Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Lisbon Chronicles | Palácio Fronteira




Built in seventeenth century, as a hunting lodge, for the first Marquis de Fronteira, D. João de Mascarenhas, a hero of the Portuguese War of Restoration, this beautiful palace is located on the edge of Parque Florestal de Monsanto, in Largo de São Domingos de Benfica.

The Palace was enlarged in the eighteenth century,  in a "rocaille"  style, and remains in the family to the present days. Currently, is the residence of the 13th Marquis de Fronteira, and is possible to visit some of the rooms, the library and the garden.






The majestic garden, of about 13 acres,  is breathtaking for its amazing details and design. In a day full of the beautiful Lisbon light, this sumptuous Italian gardens will make want to stay forever, so you better schedule your visit with enough time to enjoy so much beauty. Wondering through the garden you'll get lovely views of the statues, buildings and plants, finding a photo opportunity at every turn.

The visit may begin in the chapel terrace and the Terrace of Arts, both overlooking the Venus Garden. The Terrace or Gallery of Arts is almost entirely covered with tiles, blue, white and manganese, where punctuate niches with statues and busts. Stone benches and flower pots contribute even more for the tranquil beauty  of the place.









Step into the Garden of Venus where  you can find a great diversity of plants and flowers, and also the Tank of Ss, so named for its form, that stands in front of a small pavilion called Casa do Fresco. This House of Freshness or of Water, has a fountain in the center and served as a refreshing secluded place to rest in the warm days. Its facade is adorned with stones, shells, broken glass and pottery pieces. It is said that these pieces are the remains of the chinaware that was used in a banquet in honor of the King, that were broken into pieces so it could not be ever used by no one else.

Around the tank you can find stone benches covered with tiles depicting several themes, from fishing, to mythological figures, and including "monkey business" ("macacarias") with fable like imageries of monkeys playing the parts of doctors or music teachers with cats as patients and pupils.









From the Venus Garden, walk to the Gallery of Kings, that is over the Tank of Knights, before you descend to the Formal Garden of the seventeenth century. The large tank on the southern limit of the Formal Garden, presents decorated tile panels at both levels. At the higher level you can find a gallery with decorative niches containing busts of Portuguese kings. At the water level, the tiles depict the family's ancestors knights, reflected in the waters of the large tank.  The tank has big fishes and a pair of black swans. Although beautiful and full of grace, you must beware of the feisty black swan for it acts like a regular guardian of the thank.













The interior of the palace can be partially visited in a guided tour held in English, French and Portuguese. The guides have a deep knowledge of the history of the family and the building, and are more than willing to answer your questions. The interiors are rich, especially the Hall of Battles, with its beautiful panels of blue and white tiles with scenes of the War of Restoration,  and the Dinning Room, adorned with Dutch tiles and with frescoes  and portraits of the Portuguese nobility. Is also possible to visit the Library situated in the Logia overlooking the formal garden, some decorated rooms and the chapel. You are not allowed to photograph the interior of the house.








Palácio Fronteira has an unique collection of seventeenth century Portuguese tiles, even more important for it is practically the only one in which the tiles are still in situ, particularly outdoors. Take your time to admire the Dutch tile panels of the dinning room, the tiles of the Hall of Battles in which are narrated eight battles of the Wars of Restoration (1640 -1668), the tiles on the tank of the Knights,  the copper-plated tiles on the Gallery of Kings,  possibly of Spanish origin, the polychrome panel "macacarias", on the benches that surround the tank of Ss, and all the tiles of the Terrace of Arts.





Palácio dos Marqueses de Fronteira
Largo de São Domingos de Benfica, 1
Lisboa
Phone: +351 21 778 4599

Opening Hours and Ticket Prices:

October to May: (Monday to Saturday) 11am and 12am
June to September: (Monday to Saturday) 10.30am 11am, 11.30am and 12am

House & Garden - 7,5 € | Garden - 3 €





To get there you can take the subway to Jardim Zoológico station and from there walk about a mile to the palace (I really don't advise it) or take the Bus 770 (Carris). Alternatively you can opt for taking a taxi, its only a short ride from the city center.

If, while traveling, you love to find this more off the beaten path places, you'll surely enjoy the collaborative post recently published by Got The Travel Bug Too where you can find several suggestions of hidden gems all over the world.













28 comments:

  1. This is so beautiful, I really like the pictures.
    I keep that in mind for my trip to Lisbon.

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    1. Nene you must! Is really a almost magical place. Thank you for your comment.

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  2. I love this place. The tile work is amazing and you certainly captured the detail with those close-up photos. Looks like a must-see if visiting Lisbon. Enjoyed reading the post.

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment Christine! Is indeed an awesome place and, for me, one of the top 10 must see in Lisbon.

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  3. I love the attention to detail and the architecture on the buildings and in the gardens. What a lovely place to visit.

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    1. Its a great place and I'm so glad that you enjoyed the post. Thank you for your feedback Tonya.

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  4. I could look at pictures of castles ALL day long.

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    1. Thank you Miss K! So good you like it :)

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  5. I HAVE to go here! I love all the detail in your photos. It makes me feel like I'm actually there :)

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    1. Colley I'm sure you will love it. Thank you so much for your feedback.

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  6. Thanks for sharing. I am planning to Visit Lisbon next year so I wont skip this Palacio Fronteria for sure. Btw, beautiful pics. ;)

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    1. Don't skip it! If you need any tip for Lisbon while planning your visit, please contact me. Thank you for commenting.

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  7. So beautiful! No wonder you recommend this place.

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    1. Yes Amanda, I really recommend it and I'm sure people will love it. Thank you for your comment.

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  8. Great pics! may have to stop here on our trip to Lisboa. We plan on visiting next year possibly.

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    1. Thank you! If you're coming to Lisbon this is one of the places to go.

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  9. That tilework is gorgeous! I’ll bet that entire castle was amazing in its heyday.

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    1. I'm sure it was Shobhaa, but still is very well kept. It's also a venue for special events. Can you imagine a wedding there? Thank you for your comment.

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  10. Wow, gorgeous pictures! I absolutely love castles, palaces, temples, and other beautiful buildings. This is one I have to add to my bucket list, your pictures have me in awe.

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment Lianna. This palace is beautiful. Do visit it if you have the chance.

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  11. Reminds me of Versailles a bit. I love the garden here, but for sure it takes soo much time to maintain it :)

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    1. There's much work involved to keep a garden like that. Thank you for commenting.

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  12. What a beautiful post! Exactly all of the information needed for someone looking to visit Lisbon. Portugal appears to be a very colorful and artistic society, hopefully we get to visit one day!

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    1. I hope you do Stephanie. Meanwhile keep visiting the blog. I'll promise to show more of Portugal. Thank you for your visit.

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  13. What a beautiful palace. We went to Lisbon last year and the architecture is stunning. We missed this palace though! Guess another trip to Lisbon is in order. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I'm sure you'll be always welcome. There's a lot to see and do in Lisbon. Thank you for your comment.

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  14. Lisbon is indeed beautiful with its architecture. I was lucky to see the places you noted myself. Lovely shots.

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    1. So good you liked. Thank you for your feedback.

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