Overlooking the historic Campo de Sao Francisco, the Vila Gale Collection Sao Miguel is one of the Azorean capital’s most recognisable landmarks.
The stately facade and grand Romanesque entrance to Ponta Delgada’s newest hotel slightly misrepresent the building’s origins. Opening its doors in June 2023, the Vila Gale Collection Sao Miguel was constructed in the 19th century and served as the capital’s main Sao Francisco Hospital for over a hundred years. As you enter, the striking entrance lobby is unlike any other Azorean hotel and is perhaps more in keeping with a Viennese opera house. The intricate cornices, architraves and decorative friezes of the original building have been lovingly preserved, and the bold geometric porcelain floor tiles are a feature which runs throughout.
There are ninety-two rooms in total: standard, superior, deluxe and family rooms, junior suites (some with balconies) and master suites. The décor is subtle and understated, with the exception of a feature wall depicting key figures from the long and illustrious history of the Azores. The burly archways of the Vila Gale’s Restaurante Versatil look out to the hotel’s inner courtyard and outdoor pool – the pool’s Splash Bar is open throughout the day, and the Soul and Blues bar takes over in the evenings.
Location-wise, the hotel is at the western end of the main seafront avenida, overlooking the Campo de Sao Francisco. It’s one of the city’s oldest squares and plays host to the Azores’ largest and most-colourful religious festival: the Festas do Senhor Santa Cristo. The 16th century Forte de Sao Bras is close-by, and it’s a short five-minute walk to the Portas de Cidade city gates with the Portas do Mar marina just beyond.