Inside the ghost Hotel Monte Palace on the Azores.

Inside the ghost Hotel Monte Palace on the Azores.

On the Azores you have one of the strangest hotels I have come across in a long life of travel. A massive 5 star hotel that has been abandoned almost from the day it was built.

Hotel Monte Palace was built in the 1980’s on the crater rim of a volcano, on the Azores in the middle of the Atlantic. The hotel has one of the best views you will ever get from a hotel. I’m quite sure that this was the reason why it was built in the first place. The hotel went bust almost before it got started though. It has now been abandoned for more than 25 years and you can walk freely around this giant ghost thing if you are visiting the island of Sao Miguel on the Azores. It’s located right above the village of Sete Cidades. At the viewpoint called “vista do rei”.

Hotel Monte Palace has one of the best views in the world, but only on a sunny day.

Hotel Monte Palace has one of the best views in the world, but only on a sunny day.


Why did Hotel Monte palace go bust?

Hotel Monte Palace, seen from the road.

In theory, the idea of building a 5 star hotel on the island’s most famous spot, with fantastic views over two famed lakes at Sete Cidades sounds fantastic. But I think the idea to build the hotel was made by a non native who came there on a sunny day. In reality, the viewpoint is covered in clouds most of the time. And there is little fun in paying hundreds of dollars a day to sit in a hotel that is inside a cloud, with damp weather and rain more than 200 days a year. Building a luxury hotel up there is simply so idiotic that it screams to the heaven it’s placed in. You can place a shelter for hikers up there. But not a 5 star hotel.


I have some of the unpaid bills from the hotel.


A few years ago the broken windows of the hotel were starting to pose a danger to people’s safety. So the authorities decided to take them down. And that gave free access to Monte Palace. You can still enter if you like. I happened to come by the same week they broke the windows and I walked straight into the hotel managers office. Many papers were still sitting on the shelves, where I took a binder with some unpaid bills, just for the heck of it. I still have them back on my shelf in Denmark. But I do not plan to pay the bills 🙂


What is the future for the ghost hotel?

Perfect location for a horror movie if you ask me.

Perfect location for a horror movie if you ask me.

The hotel has been for sale for years. But no one wants to spend money on a hotel that has not seen maintenance for over 25 years. Even if it is built from very solid material. There is serious talk about tearing the place down. I guess this will happen in the end. But if you go inside and have a look, you will see that the place looks like something out of a horror movie. So why not make film studios there and shoot future horror movies at Monte Palace hotel. That is the perfect use for a ghost hotel if you ask me.

I hope that the good people who govern the Azores will see this too before this weird and ugly, but unique structure is torn down.


2019 update.

I just stopped at the hotel today, on October 19th, 2019. The hotel is still in the same old bad shape. But I have been told that it has been sold now. The new owners are waiting for the paperwork to be done, so they can do something about it. one of the guys I spoke to told me that it was a Chinese company who had bought the Monte Palace hotel. I have nothing against Chinese as such. But I can fear that they might consider turning it into a casino. I hope this will not happen to the giant ghost hotel of the Azores.

November 2021 update.

The hotel is still sitting on top of the volcano, with no signs of change.So whatever stories that have come out in recent years about the hotel being sold to investors and developers, seems to have not materialised in the end. So if you happen to be on Sao Miguel Island, then you can still visit this oddity of a hotel, if you take a trip to the crater rim of Sete Cidades.

2022 update:

I have been back to the hotel two times so far in 2022. Hotel Monte Real is still the same. The ruin seems to have been increasingly popular with tourists, who scale the walls, even if there are several signs saying that it is forbidden. The local government should actually recognize it as the tourist attraction it has become. If they opened the place to the public and increased the security inside the hotel. Then Hotel Monte Real could be an official tourist attraction and just a piece of curious junk, that is just a headache for the local authorities.

Monte Palace hotel

Monte Palace hotel, October, 2019.


  1. Crazy! I love abandoned buildings and places. Something unique about them. I put this place on my list!

  2. What a shame it might be torn down! I hope it ends up staying…these buildings with forgotten stories always make for fascinating visits.

  3. What a lost place! I’ve been there last month and had beautiful weather. The view from the roof was fantastic. Now nature takes over. Compared to the pictures you took all walls are now green and trees are growing on the verandas. It’s looking now even more scary. I took some nice pictures, if you are interested to see how the story went on …

  4. I actually was there a few months ago and it has been sold. It was still “abandoned” but the main ballroom had was roped off and had some fresh concrete poured the day before. With the tourism boom that is reaching portugal, it is bound to be a great hotel again, just needs to be efficiently run!

  5. Personally, if I had the money I would buy the hotel and turn it into a restaurant, tourist information booth that offers guided tours and bike rentals etc, and maybe charge a nominal fee to view the lakes from the roof. That would leave a lot of empty space, though. I’m not sure it will ever work as a hotel as I wouldn’t be too keen on driving up there or down from there in the dark.

  6. Gary Rodrigues

    I went there back in 1997 to visit family and it was still in fairly good shape despite not seeing customers for 7 years or so. It was supposedly guarded, but we were able to walk right in. Very eerie and strange to be alone in a massive empty structure like that, but i see pictures now of it completely ruined. Sad stuff. It would have done well now since tourism in 2017 is much greater than it was back in 1989.

  7. I’m here right now and it’s Not Sold but still very abandoned there is no Work being done at all so I’m not sure what Jaime is say is correct.

  8. I was there in 2015. Our tour guide told us it won an award for its design. It was built to accommodate a casino but just after it opened gambling became illegal and so it closed almost instantly.

  9. Great pictures Claus. I would have explored the hotel further today but my spouse was waiting outside for me. 🙁

    Absolutely fascinating place. Very sad to see the condition that it’s in. Considerably more graffiti now than shown in your pictures.

  10. Was there in July. The place was being worked on and all accessible entrances were blocked off with cinderblock walls. We did manage to get in, but I unfortunately didn’t get to spend much time exploring before being chased out by some of the construction workers. There was also someone guarding on the roof.

  11. Went there years ago. In front of the hotel there was a big guard dog on a leash, barking like crazy. There was also a man standing at the door. Didn’t feel like going any closer… Spooky as hell!

  12. Nous venons d’y passer la matinée. L’hôtel est grand ouvert aux touristes, on peut même s’y garer devant l’entrée.
    Pas de traces de début de travaux.
    En espérant que l’épidémie de covid ne mette pas un terme définitif à ce projet. Le lieu est magnifique !

  13. Pingback: The battle of Neretva was a historical movie set in Jablanica in Bosnia.

  14. I was.there last week, be careful for things may fall on your head, lots of wind there bc they took the window and it’s next to the water.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *