It can be tricky knowing where to book a hotel in a foreign city. You don’t want to end up so far away you have to take a taxi everywhere but you also don’t want to end up in the red light district on accident! When it comes to finding the perfect spot I spend at least 30 minutes searching “Where to stay in ______” and “Best area of _____” and get an idea on the map of where that is. Then, I look up “What to do in _____” and see where the majority of the key tourist attractions are in relation to what I had already found. From there, I check multiple sites to see the ratings of hotels and narrow it down to my top 4 for further investigation before making the final decision.
Using this technique is how we ended up at Memmo Alfama in hotel, a stones throw from the castle, a $10 uber from the airport, and with a un-hampered view of the water.
I had really wanted a hotel with an infinity pool which is what led me to Memmo Alfama above the rest. That being said, the pool was way too cold for it to be of any use.
Our hotel was tucked away down a narrow side street, providing an easy sense of security as well as noise protection. As always, I booked the hotel with breakfast included with minimal affect to the price and was able to secure a hotel with a terrace for only $10 more per night. While I imagined a terrace to be a small little railing, it ended up being small french doors opening entirely to the roof-top bar area with our own small patio with chairs and an umbrella. The views from this patio and the rest of the bar were definitley the best part of the hotel and the top reason I would recommend it to other travelers. While the outside was a bit too chilly for people to be hanging out, the inside area of the bar offered reasonable drinks and snacks with floor-to-ceiling windows to enjoy the view.
An interesting detail is that when I was searching for bars in Lisbon to hit up, our hotel was on every list I found! (like here, & here) Apparently the rest of the city agreed that the views were some of the best for any hotel which made it more than worth it.
The room itself was small but comfortable. So many European hotels combine two twin beds as a “double” and unfortinately this hotel is one of them but the bed itself was comfortable. The shower was a combination waterfall showerhead and power handheld shower head that didn’t skimp on hot water.
The hotel breakfast offered an assortment of meats and cheeses, fresh juices, and a fantastic fruit bar. There was also a menu of made-to-order items like crepes, omelette, and sides that were included. The dining area itself was cozy with an assortment of chairs, couches, and long tables to eat at as well as the option to take your meal to the rooftop bar area and eat outside.
Another cool perk of the hotel was a free walking tour of the city. Since we didn’t have any hard plans, we decided to take them up on this tour. A local guide took the 7 of us who showed up on a 2 hour walking tour of the city talking about the history of Portugal, Lisbon, and Alfama while showing us some areas we may otherwise not have seen and surely not have appreciated. It was well worth our time and a nice start to the day.
The hotel also sells metro day passes at the same cost as the station to make things more convenient (although we didn’t take them up on this offer).
The front desk was extremely helpful when looking for dinner reservations, offering up their own favorites as well as calling around to make reservations for us which was really nice.
In all, I would absolutely recommend this hotel to any of you, especially in the Spring and Summer when that rooftop pool can get some use! The hotel was young and modern, full of cozy little nooks and staffed with incredibly pleasant people. As far as hotel breakfasts go, this one is certainly excellent and left us so full each day that we didn’t eat again until dinner! Lisbon was a fantastic city and our hotel was a perfect part of the experience!