Quinta do Cabo das Lezírias belongs to Companhia das Lezírias, the largest Portuguese agricultural company, created in 1836, then known as Companhia das Lezírias do Tejo e Sado. It was established by a group of businessmen and landlords in order to acquire, by public auction, extensive properties that Queen D. Maria II decided to sell to try to balance public finances.
The public company Companhia das Lezírias, with more than 18 thousand hectares, is located between the Tagus and Sorraia rivers, and is divided by the so-called “Reta do Cabo” (national road between Vila Franca de Xira and Porto Alto) and produces mainly wine, cork, olive oil and cattle.
It occupies a unique area, not only because it covers the important aquifer on the left bank of the Tagus, but also because two thirds are in a designated of which 11% is in the Tagus Estuary National Reserve and in the Special Protection Zone, thus maintaining the Tagus wetlands as a dual rural and environmental space on the outskirts of the great city of Lisbon.
More than 180 years after its foundation, Companhia das Lezírias is still ahead of its time. Good agricultural practices now include integrated protection and organic farming, avoiding chemical inputs that pollute the estuary and harm bird life.
The rural Quinta do Cabo das Lezírias building consists of old barns, stables, warehouses, water storage, grain silos, chicken coops, a sub-divided building with changing rooms and dining space for women and for men (there are two sets of very interesting octagonal washbasins) and old small single-family houses (single storey, with small divisions and small porch).