When looking at accommodation options in Portugal, the first thought about this Atlantic-facing nation might be about its seaside resorts. But, if you think that Portugal only has sandy beaches and lively nightlife on the menu, you couldn’t be more mistaken. Not that their beachside hotels and island retreats are lacking in any way; quite the contrary, but simply put, there’s so much more to experience.
As you will see from our list, the best luxury hotels in Portugal offer much in the way of representing the country’s winemaking culture, as well as the more remote inland region.
Situated on the stunning Praça de Camões square, Bairro Alto Hotel is the gold standard of Lisbon’s boutique hotel scene. The Bairro Alto quarter and its cobblestone streets are home to many sights and attractions, including the opulent São Roque Church, the Bica Funicular, a historic railway system, and many traditional buildings as well as hip bars and local cuisine restaurants.
The recent renovation and expansion under the leadership of Eduardo Souto de Moura, a renowned architect, the Bairro Alto Hotel is once again operating in all its former glory. The three buildings comprising the hotel date back to the 18th century, while the main one has an unassuming ochre exterior, tastefully executed to combine the charm of the existing old buildings with a contemporary facade.
The interior decor, done by Atelier Bastir, is characterized by contemporary art and vintage furnishings, while the unobtrusive, romantic lighting and the marble floors create a welcoming and homely atmosphere. The older rooms, which have some of the best views of the square, stay true to their vintage vibe with hand-drawn wallpapers and classic furniture. The newer suites, though, are more adventurous, straying into modern aesthetic territory with vibrant tones of red or turquoise.
In-room amenities include a minibar, vanity and writing desks, flat-screen TV, coffee machines, and free wi-fi throughout the hotel. The rooftop bar and terrace of the hotel is one of the main selling points, providing incomparable views of the surrounding city vista. Should you want to get your daily workout in, you can do so in the well-equipped fitness center in the hotel. The sauna and the steam rooms, on the other hand, are par excellence, should you want to relax after a long day of sightseeing.
The BAHR restaurant is one of a kind; local chef Nuno Mendes provides savory international delicacies. The other all-day dining option is the Mezzanine, while for cocktails and other drinks, you can visit the 18.68 Cocktail Bar.
Near Porto’s picturesque Old Town, south of the Douro river sits an oenophile’s paradise – The Yeatman. But, even if you’re not that much of a wine connoisseur, there’s plenty to enjoy in this hillside high-end hotel. From the remarkable views of the Porto skyline to the historical sights nearby, The Yeatman has something for everyone and plenty for those who enjoy upscale accommodation.
Both the hotel’s interior and exterior are simply striking; from the characteristic pillars and marble staircases to the light-colored walls providing a relaxing ambiance, The Yeatman doesn’t let you forget even for a second that you’re in an exclusive, palatial estate. The 70 rooms and 12 suites are all themed around Portugal’s history and wine culture – paintings and paraphernalia standing as symbols of both. Complimentary wi-fi, exquisite bedding, extravagant toiletries, as well as minibars, TVs, and safes are available in each of the rooms and suites. All of them also have front-facing private balconies.
The fitness center, the spa, providing professional treatments and massages, and the sauna, as well as the bottle-shaped infinity pool with a view, are some of the facilities you get to enjoy when staying at The Yeatman. The indoor heated pool provides some respite if the rooftop gets too crowded for your liking, while the concierge and butler service is simply exceptional.
The Michelin-starred in-house restaurant offers delicious international dishes with an incredibly extensive wine list – a total of 1100 wine bottles! All of the wines are also available for purchase in the hotel’s shop.
Double rooms start at about $260 depending on the season.
As its name would suggest, The Cliff Bay hotel is located on a cliff overlooking the wondrous Atlantic seaside. Having direct access to the sea and being less than a mile away from the town center, The Cliff Bay has the best of both worlds in terms of beachside relaxation and nightlife.
The hotel oozes elegance due to its tasteful Mediterranean Revival architecture, modern furnishings, and rich marble interior. The hotel has a striking airiness to its atmosphere due to the cute balconies with a view and the neatly organized palm trees that form what feels like some tropical garden.
All of the rooms have all the amenities characteristic for a luxury hotel, including flat-screen TVs, air conditioning, safes, minibars, coffee machines, etc. In terms of facilities, though, you simply can’t ask