Alfama, Lisbon’s old city, features steep cobbled streets, guitar-stumming fado musicians and some of the most fascinating sights in the capital. Offering spectacular views of the River Tagus, you will also find a variety of bars and restaurants and a range of accommodation, everything from budget hostels to historical mansions. Here are some of the best hotels in Alfama where you can enjoy the city’s relaxed and friendly vibe.
Across the street from the Tagus River, the distinguished Eurostars Museum is centuries old. The museum displays preserved walls, public spaces, and objects dating back to the second century AD. Today the hotel offers all the modern comforts and amenities including a serene spa, indoor pool, sauna, Turkish bath and fitness room. Along with a complimentary buffet breakfast, the in-house restaurant Atlantiko serves traditional Portuguese fare.
This boutique and romantic property, housed in an 18th-century mansion, is the only hotel in the grounds of Saint George’s Castle. Listen to the cry of the castle’s resident peacocks while enjoying complimentary breakfast on the terrace or exploring the courtyard and garden. The regal rooms are a nod to the hotel’s past as a palace and there’s a bottle of Port wine and Molton Brown products to welcome you.
Centrally located, Urbano is a four-minute walk to Lisbon Cathedral and 10-minutes to St George’s Castle. The rooms are modern and compact with warm wood details and fun Super Mario-inspired artwork. Private bathrooms offer showers and rooms are best suited for one or two people. A continental breakfast of fresh orange juice, bread, croissants, fruit, and yoghurt is delivered daily to your door.
Just a short walk from historic Rossio Square, the rooms at this boutique gem are decorated in calming blue and white colours, inspired by traditional Portuguese tiles. The hotel’s cheerful restaurant Jony Rules serves Portuguese wine and tapas, while Premium Wine House, an underground wine cellar, offers wine tasting and brunch. Additionally, guests can visit Rooftop Bar, on the ninth floor of the hotel’s sister property Hotel Mundial, for views over the rooftops of Lisbon.
Once part of a 14th-century convent, Hotel Convento do Salvador is just minutes away from Castelo de São Jorge and Sé Cathedral. The well-connected number 28 tram stops outside so its location is perfect for exploring the area. The hotel’s public spaces have the feel of a modern art gallery – clean and light with walls adorned with an array of work by some of Portugal’s most celebrated contemporary artists. As for its rooms, they are cosy, some have river views.
This family-run boutique hotel won the 2019 Condé Nast Johansens Award for Best Urban Hotel in Europe. It is a favourite of international celebrities and it’s easy to see why. Housed within an exquisitely restored 15th-century palace, it features some of the Roman remains found during its reconstruction. Every room here is unique, with some overlooking the River Tagus. The finery extends to the Dining at Audrey’s restaurant, where menus of fresh seafood and delicious wine pairings promise to seduce.
These stylish serviced apartment, tucked away from Alfama’s bustling streets, come with an outdoor lawn and patio where you can collapse onto a deck chair after a busy day of exploring. The Alma Moura Residences is a short walk from the Jardim da Cerca da Graça, a public park with wonderful views of the city.
These modern yet inexpensive apartments and rooms feel like a private sanctuary with the friendly services of a hotel. They are situated on a steep cobbled street just wide enough for the popular number 28 tram to pass by and which you can see from the rooms’ large windows if you don’t feel like squeezing onboard.
The Hotel Riverside Alfama is about as close to the River Tagus as you can get, offering the perfect starting point to any stroll by the water or exploration of the neighbourhood’s narrow streets. This lobster-red hotel has 21 stylish minimalist rooms that feature striking hand-painted tiles (the owners also run a nearby tile shop) and a top complimentary breakfast. It’s a popular hotel, so be sure to book early.
Live like a Portuguese aristocrat at Palacete Chafariz D’El Rei. This magnificent and eclectic building from the 19th century underwent years of restoration, reopening as a boutique hotel in 2010. It feels like a stately home, complete with stained-glass windows, glass chandeliers and a wood-panelled library. Magnificent views of the nearby River Tagus await you from the rooms and terrace, as does your butler.
Christy Taylor contributed additional reporting to this article.
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