Preserving Tradition and Excellence

The Lusitano stud farm and the art of breaking in and training horses at Herdade de Malhadinha Nova country estate.

Nestled amidst the rolling hills and golden plains of Alentejo, Portugal, lies the prestigious Herdade de Malhadinha Nova Country Estate. This tranquil haven, renowned for its luxurious accommodations and exceptional wine production, also boasts a hidden gem—the Lusitano stud farm. Here, amidst the serenity of the countryside, a centuries-old tradition of breeding and nurturing Lusitano horses thrives, embodying the essence of Portuguese equestrian culture.


A Heritage of Excellence

The Lusitano horse, appreciated for its elegance, intelligence, and versatility, holds a special place in Portugal’s history. With roots tracing back to ancient Iberian civilisations, these magnificent creatures were once the esteemed companions of kings and nobility, renowned for their prowess in battle and their grace in the equestrian arts.

At Herdade de Malhadinha Nova, the legacy of the Lusitano horse is not just preserved but celebrated. The stud farm, meticulously maintained and operated by a team of dedicated experts, continues the time-honoured tradition of breeding and training these exceptional animals. Every aspect of the farm’s operation, from breeding to training, is guided by a deep respect for the Lusitano’s heritage and a commitment to upholding the highest standards of excellence.


The Breeding Program

Central to the success of the stud farm is its selective breeding program, which aims to produce Lusitano horses of exceptional quality and character. Carefully curated bloodlines, meticulous attention to conformation and temperament, and a deep understanding of equine genetics are the cornerstones of this program.

The process begins with the careful selection of breeding pairs, chosen for their complementary traits and potential to produce offspring of superior quality. Each pairing is meticulously planned, taking into account factors such as pedigree, conformation, movement, and temperament. Through this selective breeding process, the stud farm aims to perpetuate the traits that have made the Lusitano horse so revered throughout history.

Nurturing Future Champions

From the moment they are born, the young foals of the stud farm are given the utmost care and attention. Raised in spacious paddocks amidst the idyllic Alentejo landscape, they are allowed to develop and grow in a natural environment that encourages physical strength, agility, and socialisation.

As they mature, the foals undergo a comprehensive training program tailored to their strengths and abilities. Skilled trainers work patiently with each horse, nurturing their natural talents and instilling in them the discipline and skills necessary for success in the equestrian arena. Whether destined for the dressage ring, the show jumping course, or the fields of competitive driving, every horse receives the personalised care and training needed to reach its full potential.


Embracing Tradition in a Modern World

While the Lusitano stud farm at Herdade de Malhadinha Nova remains deeply rooted in tradition, it also embraces innovation and modernity. State-of-the-art facilities, equipped with the latest technology and amenities, ensure the health, comfort, and well-being of the horses at every stage of their development. From modern breeding techniques to advanced training methods, every effort is made to optimise the success and longevity of the program.

Moreover, the stud farm serves as a beacon of education and outreach, welcoming visitors from around the world to learn about the rich history and heritage of the Lusitano horse. Guided tours offer guests the opportunity to witness firsthand the beauty and majesty of these magnificent creatures, while educational programs provide insights into the breeding, training, and care of the horses.


A Testament to Passion and Dedication

The Lusitano stud farm at Herdade de Malhadinha Nova stands as a testament to the enduring passion and dedication of all those involved in its operation. From the skilled breeders and trainers to the caring grooms and stable hands, each individual plays a vital role in preserving and promoting the legacy of the Lusitano horse.

As the sun sets over the Alentejo plains, casting a golden glow upon the tranquil landscape, one cannot help but feel a sense of awe and reverence for these remarkable animals and the timeless tradition they represent. In the heart of Portugal’s countryside, amidst the vineyards and olive groves of Herdade de Malhadinha Nova, the spirit of the Lusitano horse lives on, a symbol of grace, beauty, and enduring excellence.


