near Beja – the Soares family has invested in a new project, where different ruins have been turned into modern and luxurious rural houses, surrounded by vineyards. It all began in 1998, when they bought 200 hectares in the Alentejo. They restored a house for a family getaway, and soon realised the potential the place had for wine production, planting 20 hectares of grapes and building a winery. Today, the estate has doubled in size and the vineyard has grown to 85 hectares. Besides the winery, there’s a restaurant, shop, a hotel – the Country House & Spa (ten rooms) -, stud farm, and a range of wine-related activities. All in all, it’s one of the best wine tourism projects in the country.

The 20 new rooms can be found among the various houses renovated by architect Joana Raposo and wonderfully decorated by Rita, wife of João, one of the Soares siblings, who chose natural materials and local handicraft. Casa das Pedras (four suites, private pool for each, minimalist in style); Casa do Ancoradouro (seven suites, Alentejo architecture, terracotta paving produced manually from local clay soils; Casa da Ribeira (three suites in different shades of blue, private terrace, pool); Casa das Artes e Ofícios (two suites, swimming pool, a common area that pays tribute to traditional crafts), where exhibitions, gatherings and workshops are hosted; and Venda Grande, in the village of Albernoa, around five kilometres away – once a spot to buy fabrics, hats, groceries and basics. The restoration of this house maintained some original features, such as the tiled floors and traditional solid wood shutters, and each room has different colours. Guests can also buy most of the furniture and objects used. As for Malhadinha’s wines, they have top-draw reds, whites and rosés created by resident winemaker Nuno Gonzalez and consultant Luís Duarte.

Albernoa, Beja \\\


by Maria João de Almeida /// photo João Guimarães


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