Funchal’s Old Town
Cobblestones, Old buildings and much more…
Stroll through Funchal´s Old Town, one of Funchal´s main tourist hotpots, popular for its historical, architectural, gastronomical and artistic aspects.
Become enchanted by a picturesque setting of narrow cobblestone streets lined by aged buildings (some dating back to the 15th century) in an environment that is full of life and spirit, with a variety of shops, bars and restaurants.
Funchal Town Hall
The Funchal Town Hall Building is located in what was once the palace of Count Carvalhal and it is a harmonious example of late 18th century architecture.
This building was commissioned in 1758 by the Count of Carvalhal to be his residence, and then passed through several owners and tenants. In 1883 it was acquired by the Funchal Municipal Council to serve as Town Hall, due to the development of the city, which forced the authorities to look for a larger place to hold its headquarters. The building has undergone adaptations and changes over the years, but kept it’s original architecture.
William Reid, the son of a Scottish crofter, originally arrived in Madeira in 1836.] He hired out quintas to wealthy invalids and moved on to hotels, but died before his Reid’s hotel was completed.The hotel was designed by the architects George Somers Clarke and John Thomas Micklethwaite. It opened in November 1891 and later became the Reid’s Palace or just “Reid’s”. The hotel was acquired by Orient-Express Hotels Ltd., which changed its name to Belmond Ltd. on 10 March 2014. At that time the hotel changed its name to Belmond Reid’s Palace.]The pioneer colour photographer Sarah Angelina Acland (1849–1930) stayed at the hotel during the early 20th century and took many photographs in and around the location of the hotel.Famous guests over the years have included General Fulgencio Batista, Winston Churchill, Anthony Eden, David Lloyd George, deposed emperor Karl von Habsburg, Roger Moore, Gregory Peck, the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, the missionary Albert Schweitzer, and dramatist George Bernard Shaw.Reid’s is particularly known for its tradition of serving afternoon tea on the terrace.