In a city as bright as Lisbon, it can be hard for hotels to shine. But Intercontinental Lisbon, with its welcoming service, modern interiors and unique exterior stands out even on the sunniest of days. With 331 newly refurbished rooms, this contemporary hotel offers far more than just a bed for its guests. Inside awaits a city stay that’s filled with both character and culinary charm, as I discovers upon trying it for myself.
Fresh from the Algarve’s idyllic coastline, I hop off the train at Santa Apolónia and make my way across the city to find InterContinental Lisbon, which can be spotted a mile away with its flagship logo like a gleaming gold beacon.
As someone who struggles with Google Maps at the best of times, seeing its modern facade was like spotting land after years at sea.I’m ushered in like an old friend by the concierge team, shown swiftly to the front desk to check-in where I’m told, much to my delight, that I’ve been upgraded to one of the freshly rejuvenated Club rooms for the night.Found on the 19th floor, high above Lisbon’s bustling streets, the door opens to a large and polished space – complete with huge windows that showcase the clusters of Lisbon’s pretty buildings leading down to the Rio Tejo.
The bed is vast, acting like a centrepiece against the artwork framing the walls around it – as is the bathroom equipped with a shiny contemporary look and trail of toiletries. Neutral colours schemes, sleek wooden panels and the odd pop of artwork work together to create a relaxed yet debonair abode.Other little details add to the decadent feel – in the corner awaits a large desk, whilst a huge Smart LED 40″ TV faces the bed. There’s also an Nespresso machine and an awaiting platter of fruit to devour, little touches that help guests settle in and relax.
I don’t have long until dinner, so I leave the rather inviting fluffy robe for now and settle on answering a few emails at the desk instead. The views behind me are spectacular, stretching for miles across the postcard-esque landscape. From the top of this towering building, the city is spectacular.
Before I know it, dusk has fallen, sweeping the city into darkness. I make my way downstairs to dine in the suave AKLA restaurant, found adjacent to the lobby filled with impressive rose gold chandeliers, velvety furniture and elegant flower displays.
If the lobby is stylish, AKLA is stunning. With an ethos focused upon ‘where the market flavours shine and colour is always present’, it’s styled in attractive, blue and white tiled panels, as well as similar velvety seating and luxe details.
The staff, much like the concierge, are faultless – eagerly showing me to a table, recommending their favourite dishes and speedily topping up my water glass as if it’s under a hose.
On the menu, foodies can feast upon everything from Cod Fish Fritters to Grilled Tuna Loin and Aged Tenderloin Steaks. With a focus upon highlighting the best of Portugese cuisine, the fish and seafood is especially sublime.
Breakfast meanwhile, is served on another floor entirely – a spread of numerous buffet tables piled with fresh breads, fruits, cheeses, milks and more. I try it the next morning, making my way through the hot and cold options until my stomach’s fit to burst.
Despite its vast size, Intercontinental Lisbon manages to conjure a welcoming, family-like feel through its impeccable service and friendly staff. Whilst the views are wow-worthy and the cuisine is delicious, it’s the welcoming nature of Intercontinental Lisbon that’ll leave you scouring your schedule for the next visit.
Make it happen
Where: R. Castilho 149, 1099-034 Lisboa, Portugal
How: Rooms from £127 per night. To find out more and make a booking, please click here.
Words by Sophie Ritchie