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Portugal is Working Hard to Maintain Top Billing for Bucket List Choices

TAP Air Portugal creating more access with new nonstops to the Azores, Porto and Lisbon

December 11, 2019

TAP Air Portugal is adding two new routes from North America in 2020, with nonstop service between Boston and Ponta Delgada, in the Azores, and between Montreal and Lisbon.  Both new routes will be operated with new Airbus A321LR aircraft and will launch by this coming summer.  TAP plans to operate six weekly frequencies between Lisbon and Montreal, and five weekly frequencies between Boston and Ponta Delgada.

From June 2020, TAP will serve the New York market with four daily roundtrips to Portugal.   The airline will add a second daily flight between New York JFK, plus an extra weekly flight to its Newark-Porto service making that a daily operation, along with the daily Newark-Lisbon service.

TAP will also be adding two weekly Miami-Lisbon flights this winter and a third next summer for a weekly total of 10 roundtrips. Finally, it is also adding two weekly frequencies to Chicago-Lisbon, and Washington, DC-Lisbon, making each daily service.

Portugal: New and Noteworthy

Comporta: just an hour south of Lisbon on the sandy coast – this is the new hotspot where the “fashionable European crowd goes off the grid.”  Set north of the Tróia Peninsula, and near the Sado Estuary, Comporta is a refined retreat between dunes and pine forests.

Tomar: Once a home to the Knights Templar, this culture rich city is just 90 minutes north of Lisbon. With great squares, eateries, castle, churches, and a newly restored Jewish quarter Tomar has it all – except the crowds.

Madeira has been a winter vacation spot for centuries, with temps in the 70s, amazing hiking, seafood and volcanic landscapes – it is the place to go from fall to spring.

Nazaré:  Once a fishing town, today Nazaré is a busy beach resort – with a long sandy beach, fresh seafood, and now a mecca to the world’s top surfers seeing huge waves.

This year two properties in Lisbon are worth giving special attention. The 5-star The One Palacio da Anunciadaand Casa Fortunato, a luxury guesthouse, are both located in refurbished historic buildings in the more affluent parts of town. While Casa Fortunato is a family-owned business combining warm hospitality with tasteful modern décor, the one Palacio da Anunciada is set in a 16th century palace with a sophisticated atmosphere that blends perfectly with its surrounding Avenida da Liberdade, Lisbon’s Fifth Avenue.

Located about an hour away from Lisbon in Comporta, “the Hamptons of Portugal,” the new resort Quinta da Comporta is a sustainable project set in the heart of this idyllic beach town. The property offers 73 rooms and pool villas with a predominantly white and natural boho-chic aesthetic, a heated outdoor infinity pool, spa, cinema, cocktail bar and a restaurant that uses local produce from the resort’s organic garden.

The booming city of Porto also welcomed two new hotels that are raising the bar of the city’s offerings. Set in the heart of Porto’s historic center, the 5-star hotel PortoBay Flores features 66 luxury rooms and suites and a bar with direct street access. The hotel is built around an 18th century chapel and is a perfect blend of historic and contemporary. And since Porto is famous for its wine, Vila Galé’s new property Vila Galé Douro Vineyards seizes the stunning views over the Douro Valley slopes. Currently in soft opening, the hotel features 7 rooms with 42 additional rooms and suites underway. It also has a wine cellar open daily for tours and tastings.

In the Alentejo, the former frontier fortress-city of Elvas saw the opening of Vila Galé Collection Elvas, a new 4-star historic hotel with 79 rooms, two restaurants, bar, spa and indoor pool, and many event rooms. Set in the former Convento de São Paulo in the historic center, the 1721 building, vacant since 2004, is the first hotel to open in Portugal under the Revive Program. This is a Government-sponsored initiative that seeks to rehabilitate public historic buildings and boost tourism in culturally significant locations.

Also in the Alentejo, Portugal’s cork country and home to the Great Alqueva Lake, is the new Herdade dos Delgados – Dark Sky View Hotel & SPA, featuring 24 bedrooms and 3 apartment suites. Located near Europe’s largest man-made lake, the hotel is great for an off the grid vacation including stargazing by night and lakeside fun by day. The property also has a locally sourced restaurant, terrace bar, pool, spa and sports facility.

Finally, three new luxury hotels opened this year on Madeira Island, often called the Hawaii of Portugal. The Savoy Palace is a 5-star hotel located in Funchal, offering a mix of classic luxury and modern comfort, featuring 352 rooms and suites with capacity for 1,400 people. Set on a hilltop with amazing sea views, Les Suites at The Cliff Bay is the new 5-star resort offered by the Porto Bay Hotels & Resorts Group. The new property is adjacent to The Cliff Bay Hotel and features 23 luxury suites equipped with a kitchen and dining area and surrounded by expansive gardens.

And located in the scenic fishing town Câmara de Lobos, 5-star hotel Pestana Churchill Bay offers 57 contemporary-styled rooms, restaurant and bar services and a panoramic rooftop pool with views of the ocean and the colorful bay that inspired Winston Churchill’s paintings in the 1950s.


Radisson RED

For business travelers with points to spare, Radisson RED Lisbon Olaias and Radisson RED Porto are Radisson’s two latest ventures in Portugal, adding a total of 560 new rooms to the group’s properties in the country. Opening in 2020, the Radisson RED Lisbon will have 290 rooms, a restaurant and a bar, a gym and a rooftop pool. Up North in the district of Porto, Radisson RED Porto will be located in Vila Nova de Gaia within walking distance of several renowned wine cellars and the famous D. Luis Bridge, offering 278 rooms. The two hotels opening in 2020 represent the debut of the RED brand in Portugal.

More Info: Visit Portugal