Classified Immovable Properties

    MM050-Pier No.1



    Location: Macao

    Category: Monuments

    Pier No.1, top amongst over 30 piers in the Inner Harbour of Macao, is located at Barra Square and opposite to A-Ma Temple.

     

    In the olden days, in front of A-Ma Temple was a rocky beach and a jetty with a stone tablet which read ‘Barra Temple Jetty’. Legend has it that the Portuguese landed at that jetty when they arrived in Macao over four centuries ago, and the stone tablet was buried during land reclamation. A government pier was later constructed at the site of the jetty and was also known as the ‘Royal Pier’ as it mainly served the government vessels and was used as an arrival or departure point for Macao governors and officials. When a new governor assumed office, he would arrive at the pier and review the guards of honour at the pier square. The governor would leave Macao at the same pier, where major officials of government departments, leaders of Chinese organisations, business leaders and celebrities would gather to bid farewell. This government pier in front of A-Ma Temple, already numbered as Pier No.1 before 1946, was managed by the Port Authority and mainly used for the docking of marine police’s patrol crafts, and also as a venue for fishermen’s activities. Since the Maritime Museum was inaugurated at Barra Square in 1987, the pier has been open to the public as an exhibition space showcasing featured historic vessels, including tugboats, sampans, festive boats, dragon boats, fishing boats, and Vietnamese boats.

     

    Pier No.1, situated in the west of the Macao Peninsula and facing Barra Hill, was an iconic structure on the Inner Harbour channels. The structure consists of a porch and an inverted T-shaped portico featuring a bright and open design. Built with an H-shaped layout, Pier No.1 is mainly a reinforced concrete structure with yellow plastered exterior walls embellished with white fillet mouldings. Horizontally, the roof is thoroughly adorned with light cornices made of concrete, and on the parapets above the cornices are rhythmic merlon-shaped decorations, which demonstrates a strong Moorish architectural style.

     

    Erected on a stone embankment, Pier No. 1 is adorned with the Portuguese coat of arms atop its front façade and features a trapezoid entrance that gradually narrows upwards. The doors and windows are pointed arch-shaped with dark green wooden frames. The H-shaped portico that is connected to the entrance extends from the embankment to the sea and has a granite staircase for embarking and disembarking. On both sides of the portico are distinctive patterned fences which feature red crosses enclosed by yellow circles; the red crosses are particularly evident in a building mainly coloured in yellow, and were frequently seen on Portuguese sailing ships (caravels) during the Age of Discovery.


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