Travel writer and Athena’s Editor Lauren Holmes shares her insider food tips for a long weekend in Lisbon.
Travel writer and Athena’s Editor Lauren Holmes shares her insider food tips for a long weekend in Lisbon.
Travel writer and Athena’s Editor Lauren Holmes shares her insider food tips for a long weekend in Lisbon.
Lisbon is such a hot spot these days, it seems every weekend someone has a friend coming to town who wants insider tips on Lisbon. Always the question that comes is… “where do we eat?”. When it comes to churches and traditional sightseeing, I’m no expert, but ask me about restaurants and music, and yes, here I can help. Since I was a little girl, travelling with a passionate foodie for a father, the question at every meal time would be, “Where shall we eat?” Now, when people come to visit me, we plan our days around meals. From which beaches to stroll in preparation for spectacular lunches or which cobblestone streets to wind through on route to cozy tascas. Food and music. It’s our living, breathing culture, so alive and human. You can tell so much about a city’s soul through this everyday tapestry of life. Lisbon is at an interesting cross-roads of evolution, the blending of its traditional roots with the influx of cultures and trends that now flood through it’s gates from former colonies like Africa and Brazil, combined with a new-wave of European expats, digital nomads and yogis from the Far East and the US. If once, Portuguese explorers set out on great sailing boats to connect the dots between the East and West, forging pathways to the new world and Africa, now the tables have turned and those energies are drawn here to a vibrant cultural melting pot. Always, I seek out the places that haven’t yet hit too much tourist hype and represent the value-for-money that makes Lisbon so rare as a European capital. Come high season, the one-time highlights can be packed. Yes, chef Nuno Mendes’s favorite restaurant A Taberna da Rua das Flores is great, as is the outstandingly popular ceviche bar A Cevicheria, but who really wants to spend 2 hours queuing in the street? Insider tip: If you are desperate to tick these off, go for a late lunch at 4pm, or as soon as they open at 12pm.
9 am: Located a 10 minute stroll along the water from Time-Out Food Market and the buzzing central transport hub of Cais do Sodre, Santos has flourished during Lisbon’s recent evolution into an intimate creative community with a vibrant café culture. Stop for breakfast at stand-out spots like Cafe Boa Vida, with its healthy home-made cakes and innovative brunch bowls, Hello, Kristof for high-class coffee and artsy-magazines, or Dear Breakfast for all-day Eggs Benedict. Then take a stroll along Rua São Bento and Rua Poço dos Negros to browse independent craftsmanship from local designers and artists. Don’t miss olive oil shop D’Olival, tea haven Companhia Portuguesa do Cha and a stop by art centre Rua das Gaviotas 6, where you can catch a court-yard mural by local street artist Vhils. Take note of the tiny houses and narrow streets, first built as the dwelling place for slaves brought in by the boatload during the Portuguese empire.
1pm: Hop in a cab or enjoy the 15-minute walk along the docks from Santos for some of the best grilled fish in town. One of the few spots where you can eat right on the river, Ultimo Porto is the go-to for local businessman during the week, while on Saturdays it’s packed with families and friends. Deliciously unpretentious, tables are set out under an awning as fresh fish smokes on the open-barbecue. It’s high-class cooking in an informal atmosphere. Book ahead to avoid a wait.
3pm take a stroll along the waterfront all the way to Bélem, or jump on the E15 tram, where the best pastel de natas (creamy custard tarts) in the whole of Lisbon awaits at the iconic Pasteis de Belém. Stop by the Torre de Belem and Padrão de Descobrimentos monument in honour of the city’s sea-faring soul before a visit to Lisbon’s hippest new art, architecture and design museum Maat.
9pm: Expect the warmest service and delicious Mediterranean-inspired dishes from an effervescent duo of Israeli chefs at local neighborhood spot Tantura. Still well under-the-radar, this cozy spot offers some of the best quality for value food in central Lisbon.
