Factoría Inglesa (The English Trading Post)
An obligatory stop on the city’s Urban Wine Way.
The most British thing in town.
A charismatic construction which bears true witness of the strength which has historically bound the union between Portuguese and English towns, and designed by the consul John Whitehead in the neo-Palladian style and built between 1785 and 1790, the Factoría Inglesa (The English Trading Post), was created as a meeting place for British tradesman who lived in Porto, essentially for those who traded in wine, an sector which practically became a British monopoly. The plot where the trading post stands was donated in perpetuity by the Portuguese government to the British Consulate and was only ever closed when Napoleonic forces invaded Portugal in 1807.Currently, it’s a private club where British promoters and exporters of the world-wide renowned Port wine meet. It consists of four floors and the façade of the ground floor is formed by seven arches which give way to a portico gallery. The main floor displays high openings, with balconies and gables. The complex finishes off with a balustraded mezzanine level. Inside, stand-out features are the Anglican chapel, a large library, a magnificent staircase, a kitchen (which still contains its original accessories and crockery), the Chippendale furniture, and, why not, it’s excellent porcelain. Today, it is an obligatory stopping-off point on the famous City Wine Route.