A stylish, modern hotel, surrounded by the beautiful landscapes of Cascais. Perfect for a romantic getaway, a golf vacation, or just a place to relax and unwind.
Only 20 miles west of Lisbon is a perfect little coastal town called Cascais. Crashing waves line the golden beaches, people walk around in little more than bathing suits and sandals and the sun seems to always shine. The attitude is lively, yet relaxed and if you look closely you can still see a few remnants of what once was a small local fishing village.
Right on the outskirts of this pristine coastal town, is The Oitavos Hotel, the passion project of the Champalimaud family. With the vision to create a comfortable, yet architecturally stylish hotel, The Oitavos is the perfect place for those looking for a quick getaway or a romantic vacation.
Arriving at The Oitavos
A warm smile and kind words is always a good sign, when giving a first impression and that is exactly what we got when we met our driver at a crowded train station in Lisbon. We arranged for a private transfer from the train station to the hotel, which really is the best way to go. He greeted us, swiftly took us to his car and we were off.
We gradually made or way through the busy streets of Lisbon and before I knew it, we were driving on a two lane road with a stunning coastline following our drive. We had arrived in Cascais and it was everything I imagined; scenic, beautiful and quiet. Our drive went on like this for about 10 minutes before we started up the long driveway to The Oitavos.
The Oitavos stands out of the dunes like a shiny new toy, just begging to be played with. The facade is mirrored glass and reflections of the scenery can be seen from every angle. Part pristine golf course, part luxurious retreat and part ocean haven, The Oitavos sits neatly on the sand dunes overlooking natures beauty.
When you enter The Oitavos, you are immediately greeted by the front desk team and a lobby area that spans the entire length of the hotel. Beyond the neatly decorated areas and the stream of floor to ceiling windows, I could see a peep of blue sparkling water. Yes! They have an amazing pool area overlooking the dunes and eventually the ocean. It felt like we were in the middle of nowhere.
Everywhere I looked reflections were being mirrored in the glass walls, simple and modern furnishings decorated the expansive space. Colors of white and silver and blueish/purple tones gave the serene space a sense of style. I kept asking myself if we were in a hotel, or a really chic lounge.
I must admit, that at first glance, our room seemed a bit cold. Polished concrete floors and a monochrome scheme filled the room. Everything felt dark and a bit dreary, but as soon as the curtains were pulled back, the bright blue sky and lush greenery flooded the room, making everything feel warm and inviting. Here at The Oitavos, nature takes center stage and everything, from the decor to the actual structure, is meant to highlight the surroundings.
Our room was indeed beautiful, well designed, and very comfortable. The entire space was open concept (even the bathroom doors were transparent, so make sure you're only sharing a room with someone you *really* like!), and we had plenty of room to work, relax and enjoy the views. Our bed faced a small living/workstation with further views to the dunes. The large balcony proved to be fantastic for pre-dinner glasses of wine and the bathtub, situated right next to the window, was perfect for relaxing after a long day exploring. Every room has a balcony, so simply choose if you want the sunset or sunrise view.
Dining at The Oitavos
Although The Oitavos is close to Cascais and there are several restaurants nearby, there is not much within walking distance. Fortunately there are plenty of fantastic restaurants on site that are delicious, creative and definitely make you want to "stay in” during your visit.
One of the first areas you might notice on the main floor of the lobby is a space dedicated to Ipsylon - the hotels gourmet restaurant. White table cloths give an elegant appearance, and the floor to ceiling window make for amazing views while the charming staff give a sense of comfort in this sophisticated space. We spent an evening here and tried their Chef's tasting menu. Not only were the dishes exquisitely prepared with fresh, local ingredients, but the presentation of the food was incredibly creative. Even if you aren’t staying at The Oitavos, Ipsylon should still be on your reservation list.
For lunch, it's hard to beat the food and the views from Verbasco Restaurant & Bar. The Oitavos is located on the pristine Oitavos Dunes golf course, so naturally there is a Club House to accompany the facilities. Although we don’t play golf, we do appreciate great views with even better food, so for lunch one day we walked over to the golf course and had an amazing meal.
Although they say they serve simple, traditional cuisine, what we had was delicious, creative and beautifully presented! We ordered traditional Portuguese steak, a medley of vegetables and of course, smoked salmon (which I highly recommend!)
What to do
I don’t like to bike riding. I find it uncomfortable, sweaty and well...I would much rather just walk or get a taxi. BUT when you’re staying in an area that has stunning scenery all around, a taxi or your own two feet just won’t work. So during our stay we decided to rent two bikes from the hotel, so that we could efficiently check out Cascais. It was the best decision we made during the trip.
After a hearty lunch at Verbasco, we met with the concierge who property fitted us for our bikes and we were off. We must have rode for miles in each direction, just trying to discover the beauty of the area. No matter which way we rode, we had ocean views on one side and lush vegetation on the other. The road has its own bike lane, so I didn’t have to worry about dodging cars or acting like a pro rider (perfect for a novice biker like me).
We started by heading towards the direction of the beaches where we knew we could get easy access to the sandy beaches and of course those beautiful views everyone had been telling us about. Many locals and a few tourists were dotting the sandy beaches, enjoying picnics or sunbathing and everyone else was trying to scout the perfect spot for a lust-worthy image.
After a few hours hours, wandering around the beach paths and trying to navigate the rugged cliffs, we started pedaling the other direction towards the town of Cascais. There was a huge music festival going on, so traffic was a bit tight, making it one of the only times I was incredibly thankful for a bike. We locked up our bikes and made our way through the old cobblestone streets and festival goers. Somewhere along the way we found a great little bar, sat outside and people watched. I couldn’t have asked for a better way to explore this once old fishing town!
A Perfect Spa Trip
The Spa at Oitavos is truly a unique...and incredibly relaxing experience. There is the usual list of tempting treatments, from massages to specialized baths and a large (yet very quiet) Balneotherapy area. Yet what makes the Spa so special is the location. Views of the landscape carry through to the Spa, making you feel (yet again) as if you’re in the middle of nowhere surrounded by nature.
As I laid on the bed of my treatment room, I had unobstructed views of the landscape and not another person in sight. During my massage, my therapist alternated pushing and pulling techniques, along with deep kneading, making me a bit lifeless. It was heaven.
For more information about The Oitavos, make sure to visit their website: