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Trienal de Arquitectura de Lisboa

Palace rehabilitation project presented to the public

On May 2014, the project for the rehabilitation of the Sinel de Cordes Palace was presented. Authored by Margarida Grácio Nunes, the programme is based on an intervention that combines three aspects: rehabilitation, conservation and restoration. In articulation with the engineer João Appleton from A2P, this project counts with the participation of Professor José de Monterroso Teixeira, who developed a historical research of this municipal heritage that dates from the 18th century for a better intervention in the space and respect for the existing one. This pro bono team has established a reconfiguration of the space given its new use that combines programming area and work spaces for the creative pole with those dedicated to architecture, design, photography, and other related creative areas.

The organization, which was granted by the Lisbon City Hall two years ago to host the Triennale, aims to transform Sinel de Cordes Palace into an architecture centre that welcomes emerging entities in its creative pole in order to boost the local economy. The architect José Mateus, chairman of Triennale, praised the importance of this project to the newspaper Público: "linking the architectural rehabilitation of the building to the functioning of the creative pole... We want to rescue the building from the state of near ruin it was in when we arrived here. In fact, that recovery has begun since we entered here, but now the process will have another dimension".


© Dóra Karácsony



The rehabilitation project is based on an approach that respects the identity and legacy of the 18th century building, as well as its relationship with its surroundings. The intervention aims to be carried out in a phased manner, combining a public investment by the City Hall with a diversified network of private partners activated by the Triennale. With a contained approach, the aim is to be able to be a showcase of new building materials as to represent a case study in terms of an approach inspired by the Japanese technique of ceramic restoration, Kintsugi.  

Architect Margarida Grácio Nunes received a further invitation to present this rehabilitation project in the future, either in a conversation at the Pombal Palace or at the Architecture Faculty in Ajuda.

Margarida Gracio Nunes © Dóra Karácsony

About Margarida Grácio Nunes

Born in Lisbon, Margarida Grácio Nunes graduated in Architecture from the Escola Superior de Belas Artes de Lisboa in 1977, and specialized in "Conservation and Recovery of Buildings and Monuments". She lives and works in Lisbon, where she has a studio since 1979, together with Fernando Sanchez Salvador, developing activity in the field of Architecture and Urban Planning), with several projects and works of public and private buildings, rehabilitation and restoration of buildings, interior renovation, furniture and object design. She is a regular guest at conferences and lectures on architecture and design, in Portugal and abroad.