More about the Pousadas and Portugal
POUSADAS DE PORTUGAL form a network of 36 distinguished establishments spread across the country from the green valleys of the Minho in the north, through the more 'manicured' Douro region to the luxuriant mountains of Trás-os-Montes and the various Serras, to Alentejo's golden plains and the Algarve coast with its extensive beaches and sand bars with warmer waters.
Portugal - 'Europe's last best-kept secret' - is proud of its history and traditions, many of which are associated with Pousadas de Portugal - first established in 1942. Each Pousada is synonymous with the history, culture and traditions of its particular region. Their restaurants showcase both Portuguese and international cuisine, offering you the chance to taste some inspiring local flavours and traditional recipes, as well as more mainstream dishes, along with an extensive and varied winelist.
Classified in 3 distinct groups - Historic, Monument and Charming Pousadas - depending on the individual characteristics and settings of each Pousada, Pousadas de Portugal's hotels include castles, palaces, citadels, monasteries and convents (all meticulously restored and converted), country houses and mansions (constructed in the style of the region) and traditional hotels, often in superb locations and settings, some with as few as a dozen rooms.
The 'new generation' of Pousadas to open in recent years also include state-of-the-art spas and swimming pools, taking the experience to a new level of sophistication and enjoyment. We thoroughly recommend you enjoy them for yourselves: Lisbon, Estoi, Cascais, Porto, Covilha and Viseu.
What can you expect during your stay in a Pousada?
You can expect to be well looked after by multilingual staff who are highly trained in giving good service.
Each Pousada has:
- 24-hour reception
- A restaurant serving Portuguese and international cuisine and wines. Some larger Pousadas have a café open throughout the day serving snacks and drinks.
- Room service, with a modest surcharge.
- Concierges or reception staff to assist with onward arrangements and luggage.
- En-suite bedrooms of a good size, with national and international TV channels, telephones and safes.
- Bathrooms that include bathtubs with a shower overhead, or very occasionally just a large shower cubicle. All bathrooms are stocked with hairdryers and toiletries.
- Parking, either directly at the Pousada or in a car park locally.
- Swimming pools at a considerable number of Pousadas. Several Pousadas such as Porto, Lisbon and Viseu have spas, and Beja and Arraiolos have a tennis court.
Useful points to note:
Wifi: All Pousadas provide internet access. Some provide wifi throughout the hotel, whilst others provide wifi access in at least their main public areas. 2 levels of wifi are sometimes available, with a faster version available at an extra cost.
Tea and Coffee making facilities: Bedrooms do not have tea and coffee making facilities but these drinks can be ordered through room service.
Parking: the vast majority of Pousadas are set in grounds with ample space for parking, some with enclosed car parks that are locked at night. Parking is free at almost all Pousadas.
Accessibility: Pousadas are usually well marked and very noticeable, and road signs generally indicate their location well.
Swimming pools: We suggest checking with us about the opening and closing dates of external swimming pools should the availability of the pool be of great importance to your stay. However, as a general rule Pousadas open their pools during peak summer months when ambient temperatures regularly exceed 25-28 degrees. Towards the south of Portugal the pools open earlier in the season and close later.
Language: Staff in receptions, bars and restaurants are multilingual and often speak exceptional English.
Disabled access: Many Pousadas are accessible by wheelchair and some have rooms adapted to wheelchair access with wider doorways and handholds in the bathrooms. However not all Pousadas are fully accessible because of structural restrictions such as narrow corridors and stairs in medieval buildings..