Loulé’s Gama Lobo Palace, also known as the Spanish Palace, has opened after a €1.3 million renovation.
The notable building now is an arts andf crafts centre, more formally, a Space of Creativity, Crafts and Arts (ECOA) and is the new centre of the Loulé Criativo project, set to host workshops, displays and a variety of artists.
The building had been closed for years until the Council, now in good financial health, decided to renovate the C18th building to boost the municipality’s arts provision.
Pedro Siza Vieira, Deputy Minister of the Economy cut the ribbon last Saturday and declared the building open, with a chance for the public to visit this week.
Vítor Aleixo, Loulé’s mayor, commented, “This is a happy day for us and for the municipality. We see this beautiful building being returned to Loulé’s population in all its splendor, in an extraordinary renovation project that counted on invaluable input from the municipal architect, Luís Guerreiro.”
After visiting the renovated palace, Minister Siza Vieira said he was amazed by the renovation work.
In the opinion of the minister, Loulé Creativo “contributes to making the city more pleasant for those who live here and also for those who visit.”
“For us, it is important that the ‘louletanos’ realise what was done here, that this palace was not abandoned or condemned to oblivion, but rehabilitated with affection,” said Aleixo.
During this week, anyone can visit the renovated palace between 9.00 and 13.00 and 14.00 and 17.00.
The Gama Lobos palace is a noble house, with a coat of arms, dating back to the second half of the 18th century, and is the most expressive example of that period in Loulé. It is also known as the Palácio dos Espanhóis (Spaniards Palace), because ot shelterd the Spanish refugees during the Civil War.