When it comes to choosing the right hotel for your stay, the devil is in the details. Culture Trip has compiled a list of the best boutique hotels in Lisbon, allowing you to explore Portugal’s capital in style. Think rooftop pools, renovated 16th-century palaces and Portuguese design elements such as azulejos, elaborately painted blue-and-white tiles.
Verride Palácio Santa Catarina – Simple elegance with 360-degree views of the city
Expect attentive service at the luxurious Verride Palácio Santa Catarina | Courtesy of Verride Palácio Santa Catarina / Hotels.com
Get ready to caption #winning in all of your photos when you book a stay in this renovated palace overlooking the Tagus Estuary. All 19 of Verride Palácio Santa Catarina’s minimalist-chic rooms have a window that looks out over the rooftops of the trendy Bairro Alto district, the city’s centre for nightlife. An even better 360-degree panorama is found on the hotel’s rooftop terrace, complete with a patio bar. In the warmer months, enjoy breakfast poolside, and then come back later in the day for a happy-hour beverage and a sunset dip. It also has a restaurant, Suba, on the top floor that serves Portuguese cuisine with a modern twist.
The Memmo Príncipe Real offers you a five-star stay in one of Lisbon’s up-and-coming neighbourhoods. It’s close enough to the nightlife of the Bairro Alto, but quiet enough for those wanting a relaxing evening away from the action. The cosy rooms have a laid-back, modern feel – ideal for couples or solo travellers. If you are looking to celebrate a special occasion, book the Exclusive Room as you can cuddle up by the fireplace located on an open-air terrace overlooking the city. For a more budget-friendly view, try a speciality cocktail at its rooftop restaurant and cocktail bar, Café Príncipe Real.
The Santiago de Alfama is the perfect destination for bachelorette weekends and romantic getaways, with a poppy design, modern amenities and prime placement in the heart of Alfama. Treat yourself with a care package at its in-house spa, The Beauty Bar, before you step your freshly pedicured toes onto the cobblestone streets of Lisbon’s oldest neighbourhood. Alternatively, have a leisurely breakfast at Audrey’s, the hotel’s restaurant with a sidewalk café, and then take one of the hotel’s custom-arranged day trips to nearby Sintra or Cascais.
Carlos Sanches Ruivo founded The Late Birds Lisbon in 2015 as he wanted to create a community in Lisbon that catered to “gay men from all over the world”. The hotel is perfectly placed in the heart of nightlife-friendly Bairro Alto and offers guests (and friends) a private retreat where they can connect with a like-minded community. Lounge by the UV-treated swimming pool, or attend one of the many scheduled events at the hotel’s in-house bar, aptly named Get Home Late.
Enjoy all the convenience and amenities of a large hotel chain with the small scale and attention to detail of a boutique hotel at PortoBay Liberdade. Perks include an indoor swimming pool, 24-hour gym, a Turkish steam bath and an outdoor Jacuzzi. Its location near Rossio Square means you will have easy access to all of Lisbon’s most popular sights, as well as lots of transportation options for exploring the city and beyond. Plus, joining the PortoBay frequent traveller programme gets you even more discounts during your stay.
There is no shortage of charm at The Vintage, a hotel and spa with a hipster’s take on Mid-Century Modern design near the Rato metro station. Among its many novelties is a bespoke record player that guests can use. The location is slightly off the beaten path, giving travellers more of a local perspective of the city. At night, it’s only a short walk to the excitement of Bairro Alto’s nightlife. It’s an even shorter walk upstairs to the hotel’s rooftop bar or your room, which has a vintage bar cart with a complimentary gin and tonic.
Located in Belém, the westernmost neighbourhood of Lisbon, Hotel Jerónimos 8 lands you only a short walk from some of the city’s most important architectural monuments. Perhaps more importantly, it also near Pastéis de Belém – a pastry shop that is home to the original custard treat known throughout the rest of Portugal as pastel de nata. The hotel’s rooms have a clean, contemporary design and a front-row view of the hotel’s namesake, the Jerónimos Monastery. While you are about 20 minutes from the city centre, the Hotel Jerónimos 8 offers many amenities, such as a 24-hour concierge service, a rooftop terrace and free Wi-Fi, to help put all of Lisbon at your fingertips.
You’re in the centre of it all at the aptly named Brown’s Central Hotel, located in the Baixa neighbourhood and close to Commercial Square, Rossio Square and the Alfama district. A stay at this hotel is not for those with chromophobia as it has a lime-green exterior and an eclectic collection of original artwork in its lobby and each of its 84 rooms. Don’t forget to enjoy the complimentary breakfast buffet every morning before hitting the streets.
Fans of film noir will love to stay in this original Art Deco hotel designed in 1940 by celebrated Portuguese architect Cassiano Branco. Among its unique features are a vintage barbershop and a library with books on local history. Film buffs are only a short walk from the Cinemateca Portuguesa (Museum of Cinema) and the Cinema São Jorge, one of the city’s traditional arthouse theatres. Everyone else will enjoy the hotel’s location near the Avenida da Liberdade, a grand boulevard with several small public parks and some of the poshest shops in town.
The 9 Hotel Mercy captures the bohemian spirit of the Chiado, with its mix of old and new design elements. The outside of the historic building features traditional Portuguese tiles while the inside sees unexpected lighting details, including a giant light fixture that winds its way through the hotel’s entire first floor. Step outside the door to explore the many cafés, restaurants and stores surrounding the nearby Praça Luís de Camões and the Bairro Alto. Grab a nightcap at the in-house cocktail and tea lounge, Double 9, or during the summer, head up to the rooftop bar.