If you’ve read my blog at all in the last six months, you know that Dan & I married in Portugal last year! We got married in Gradil Portugal, but our closest friends and family spend a few days in Lisbon with us before our wedding! These few days were really fun and brought the group together, and it was really cool to share Lisbon – a LOVEY city – with those closest to us!
If are you are not familiar with Lisbon, read this post. As I discuss therein, Lisbon is a city of cobblestone hills with only a small flat areas. Since a number of people in our party are older, we decided to stay in one of these flat areas – Baixa! Baixa is a very central area of tourist Lisbon and home to Hotel Avenida Palace. Dan and I stayed at Hotel Avenida Palace when we visited last March (pre-wedding, stay totally based on Trip Advisor reviews) and enjoyed our stay so much that we decided to have our friends and family stay at Hotel Avenida Palace when we came back for our wedding!
Hotel Avenida Palace is an old-school (in a good way), grand hotel in a quite central location in Baixa, the only flat part of tourist Lisbon. The hotel has about 80 upscale rooms spread over several floors, in addition to a number of amenities. Hotel Avenida Palace is located right next to the Rossio train station, down a small courtyard that really makes you think you are in a royal residence, and really removes guests from the hustle and bustle of Rossio Square. The entrance to Hotel Avenida Palace is fabulous:
The Hotel Rooms
Hotel Avenida Palace’s rooms are decorated in what I would describe as a royal theme – meaning lots of curtains, sofas, and pillows with tassels. Like its entrance, the decor really feels like a European Palace (I guess, hence the name). Despite its monarchist decor, the beds in all of the rooms are very large (American-style large) and super comfortable, which places Hotel Avenida Palace a step above many other Lisbon hotels. Likewise, Hotel Avenida Palace has American-style air conditioning, which is greatly appreciated during Lisbon’s summer heat (especially for our group)! In addition, most of the rooms are downright large by European standards and all have Castobel bath products!! FYI, Castobel is an amazing soap company from Porto, and I am totally obsessed with their products!!
When we visited in March, we stayed in a lovely junior suite that included two bathrooms, two TVs, a view of Rossio square, and two rooms. In short, the room was huge and awesome. It was especially nice, as we had booked a standard room and the hotel upgraded us just because the room was not being used!
When we returned for our wedding, the hotel upgraded us to their nicest suite, which included two rooms – a bedroom and a sitting room – again with views of Rossio square!! The bathroom was also quite spacious and again, had my favorite bath products! This was so appreciated and unexpected! Here are some videos from our wedding room (side note – even though this is a suite, all rooms are decorated in a similar style):
Along the upgrade lines, if you are visiting Hotel Avenida Palace for a special occasion, tell the front desk! Hotel Avenida Palace upgraded us for free on both trips and left us many, many surprises. For example, on both trips, Hotel Avenida left us fresh strawberries on arrival and a bottle of sparking wine another night. And, on International Women’s Day, they left every guest a box of flower-shaped chocolates from a local chocolatier to celebrate!
And for our wedding stay, one one night they left all guests a free reusable shopping bag and another, they gave Dan and I a complimentary happy hour for us and our wedding guests staying at the hotel! How extremely nice!! We really enjoyed the happy hour!
As a final note, all rooms have a complimentary Nespresso machine, good wifi, and cable TV with at least a couple English channels. Guests who book directly with the hotel also receive a free large bottle of water per guest daily. Very appreciated in the Summer heat!
The Amenities of Hotel Avendia Palace
The most striking amenity in my opinion are the number of fancy seating areas around the hotel – lots of room to relax and escape the craziness (and the heat) of Lisbon. There is a grand setting area, with complimentary international news publications, on the first floor and a second sitting room on the second floor with a number of comfortable couches (we used this room for our Champagne happy hour and took over it when we first arrived #sorry)! Hotel Avenida Palace often offers free concerts a couple nights a week in the first floor sitting room. We attended a concert in March and it was very enjoyable:
In addition to the sitting area and free concerts, Hotel Avenida Palace also has a small gym that is not that great… However, it does have filtered water, so refill those water bottles!
Food at Hotel Avenida Palace
Hotel Avenida Palace serves complimentary breakfast every morning to all of its guests. The breakfast is set up buffet style and offers something for everyone, including the MOST DELICIOUS CROISSANTS EVER. Seriously, better than I have ever had in France. They are to die for. In addition to those amazing croissants, the breakfast buffet includes multiple meats and cheeses, fruit, lots of bread, a sweet section (with Pastel de Natas!), several hot selections, including broiled tomatoes with cheese, sausage, beans, bacon, poached eggs, scrambled eggs, a cereal bar, lots of juice, and sparkling wine (near the cereal section). Serves come around and take your coffee order. I highly recommend everyone staying at Hotel Avenida Palace to take advantage of the breakfast.
Hotel Avenida Palace also has a bar that serves bar food/room service. I have only ordered drinks and a cheese appetizer here, which was quite good. In any case, the bar is pretty cool and became quite lively during our stay!
The Staff at Hotel Avenida Palace
I cannot rave enough about Hotel Avenida Palace’s lovely staff. As promised, the staff spoke perfect English and answered all of our guests seemingly endless questions, from when a room would be ready to local restaurant recommendations. Further, the staff were super accommodating! For example, when we landed on our first dat at 5:00, clearly no rooms were ready. The staff let us enjoy complimentary breakfast and got our rooms ready pretty quickly (all before 12h). They also took excellent care of my wedding dress and hand delivered it to my room and also delivered an itinerary and Portuguese tile cookies (brought to the hotel by me and Dan) to each of our rooms at no cost!
Since we were here with a group, I started working with Hotel Avenida Palace back in March to set up a room block. The staff was super helpful in setting this up and gave us a great rate. The book of the rooms, which had to be done with the hotel directly, was easy and the staff responded to all of our (numerous) requests promptly and professionally.
In all seriousness, I LOVE Hotel Avenida Palace and I will definitely stay at Hotel Avenida Palace when I am back in Lisbon. I highly recommend stay at Hotel Avenida Palace, especially if you are over 40 and American.
STEAL OUR TRIP
Hotel Avenida Palace: R. 1º de Dezembro 123, 1200-359 Lisboa, Portugal. T: +351 21 321 8100. Book directly with Hotel Avenida Palace to ensure the best service! Every time we have stayed at Hotel Avenida Palace, they have profously thanked us for booking directly with the hotel! *Note, in booking or corresponding with Hotel Avenida Palace, ensure that you are communicating with the Lisbon hotel. There is a hotel with the same name – but not related – in Barcelona.
ON A BUDGET
Honestly, Lisbon is home to a lot of budget accommodations, from hostels to Airbnb to simply less expensive hotels. While I do LOVE Hotel Avenida Palace, look elsewhere for budget options.