Sleek design, modern ambiance, and terraced views extending towards burgundy colored rooftops against a backdrop of the Tagus River: Memmo Alfama Hotel in a nutshell. The moment you step off the cobblestone path leading to the hotel’s entrance you know this is no ordinary experience in one of Europe’s coolest capital cities.
Get Acquainted with Memmo Alfama
A modern contemporary design greets you at the door and extends throughout Memmo Alfama. Those who admire minimalist design (such as myself) will feel right at home with clean lines and deliberate pieces of furniture that are both fashionable and functional.
Seated behind a custom made desk that looks like it belongs in the Tate Modern, Pietro looked up from his oversized Apple computer screen to warmly greet us. Although our room was not ready for another hour or two, Pietro happily provided a guided tour, explaining the history of both the hotel and the trendy Alfama District of Lisbon.
The hotel’s resurrection from an old bakery is cleverly designed by integrating a cozy seating nook inside the circular red brick ceiling of what used to be the oven room. However, a bakery would not be enough to accommodate a stylish hotel in modern day Lisbon, which is why the Memmo Alfama also acquired an old shoe factory adjacent to the bakery.
The finished product combines architectural prowess with a superb location to create a contemporary boutique hotel experience within minutes of old town Lisbon.
The Wine Bar & Terrace
The terrace and wine bar are the star attractions, and the primary reason we chose to review the Memmo Alfama Hotel. Perched on a hillside in the eastern part of old town Lisbon, picture worthy views are endless from the well stocked wine bar housed behind a wall of glass windows. Step outside onto the terrace to discover the panoramic views from multiple levels, complete with a small infinity pool.
Romance comes naturally in such a setting. I imagine the terrace has witnessed many a Don Juan whispering sweet nothings or sharing a quiet laugh between newlywed couples.
Cast your gaze towards the cathedral at the top of the hill; watch ships glide down the river as they have done for hundreds of years in the proud maritime harbor; and bask in the simplistic pleasure of gleaming white walls contrasting with bright red tile roofs to create an intricate criss-cross patchwork of old world city planning, more chaos than design.
Even on a cloudy winter day, standing side-by-side with your significant other on the outstretched terrace provides a sense that not much has changed in this part of the world. European romance is alive and well, allowing you to truly slow down and enjoy special moments in life.
Room With a View
Our standard room with a view overlooking the terrace, Alfama District, and Tagus River was clean and comfortable.
For those who want a little more space and romance, stay in the Mansard Junior Suite – a uniquely designed space that one comes to expect from a hotel with so many design surprises. Enter the separate seating area and step up into the bedroom. Make your way to the glassed bathroom and step down into a bathtub to soak your tired body after a day of exploring the cobblestone streets.
A Romantic Vacation in Lisbon
A honeymoon or romantic vacation in Lisbon is equal parts cultural education, gastronomic delight, and city exploration. And Memmo Alfama is well situated to take advantage of every last bit. Within a short walking distance from the hotel you will find: world-class museums and castles, old town alleyways perfect for newlywed wandering, excellent restaurants cooking up the catch of the day, and a vibrant nightlife with pulsating tunes into the wee hours of the morning. One Lisbon local we talked to indicated that clubs don’t start getting lively until around 1:00 a.m. in the morning.
Visit at Christmas time to get a sense of Portuguese traditions during this festive time of year. Bright city lights hang neatly in a row from the central Praça do Comércio all the way up to the Rossio area, while Christmas markets dot the city, injecting a dose of good cheer along with baked goodies, drinks, and local Portuguese handicraft gifts.
Memmo Alfama offers excellent value for money on your next vacation, a wonderful base from which to explore Lisbon.
Book a Room at Memmo Alfama