Mastering the Art of Breaking In and Training Horses

In the picturesque landscape of Alentejo, Portugal, where the golden fields stretch as far as the eye can see, there exists a master of the equestrian arts. Pedro Sousa, a professional horse rider at Herdade de Malhadinha Nova Country Estate, embodies the essence of skill, patience, and dedication required in the delicate art of breaking in and training horses.


A Journey of Dedication

Pedro Sousa’s journey into the world of horsemanship began at a young age. Growing up surrounded by horses in the rolling hills of Alentejo, he developed a deep connection with these magnificent animals from an early age. His innate passion for horses led him to pursue a career in professional riding, where he honed his skills under the guidance of seasoned mentors and trainers.

Over the years, Pedro’s journey has taken him across the globe, from the competitive arenas of Europe to the remote ranches of South America. Along the way, he has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience, mastering various disciplines of horsemanship and earning a reputation as a skilled and intuitive rider.

The Art of Breaking In

At Herdade de Malhadinha Nova, Pedro Sousa’s expertise shines in the delicate process of breaking in young horses. Known for his gentle yet firm approach, he understands the importance of building trust and confidence in these impressionable creatures from the very beginning.

The process of breaking in a horse is not just about teaching them to accept a rider; it is about laying the foundation for a lifelong partnership built on mutual respect and understanding. Pedro’s patient and methodical approach ensures that each horse progresses at its own pace, never rushing or forcing them beyond their capabilities.


Training for Excellence

As the horses mature, Pedro’s focus shifts to training them for their chosen discipline, whether it be dressage, show jumping, or eventing. With a keen eye for detail and a deep understanding of equine biomechanics, he tailors each training program to suit the individual needs and abilities of the horse.

From refining their movement to perfecting their technique and athleticism, Pedro’s training methods are designed to unlock the full potential of each horse. Through a combination of groundwork, flatwork, and gymnastic exercises, he helps them develop the strength, balance, and suppleness required to excel in their chosen discipline.


A Partnership of Trust and Respect

Central to Pedro Sousa’s approach to horse training is the concept of partnership. He believes that true harmony between horse and rider can only be achieved through a relationship built on trust, respect, and clear communication.

By fostering a deep understanding of the horse’s instincts and behaviours, Pedro empowers riders to become true partners with their equine counterparts. Through patient guidance and encouragement, he helps them develop the skills and confidence necessary to.

Embracing Equine Elegance: A Day in the Life at Herdade de Malhadinha

Pedro, the masterful hand behind the equestrian endeavours at Herdade de Malhadinha, graciously shared insights into his journey and daily routines that intertwine seamlessly with the estate’s rich equestrian culture.


Pedro’s Path to Passion

“When asked what led me to work with horses, it’s the sheer pleasure and tranquillity they bring. Teaching horses is my ultimate joy! My journey with Herdade de Malhadinha began in 2006, initially through a friend. What started as part-time care for a couple of horses blossomed into a full-fledged commitment over time.”


A Dawn of Dedication

Pedro’s day commences with the first light, typically around 6:30 am. After nourishing himself, he dives into his role. “My mornings are dedicated to assembling. I start with the youngest ones, gradually progressing to the others. By 1 pm, they’re all set. In the afternoon, I venture into the fields, checking on our mares and foals. It’s a time of observation and nurturing, witnessing their growth and contemplating ways to enhance their potential.”


The Art of Connection

Pedro’s approach to building bonds with the horses is grounded in calmness and tranquillity. “Above all, it’s about maintaining a serene environment. Tranquillity forms the cornerstone of effective teaching.”


A Haven for Horses

Herdade de Malhadinha stands out for its exceptional approach to horse care and equestrian activities. “Malhadinha Nova boasts optimal conditions for horse breeding – abundant space, favourable climate, and a family deeply devoted to these majestic creatures. This love for horses permeates every aspect of the estate, including the guest experience. Equestrian activities, from classes to carriage rides, are immensely popular among our guests, reflecting the estate’s dedication to preserving and celebrating the equestrian heritage.”

In the realm of luxury living, Herdade de Malhadinha isn’t just a destination; it’s a sanctuary where the bond between man and horse thrives, painting a portrait of elegance and equine excellence.