The Golden Gate returns

One of the most emblematic spaces of Funchal has reopened to the public. It remains a café and restaurant, now in the Italian spirit.


Back in 1933, one of the most translated Portuguese novelists in the World, Ferreira de Castro, coined a phrase which would remain a popular one: The Corner of the World! The phrase appears in the novel Eternidade, set in Madeira, and it refers to Golden Gate, a grand café, restaurant and historic site where the society of Funchal and visitors from all around the world gathered alike.

Because it is located in a corner where two of the city’s main avenues converge it is a prime site to enjoy a cosmopolitan view on the city. It will, no doubt, have served as inspiration for Ferreira de Castro while he wrote his novel here during the winter of 1932/1933.

‘Corner of the world’ may have gained more and more popularity with time but in truth the Golden Gate café had been open since 1841. It is more than a place for commerce. It is part of the town’s very heritage. This iconic café bore witness to the transformations of Funchal and the visits of several historic people as they passed by the island on their way to the most distant destinations imaginable. 

Over the course of nearly two centuries it has undergone several changes and different layouts, but the wicker chairs in its outdoor area and the first floor veranda have been there for many generations.  

Having been closed for three years, the Golden Gate Grand Café has reopened to the public under new ownership and with a renovated space. It maintains its classical style and adds an Italian-inspired restaurant to the café.