Where to Stay in Portugal: Best Luxury Hotels in Portugal
I'm really happy to share another guest post with you today that has a round-up of the best luxury hotels in a very popular holiday destination. Portugal is a country I love exploring and I recommend it regularly to readers, so it's great to have a round up of the best luxury hotels in Portugal for you today.
Figuring out where to stay in Portugal can make or break your holiday so I'm really happy to have a country expert sharing this list of Portugal's best luxury hotels. This post's guest author, Marco Santos, writes all about Portugal travel on his blog Travel Boo,, so you can consider these Portugal accommodation recommendations verified by an expert!
I have also added on two of my own recommendations of luxury hotels in Portugal. I've been lucky enough to stay in too. While these places to stay in Portugal are all luxury, it's also true that they're not exactly all family-friendly so in line with this being a luxury family travel blog, I've also added in a short section (written by myself!) highlighting where to stay in Portugal with kids if you want a little luxury for yourselves knowing there will still be lots of fun activities or age-appropriate kid's clubs and facilities for your children.
If you want more of my luxury travel hotel recommendations for other beautiful destinations around the world, have a look at these picks of the best luxury accommodation in Marrakech, the best luxury hotels and resorts in Florida, best luxury resorts in Phuket (Thailand), the best luxury resorts for families in the Maldives, and a monster round-up of the best luxury resorts all over the world that are perfect for young families. I also have some accommodation guides for all budgets featuring the best places to stay in Barcelona, where to stay in Singapore, the best places to stay in Reykjavik, and of course the best hotels in Amsterdam for all budgets.
So let's get cracking with this round-up of best Portugal hotels, shall we? Over to Marcos...
The Best Luxury Hotels in Portugal
The following luxury hotels in Portugal are located all over the country but there is a focus on picking places to stay in Portugal's major holiday destinations like Lisbon, Porto and the Algarve. The list effectively moves down the country starting with the more northern city Porto, heading onto the capital city Lisbon, and then finally ending up in the Algarve.
Frankie's contributions are highlighted as such from her, and the section on luxury family hotels in Portugal at the end (also by Frankie) cover all these destinations.
DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links. I make a small commission off any purchases made but they don't cost you anything extra, and often I do a lot of research to find you the best possible deal in the link - yay!
The Best Luxury Hotels in Porto
When considering a luxury stay in Porto, most in-the-know will immediately suggest the 5-star Yeatman hotel as the place to stay.
Set in Vila Nova de Gaia, on the opposite banks of the Douro from downtown Porto, this hotel not only offers sweeping views out over Porto city, but also the bells and whistles you would expect from a top luxury hotel in Porto.
From the classic styled rooms, to the award winning Caudalie Vinothérapie Spa, to the 2-starred Michelin star restaurant, The Yeatman Gastronomic Restaurant, this hotel certainly ticks all the right boxes. It’s no wonder it’s been a firm favourite several years running.
For the ultimate luxury Porto experience, book the Presidential Suite with its own private terrace and garden offering breath-taking views of Porto, private pool and not to mention the gigantic wine barrel bed, the embodiment of luxury!
Find the best rates for The Yeatman in Porto on Booking.com and Hotels.com, and find more real traveller reviews and photos on TripAdvisor.
Smack bang in the heart of Porto and overlooking the gorgeous Avenida Aliados avenue, is the 5-star InterContinental Porto - Palácio das Cardosas. Set in the 18th century Palácio das Cardosas palace, it is one of many palace hotels of Portugal that you can stay in, when visiting this beautiful country.
The InterContinental has also been around for a number of years and been another popular choice when choosing the best luxury hotel in Porto, especially given the location. Around the corner you’ll find the São Bento train station and many other top sights are situated close by, such as the Clérigos Tower and church, the Ribeira riverfront, Palacio da Bolsa and many more.
Offering elegant and timelessly decorated rooms, the InterContinental has all the amenities and services you would come to associate with a luxury 5-star hotel offering. These include a Spa and Wellness centre, conference and events facilities, concierge services and of course an onsite restaurant and bar too.