11pm: Barrio Alto comes alive at night with happening little bars, stroll the streets, head for speakeasy cocktails at bar Red Frog, or check out the line-up of performances, art shows, djs and live music at Galeria Zé dos Bois.
9am: Head to Feira da Ladra – the vintage flea market in up-and-coming neighborhood Graça, where antique, vintage and bric-a-brac stalls are dotted between a grassy park and the striking Pantheon temple. Pick up local pottery and soak up the scene before a pit-stop of coffee and cardamom buns at Danish bakery Copenhagen Coffee Lab. All fuelled up, head to the magnificent São Vincent church. Pop next door to the convent and climb the winding stairs up to the secret roof-terrace, with fabulous views over the city.
1pm – Stroll through Alfama’s iconic cobblestone streets on route to traditional tasca Ze da Mouraria. Set in the heart of one of the city’s oldest neighborhoods, where the first fado singers strummed their soulful laments, house specialities include the giant squid casseroles and chunky steaks with ice-buckets of crisp vinho verde.
3pm Hop in a cab and head to Lisbon’s loveliest lung of green, Estrela Park, where live bands often play in the late afternoon sun, or you can catch a snooze under the century-old Pepper trees. From here, it’s a 20 minute stroll passed elegant embassies towards the chic neighborhood of Principe Real. Stop on route for decadent ice-cream at Italian gelateria Nannarella to be slurped in the picturesque square of Praça das Flores. Wind of the afternoon browsing the myriad of boutique shops that line Rua Escola Politecnica. Highlights include Brazilian emporium Casa Pau Brasil and multi-brand gallery Embaixada, where you’ll find organic spa Organni along with Fair Bazaar, which curates ethical and locally sourced pieces.
5pm For sunset views with a more local, bohemian scene, Adamastor statue in Santa Catarina always draws a vibrant mix of local musicians who jam to a youthful crowd as the sun goes down. Set just behind this hip-hangout, Pharmacy Restaurant has tables set on the lawn and a great selection of Portuguese wines if you seek a more sophisticated setting.
9pm –Music and Food. Options abound in Lisbon when it comes to live music. Book ahead for a table at this tiny neighborhood bar in Alfama where some of the city’s best live Fado singers perform every night from 9pm and you can graze on tapas-style antipasti and a red wine.
12am For more of a vibe, head to Intendente square for alfresco drinks before heading to 3-storey bohemian town-house Casa Intendente, where a lovely alfresco courtyard and stella roster of DJs make this an eternally popular option for a fun night out in Lisbon.
2am And for the most atmospheric nightcap? Stop by the tiny Tejo Bar in Alfama where local musicians go to jam together once their sets have finished. Sessions get going from midnight and can last until dawn, with doors closed when the place is full.
11 am Sleep late like the locals and then head to the beach. Lisbon is enveloped in spectacular pristine beaches, all of which which make for great options for exploring before a long lunch. Which to chose depends on how mobile you are. If you have a car, then take the scenic drive out to Sintra, stopping to explore the historic center and a handful of castles, before a seafood lunch at scandi-esque wooden restaurant Bar do Fundo, set at the far end of Praia Grande. If you fancy a trip on the train, hop on the comboio at Cais do Sodre and head out to Cascais. Out of the wide range of beaches on route, the sweeping sands of Praia do Guincho, where surfers and kite-surfers congregate is a further 10 minutes on by cab and well worth the extra effort (ask to be taken to the Bar do Guincho entrance).Then head to traditional fish restaurant Mar do Inferno overlooking the water in Cascais and ask for a table on the terrace. Finally, if you find yourself in Lisbon in the height of summer, there are few better options that a day on the beach at Praia da Princesa on the Costa Caparica, a 20 minute uber ride from Lisbon’s center. Here, a barefoot beach chic setting and delicious fish makes Bar do Princesa a the best bet for lunch. For all of the above, book ahead for a table.
