The Convento do Espinheiro is not only interested in the well-being of its guests and their exigencies, it is also concerned about the sustainability of the environment of which it is a part. The hotel would like to leave a really long-lasting legacy behind it.
When the Hieronymite monks lived here in the 15th century, the monastery was totally self-sufficient.
The Convento do Espinheiro is a Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, and one of its concerns now is to make the monastery vegetable and fruit garden productive again. The plants and herbs that have been sown conform to the demands of biological agriculture, and this means that no chemicals have been used.
These are the herbs that give such a flavour to the delicious meals served in our restaurant, Divinus. All organic waste from the kitchen, along with fallen leaves and grass cuttings are put in compost tanks to be used later as fertilizer for our gardens.
Following the renovation of the old aquaduct, it has been possible to start using water from the well to irrigate the gardens and they are now self sufficient in water. This in itself is a real blessing, in a region where the average annual rainfall is around 700 mm.
This policy has also been applied in our garden, where we have replaced some of the plants with Mediterranean flora requiring less water.
The Convento do Espinheiro has adopted other policies too with the environment in mind. Among these are the use of eco-friendly lighting, solar panels for heating water and regular dissemination of information to stakeholders regarding our environmental practices.