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A Brief History of Casa Grande...


Casa Grande is an Old Portuguese manor house which dates back to its completion by Francisco Nico in 1912.


Sally and John Vincent bought the derelict house in 1972. They had been living in Chicago for five years and wanted to return to Europe.  Portugal, at the time, was the least developed country and the government- looking for foreign investment-was offering Castles cheaply to outside investors. So the Vincent’s set off with their two young children in search of a castle to buy. The sales of castles turned out not to be quite true and instead, they switched their search to large houses they could convert into a guest house.  After an extensive search, they finally fell in love with the “Quinta do Senhor Nico” now Casa Grande.  The house had just one water tap and no electricity and over the next year the Vincent’s camped inside while they lovingly restored it.


The legend of Senhor Nico

 Senhor Nico was found as a baby floating out at sea wearing nothing but a necklace with the name Nico on it, by a local fisherman.  During a storm from the night before a Greek ship had been spotted passing by, so it was assumed Nico had been dropped overboard by his parents in hopes he would be saved.  Nico was raised by the fisherman and grew up to become a wealthy land developer.  After sailing the world he returned to Burgau with his fortunes and built the Casa Grande where local legend has it he hid his treasure and it is still thought to this day, to be buried under the house.

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