The Stock Exchange Palace, better known even to foreign visitors as Palacio da Bolsa, is one of the most valuable tourist sights of Porto. The construction works started in 1842, only to be completed some 30 years later, and the reason for building a venue of this kind was, at least as far as Porto was concerned at the time, to boast of its economic power and to draw the European businessmen to make investments in the city. In time, most of the traces which might have been reminiscent of the former functionality of Palacio da Bolsa (lecterns, podiums, desks, and benches) were removed, such that at present the venue, while seen from the inside, can easily be taken for a royal palace.

Given both its age and architectural virtues, the palace was declared a national monument and listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Thus, the palace is the expression of a mix of architectural styles, with prominent neoclassical elements which prevail across other influences. Thus, for instance, the superb neoclassical facade invites visitors to search the palace in depth, luring them to enter the venue and admire its inner patrimony. Indeed, once inside, tourists can discover highlights like the celebrated Arabian Hall, said to have been inspired by the even more renowned Alhambra Palace in Granada. The room is literally engulfed in decorations, such as lush arabesques, splendid woodwork and fine stained-glass works, which call forth the aesthetic tastes of the Moors who ruled Portugal during the Middle Ages.

The Nations’ Room (Patio das Nacoes) is also interesting to explore. It showcases a collection of flags of the countries which, in time, had commercial relations with Porto. The garden of the palace is, it too, well worth a visit, but tourists can also direct their attention to the monumental staircase of the venue, as well as to its two massive bronze chandeliers suspended from the main cupola.

At present, while being a top-of-the-range tourist sight, Palacio da Bolsa is the main conference and exhibition center of Porto. Thus, it is home to a wide range of cultural, social and political events.

Name:
Stock Exchange Palace (Palacio da Bolsa)
Address:
Rua Ferreira Borges, Porto, Portugal
Telephone:
00351 223 399000
Fax:
00351 223 399090
Email:
correio@cciporto.pt
Website:
www.palaciodabolsa.pt

Rua Ferreira Borges, Porto, Portugal

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