LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter • illuminaija
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LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

   
   

LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

The Lello Bookstore, also known as Livraria Lello & Irmão and Livraria Chardron, is a bookstore located in civil parish of Cedofeita, Santo Ildefonso, Sé, Miragaia, São Nicolau e Vitória, in the northern Portuguese municipality of Porto.

LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

The bookstore is widely famous – it was considered the third most beautiful bookstore in the world by Lonely Planet – that some even claim that JK Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, wrote the first Harry Potter book inside the bookstore

The bookshop has been a wonder for the people living in Porto and even the world as visitors from all over the world come to see the magical bookshop. For those who haven’t visited the bookshop, it is a must-see attraction centre.  

But why in fact is the Livraria Lello so famous worldwide?

Why do thousands of visitors come to see this building in downtown Porto? 

History and Location of Livraria Lello

   
   

LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

Located in the centre of Porto, the famous bookshop was opened on 13 January 1906 by José Lello. 

He was a curious and enterprising man, whose history and journey lay within the world of books and literature since he had already opened another bookshop on Rua do Almada. 

When he acquired this space on Rua das Carmelitas, José Lello managed to attract the attention of illustrious literary figures and artists of the day, such as Guerra Junqueiro, Abel Botelho, João Grave, Bento Carqueja, Aurélio da Paz dos Reis, José Leite de Vasconcelos and Afonso Costa.

The opening of the book store had a great cultural impact on the aristocratic milieu in the early twentieth century and placed Porto at the focal point of national attention with regard to literature. 

It was 1906 and José Lello had a dream that Porto would prove to be the literary destination of choice – something that came to pass in the first few years of the bookshop’s life. Today, 114 years after it opened, Livraria Lello continues to stand as one of the most influential bookshops in the world, having also been singled out as one of the most beautiful internationally.

The historic building and details of the stairs

At this time, the book store was not only selling contemporary national and international books, but many people interested in appreciating the architecture of the building also came to visit it. 

The pride of having a building of great architectural distinction meant that José Lello and subsequent owners paid special attention to the details and conservation of the interior areas and the façade, taking care to preserve its structural beauty, even today. 

Many years later, in 1995, an art gallery and social gathering space was created, which came to be a significant centre of culture in Porto. 

LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

By this time, the book store was already one of the city’s iconic buildings.

Nowadays, it is difficult to think of Livraria Lello without picturing the beautiful central staircase that is such an eye-catching feature in the majestic room full of books. 

It is practically impossible to find a photograph of Livraria Lello without the wonderful red staircase that rises to the imposing painted plaster ceiling, yet another of the building’s special decorative details. 

Livraria Lello is unquestionably one of the most beautiful and quirky sights in Porto and this is one of the reasons the bookshop gets thousands of visits every year.

Relationship with and closeness to Harry Potter

Another reason people visit this bookshop is the fact that J.K Rowling, the author of the best-selling Harry Potter saga supposedly got inspiration from the bookstore. 

   
   

LIVRARIA LELLO | See The Magical Bookshop That Inspired The Author Of Harry Potter

It was said that she often visited the store and let herself be captivated by the magic that she imagined existed within. 

If you are a writer, you can also visit this bookshop for magical inspiration. 

   
   

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