‘Dá Licença’ Hotel, The Perfect Refugee Overlooking the Alentejo plain ♦ Dá Licença is located a few miles outside the historic city of Estremoz, perched atop a hilly 120-hectare plot of land that’s blanketed in mature olive trees. With a total of just eight guest rooms, the hotel has been developed by creatives Vitor Borges and Franck Laigneau to be more akin to a guesthouse where visitors “already feel at home”. Today, Secrets From Portugal is here to let you know all the deets on this amazing hotel in the Alentejo. Pack your bags and set off on a discovery of this heaven on earth.
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The Herdade das Freiras emerged in 1830, as one of the important olive oil production. Dá Licença embraces three hundred acres and magnificent hills, including more than thirteen thousand olive trees, emerging on pure, white and pink marble rocks. The location is unique, with its wonderful 360º view into the Serra d’Ossa forest and into the beautiful castles of Evoramonte and Estremoz, in Medieval and Manueline style.
When Vitor Borges and Franck Laigneau first discovered the Alentejo region in the 2000s, they were overcome with a sense of déja-Vu. This landscape felt somehow deeply familiar, the colours vibrant and clear, the smells around them like memories. Here they found their spiritual homeland.
Drawn to the dramatic and ancient town of Estremoz, surrounded by wonderful vineyards and dominating its surroundings as if still under the protection and benevolent hand of Elizabeth of Aragon, they found Herdade das Freiras. This was home.
Vitor and Franck have devoted themselves to this little piece of heaven, leaving Paris after successful careers in art and luxury business to create Dá Licença, a new and sophisticated hotel.
There are four luxury suites between 50 and 180 sqm each, decorated with refining and elegance. Large and spectacular bathrooms, two of them with a bath in a local marble block. All the washbasins are individually sculpted by a local artist. Large patios or terraces for more privacy and incredible views over the natural landscape. Two suites with private pool in marble finish and saltwater treatment. The interior of the suites has private and unique Art pieces.
There are four types of bedrooms:
THE ROCK – The suite is infused with Japanese ambience, shaped like an amphitheatre so you can lie back and contemplate the stunning views.
THE LOFT – The loft is a large, open studio with three main spaces – bedroom, living area and bathroom. Immerse yourself in a relaxing and meditative environment. All have natural, open windows opening onto the landscape.
MY POOL – Architecturally reminiscent of a yacht and little boat, the Pool Suite offers soothing comfort and style with Scandinavian furniture.
SKY POOL – The sky is the only limit in this suite. Feel as free as a bird and enjoy the beauty of the Alentejo olive hills.
The purpose of an art concept as part of Dá Licença is to go on with a project Franck Laigneau initiated in 1998 with the opening of its gallery in Paris nearby the Orsay museum. His vision was to promote historical design from Norway and Finland. The first entities to react were international museums and private collectors followed by interior decorators. He then developed another avant-garde design field with the anthroposophical art movement. Today design and architecture have been very focused on technology, removed from spiritual and soul.
The decor is provided by a selection of furnishings and ornaments produced during the 20th-century arts and crafts movement, which Borges and Laigneau have picked up on their travels throughout Europe.
Throughout the hotel, doors have also been swapped for arched open walkways – a move which Borges and Laigneau hope will encourage guests to move freely between rooms and let cooling airflow during the warm summer months.