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Where to Stay in Portugal: Our 10 Favorite Hotels

It seems like almost everyone is going to Portugal (at least according to FB and Insta). Can you blame them? There's the rich history, glorious beaches, world-class restaurants, vibrant cultural scene, and rolling vineyards to rival France and Spain. From Lisbon to the Algarve, these 10 hotels provide the perfect springboards for exploring the country’s best.

See recent posts by Siobhan Reid

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Photos Courtesy of Joe Condron, Camile de Ginestel, Palacio Belmonte, Marko Roth


Palacio Belmonte, Lisbon

Stately and historic, Palacio Belmonte is a splurge-worthy stay with amenities (sitting rooms, libraries, terraces) fit for a king. The Palace is the oldest building of its kind in the city, once serving as the residence of the Marques d’Atalia, Alvares Cabral and the Earls of Belmonte—something you might be able to intuit from the aristocratic interiors, which blend antique rugs, 18th-century hand-painted tiles, period oil-paintings and preserved Roman walls. There’s no restaurant on-site, but a breakfast is served on a breezy private terrace that overlooks the city’s terracotta rooftops, and all other meals can be ordered from Michelin-starred Belcanto. Spend your days relaxing by the orange tree and herb garden-lined black marble swimming pool, or brushing up on your reading one of two wood-paneled libraries.

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Memmo Alfama, Lisbon

Housed in a former shoe polish factory, the Memmo Alfama is a contemporary boutique hotel with major Old World charm. It’s tucked within a cobbled ancient courtyard in the romantic Alfama neighborhood, and sports a sleek and clean-lined design, courtesy of interior designer João Corrêa. The 42 guestrooms are outfitted in wood and taupe tones and have modern bathrooms with polished concrete floors and Portugeuse Saboaria bath products. After exploring the nearby São Jorge Castle and the city’s 12th century cathedral, watch the sunset from the hotel’s rooftop lounge, which has an iridescent red-tile pool, an extensive port wine list, and unobstructed Tagus River views.

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L’AND Vineyards, the Alentejo

This high-design wine resort is set among rows of oak trees and gnarled vines in the wine-growing region of Alentejo, less than an hour east of Lisbon. Brazilian architect Marcio Kogan is behind the stone and slate exteriors, whose clean, minimalist lines contrast the wild natural beauty that surrounds. Inside, the atmosphere of understated luxury continues, with earthen tones of brown and taupe, raw textiles, walls of slender wooden slats, black-stained timber flooring, and polished copper orbs which hang from the ceilings at different heights. The focus here is on the wine (there are regular tastings of the vineyards’ own, plus tours of the winemaking facilities), but if you’d rather just kick back and relax, there’s also a subterranean Caudalie spa, and an indoor and outdoor pool, the latter offering breathtaking views of the lake and medieval hilltop castle of Montemor, and a Michelin-starred restaurant with a drool-worthy tasting menu (order the roasted merino lamb with date tangine).

RELATED: Lisbon for Food Lovers

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Photos by Nelson Garrido


São Lourenço do Barrocal, the Alentejo

A deep sense of history pervades this rustic-luxe hideaway, set on a 200-year-old family-run working farm set between the village of Monsaraz and the vast Alqueva lake. Inside a series of whitewashed, tile-roofed buildings you’ll find farmhouse-chic interiors, which are kitted out in vintage furniture, white walls, pendant lampshades, and communal tables laid with olive oil and sheep’s cheese. Step back in time as you wander through the property’s grounds (all vines, orange groves, and wildflowers meadows). Don’t miss an indulgent treatment at the spa by Austrian brand Susanne Kaufmann.

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Torre de Palma, the Alentejo

Food, wine, and beautiful scenery—these are the main draws at Torre de Palma, a historic manor dating back to 1338. The ranch-style building is comprised of 19 antique-filled guest rooms that look out over an Arcadian landscape filled with olives and vines. If you want to learn about viniculture, this is the place to do it: the property hosts numerous wine-centered activities, including vineyard tours, grape picking, wine tastings, and tours of the cellar. More of a foodie? Tuck into Alentejo specialties—Ibierian pork cheeks, Pennyroyal Acorda (bread soup), and octopus alagardo—at the restaurant Basilii, named after the prominent Roman family who once resided in the nearby villa.

RELATED: 9 Fairytale Towns in Europe to See Now 

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Photos by Siobhan Reid


Monte da Fornalha, the Alentejo

Time slows down at this 200-year-old country guesthouse, located on a small farm between the city of Estremoz and the village of Borba. The intimate stay features six enormous guestrooms outfitted with threadbare rugs, decorative clay pots, cool slate floors, wooden desks, and shuttered windows with views of the surrounding olive groves and orange trees. Days start with a farmhouse-style breakfast of fresh peaches, olive oil cake, coffee, and thick country bread, followed by delightfully listless afternoons around the Moroccan-style pool. Bikes are available to borrow if you want some exercise to counter all that lounging.

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Six Senses Douro Valley

Wine is at the heart of it all at the historic Six Senses, a 19th-century manor house restored for the 21st century by New York-based firm Clodagh Design. Guests can unwind with wine-focused treatments in the spa, attend wine tastings in the library, and sample regional varieties at the on-site restaurant. Take a break from your education in viniculture at the property’s magnificent infinity-edge pool, which looks out over the winding Douro River, or, if you’re feeling adventurous, try aerial yoga in the surrounding forest. Come down from the adrenaline high by retreating to your guest room, where there are oak floors, glass-walled bathrooms, sweeping views of the river, and comfortable beds dressed in soft cotton sheets and topped with wool throws.

RELATED: 7 Gorgeous Wine Country Hotels Around the World

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Casa Mãe, Lagos

This 19th-century family estate in coastal Lagos is a fresh vision of contemporary Portuguese design—though it operates more like its own tiny community than a boutique hotel. At Casa Mãe, there are 30 individually designed guest rooms spread throughout three houses decorated with local art (think colorful textiles, woodwork, and ceramics), as well as two restaurants with their own organic gardens, a bakery, a farmer’s market, an alfresco movie theater, and even an in-house magazine.

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Martinhal Sagres Beach Resort & Hotel, the Algarve

You won’t have to sacrifice style for comfort (or amenities) if you stay at the Martinhal Sagres Beach Resort, a family-friendly stay in the sun-soaked Algarve. The 200-room, ocean-facing hotel features all the kid-approved activities you’d find at a sprawling beach resort (a game room, water sports, five pools) while also cultivating a sense of intimacy and stylishness that you’d expect from a trendy boutique hotel. The low-lying villas and townhouses are done up in natural materials (stone, timber, cork), with massive glass windows and terraces that look out over the Mediterranean. Drop the kids off at adventure club and steal away to the pampering spa for a facial or massage.

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Cabeca da Cabra, Porto Corvo

There’s not much to do at this charming B&B other than hang out in a deck chair on the veranda. But if you seek a restful, back-to-nature getaway, you’re not going to find a more gloriously isolated spot. The former schoolhouse has five spacious studios decked out in vintage chests, Edison bulb fixtures, succulents, and Victrolas, plus a dining area where breakfast and dinner is prepared. If you want to do some exploring, borrow a bike and pedal out to one of the area’s golden-sand beaches.

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