As far as Western Europe goes, Portugal is a more economical alternative to its neighbors, while still offering dazzling beaches, an Old World capital city, charming countryside, and its famous wine. Portugal’s capital city, Lisbon, has had a crop of new hotel openings in 2010, giving us even more reason to buy a Portuguese phrase book and plan a trip for 2011.
Inspira Santa Marta Hotel (Opened March 15, 2010)
This four-star hotel in the heart of downtown Lisbon offers 89 rooms decked out in contemporary and environmentally-friendly décor, artfully arranged according to the principles of feng-shui to promote the healthy flow of energies. The hotel prides itself on the concept of “urban eco-tourism,” utilizing sustainable design and day-to-day conservation practices. Grab a drink at the Urban Bar or dinner at the Open Restaurant for Mediterranean fare. To celebrate their grand opening, Inspira Santa Marta is offering a promotional rate from €99/night, available select dates in December and January. All rooms include A/C and Wi-Fi. Regular standard rates start from €140, including breakfast; 011-351-210-440-900; www.inspirasantamartahotel.com
Hotel da Estrela (Opened October 26, 2010)
Located in a renovated historic palace, this small boutique hotel is home to 19 rooms designed by architect Miguel Câncio Martins and run by the School of Hospitality and Tourism of Lisbon. The hotel exudes a contemporary atmosphere with small details evoking a classic school setting (think chalk boards and retractable maps). Enjoy terrific views of the city and the Tagus River, a peaceful private garden, creative Portuguese cuisine in the Cantina da Estrela restaurant, and a spa room offering massages and beauty treatments. Part of the staff includes final year students trying extra hard to earn high marks through excellent service. Through the end of the year, Hotel da Estrela is offering a promotional rate of €100 to celebrate its opening. Regular rates will start from €159; 011-351-210-440-900; www.hoteldaestrela.com/en
CS Vintage Lisboa Hotel (Opened June 1, 2010)
This five-star hotel in the city center boasts 56 modern rooms with vintage details, including old photographs of Lisbon. Expect topnotch facilities such as a spa with massage/treatment rooms, a sauna, steam bath, and gym. Each room is outfitted with sound proofing, AC, and internet access. (By the end of the year, the hotel will open its panoramic rooftop lounge bar, Varanda do Castelo). Rates start from €140; 011-351-210-405-400; www.cshotelsandresorts.com
Oitavos Hotel on the Estoril Coast (Opened September 1, 2010)
Located on the gorgeous Estoril Coast in the Sintra-Cascais National Park, a mere 20-minute drive from Lisbon, Oitavos offers 142 guest rooms, a golf course, an outdoor saltwater swimming pool, and, of course, beach access. All rooms have a private balcony with views of either the ocean or the golf course. Rates start from €160; 011-351-21-486-0020; www.theoitavos.com
For more trip-planning info, check out our Lisbon Travel Guide, then use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find the lowest rates and travel deals on hotels, flights, and vacation packages in Lisbon.