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The Independente Suites, Lisbon, Portugal
With views stretching over downtown Lisbon to the Alfama district, across to the Moorish castle of São Jorge, and way down to the Tagus River, the Independente Suites have an unbeatable position for just standing and gazing. Spread across two turn-of-the-century patrician townhouses - one the former residence of the Swiss ambassador - it's all high ceilings, shuttered windows, eclectic furnishings, and parquet and tiled flooring. Handsome-sized bedrooms, some with balconies, are a mix of vintage and recycled items. One building also houses a cool hostel with the suites on a separate floor. Dine casually in the ground-floor Decadente, with its sharing tables, or head up to top-floor restaurant Insólito, with its roof terrace. The latter's stylish and creative Portuguese dishes match the knock-out views.
The Miradouro (viewpoint) de São Pedro de Alcântara is a leafy terrace, with drinks stalls, and where something interesting is always going on, whether buskers or jugglers or just people-watching.
The hotel is in the Bairro Alto with great views over the city, a short walk from one of the funiculars that takes you to downtown Lisbon.
By plane: flights to Lisbon take around 2 hours 50 mins from London and Manchester, and 2 hours 30 mins from Bristol. The hotel is a 30-minute taxi ride from the airport. skyscanner.com
Style & Character
Ideal for people who love a quirky style, and the idea of living in a grand mansion with fabulous views - and who don't mind the uphill walk. We love the mix of grand and quirky details, from the old fashioned washing machine in reception to the birdcages in the restaurant.
Service & Facilities
A blackboard wall near reception highlights things to do plus has special events such as a trip to hilltop Sintra or a tour of neighbourhood bars.
- Roof terrace
- Games room
- Free Wi-Fi
We love the eclecticism of the decoration; you might find a TV perched on an old radiogram, a display cabinet of vintage glass bottles, or a velvet footstool. The front-facing rooms with balconies have a bit of a vintage film star vibe.
Small Double, Double, Double Superior, Double Terrace, Suite Deluxe
Facilities include: ensuite bath or shower, hairdryer, TV, free Wi-Fi
Food & Drink
Breakfast on the terrace of Insólito, gazing over the city sparkling below, as you plan your adventures, is a cracking way to start the day. We love its fun design too, from the birdcages and chandeliers to the recycled timber walls, pink-velvet bar stools and lush foliage.
Insólito: contemporary Portuguese cuisine. Dishes include salt cod and squid with toasted almond broth. Open Tues-Sat for evening drinks and dinner.
Decadente: grill and seafood. Open daily for evening drinks and dinner.