Stand in front of the entrance, raise your head and lay your eyes on the two figures that surround the large window opening: Art and Science welcome you here. Since 1906, this bookshop of undisputed decorative beauty has been considered a 'house of letters' by the many intellectuals and writers that Porto counts in its midst, browsing an incredible number of rare books. In spite of the years, this Neo-gothic architectural gem shelters a temple of literary culture in Porto (with more than 60,000 electronically indexed titles available) in pristine conditions. Book lovers, students and academics rub shoulders with tourists in front of the imposing central staircase, between old books of spells and wooden shelves. The current craze about this historical monument asks for enhanced vigilance on the part of the staff. They have to make sure the primary function of the place is preserved, and it does not become a dusty museum instead.
Treasure hunters, note that gems like the three volumes of Reynaldo dos Santos' Oito séculos de arte portuguesa, or the facsimile of Luís de Camões' Os Lusíadas'(1572) first edition sit jealously guarded in owner Antero Braga's office! Finally, J.K. Rowling enthusiasts will gladly learn that the writer took her inspiration there for Hogwarts, Harry Potter's school.
Rua das Carmelitas 144
+351 22 200 2037