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Seminar Historic Cafés: A Meeting of Ideas

Coimbra, Portugal

SEMINAR: Coimbra, Portugal – 20th and 21st of May 2022

The seminar is the result of a partnership between Café Santa Cruz and the Portuguese Historic Cafés Association (ACH) and it is co-organized with the Historical Cafes Route. It will be attended by Stefano Dominioni – Executive Secretary, Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes, Council of Europe Director, European Institute of Cultural Routes, Vassilis Stathakis -President of Historical Cafes Route and Vitor Marques, manager of Café Santa Cruz (Coimbra) and President of the Portuguese Historic Cafés Association (ACH).

This Meeting will signal the beginning of the program for the celebrations of the Café Santa Cruz’s Centenary. The program “A Café Approaching Its Centenary” will include a set of initiatives that will take place between May 2022 and May 2023.

ACH’s mission is the promotion and dissemination of Historic Cafés as heritage spaces of unquestionable value, symbols of Portugal’s culture, identity and memory. The Historic Cafés are unique places, with strong attributes that inevitably hold us captivated: their decoration, ambience, architecture, but also their heritage value, history, traditions and, above all, their authenticity and genuineness. These are values that we want to continue to preserve. The Historic Cafés are the guardians of our memories and experiences.

The objectives of the Seminar

Besides the will to sow the seeds of discussion, stimulate debate, and promote the exchange of experiences in different aspects, with the presence of professionals from different sectors, other objectives are:

  •  the participation of European institutions and entities associated with European Cultural Routes;
  •  the presentation of the Café no Caminho project, a route of Historic Cafés that are on the Caminho de Santiago, which starts in Coimbra and ends in Santiago de Compostela;
  •  the identification of fundamental challenges for Historic Cafés in order to keep up with market trends without losing identity;
  •  to reflect on the importance of creating the National Historic Café Day;
  •  to reflect on different themes (subjects) related to Cultural Heritage, of which the Historic Cafés are part of;
  •  to reflect on future challenges, especially in a post-Covid-19 situation;
  •  to identify the European dimension of the Cultural Routes passing through Portugal;
  •  to contribute to the stories of the Cafés being told, reported, heard, and transmitted from one generation to the next, not only through storytelling but also through storydoing;
  •  the use of streaming as a way of promoting and disseminating the contents of this seminar’s program;
  •  to promote the participation of Historic Cafés from all over Europe, through the use of the different existing digital communication platforms.

Both the seminar and the closing musical show will be broadcast via streaming.

20th of May 2022

Among the Speakers:

  • Stefano Dominioni – Historic Cafés: the importance of a European Cultural Route
  • Guilherme d´Oliveira Martins – Cultural Heritage and Historic Cafés
  • Fernando Franjo – The Historic Cafés of the Iberian Peninsula: The “Cafés no Caminho” project
  • Vasilis Stathakis – As President of the Historic Cafés Route


  • The importance of the “Central Café” in the life of cities
  • Historic Cafés – Memory, authenticity and safeguard
  • From mass tourism to the impact of Covid-19 on Historic Cafés – solutions for the future

Musical performance

  • Closing musical performance on 21st of May – 5:00 pm

21st of May 2022

Book presentation:

  • Presentation: João Pinho (Historian and researcher) – Memórias do Café Derby (1929-2020) Author: Fernando Franjo

Parallel events: Location: Café Santa Cruz Exhibition:

  • Books about Historic Cafés
  • Live painting
  • Exhibition: “Memories of Café Derby: A City Café”
  • Exhibition: watercolours and photographs of Historic Cafés

In addition to the panels and all the work meetings, exchanges, and networking, guests will also enjoy complementary activities, such as the tasting of 5 Historic Cafés: A Meeting of Ideas renowned products from Coimbra’s gastronomy.


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Under the support of:

Region of Crete

Under the Αuspices of:

Regional Unit of Chania


Municipality of Chania


Chania Chamber of commerce & Industry


Historical Archive of Crete

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