When we launched our summer collections (which included lots of tile print) – we knew we had to head to Lisbon! Famed for its shabby but effortlessly chic buildings and hand-laid cobbles ensuring we ALL have a thing with floors – it was a win-win destination for a trip. So, we assembled the ultimate squad – Carrie (who as it happened got married in Lisbon!), Niomi Smart, Danielle Peazer, Megan Ellaby, Lorna Luxe, Lily Pebbles and Amy Spencer. Read on for the lowdown on where we walked, cycled, ate and slept during our three day stay!
We arrived in Lisbon just in time for lunch and checked into our wonderful hotel – The Pestana Palace. Everyone was super keen to get out in the sunshine as fast as possible so we immediately regrouped in the picturesque summer house. After a good amount of getting to know each other and general refuelling, we headed out into Lisbon for a wander around the gorgeous streets. If ever there was a place to visit solely for Instagram purposes, Lisbon would be THE ONE. The sun-bleached, pastel buildings provided the most beautiful backdrop for the girls to shoot some outfit pics.
One of the best views of the city can be found up at Beco de Santa Helena 21 and was where we took the cover photo for this post! It’s definitely worth the walk up the windy cobbled streets (made better by an ice cream stop en route), plus you’ll likely spot the famous no. 28 tram passing too!
After a good few hours of exploring the city (and working up another appetite), we headed back to the hotel for some chill time before getting ready for our first dinner! In true European style we had a late reservation and were SO excited for food as we rocked up at Bairro do Avillez which is situated in the uber-trendy Barrio Alto district. The food was UNREAL. We had a serrrriously delicious mixture of dishes ranging from smoked pork, giant red shrimp and insanely flavoursome crab broth – all alongside rice and fries (a traditional Portuguese combo!).
After an indulgent evening, we were adequately fuelled for a 4.5 hour tour of Lisbon – via bike! We headed to the meeting point in Miradouro do Parque Eduardo VII for 9.30am sharp and began our fact-filled descent (yep, it was all downhill – bonus!). We learned about the history of Lisbon, tried some traditional cherry liquor en route and even had a well-deserved rest stop complete with pastel de natas! It was a fantastic way to explore the city, soak up the sun and burn a few calories at the same time. Once we’d handed back our bikes, we set about finding a local fish restaurant our tour guide had recommended. A favourite with the locals, we enjoyed everything from octopus to tuna steak to mussels – all freshly caught that day. Yum!
After a gorge sun-drenched bike ride in the morning and a leisurely lunch – it’s safe to say everyone was looking forward to a poolside siesta when we got back to the hotel! It also provided the perfect opportunity to don our tile print cozzies for lots of insta-snaps and boomerangs. The pool was UHH-MAZING as it was situated amongst ALL sorts of tropical plants – almost as though we’d stumbled upon a hidden oasis… TAKE US BAAAACK!
Feeling rejuvenated, we jumped in taxis and headed to Le Chat – a gorgeous bar/restaurant with an epic view of the river. Arriving around 9pm, we were lucky enough to catch the sun set as we sipped on our cocktails – something that seems a million miles away now as we’re sat at our desks! The vegetable curry got RAVE reviews and the deconstructed mango cheesecake was a winning pud! As you can imagine, a group of 10 girls eating out is a very leisurely affair and we FULLY made the most of our final night and put the world to rights!
On our final morning at the hotel we got up early, hit the gym and enjoyed an al fresco breakfast including fruit, freshly made pastries, continental meats and er, pancakes… (AKA going in on the breakfast buffet!). The girls took some final outfit shots around the grounds of the hotel before reluctantly checking out of their rooms. The trip hadn’t finished juuuuust yet though as we’d planned one more meal (of course) before heading to the airport. About a 15 minute walk away from the hotel was LX Factory; an achingly cool mecca of cafés, bars, quirky retailers, art spaces and studios. We stopped at AMESA – a pizzeria with a strict ‘no cutlery’ policy (unless you’re ordering pasta and salads ofc.). Its mission is to encourage conviviality and sharing – and once we’d had a dollop of hand sanitizer, it was an enjoyable experience rolling up slices of pizza and chatting about how we’ll definitely be returning to Lisbon!
Are you in the process of planning your #NextGetaway? All 10 of us girls can wholeheartedly recommend Lisbon – it has the perfect balance of historic charm and the bustling pace you would expect from a capital city. The scenery is stunning and you’ll be hard pushed to turn a corner without wanting to whip your phone out for a cheeky insta-upload. It’s an exciting place to visit as the landscape is changing. Having previously struggled through an economic recession, the city’s creative types are now reimagining its future. A final plus point is, you only have to travel for around 2.5 hours to enjoy uninterrupted sunshine – making it the perfect place for snatching a long weekend.