Sitting at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta, the seaside city of Macau is a vibrant tapestry of Portuguese ancestry and swinging casino life. Boasting all the Las Vegas hotel giants such as Sands, Wynn, Venetian and Studio City, the old Portuguese charm is still very much alive and shining brightly waiting to tell its tale.
Macau became a colony of the Portuguese empire in 1557 as a “trading post”. When the Qing dynasty and Portugal signed the Sino-Portuguese Treaty of Peking in 1887, the treaty terms made Macau a Portuguese territory until 1999, when it was handed over to China. Macau was the last extant European territory in continental (on-shore) Asia.
Unlike other former European colonies, Macau preserved and restored it’s Portugese past. From old forts and churches to, commercial street. Heritage sites has been carefully restored allowing all visitors to see the colourful grandeur of this sleepy city.
Since the handover back to China in 1999, Macau has seen a change which incorporates cultural education and historical restorations. The colonial architecture received new coats of paints and the city slowly transforms itself into a walking cultural relic, with emphasis on architectural education to highlighting the rich Roman Catholic influences through its many churches.
Outside the Santa Rosa school, glass panels were installed at the entrance where part of the wall has been dissected so people can see how old walls were made from organic materials, which still remain intact today. Cobbled streets were restored and older buildings received new coats of paint, allowing the city to be as grandiose as it has once been in the golden Portuguese era.