Casa C’Alma, Príncipe Real

Tucked away on the first floor of a pale-pink building, Casa C’Alma overlooks the quiet Praça das Flores. “It used to be an apartment and it still is,” says Rafael Reis who, with his partner Sara Madeira, turned it into a guesthouse. “Our aim was to create something that feels like a home but pays special attention to detail and design.” 

The interiors come courtesy of Lisbon-based Arkstudio and combine Portuguese tradition and Scandinavian design. White walls and polished-wood floors make for a clean-cut canvas, which is punctuated with leafy pot plants. The living room has a small library of books and magazines and occasionally hosts workshops and pop-ups. Each of the five bedrooms has a distinct character and is flooded with natural light. The Suite Deluxe is the biggest and the best.

48 Praça das Flores, 1200-192
+351 919 430 494

Santa Clara 1728, São Vicente

Pilot turned hotelier João Rodrigues claims that he went into the hospitality business by accident. But there’s nothing accidental about this light-drenched hotel that he runs with his wife Andreia, which overlooks the Feira da Ladra. Every fixture has been carefully considered, from the freestanding Portuguese stone baths to the pinewood floors, handmade tiles and artfully placed Hans J Wegner chairs.

According to folklore the 18th-century pile was once home to a princess. Today, after a renovation by architect Manuel Aires Mateus, it’s more of an exercise in muted minimalism than regal excess but the result is no less enchanting. A calming palette of grey, beige and off-white runs throughout the six roomy suites and the cavernous reception area, which is lit by a lunar-like installation by Davide Groppi.

128 Campo de Santa Clara, 1100-473
+351 934 418 316

Palácio Ramalhete, Santos

This former private palace, in a residential area opposite the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, is an ode to the 18th century: think original hand-painted azulejos, polished wooden floors, delicate stucco ceilings and open fireplaces. Don’t worry, the overall effect is far from stuffy: the three lounges are peppered with architecture and design books and beyond them is a bright, white-walled library. 

Each of the 12 bedrooms and four pool suites is different. The Old Kitchen Suite centres on an antique copper-roofed fireplace and retains its flagstone floors, while the Oak Suite features floor-to-ceiling oak panels and chesterfields with river views. Between the main rooms and pool suites is a flower-filled tiered courtyard, leading to a petite pool surrounded by a dark-wood deck.

92 Rua das Janelas Verdes, 1200-692
+351 21 393 1380

Images: Rodrigo Cardoso, Pedro Guimarães

Go back: Lisbon


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  • The Big Interview