Architect Vasco Vieira finds inspiration in the land itself for his designs of the buildings of Umay. Respect and reverence for the local bioregion, geography and climate guide his entire architectural design and construction process.

Umay´s cantilevered infinity pool – one of the highlights of Vieira’s innovative designs – will seem to reach out for the mighty Atlantic, evoking a sense of classical Portuguese saudade (longing).

From foundations that seem to grow organically out of the soil, to raw materials and techniques that draw upon time-tested local construction practices, to rooflines that echo the curves and swells of the land’s topography: Umay is deeply of this place, from start to finish.

Interior Design

Organic structural forms. Clean lines. A tonal palette borrowed from the countryside. Mother Nature steps indoors and makes herself at home.

Walls, floors and furniture celebrate the tones and textures of the Atlantic coast in bone, stone, sand, and terra cotta. Textiles, pillows, and decorative pieces bring in wood, ceramic, raffia, rattan, cotton, linen and clay.

We collaborate with local artisans, artists and experts who use regional raw materials and traditional techniques to produce original crafts by hand. Each piece celebrates the talent and ingenuity of the people of this place, contributing to the history, identity and experience of Umay.

Here, the sophistication is in the simplicity.


Less is more: we protect existing vegetation to the greatest possible extent, minimizing damage and adding only indigenous species. Formal and functional solutions introduce elements – such as wood, sand and stone – that fit seamlessly and harmlessly within the spectrum of local flora and fauna.

The greenhouse garden and the cultivation of the neighboring valley support Umay’s holistic landscape, providing seasonal produce for our farm-to-table kitchens.


Umay’s state-of-the-art engineering infrastructure and maintenance systems are built to run so smoothly – so silently, so invisibly – that they seem not to exist at all.

Our expert team maintains all heating, air conditioning, and electrical systems throughout the grounds from their headquarters in one central subterranean maintenance plant. This hub of activity will run behind the scenes, located at a distance from residences and recreation areas to eliminate noise and interruptions – always with as small a carbon footprint as possible.

The roof of the central guests’ car-park will feature a 160kw photovoltaic installation sufficient to provide electricity for 60 households. Communal parking areas will offer 40 charging stations for electric vehicles, while each private villa has a charging station of its own.