The Quinta

The Quinta dos Peixes Falantes offers 4 accommodations in a rural setting, 2 houses with a bedroom and 2 studios surrounded by a common garden that guarantees silence and total privacy for an immersive experience in the Azores.

Quinta dos Peixes Falantes combines the traditional architecture of the island of São Miguel with the most innovative construction methods, guaranteeing a pure symbiosis with nature and comfortable stay for those who visit.

It is a unique place of sharing and communion, where our Azorean family lives and where our guests can experience our daily lives, sharing with us the common areas of the Quinta: where the chapel (reconfigured and remodeled) is our living room and an extension of our dining room.

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)

Who we are

Here the lives of a family come together!

This Quinta (our orchard lodge), born and blessed by the chapel that borders it, has grown with the enthusiasm and warmth of Azorean families’ social gatherings and cultural heritage.

Bordering the coast of Santana and invested with countless stories among friends, families and neighbors, appear the “talking fish” (“Peixes Falantes”). They are “fish” that talk but do not tell you their story: they give you the opportunity to build your own. It is they who open the door and invite you to contemplate in the Azores; they come to your table, into your home and to the ground that you step on, for you. Here the Azores are real: they are family and they are sharing.

So, what exactly are the “talking fish” (“Peixes Falantes”)?

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)

Tradition and History

Our story begins with a chapel built in the 18th century. From this chapel, the main house was constructed, leading to the natural growth of the Quinta.

The Quinta dos Peixes Falantes was born amid the tradition and the common practice among some Micaelense families to construct summer houses near the sea. In this case, Santana was for many years a privileged area for families from Ribeira Grande to get together and spend the summer months. It is an area with a microclimate that offers unique conditions throughout the year. Never neglecting the local connection between the countryside and the agricultural activities, the orchards and vineyards, these traditional Quintas were places of sharing between neighbors and the community, where they would get together to socialize and play croquette (an uncommon game these days). It was here that stories were exchanged and lifelong relations were cemented, that extended from generation to generation.

Quinta dos Peixes Falantes is, thus, a typical Azorean summer house that has been transformed over time: always remaining within the same family and serving the most varied purposes. Today it is the home of an Azorean family, whose vocation it is to welcome and receive guests to the Azores.

Did you know? In addition to its unique conditions, Santana was the location of the island’s first aerodrome. Colloquially known as the “aerovacas” (or “aero-cows”), it was an airfield surrounded by pasturelands used for grazing cattle: it was not only a gateway for the island but also attracted visitors during the 1940s, until its closing in the late 1960s.

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)


The Quinta dos Peixes Falantes is an architectural project by the Azorean atelier M-Arquitetos. It has a rare characteristic: its architect is both owner and descendant of the family who originally began its construction.

As such, and with the aim of preserving the essence and genuineness of the place (as well as the heritage and family memories), there was a concern for enhancing the existing architectural heritage by fusing the traditional with the contemporary.

We can see this in the Azorean basalt walls that flank the main houses in the “Solarengo” style (the so-called “Micaelense-style” typical on the island of São Miguel) which was common at the time of its construction (and used to delimit the entire Quinta). The stonework of the old vineyard hedgerows were also used for the construction of the two studios, inspired by the “arribanas” (old agricultural annexes) and which mirror many of the architectural models still seen on the island.

The so-called “Casa do Caseiro” (the “Caretaker’s Home”) was also transformed into two houses with master bedrooms and original regional tile floors, as well as many of the architectural traits typical of Azorean farmhouses.

Regional and natural resources were used to refurbish the accommodations, such as basalt and cryptomeria wood on exterior walls of the two studios, and Portuguese pine used on the interior walls.

The remodeling of the iconic chapel resulted in a completely unique place for social gatherings, events or meetings that blends history and tradition with contemporary architecture and modern necessity. Unquestionably, the exterior landscapes were enhanced by the gardenscapes that complement the outdoor areas, introducing endemic plants and typical Azorean arboreal species or fruit trees to produce tranquil natural spaces.

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal) Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)

Art and Culture

The Azores are known for their exceptional intellectuals who carry an enormous emotional burden, and who have been highly influenced by their island experiences, making them truly unique.

Here, at Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, it could not be different: from the artistic expression present in the chapel to the architectural component, everything has a purpose and that is why here the fish talk to us.

So, what are the “Peixes Falantes” (“Talking Fish”)?

They are an artistic creation inspired by the “Sermon of Saint Anthony to the Fish”, by Portuguese Jesuit priest António Vieira. A literary work of great importance in Portugal, this sermon was anthropomorphized into a set of singular paintings that the author, uncle and relative of the owners of Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, left to his nephews as a legacy, and which today colors and nurtures the history of this unique place in the Azores.

Besides their sentimental value, these works of art are of great artistic value for they were made by the Azorean author José Nuno da Câmara Pereira.

Who was José Nuno?

José Nuno da Câmara Pereira, or José Nuno (as he was known in the cultural milieu), was considered by many to be the most or one of the “most important Portuguese plastic artists residing in the Azores”.

Born on the island of Santa Maria, he devoted his life to painting, sculpture and education receiving numerous distinctions and awards, such as an award from the first Bienal de Artes dos Açores e do Atlântico, during the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s third Plastic Arts Exhibition.

Following his time at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) he returned to Portugal, where he participated in the creation of the CAI - Centro de Arte e Investigação (Centre for Art and Investigation), founding the Oficina d’Angra – Associação Cultural.

In 2016, he held his last major exhibition of his work, at the Arquipélago Centro de Artes Contemporâneas (“Arquipélago Contemporary Art Center”), titled “Um Sísifo Feliz” (“A Happy Sisyphus”).

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal) Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)


The Quinta reflects, in a contemporary way, the character of a typical 20th century Micaelense summer house, bringing our guests closer to the natural tranquility of the landscape, where each accommodation has access to a private gardenscape that they can enjoy.

The outdoor area is dominated by a small forest and the traditional agricultural lot reinforced with a new orchard that supplies the Quinta with its organic and seasonal fruits, aromatic herbs and vegetables allowing visitors to harvest and sample the fruit as if they were in their own orchard/garden.

The traditional Metrosideros “abrigos” (“hedges”), the Incense, the Hibiscus plants or Camellia trees wind along the old pedestrian paths, which have been recovered to allow visitors to observe the reintroduction of endemic Azorean species such as Laurel or Beech trees, creating an absolutely unique greenspace in this type of lodging.

Here, all the plants, all the trees, and all the flowers have their own story. Try asking them where the yellow roses came from…

Painting "Peixes Falantes" ("Talking Fish") by José Nuno da Camara (Quinta dos Peixes Falantes, São Miguel, Azores, Portugal)


  • 800 m from Santa Bárbara beach
  • 18 km from Ponta Delgada
  • 19 km from the airport
  • 5 km from Ribeira Grande
  • 30 km from Furnas
  • 16 km from Lagoa do Fogo
  • 9 km from Caldeira Velha
  • 37 km from Sete Cidades
  • Close to the tea plantations (Gorreana and Porto Formoso)
  • Close to the Golf Course of Batalha