7pm Sun-dozed and smiling, round of the day with organic wood-fired pizza at Principe Real’s pizza spot In Bocca al Luppo. If it’s the last Sunday of the month, then see if you can bag a spot at Lisbon Living Room sessions, a secret jam session with leading local and international musicians that takes place in private houses around the city.
We talk to English designer John Whelan about being the Englishman behind one of Paris’s most iconic design revivals.13.Dec.2018
Eating in the City of Light always feels so full of promise, yet, so rarely matches expectations. Until now.20.Nov.2018
Welcome to the hallowed stomping ground of duchesses, spies and martinis shaken-not-stirred.15.Oct.2018
Ever dreamt of owning your own country retreat? We talk to São Lourenço do Barrocal’s in-house architect Aidan McMahon on why the estate´s country retreats in the midst of Portugal’s idyllic Alentejo is a cut above the rest.18.Sep.2018
Last night I dreamt I went to Barrocal again….15.Aug.2018
Editor Lauren Holmes shares her insights into beach life south of Lisbon13.Jul.2018
A curated selection of Lisbon’s best summer festivals.24.May.2018
Producer Benjamin Cassan shares his wisdom on Paris after-dark and how to party like a rock-star DJ05.Apr.2018
Interior designer Anna Waldburg gives us the ABC of how to create a home with a soul that will hold its value for the years to come.09.Mar.2018
Expert Daniel Favarin shares his insights about what you need to know in Spain’s luxury real estate market for the year ahead and where to invest.14.Feb.2018
Be the change: simple ideas for the everyday25.Jan.2018
Find out from the architects driving innovation and style in France’s classic ski resorts.19.Jan.2018
As property trends go, a fail-safe trick has traditionally been to follow where the artists go.12.Jan.2018
Find out who is shaking up the status quo with an industry-defining architectural project in Spain.05.Jan.2018
Paul Coleman has been shaking up Méribel's snowboarding scene for over 10 years and shows no sign of slowing down.30.Dec.2017
Shopping in Portugal? These are the Best Lisbon Brands You Won’t Find Alone.20.Dec.2017
Lisbon’s oldest and most traditional neighbourhood, Alfama is one of those places that takes time to discover.16.Dec.2017
Spend time in Lisbon and it won’t be long before you find yourself weaving through the cobblestone streets of Alfama.12.Dec.2017
With a career rooted in recycling discarded materials into breath-taking design pieces, Australian Designer Brodie Neill forges a new path for how design can be harnessed to bring much bigger change to the world.20.Nov.2017
Global Head of Community for Summit, Courtney Boyd Myers shares the inside track on building global community.03.Nov.2017
As part of our Hospitality Series, we talk to developer-hotelier Matt Dickinson from Nicaragua’s Maderas Village about the secret to fostering a global community and why Lisbon’s got his attention.02.Nov.2017
As the co-work model continues to revolutionise our modern work culture, so too community co-living provides an increasingly in-demand alternative to single property ownership.01.Nov.2017
Son of leading contemporary architect Ricardo Bofill Levi and CEO of creative studio El Taller Bofill, Pablo Bofill shares his insights on staying ahead of the curve when it comes to innovation 50 years on.31.Oct.2017
In this 3 part series, we dive into the minds of 3 leading entrepreneurs making waves in the architecture, design and hospitality sectors. From Brazil to Barcelona and Lisbon, each is a leading light in driving change and shaping the future of their country’s landscape for decades to come.20.Oct.2017
Manageably sized, minimal traffic (compared to many capitals) great local transport and plenty of parks for playing, Lisbon’s quality of life make it a winner when it comes to raising a family.18.Oct.2017
In this 3 part series, we dive into the minds of 3 leading entrepreneurs making waves in the architecture, design and hospitality sectors. From Brazil to Barcelona and Lisbon, each is a leading light in driving change and shaping the future of their country’s landscape for decades to come.28.Sep.2017
We talk to local experts on what makes Les Gets stand out.15.Sep.2017
