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“An Amazing Place” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Universo de Memorias Joao Carlos Abreu

Universo de Memorias Joao Carlos Abreu
Ranked #30 of 143 things to do in Funchal
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Glasgow Scotland
Level Contributor
96 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 222 helpful votes
“An Amazing Place”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 18, 2013

The second place I visited on World Tourism Day. Straight across the road from Quinta das Cruzes.According to my excellent guidebook the tearoom here is the best place to recharge your batteries for more sightseeing. There was absolutely no mention of the house or its contents. After coffee in the delightful garden tearoom i entered what looked like a very ordinary house for ny tour with the guide. I was the only person doing the tour which tskes place twice an hour, on the hour and half hour. I like my museums quirky and this one takes quirky to a whole new level. As has been said this iis the personal collection of an ex tourist minister and he collected some weird and wonderful things! The various collections are housed in individual rooms and`are all wonderful. The tie room will live in my mind forever. The bathroom can only be described as surreal and I left the museum feeling joyful, uplifted and determined to return, which I definately will. Special mention must be of whoever styled the rooms.
Even a few weeks later when I think of it the word which comes to my mind is psychaedelic.
The tea room is for everyone to enjoy although the collection may not suit all.
my kind of museum!

Visited September 2013
7 Thank Calderglen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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115 reviews from our community

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English first
Level Contributor
42 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Great place for a cup of tea and a scone”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 5, 2013

Opposite both the Quinta das Cruzes & the Conventa Santa Clara this beautiful house has been converted into a museum housing the eclectic collection of the former regional secretary for tourism (including a room full of horses and another of ties)
The tea garden is a little oasis with easy seating and plenty to look at.
If you are looking for a pit stop whilst exploring the area then this is idea, the coffee is great and the service very friendly

Visited August 2013
1 Thank Michael L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
23 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“What a Find”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 5, 2013

After 12 years of visiting Funchal, found this when visiting the Santa Clara Monastery, just across the road. Had a coffee and scone in the cafe and decided to visit the museum or more exactly a collectors collection from around the world. Rooms in an 18century house each filled with different collections of items from around the world. The horse collection was my favourite, with horses created in every conceivable fabric. And we almost missed the full size horse on the balcony. A really worthwhile visit with guide to take us round and was very knowledgable. Thoroughly recommend this.

Visited July 2013
4 Thank Silverfoxmickh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“one man and his museum”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 28, 2013

called into what we believed was a small cafe' offering tea and scones called (Casa de Cha') just across the road from the Santa Clara monastery. we thought it might take up a little time to visit the museum. the price was 3.5 Euro for an adult. it is a guided tour but there will be no large group to follow. immediately you realize that this is something special. the owner collector of this museum is obviously a kleptomaniac of the very best sort. at every room, corner, wall and floor space is unique beautiful art both old and new. each collection of which there are many, would be able to grace a much larger space and would not look out of place in a national museum or art gallery. the guide who patiently walks you through this menagerie takes her time but can scarcely scratch the surface of the art on show. we spent about 45min looking around and eventually arrived back at the small tea room a bit overwhelmed. but very glad to have seen a small part of the world according to João Carlos Abreu. P.S the tearoom was very good too.

Visited June 2013
2 Thank charnett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Bagborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
54 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
“An Eclectic Cornucopia!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 28, 2013

We discovered Joao Carlos Abreu's collection by accident, intending to visit the convent over the road, which happened to be closed. On entering the Universo de Memorias, we found that a tour of the house in English was about to begin so we joined it. Entry was 3.50 Euros. The house is filled with artifacts and paintings collected by Abreu over about 50 years.

The first rooms contained treasures from South-east Asia and Africa, including Nepalese marriage head-dresses, African masks, enormous Tibetan yak horns and countless silver pill-boxes. Abreu is apparently very fond of horses and he has dedicated an entire room to them. There were horse sculptures from all over the world, made of every material. Some of the most spectacular were from India, painted in lively colours or coated in embossed silver.

The collection was well displayed; a huge number of teapots were arranged in a dining room setting and there were cases of extraordinarily elaborate paste jewellery in another. The bathroom was truly surreal, festooned with hats, with stylish fashion plates on the walls. Towards the end of the tour, the guide said what I thought was 'and this is the Thai room' but when I entered, I was confronted with a room lined with neck-ties. And I mean lined, I've never seen anything like it.

We finished with the library, where Abreu's innumerable passports were displayed in a glass case. He travels almost constantly, always on the lookout for more objets d'art. As it turned out, Abreu himself was visiting the house that day, and we met him as we reached the first floor. He stopped for a brief chat, nice guy. I haven't mentioned the paintings - the walls were covered in modern artworks and prints. So much to see. Our guide had good English and allowed us time to digest the sheer profusion of it all as we moved from room to room.

There is a tearoom in a courtyard outside the house and the only reason I haven't given this place five stars is because it wasn't operational when we visited. Perhaps it was because it was out of season, I don't know, but the courtyard was lovely, with palms and flowers and a view over Funchal, so I wished we could have had tea there. This collection is highly recommended and I'm very glad the convent was closed after all, or we'd never have seen it.

Visited February 2013
2 Thank funnyjaybird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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