The rooms: clean and basic, 12-14sqm. Half of the rooms face backyards/quiet but you should be on floor 3 or 4, otherwise you don’t get much daylight into your room as the opposite building is close (that’s why on the website’s pictures these rooms have closed curtains). So floor 1 and 2 are rather depressing backyards.
The street-facing rooms have lots of noise, esp. at night! I recommend you to take earplugs with you (or alternatively go out until mornings).
The location: As others said, that’s the place to be. Convenient.
The price: That’s were its getting more complicated. Rooms are 65/75EUR in high season. For other European cities that would be cheap, for Lisbon its not. Is it a rip-off? No. But not such an “amazing”/“great” deal as others say either. In the same area you get wonderful short-term-apartments with at least 4times the size for the same price as the hotel sleeping 3 or 4 people - again: FOR THE SAME PRICE. And: there is no breakfast at the hotel anyway.
One more on the price: I got a 10% discount by paying CASH – but you have to ask for it, they wont give it without asking! I assume that’s the Portuguese way (no receipts). I also heard from another guest that if you mention “Spartacus” you can get a 10% discount too. I wonder if you can combine both discounts? Again, 10% discount was in high season. I guess off-season cld be more!?
The service: As I said rooms are clean, you get fresh towels every day. Bed/Blankets were clean. No complaints.
HOWEVER… here it comes: Reception staff was either very friendly or totally ignorant (both extremes), depending on the person…
Also, reception is NOT well informed, example: Going to the beach (“Beach 18”): I expect them to know how to get there, more than their “take the bus” – “which line?” – “just ask at the bus station”.
Basically there are 3 ways getting to the beach:
A) take a taxi from hotel for approx. EUR35 (with meter, one way, 40mins at least) –HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!
B) Subway/Bus/ToyTrain at the Beach:
I took that option once - nightmare. However the receptionist did not tell me/did not know that the ToyTrain only runs June/July/August. So you are getting off the bus in the middle of nowhere and discover "oh, they didnt tell me at the reception the train only runs in these 3months?"... Nice, no taxis anywhere… Good luck! The whole trip to the beach took me unbelievable 2.5hrs and lots of asking around!
I found out that’s a much better way getting there. Ferry (EUR1.30 one way) and then bus Number 127 (EUR3.55 one way) to final stop and walk 10mins on the beach from Toytrain Stop 19 to Stop 18. Do not take bus 130 as this brings you to toytrain stop 1 (and if there is no toytrain you are stuck in the middle of nowhere!).
Back from beach to hotel: You will not be able to get a taxi – they don’t go out there to pick someone up – I tried it but it seems to far away for them. Buses run every 30-45minutes. Again, take bus 127 from Stop 19, then the ferry. Should take you 60-75mins in total, no included waiting time for the bus.
(This is the type of info a reception should know and not every guest has to painfully find out themselves.)
Internet/Wireless signal is only available in the lobby. You can use their terminal for EUR1 for 30mins.
Security Problem 1: Imagine you come home and there is a NEW guy at the reception. You tell him “room XYZ” and you get the key. No further questions asked. Wanna try and see other rooms…?
Security Problem 2: There is a room safe, which costs extra per day of usage. But it only fits a small wallet. So what are you doing with your laptop? Again, remember basically everyone has access to your room by only saying a room number…
Have fun in Lisbon, it’s a great town and most Portuguese are friendly/welcoming by nature... ;))
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