Hit the highway south of the Portuguese capital of Lisbon, and you’ll soon be swooping through cork groves towards the pristine white sands and boho-chic scene of Comporta, Portugal’s hippest little beach town. So what’s all the hype about?05.Sep.2017
There’s something special about Principe Real. Set just beyond the bustle of Barrio Alto’s bars and the crowds that congregate in chic Chiado, it still feels like something of a secret, as if it hasn’t yet become too famous for its own good.29.Aug.2017
A new school in Lisbon provides an added incentive for foreign expat families.15.Aug.2017
Regarded as one of the most coveted neighbourhoods in Barcelona, what makes Eixample so special? We talk to resident expert and hospitality entrepreneur Ines Miró Sans.08.Aug.2017
Live Music, Art Galleries, Beach Bars and Cocktail Spots. These are the insider addresses you need in Lisbon.01.Aug.2017
How a sustainable approach to development can breathe soul into a city.28.Jul.2017
Wondering what underpins Lisbon’s captivating charms? A creative scene that is drawing artists from across the globe.18.Jul.2017
Passionate local foodie Gabriela Palatchi shares her insider tips on where to eat in Barcelona.03.Jul.2017
How a pair of chefs transformed a quiet neighbourhood into Barcelona’s hottest new food spot.30.Jun.2017
We talk to one of Barcelona’s style innovators, Maxi Zigart, about the city’s design scene and the best, secret spots to eat.14.Jun.2017
How have the recent French elections influenced the property market? Where are the coolest spots to invest and hang out? We talk to Parisian destination expert Clementine Georges.14.Jun.2017
British-born entrepreneur Benjamin Nachoom talks global business trends and how Barcelona’s work culture is shifting.14.Jun.2017
As Athena Advisers prepares to launch in Barcelona, we talk to destination expert Amanda Kendzior about where to buy and why Spain's second city is onto a winning streak.14.Jun.2017
Part of our series on people that change the future, we explore the future of sustainable building.14.Jun.2017
Intendente is the neighbourhood on the lips of hipsters, artists and pioneering investors. Find out why.14.Jun.2017
As Lisbon's business and real-estate landscape matures, what does the future hold? We get the inside track from one of Lisbon’s most innovative hospitality entrepreneurs, Duarte D’Eça Leal.14.Jun.2017
Where do the modern-day Monet's hang-out? Athier Mousawi shares his paint-splattered black-book on his favourite art-inspiring spots and the hidden places where creatives go to connect. Consider this your ultimate insider artist’s guide to Paris.14.Jun.2017
Local resident and contemporary British-Iraqi artist Athier Mousawi shares his behind-the-scenes take on life in Paris as a modern-day artist...and how this relates to the property market.14.Jun.2017
As Lisbon booms, what is going on with the property market? We talk to destination expert Carlota Pelikan for the inside track.14.Jun.2017
Industry insider’s share where they head when off-duty.14.Jun.2017
Say goodbye to those grilled sardines…how a city of passionate pescetarians began to catch on to the merits of going green.14.Jun.2017
Onefinestay, which rents homes far beyond the ordinary, is poised for global dominance. We talk to Deputy CEO Keyvan Nilforoushan about what lies behind their success, and how to get your property on to their increasingly competitive books.14.Jun.2017
What are the insider spots that make the world-class ski resort of Val d'Isère so special? Globetrotting entrepreneur Roman Carel shares his tips.14.Jun.2017
Bucket-loads of powder, a game-changing €200 million euro development and a new state-of-the-art lift system: Find out why the historic resort of Val d’Isère is the hottest topic of the season.13.Jun.2017
Time for some winter sun? Here’s how to get beyond the super spas and beach resorts of one of the world’s most gorgeous islands and live it like the locals do.13.Jun.2017
How quickly can ideas change the world? In a new series, we profile the global innovators shaping our future. First up, Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde.13.Jun.2017
Is Paris the culinary capital of the world? It is when you eat where the locals do13.Jun.2017
