Hotels in Portugal

There are so many different accommodation options in Portugal, hotels being just one in the crowd of pousadas, villas and apartments that are vying for your euros. Hotels in Portugal come in all shapes and sizes, in towns and on remote hilltops, so you are bound to find one that suits your taste and budget if you shop around. Lisbon and the Algarve are the most expensive areas, with prices at a premium during the summer. The more money you spend, the more grand and exclusive the range of hotels and some of the finest hotels in Portugal are the state-run pousadas. Still, though the top end is luxurious to a fault, the prices are noticeably lower than in the rest of Europe so you will probably find you get more for your money from a one of Portugal’s many hotels. Book in advance in Lisbon and the Algarve, but you should be able to find a room at short notice in the rest of the country.

The different levels of hotel available in Portugal are as follows:

Pensões (pensions) in most towns have rooms (double and single) for between €16 and €32, which are only beaten in price by rooms in private homes. The tourist office (turismo) will have a list of such rooms in the area, called quartos or dormidas and more common near the seaside than inland. Prices are around €13 to €20 for a night. Pensões that don’t offer meals are sometimes called residencias and charge similar rates for similar style accommodation. Make sure you ask to see the room before you take it, and use the question “Tem um quarto mais barato?” (“Do you have a cheaper room?”) if you are on a tight budget as they will often show you the more expensive rooms first in such establishments. Ones without private bathrooms or showers are usually a lot cheaper.

The same bathroom rule applies to hotels that cost from €25 to €35. Such hotels usually have washbasins in the rooms and showers that are shared by several rooms, but you could try asking if any of the rooms have showers and getting a more expensive room. For €35 and above you are looking at rooms with private bathrooms and possibly a television, and anything above €55 should have both of the above plus a greater degree of tasteful décor and other luxuries as you move up the scale.

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