We review the five best luxury hotels on the Portuguese Riviera. While this stretch of coastline is not as famous as its European cousins, it offers a fabulous beachside destination and is historically the travel destination of choice for Portuguese aristocrats and royalty. The Portuguese Riviera is also the childhood home of Spanish King Don Juan Carlos.
Cascais lies in the heart of the Portuguese Riviera and is 19 miles west of Lisbon. It is easily reached by train from the center of Lisbon, and its sandy shoreline is the perfect place to relax at a slower pace. That said, its slower pace does not mean there isn’t plenty to do. You can sail, swim in the sea, and even take part in equestrian events.
1. InterContinental Cascais Estoril
Our top pick is the InterContinental Cascais Estoril, which is set right on the oceanfront of the Atlantic, in an unrivaled location to enjoy the peaceful vistas and glamour of the bay.
This modern oceanfront hotel is located in Cascais Portugal, just a short train ride from Lisbon, with the station virtually in front of the hotel. The hotel can also be reached by taxi from Lisbon, which takes around 30 mins.
The InterContinental Cascais Estoril combines the heritage of the past with the modernity of the present. Throughout the hotel, you will enjoy hues of oceanic blues representing the oceanfront outside. The lobby and other common areas are all modern and elegant.
The rooms at the InterContinental Cascais Estoril are decorated in earthy brown tones and a classic modern luxury style. They are generous in size, each offering its own private balcony. Even the base garden room offers an extremely large outdoor terrace (see in the photos above), and many rooms are connected, so it’s a perfect hotel for families.
Next to the huge king-size bed is a sofa and a large working desk. If you book into an Ocean View room, you can lay in bed and gaze out of the floor-to-ceiling windows. All you will see is the ocean. The large bathroom has a separate rainforest shower, a huge bath, and two sinks. There is fun multi-colored lighting in the bathroom, which can be changed to any color, or for a disco effect, you can set the colors to continuously change!
The InterContinental Cascais Estoril has a spa, sauna, and gym. As Portugal is warm throughout the year, you can usually swim in the outdoor pool. If the weather is unkind, there’s also a modern heated indoor pool. There are beaches a few minutes walk from the hotel, which are the perfect place to go for a swim or to do other water-based activities.
One thing to try during your stay is the InterContinental Cascais Estoril Afternoon Tea, a time-honored British tradition with a touch of now. There are two stunning restaurants and bars for guests to choose between: the Ocean Spot Pool Bar, set in the lush gardens is perfect for a chilled cocktail in the sunshine overlooking the bay, or Bago Du Vin Gourmet Bar & Terrace enjoys views of the Atlantic Ocean complete with an excellent wine selection paired with a refined cuisine influenced by local flavors.
The picturesque Tamariz beach promenade, lined with bars and terrace cafés, is also moments away and provides plenty of opportunities to enjoy the alfresco lifestyle.
2. Villa Cascais
Villa Cascais is a great choice if you are looking for a boutique hotel. This 19th century aristocratic residence overlooks the Bay of Cascais with charming rooms, paying homage to the traditional and luxurious style of the olden days.
With just 11 guest rooms, you will feel like you are staying in a home rather than a faceless hotel and the location of Villa Cascais, overlooking the bay and facing the main square, which is surrounded by cobbled streets, makes it feel authentic.
Don’t expect an indoor and outdoor pool. For that, head to InterContinental Cascais Estoril, but if you are looking for a chic hideaway with a gourmet restaurant in the center of Cascais, this is a great choice.
3. Fortaleza do Guincho
This classic, grand fortress is an impressive place to stay. Fortaleza do Guincho was built in the 17th century on the cliffs near Cabo de Roca. This is another small hotel with 27 luxurious rooms, but the main reason to stay here is the cuisine.
The best fish and seafood from the Portuguese coast as well as the highest quality of local and national products, are a constant on the Guincho table, honored and created in every dish, every season, recognized by national and international press and critics. In 2001 their restaurant received one Michelin star.
4. Hotel Palácio Estoril
The Hotel Palácio Estoril has the ambiance of an Agatha Christie movie. This is unsurprising as it opened in the 1930s and remains a glamorous place to stay. In fact, it was featured in the James Bond ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’ film. Other reasons to stay here include a gorgeous sun-soaked swimming pool in colorful gardens. With 156 rooms, including 32 Suites, this is one of the largest hotels in the area.
5. The Albatroz Hotel
The Albatroz Hotel is a place of true glamour that rises above the ocean. There are 51 rooms at this hotel many with a nautical theme. This luxury hotel also offers a superb swimming pool with sea view and sunbathing terrace, a panoramic Bar overlooking the Bay of Cascais, gastronomic restaurant, and is just up the coast from Lisbon city center.
Note: Benefits offered correct at the time of writing but may be amended at discretion of the vendor. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.