Quinta das Faias was part of the largest agricultural property in Madeira during the 19th century, known as the Herdade dos Castanheiros. At the end of the century our great grandfather Luis Rocha Machado bought it from his cousin Count Carvalhal II who was known to be an enchanting person and a “bon vivant” spending his time travelling between Europe’s major capital cities. It was mostly an agricultural property, with large areas of orchards, apple trees and pear trees and with other areas cultivated for cattle breeding and for agroforestry, especially pine.
During this period, many important personalities visited Count Carvalhal's properties in Madeira, such as Austria’s Archduchess Leopoldina in 1817, when she passed by Madeira on her way to Brazil where she would marry D. Pedro I; or Portugal’s Infant D. Luis in 1858 (later Portugal’s King Luis I, “O Popular”), in the company of Portugal’s Archduchness Carlota.
The actual main house was built in 1853 and improved in 1956 and was used as a retreat for the family during the hot and humid summer months in Funchal, due to its mild temperatures and beautiful surroundings. During this period several houses were also built in the property for the agricultural workers who lived there all year long.
In July 20th, 1959 the Dukes of Brangança, D. Duarte Nuno, D. Maria Francisca and their three children (heirs of the Portuguese Royal Family) visited Quinta das Faias during their stop in Madeira on their official trip to visit to the Portuguese Colonies.
In the year 2000, we inherited the property and renamed it Quinta das Faias in a tribute to the two impressive “Faia” trees (Fagus – beech) that exist in the property, having invested especially in growing its gardens and preserving its secular trees, many of them endemic species of Madeira’s Laurisilva forest.
More recently we transformed one of the abandoned houses for workers into a small catholic chapel where our youngest daughter got married, where our grandchildren where baptized and where are held Masses to celebrate special occasions.
We have also recovered two other worker’s houses in the property, transforming them into cottages, being faithful to the house’s historical layout and equipping them with modern appliances for your comfort. With this cottages we look forward to share our piece of paradise with all who come to visit Madeira and are looking to experience Madeira’s culture, beauty and its natural environment.