This hotel would also be a good place to stay in Porto with children if you're travelling as a family. And if that's the case, I recommend this list of things to do in Porto with kids.
Situated in one of my favourite pedestrian streets in Porto, Rua das Flores (Flowers Street), the 5-star luxury PortoBay Flores is one of the new kids on the block when it comes to luxury hotels in Porto.
Being located in a fantastic setting in the historic centre of the city, means this hotel is the perfect base from which to explore all the amazing things there is to see and do in Porto. And for travelling around the whole country with children, be sure to check out all these great things to do in Portugal with kids.
This newly renovated hotel comprises two different wings, one being a 16th century renovated palace and the other a new build section. The interiors and feel is both modern in décor, yet classic in the architecture of the building as they’ve managed to retain the charm and character of the palace.
Services and amenities include The Bistrô Flores restaurant, a gym, a spa, a garden patio, an indoor pool, a meeting room and even a chapel dating to the 18th century. With its central location and variety of luxury services, PortoBay Flores is one of Porto's most luxurious and elegant hotels.
(Photo from Booking.)
The Best Luxury Hotels in Lisbon
It’s no secret, Lisbon is blessed with the most incredible views and viewpoints. This is largely thanks to the fact that the city is built on seven hills, meaning you’re bound to stumble upon a stunning viewpoint at every turn. And it’s exactly at one such viewpoint, the Miradouro (Viewpoint) de Santa Catarina, just off the trendy neighbourhood of Chiado, that you will find the 5-star Verride Palácio Santa Catarina.
This is absolutely one of my favourite luxury Lisbon hotels. The interiors of this palatial hotel are simply exquisite with traditional Portuguese tiles adorning the walls and intricate moulding detail on the ceilings adding personality and charm by the bucket loads.
The rooms are spacious, blending the old architectural features with modern design features. Add to that the views from the rooftop pool and restaurant, which are simply to die for. The hotel is also perfectly located to all the major sights and attractions in downtown Lisbon, making it a perfect addition to your Lisbon itinerary.
Find the best rates for Verride Palácio Santa Catarina in Lisbon on Booking.com and Hotels.com, and find more real traveller reviews and photos on TripAdvisor.
Tivoli Avenida Liberdade, LisbonNext up on our list of top luxury hotels of Portugal is the 5-star Tivoli Avenida Liberdade which is located in one of my favourite areas of Lisbon, the leafy green and very swanky Avenida Liberdade. Set just a short way out of main downtown Lisbon but with most attractions and sights still within walking distance, this hotel is perfect if you prefer a slightly quieter location away from the mad tourist crowds.
The rooms are beautifully decorated in neutrals with splashes of gold and blue. The hotel also has all the amenities you’d expect from a top 5* property, a pool, a gym, a spa & wellness centre and a fabulous restaurant. That’s not to mention the stunning rooftop bar, Sky Bar Lisboa, with incredible views out over the city that really comes alive at night and certainly is the place to be seen.
The Tivoli Avenida Liberdade is honestly one of my top recommendations for those wanting to visit Lisbon. It’s location, about 150 metres from the Avenida metro station, is in my opinion perfect and the hotel certainly ticks all the boxes in regards to a luxurious stay when visiting Lisbon.
If you prefer a more classic hotel that has stood the test of time and is known and respected for its service excellence, then the 5-star Four Seasons – Hotel Ritz in Lisbon is definitely your go-to luxury hotel in Lisbon.
Overlooking the Park Eduardo VII park in Lisbon, the hotel is ideally situated just a short trip out of the main tourist centre. It features all the five-star trimmings including its Varanda restaurant, a lovely outdoor terrace that’s ideal in the warmer months as well as a top floor gym and outdoor running track with gorgeous views of the city. Not to forget the spa & wellness centre and indoor pool area too.
The Four Seasons in Lisbon has long been a firm favourite for guests seeking a luxurious and refined experience when staying in Lisbon, and has garnered a reputation for its excellent customer service too.
