A Modern Five-Bedroom House in Sintra, Portugal
$3.6 MILLION (3 MILLION EUROS)
This contemporary villa sits on nearly three acres in the tourist-friendly town of Sintra, about three miles from Portugal’s southwestern coastline and about 25 miles west of Lisbon. Built in 2008 from concrete and glass, the approximately 10,700-square-foot house has five bedrooms and five and a half baths, with natural light pouring in through floor-to-ceiling windows and doors throughout.
The low-slung villa all but disappears into its surroundings, with three stories anchored by a central courtyard with a lone, grand olive tree. From the driveway, the front door leads to an entrance hall with a half bath. Just beyond is the courtyard, visible through glass walls. To the right is the open living room, with warm-hued Brazilian oak floors, a courtyard view and doors that open to the expansive terraces, a swimming pool and gardens. The adjacent dining room opens to a covered terrace and barbecue area that connects to the pool deck. The galley kitchen has a casual dining area and garden access.
To the left of the entrance are four bedrooms, each with sliding doors that open to the pool area. Three bedrooms share two bathrooms, while the bathroom in the primary suite has a rain shower, a large soaking tub and a glass wall with garden views.
UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its 18th-century architecture, wineries and resorts at the foot of the Sintra Mountains. Lisbon, Portugal’s capital and largest city, is a 40-minute drive east.
“It’s a very unique place,” said Rafael Ascenso, the general manager of Porta da Frente Christie’s, which has this listing. “It’s a paradise for the ones who like nature and like the rough beaches for windsurf, surf. It’s a paradise for cycling.”
Before the pandemic year of 2020, Portugal had seen house prices rise steadily for nearly a decade, thanks in part to the country’s Golden Visa program, which allows real estate investors to acquire residency and citizenship, and to its nonhabitual resident program, which offers tax benefits to certain nonresidents. That growth slowed as travel restrictions and border closures dampened demand, but foreign buyers seeking to take advantage of the visa program kept the market active, agents and market experts said.
The median appraised value of homes across Portugal settled at 1,144 euros a square meter ($126 a square foot) in November 2020, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics. That marked a year-over-year increase of 6.3 percent — notably down from the previous year’s growth of 11.1 percent.
Idealista, the Madrid-based property search portal, reported the average asking price for a home in Portugal in March 2021 to be 2,181 euros a square meter ($241 a square foot) — up from $129 a square foot five years ago.
Foreign buyers eyeing Lisbon should note that Portugal’s government recently announced that investments in that city, as well as other high-density areas like Porto and the Algarve, will be excluded from the Golden Visa program beginning in 2022.