The four assistants behind the counter have their hands full with the many orders they receive. The customers await their turn as more arrive. The orders are very diverse – professional and amateur, large pieces and minor adjustments, domestic and farming business jobs, from people in the know and from those who don’t have a clue what they are looking for. The assistants seek to advise them all and answer all questions.
With its vast range of products – more than 25,000 different items – this shop is a reference. Its clientele includes public and private entities, such as Lisbon City Council, the Guarda Nacional Republicana police force and the Santa Casa de Misericórdia [the Portuguese state social welfare agency]. It is also the only hardware shop that has survived in the area of Rua da Madalena and Rua dos Fanqueiros, where many have had to close.
The original company, Viúva C. Ferreira Pires, Lda was founded in 1948, and has always been specialised in hardware and tools. But this particular shop only opened for business in 1970. In the 1980s the shop space was extended, and in 1982 the company changed to its current name.
Hardware, tools, ladders.