Building work on it, next to the Ria Formosa, began in the year 1509, commissioned by Brites Pacheco – a widow from Tavira. Today, 510 years later, the Convento das Bernardas, totally renovated with the excellent input of architect Eduardo Souto de Moura, which has already earned it the European Award for Intervention in Architectural Heritage 2017, remains a building with history. Retaining its history was only possible because neither the existing architectural nor heritage qualities were compromised in the renovation of the convent. It stands right in Tavira, in the south of Portugal.
The location is truly a privileged one. The Ria Formosa serves as a backdrop. Historical and natural beauty has been perpetuated in time. The contemporary comfort and the carefully prepared design ensure this is a place of quality and well-being. It is a monument with history. Initially owned by Brites Pacheco, subsequently, once the works were completed, in 1530, it was handed over – by the then Bishop of Silves D. Fernando Coutinho – to the sisters of the Order of Cistercians.