Located between Lisbon and Sintra, the National Palace of Queluz is one of the leading examples of the rococo and neoclassical architectural styles from the second half of the eighteenth century in Portugal.
Commissioned in 1747 by the future King Pedro III, married to Queen Maria I, the residence was initially designed as a summer house and thus a favoured place for the royal family’s leisure and entertainment but which became their permanent home from 1794 through to their departure for Brazil in 1807, following the country’s invasion by Napoleon’s armies.
Grandiose meeting rooms, places for worship and private rooms follow on from each other in an intimate interconnection with the gardens as a fundamental part of these pleasure-inducing surroundings. Along the spectacular Lions Staircase, by the french artist Jean-Baptiste Robillion, we arrive at the monumental Tiled Canal with its great panels depicting seaports and courtly scenes. The garden pathways are enlivened by the italian and british sculptures, in their main with mythological themes, and highlighting the set of lead sculptures by the London-based artist John Cheere alongside the numerous lakes and other water features.
The evolution of the Court taste throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, strongly influenced by French and Italian as well as English taste, is particularly presented in the Palace interiors, historical Gardens and collections.
The National Palace of Queluz is now managed by the public company Parques de Sintra-Monte da Lua (PSML), established in 2000 following the recognition by UNESCO, in 1995, of the Cultural Landscape of Sintra as a World Heritage Site.
PSML manages the State properties in the area (the Parks, Gardens and Palaces of Pena and Monserrate, the Chalet of the Countess of Edla, the National Palace of Sintra, the Moorish Castle, the Capuchos Convent) and the National Palace of Queluz, where the Portuguese School of Equestrian Art is located.