During our recent trip with Porsche to Lisbon we stayed at the Intercontinental Estoril hotel on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. This luxury hotel has only 56 rooms which gives it a very boutique feel.
It is located in Monte Estoril just a few minutes drive away from the town center of Estoril and Cascais and only half an hour drive from Lisbon and Lisbon International Airport. The hotel opened last year and all rooms have floor to ceiling windows with ocean views. There are two public beaches a few min walk away from the hotel but directly in front of the hotel there is a rock shore.
Sadly the railroad from Lisbon to Cascais runs between the hotel and the ocean so you will see and hear the trains as they pass by the hotel. The rooms and public spaces of the hotel are bright and modern with a typical ocean style; various tones of blue and white dominate the interior of the hotel. There is an outdoor pool, a small indoor pool, spa and fitness center.
The restaurant called Atlantico is located next to the main hotel building and serves delicious seafood and Portuguese classics. Breakfast is served in the hotel lobby and includes a large buffet with a very decent selection of food and juices.
The lobby also has a covered outdoor terrace with ceiling heaters for cooler evenings. In the evening the lobby also serves as a lounge where guests and outsiders can have a drink with views of the Atlantic and with the tunes of a few local musicians. However, we would have loved to find a dedicated bar as well.
The rooms are spacious with a large bed, lounge chair and desk / dining table for two. Our room 305 is located on the 3rd floor where you also find the lobby. It has a large covered balcony with a small table and two chairs as well as an outdoor sofa. The bathroom has a separate bath and rain shower and double sink. All drinks you find in the mini bar on arrival are included in the room rate, additional drinks and snacks can be ordered via room service – although having some snacks available in the room would be nice. The pillows are a bit hard and big, a thinner pillow as standard would be a nice addition.
Service was professional and friendly throughout the hotel, just the service in the bar could be a bit faster when there are many guests. One thing I found inconvenient was that you need to swipe your key card for pretty much every door you want to open – whether you want to go from the lobby to the hallway or from the pool to your room you need your key card all the time which gives you the feeling you are at some high security facility and not on holiday.
Overall the hotel offers comfortable rooms with good facilities. It is a shame the railroad runs between the hotel and the ocean, albeit a dozen meters lower than the hotel garden but it is hard to ignore. The staff is very friendly and the restaurant did not disappoint. The addition of a real bar, some more items in the minibar and dropping the need to swipe your keycard everywhere would make the hotel even better. So overall it is very good but lacks a bit of a wow factor.