For my next luxury Lisbon hotel option, we head to the trendy neighbourhood of Principe Real. The 5-star luxury Memmo Príncipe Real hotel is almost hidden away and set on the edge of one of Lisbon’s 7 hills, meaning you get to enjoy yet more of the exquisite views out over the city.
This hotel is a far more modern option, both in terms of architecture and interiors and definitely the one to book if you prefer a modern and sleek luxury hotel.
The Memmo Principe Real boasts a host of different room and suite types, some of which have their own private balconies overlooking the city. The hotel also offers a private garage and valet service, an outdoor terrace and pool area, onsite restaurant and cocktail bar as well as offering guests a complimentary one and a half hour guided walking tour, every day at 17:00 pm, the perfect way to explore the best of the surrounding neighbourhood.
Book direct here, or you can search for the best rates for Memmo Principe Real, Lisbon on Booking.com and find more real traveller reviews and photos on TripAdvisor.
The Best Luxury Hotels in the Algarve
Undoubtedly, one of the top-rated luxury hotels in the Algarve is the 5-star Vila Joya hotel. A little slice of heaven located in Albufeira, around 40 minutes by car from Faro Airport, and close to the area's famous beaches.
This villa-type hotel is the epitome of understated elegance. The interiors are clean, fresh and uncomplicated, giving you the real feeling of being at the beach. It also features a spa, two outdoor pools as well as a golf academy which is very popular, given the Algarve region is a world class golfing destination too.
Probably most impressive is the fact that Vila Joya’s gourmet restaurant, under the helm of chef Dieter Koschina for 28 years, has held 2 Michelin stars for the last 20 years.
Overlooking the Praia de Galé beach, this hotel is ideal for that perfect luxury beach getaway, no wonder this award-winning hotel has been attracting visitors for years.
Only a stone’s throw away from Albufeira in the area of Armação de Pêra is my next Portugal luxury hotel choice, the 5-star Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa. If you’ve ever visited the Algarve region before, you’ll know that the coastline is lined with impressive and imposing golden cliffs and rock formations. And it’s up top one of these cliff edges that you will find Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
The resort offers guests a choice of different rooms, suites and villas to choose from. It also boasts a range of health and well- being offerings through the Vila Vita Spa by Sisley and was named as the Condé Nast Traveler 2019 readers’ choice as the 3rd top destination spa resorts in the world, this being one amongst many of the resort’s awards and accolades.
Vila Vita Parc also welcomes all types of travellers including families too, that includes a family offering with programs and activities to keep the kiddies busy during their stay.
Rounding out my list of top luxury hotels in Portugal is none other than the 5-star Tivoli Carvoeiro Algarve Resort. Another family friendly five-star resort located in Carvoeiro towards the western Algarve region, this hotel recently underwent a complete refurbishment.
It is perched on the edge of the stunning Vale Covo cliffside and overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. This hotel is the perfect spot to explore much of the stunning Algarve coast, with a number of top beaches, including the Benagil beach with the impressive Benagil caves, located only a short drive away.
The resort offers a variety of different room types including suites with balconies as well as family rooms. Onsite restaurants, a gym and spa facilities round out the list of amenities and services that guests can take advantage of. And that’s not even mentioning the outdoor pool and terrace, serving up gorgeous views out over the ocean.
Best Luxury Hotels in Maderia
This is Frankie, jumping back in now to add a few places to this list as I have been lucky enough to stay in a couple of great luxury hotels in Madeira too. Located out in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Africa so a bit further south than mainland Portugal, meaning you can enjoy warmer winters and off-peak season there. I visited in March and found it to be warm enough to sunbathe and stay outside in a T-shirt, even if I didn't brave the cold Atlantic ocean waters for a dip!
Run by the Porto Bay hotel group, The Cliff Bay hotel and resort is consdered to be their finest resort and so it deserves a mention on this list. I was lucky enough to experience The Cliff Bay during my visit to Madeira some years ago, where it was hosting a food festival gathering chefs from all over the world to showcase their talents. It was the perfect place for such an event as it was luxurious, spacious and with all the charms a 5-star resort should offer.
