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Loulé’s famous Calcinha café has reopened

LouleCafe2Café Calcinha, near the market in Loulé, reopened on Friday, June 14th having undergone extensive renovation work.

Calcinha opened in 1929 and soon became a Loulé favourite, made famous by the poet António Aleixo where he composed and recited much of his work.

The building was purchased by the Municipality of Loulé for €180,000, in a process that began in 2012 when the site was declared a "Property of Municipal Interest."

Much of this 'interest' was from the current mayor, Vitor Aleixo who is the poet’s grandson. The €120,000 refurbishment cost struck many as an expensive vanity project as private, rather than ratepayers’ money could have been used.

Café Calcinha has been a much-loved cultural landmark for locals and visitors and had remained largely untouched over the decades. It also was largely unmaintained and the council’s expenditure has given the building a new life and new facilities, while sensibly using the original tables and chairs.

Tiago Soares, Bruno Inácio and João Apolónia are now managing the business, “We want the Calcinha to be a privileged space. A meeting point. During the year we are going to host cultural events.”

Bruno Inácio is a former president of the Parish of Querença, João Apolónia was the manager of a bar in Loulé, and Tiago Soares has owned shops in Quarteira and Vilamoura.

The menu is much improved with meals as well as snacks, pastries and craft beers all being added until September when the full range will be available.