No longer the preserve of investment funds, commercial property provides new and secure opportunities in a changing market for pensioners and entrepreneurs alike. Here's how...13.Jun.2017
We talk to Alpine expert Charles-Antoine Sialelli to get the inside track on what to look out for when buying property in the Alps13.Jun.2017
How does a young polo player with a limited business background win Spear’s Magazine’s ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ award just a year after launch?13.Jun.2017
If surfing in your lunch break seems like a dream come true, then read on...13.Jun.2017
In the words of Aubrey Hepburn, ‘Paris is always a good idea”. Local design expert Pierre Frey shares his insider tips for the chicest weekend in Paris.13.Jun.2017
Lisbon has already been hailed as Europe's answer to San Francisco, yet as the world's leading tech conference moves its headquarters to the Portuguese capital, the start-up scene looks set to accelerate.13.Jun.2017
As Alpine property advisers, we love skiing as much as you do. Its why, every season, we connect with our network of on-the-ground experts across the Alps to get the inside-track. Now, instead of passing around hand-written tips before trips, we’ve compiled the AA’s Alpine Guide. Don’t dream of buckling your boots without it…13.Jun.2017
In response to increasing demand, Alpe d'Huez is set for a 350 million euro face-lift. Is this enough to put one of France's first ski resorts back to the top?13.Jun.2017
Globally renowned as a cornerstone of Parisian culture and heritage, Paris' 6th arrondissement encompasses St German, The Left Bank and some of the city's most iconic brasseries, but what's it really like behind the scenes? Locals share their insights and where to go to beat the tourist crowds.13.Jun.2017
Looking for inspiration to get off the sofa? You need to talk to Tobias Mews.13.Jun.2017
How do the fabrics you use define you and your home? We talk to Pierre Frey about the secrets to success behind one of the world’s most successful fabric houses.13.Jun.2017
This abundantly charming district, with its whimsical antique stores, renovated mansions and concept stores, sees local brands define Lisbon’s shopping scene.13.Jun.2017
As the restaurant scene in Lisbon reaches new levels of sophistication, we ask locals to share the best new and long-time favourite dining spots.13.Jun.2017
We talk to Matt Townend, Head of Residential Development at Battersea Power Development Station Company, about developing a design icon.13.Jun.2017
A ground-breaking mixed-use development, centred around an iconic London landmark, is set to create a whole new neighbourhood in the heart of the capital.13.Jun.2017
The emergence of a lifestyle-forward approach to property investment sees the rise of a new breed of destinations that combine high-quality living at a fraction of the cost.13.Jun.2017
How a move to Mauritius enabled a high-flying tech executive to swap the rat-race for sunshine time with his young family and new business opportunities.13.Jun.2017
“There has never been a better time to invest. We have seen international property investment increase 4% in the last 6 months, and with the current rate of dollar investment, prices are set to increase" says Camille Letuve, a Partner at Athena Advisers,13.Jun.2017
Tax advantages prompt the French to over-take the British as the lead investors in Portuguese Real-Estate for the first time.13.Jun.2017
Extreme Adventurer Squash Falconer talks moving to the Alps, conquering Mont Blanc and achieving the impossible.13.Jun.2017
In this series, we follow 3 Parisiennes, short on time but keen on adventure, as they navigate living in Paris, local property prices and planning the perfect weekend escape.13.Jun.2017
The founder of one of Paris's hippest organic grocery stores L'Epicerie Générale, Marseille-born Maud Zilnyk shares her secrets on where she goes in Paris and the best place to escape for the weekend.13.Jun.2017
“If new-builds are rare, waterfront new-builds in Paris are virtually unheard of.” As part of an exploration of the Parisian property market, we take a look at one of the most eagerly awaited launches in Paris of the decade, a water-front Haussmannian beauty on the city-centre island of Ile de la Jatte.13.Jun.2017