I was also lucky enough to have a treatment in the spa at The Cliff Bay and still to this day I maintain that this was one of the best spa experiences I've had, and without wanting to sound like too much of an over-privileged smug idiot, I've been lucky enough to have massages in several 5-star resorts and hotels all over the world.
The Cliff Bay is quite an exclusive and upmarket luxury hotel so I would definitely say it wouldn't suit families or those travelling with young kids, in fact, it should definitely be saved for a luxury adults-only getaway in Portugal!
Find the best rates for The Cliff Bay Hotel by Porto Bay on Booking.com or Hotels.com, and read more real traveller reviews on TripAdvisor.
Strictly speaking, a 4* hotel just down the same beachfront strip as The Cliff Bay, the Vila Porto Mare Resort is also run by the Porto Bay group whose properties have featured above also. The Porto Mare hotel was where I also stayed during my trip to Madeira and it gave us quick and easy access to explore Funchal, the island's capital city.
It is perhaps a little less elegant or luxe than Cliff Bay but this is just a question of aesthetics and style. The service and facilities are just as excellent and it deserves a special mention for being a great luxury hotel for families with five swimming pools in total, five restaurants to choose from and lots of outdoor space and a kid's playground for little people to enjoy exploring.
A special highlight of Vila Porto Mare is the orchid garden which stretches out towards the resort's cliff edge that overlooks the water below. But if flowers don't do it for you then you can check out the vineyards, or forget nature completely with some fun on the mini-golf or squash courts, or just relax completely in the spa.
Find the best rates for Villa Porto Mare Resort by Porto Bay on Booking.com or Hotels.com, and see more photos and real traveller reviews on TripAdvisor.
Best Portugal Luxury Hotels & Resorts for Families
Martinhal Resorts in Lisbon and the Algarve
It's something of a mistake or an oversight that we haven't yet tried out a Martinhal resort as I've had it on some authority by those who have stayed in one of their resorts that they are right up my alley. So based on my friends' rave reviews and those of many other travellers on TripAdvisor, I've decided to include the four Martinhal resorts as some of the best luxury hotels in Portugal for families with kids of all ages.
Martinhal has two resorts in the Algarve (one in Sagres and one in Quinta do Lago, nearer to Albufeira) and two hotels in Lisbon (one in the Chiado neighbourhood and another further out of the city in Cascais). All of these locations guarantee warm weather and sunshine in summer months and very possibly in spring and into the autumn months too. In fact, after visiting both Lisbon and the Algarve in the middle of summer, I would say that actually visiting out of the peak summer month season could be too hot for a holiday with young kids or those sensitive to the sun or heat.
Every Martinhal resort offers luxury in terms of stylish and comfortable accommodation, delicious food and drinks, and optional luxury extras like spa facilities and treatments. They cater for all the family with facilities for kids of all ages from baby-sitting services and providing all the gear babies and toddlers may need, through to kid's clubs, activities, swimming pools and watersports that older children will enjoy.
The Martinhal properties in the Algarve - Sagres and Quinta - and in Cascais are more resort-y in terms of having more space, more swimming pools, and more facilities. Indeed, these properties also include self-catering villas and apartments that families can stay in if they'd rather cook for themselves and/or have more privacy.
The Lisbon location promises to be "world's first city-centre elegant family hotel" so this is definitely the place to stay if you are travelling with kids to Lisbon and want a luxury but family-frendly base for the city break. Please note that this hotel doesn't have a pool but there is a kid's club and lots of different family accommodation options.
About the Author
Born and raised in South Africa, Marco Santos from Travel-Boo, together with his partner moved to sunny Lisbon over two years ago. On a mission to rediscover his own Portuguese heritage, Marco has set out to blog and share his passion for travelling through and exploring both Portugal and Spain, through his blog Travel-Boo. You can follow Marco on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter too.
If you'd like to save or share this post, here are some images you can pin:
Frances M. Thompson
Find Frankie on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+.