From the moment you arrive, everything about this lovely hotel is designed to help you relax and unwind. Over a glass of fresh orange juice, the friendly, professional staff - who all speak impeccable English - explain the hotel's facilities before showing you to your room.
The Palacio dos Arcos is in two distinct sections - a centuries-old and venerable Portuguese mansion, complete with its own tiny, exquisite chapel, and then a large, airy and spacious new block where the majority of the accommodation is to be found. [There are just five guest bedrooms in the old house.]
Our stylishly designed modern suite was huge, with all mod cons. The well-equipped bathroom offers a range of toiletries. The bed was large and comfortable, and even had three different types of pillow to guarantee a good night's sleep. The colour scheme of coffee and chocolate is restful and unobtrusive and the poetry decorating the walls is a delicate touch. The spacious balconies, all with views over the gardens and out to sea, are well furnished.
Meals are served in the old house, which has a wine cellar, bar and sitting area. The breakfasts boast a range of hot and cold dishes including fresh fruit and juices from the hotel's own farm. [Try their wine, too - it's delicious. A wine tasting evening is held each Wednesday.]
This is one of the few hotels that can manage to serve decent fresh coffee instead of the usual bitter, overboiled gloop!
Each evening meal is a miniature work of art, with imaginative dishes presented with skill and flair. The menu of fish and meat dishes could only be improved by providing a vegetarian option. The staff offered to adapt the meals to create vegetarian alternatives, but, to this typically reserved Brit, it feels uncomfortable to have to ask.
The meals are truly delicious and come in large portions - the chances are that you'll have to share a pudding with your companion or risk bursting!
As for getting around, well, that's easy, thanks to the small railway station just a short stroll from the hotel. The commuter trains rattle up and down the coast at twenty minute intervals, whisking travellers into the centre of Lisbon for shopping and sightseeing, or out to the seaside resorts of Cascais and Estoril, with their atmosphere of faded elegance.
A basic travel card costs 75c, and fares are bought in advance of travel. The card can be topped up to keep you on the move using the trains, buses or trams.
All in all, this hotel far exceeded our expectations, and we were sorry to bid farewell to the wonderful staff. We returned to real life feeling thoroughly pampered. This hotel isn't just one to be recommended - it's one to be treasured!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This hotel located in the historical town of Paco de Arcos right by the Tagus River on Lisbon Coast. The nearest link to the transportation network is only a 2 minutes away and you can get to Lisbon Historical Centre in only 15 minutes or to Cascais in about the same time. The nearest beach is only 1km away. The nearest airport is 25 km away. This hotel marks the Vila Gale Group's debut with a 5-star unit in Portugal. With a poetic inspiration and decoration and a privileged location by the Tagus River on the Lisbon Coast, it has 76 bedrooms that are fully integrated in the surrounding environment. The hotel offers 24 hour reception, wheelchair access, hotel safe, and luggage room, free Wi-Fi Internet connection in public areas, a library, the restaurant Inevitavel, Satsanga Spa, an outdoor pool and a surrounding garden. This unit turned out to be renewed and boosting landmark for the historical centre of the town of Paco de Arcos. The luxurious rooms are well equipped with air conditioning, electronic safety door look, direct telephone, safe, LCD TV with Cable and Pay TV, Wi-Fi Connection (for and additional cost), Minibar and 24 hour room service, private bathroom with telephone and hair dryer. Vila Gale Collection Palacio dos Arcos has 1 restaurant and 2 bars available for its customers, open not only to hotel guests, but also to the general public all year long. The Satsanga label is present at the hotel and is composed of a set of facilities that provide well-being to all its customers. Here, you will find a heated indoor pool, sauna, Turkish bath, Vichy shower, gym and rooms for massages and treatments (all for an additional cost). Guests may choose their breakfast, lunch or dinner meals from a wide buffets. At lunch and dinner guests may also select dishes from the set menu, or take the a la carte option. In addition, the hotel caters for guests with special dietary requirements or take away meals. ... more less
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