Lisbon hotels: 3 best places to stay for all budgets

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If you don’t fall in love with the bright yellow trams, the azulejo-embellished buildings and the nightlife of the Bairro Alto, then the pastéis de nata (Portugese custard tarts) will surely send you straight into a committed relationship with Lisbon.

Peregrine Adventures Europe Product Manager, Steph Millington, says Portugal’s capital is a more affordable option for travellers wanting to experience Europe’s charm, which means you can stay longer and really get an understanding of the city.

“Aussies love the value for money!” she says. “We’re certainly seeing a boost in interest in tours to Portugal and much of Lisbon’s character lies in its beautiful renovated buildings, grand boulevards and the food scene is incredible, especially the egg tarts!

“Plus it has an eclectic bohemian scene filled with talented poets and musicians.

“Our Peregrine Adventures Portugal tour includes a visit the medieval citadel of São Jorge Castle, which dates back to Moorish times and sits on the highest point of the Old Town, so there are great views across the city.

“Another must is a visit to Belem Tower – a wonderful UNESCO World Heritage Site which, incredibly, was only designed as a lighthouse.”

Add a Lisbon side-trip to your Europe travels with these three hotels for all budgets.


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LX Boutique Hotel

From $110 (Classic Room)

From the sunny sky-blue exterior to the themed Fado and literary floors, and with vistas out across the terracotta rooftops to the River Tagus, this cosy and slightly quirky boutique hotel provides the perfect Lisbon base.

Positioned in the red light-turned hip Cais do Sodre district, there’s a lot of charm for your dollar at LX Boutique Hotel with the average stay costing just over $100 per night. They also offer up a complimentary glass of wine and Japanese taster dish every evening for guests.

Decorated in tones of soft blue and grey, the compact but comfortable rooms are equipped with air conditioning, mini bar, LCD TV and free WiFi.

Downstairs, Confraria LX serves up sashimi and maki rolls to a young creative crowd and the Time Out street food market is a few blocks away.


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AlmaLusa Baixa-Chiado

From $214 (Standard Room)

Rising from the ashes of the armageddon-like triple threat of earthquake, tsunami and fire that swept through Lisbon in 1755, this 18th-century building on the Praça do Município has been born again, as AlmaLusa Baixa-Chiado.

This lovely 28-room and suite hotel in the historical heart of the city partners with exclusive Portuguese brands from beds to towels, right down to the wine being sipped in the onsite Delfina restaurant.

While each room has its own style – in a harmony of muted latte and grey in myriad textures – all come with free WiFi, LED smart TVs, coffee machine and power showers.

Start your day with a stroll along the River Tagus and fuel up with an included breakfast of fresh pastries, orange juice and eggs to order.


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Santa Clara 1728

From $413 (Suite Tejo)

The renovation dust has barely settled on this 18th century palace, lovingly re-crafted and transformed into a gorgeous six-suite hotel by Joao and Andrea Rodrigues.

The Santa Clara 1728 is a labour of love for the couple, who, along with local architect Manuel Aires Mateus, have made a home for themselves on the top floor, and an indelibly beautiful space for guests below.

Perched on the crest of one of Lisbon’s seven hills, amongst the legendary "Feira da Ladra" flea market – and overlooking the River Tagus and the Pantheon – the interior is simplistic yet warm with limestone stairs, wide wooden floorboards and a neutral palette of furnishings.

At night, the large dining room becomes the beating heart of Santa Clara 1728 as travellers cradle glasses of Portuguese wine and share home-cooked meals.


*This post originally appeared in print in Escape on 12 March 2017