‘Every weekend in Mauritius is like ‘les grandes vacances’, says 33 year old Parisian-born Franco-Mauritian Isabelle Dupond ‘It feels like being a kid again.13.Jun.2017
For years only frequented by locals and a handful of clued-up foreigners, the crisp mountain freshness, soaring valleys and sky high-blue of the French Alps is now becoming a must-visit Summer and savvy property investment destination.13.Jun.2017
Perched on a hill facing the river, Santos is home to a kaleidoscope of art aficionados, architects and designers. Design pioneers Paris:Sete shine a light on life in Santos.13.Jun.2017
To celebrate the recent launch of our new Paris offices, who better to talk to about the passions and pitfalls of the Parisian property market than our city advisor, Clement Felisa.13.Jun.2017
Following on from our insider interview with foodie-cum-restaurateur James Ramsden, we delve into his Black-Book for spots not to miss for the authentic East London experience.13.Jun.2017
While once renowned for its rhyming slang and traditional pubs, East London has evolved into London’s hippest district, thanks to its proximity to the City, relatively affordable rents, and dynamic restaurant and nightlife culture. We sit down with restauranter James Ramsden to uncover why Londoners have fallen so in love with the East.13.Jun.2017
Following on from our insider interview with fashionista-cum-author Caroline de Maigret, we delve into her Black-Book for spots not to miss for the authentic Parisian Experience.13.Jun.2017
“Pigalle is a taste of the real Paris, it has real personality” explains Caroline de Maigret, "Unlike many other districts of the city there is something raw about it”.13.Jun.2017
With a reported 95% of Lisbon’s property still primed for renovation, it’s a city in constant metamorphosis. Yet while first-time visitors tend to be attracted to the elegantly bustling Chiado, sophisticated Barrio Alto and the buzzing bars of Cais do Sodré, its in neighborhoods such as Mouraria where forward-thinking developments are driving the evolution of the next generation of hot-spots.13.Jun.2017
What better way to explore Portugal than through the lens of a photographer Amelia Hazlerigg as she journeys on the trail of architect Alvaro Siza.13.Jun.2017
London, Paris, Lisbon… while we love the dynamic metropolises where Athena Advisers is based, there’s little like escaping for the weekend to deserted beaches and country-side cabins to remind us of what life is all about. Introducing our Escape the City series – hand-picking the best insider weekend bolt-holes that balance out city-life.13.Jun.2017
What do you get if you mix talented home-chefs with diners looking for a more dynamic culinary experience? Spearheaded by the success of Airbnb for hotels and Uber for taxis, “meal-sharing” is the latest innovation when it comes to the way we dine and discover cities.13.Jun.2017
Lisbon’s most elegant neighbourhood...13.Jun.2017
Surf’s up before that big pitch.13.Jun.2017
How the provenance trend is changing the way we live13.Jun.2017
We sit down with Carlota to shine the spotlight on life in Lisbon and why today is the moment to invest.13.Jun.2017
Of all the European governments offering residence permits to wealthy non-European investors, Portugal has been the most successful. But will the scheme last?13.Jun.2017
London attracts more foreign investment in real estate than any other city worldwide. But can it be too much of a good thing?13.Jun.2017
Alpine architecture is no longer limited to age-old wooden chalets, as visionary architects create modern masterpieces in the mountains.13.Jun.2017
Alexandre Cammas, founder of French gastronomic guide Le Fooding, singlehandedly shook up a staid Parisian dining scene. But who is picking up where he left off?13.Jun.2017
LXFactory: an industrial wasteland turned Lisbon’s beating heart of creativity.13.Jun.2017
Christian Luthy, founder of Le Bec Jaune in Morzine, left a London career to brew craft beer in the Alps. And he’s not the first entrepreneur to have traded city for slopes.13.Jun.2017
In this series we follow 3 Parisiennes, short on time, but keen for adventure as they navigate life in Paris, local property prices and planning the perfect weekend getaway within 3 hours of Paris.13.Jun.2017