Photo: Jorge Maio
The Foundation of the Houses of Fonteira and Alorna, was established by Dom Fernando Mascarenhas (1945-2014), who was the representative of three important noble Houses (Fronteira, Alorna e Távora).
Dom Fernando Mascarenhas inherited the Condado of Torre and the Fronteira Palace from a great-great Aunt. Since he had no children, he decided to use this unique opportunity to reinforce the connection between his heritage and the family who is historically linked to it, while keeping in mind the public good.
Thus, he created the Foundation of the Houses of Fonteira and Alorna, and trusted it with a cultural mission in accordance with both the Mascarenhas’ historical past and contemporaneity.
The Fronteira Palace is a privately owned Museum-House.
In order to achieve a peaceful coexistence of the inhabitants with the visitors, all the visits to the interior of the palace are guided tours.
The gardens can be visited without a guide or following a pre-designed itinerary with the help of audio guides. The visitors are welcome to join the monthly “thematic walks” through the gardens, conducted by art historian Ana Paula Rebelo Correia (pre- registration needed)
The Foundation of the Houses of Fonteira and Alorna, promotes a regular program of cultural activities. This program includes monthly meetings of the Fronteira Palace Book Club (which was started by Fernando Mascarenhas in 1993), music concerts, poetry recitals, conferences, seminars and workshops. The Foundation also hosts research projects on subjects related to the material and immaterial cultural heritage associated to the Fronteira Palace as well as the noble Houses connected to it.
To fulfill the mission of promoting cultural Heritage and attracting the public to the cause of culture, the Foundation of the Houses of Fronteira and Alorna offers a regular musical program of concerts at the Fronteira palace between September and June.