The Art of being the Four Seasons Lisbon


What’s in a brand? Sometimes everything. 

When approaching the Four Seasons Lisbon – a mere 15 minutes drive from the airport  – my recurring thought was: I can’t wait to be ensconced by the Four Seasons and be totally taken care of. I’m not a brand junkie, mind you, and often I prefer boutique hotels to brands. The Four Seasons brand, however, offers unparalleled service, discretion, beauty and luxury and The Four Seasons Lisbon lived up to this international standard.

Four Seasons Lisbon; photographer: Richard Waite

The lobby entrance to the Four Seasons Lisbon is formidable: large marble pillars in the back, and myriad large-format art works  belie trendy and aesthetic-led interiors. 

Art is, in fact, one the main interior components here. The hotel boasts one of the country’s largest and most important privately-owned collections of mid-twentieth century Portuguese art. The beginnings of the hotel in 1959 started with notable local artists being invited to put their artistic stamp on the hotel. Art works by Almada Negreiros, Carlos Botelho, Sarah Afonso, Pedro Leitão and others grace the majestic halls, their imposing sizes and legacies transforming the hotel into almost a museum-like state. Many other works of these artists can be found in the nearby Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and the Museum of Contemporary National Art in Chiado.

Artwork by Almada Negreiros; photograph by Richard Waite

The interiors do not rely exclusively on the beauty of the art they house. The extended lobby is a series of well-defined micro living room areas, with myriad sofas and lounge chair spaces. The interior design here takes inspiration from the art of Almada Negreiros, with the yellow-gold and soft green palette of the tapestries reflected in the colour scheme of the sofas and carpets: the colours align for a harmonious mood.

Beyond the lobby are various dining and drinking areas. From the sultry, decadent bar area to the grand, sweeping salon of the Varanda restaurant – the hub for the breakfast buffet, boasting, too, a charming terrace – to the modern Cura restaurant, led by Michelin starred chef Pedro Pena Bastos, each well-defined area has its own artistic aesthetic and culinary identity. 

The bedrooms continue the stylish aesthetic of the hotel, incorporating a large space with elements of design dotted throughout. A soft-palette colour scheme highlights the quality of furnishings: a lacquered-mini bar area oozes sophistication; an all-marble bathroom reinforces this and elements of technology throughout, such as the automatic blinds, reconfirm that you are in THE best hotel in Lisbon, where no attention to detail has been spared. We loved, too, the (ample) linen and cushions – some of the highest quality we have encountered, ever.

Four Seasons Lisbon; photograph by Peter Vitale

True to the highest standards of quality, the spa at the Four Seasons Lisbon is a work of art. Boasting an indoor and outdoor pool, myriad saunas and an extensive list of beauty procedures, this is absolutely the place to come and get pampered. It is no wonder, then, that we saw several locals who obviously frequent the Four Seasons Lisbon for this very reason.

Lastly, the location of the Four Seasons Lisbon is one of the best in Lisbon. Situated between the Azul and Principe Real, the hotel is conveniently located to pretty much anything in Lisbon – with the benefit of being slightly removed from the bustle of the crowds. Boutique shops, as well as the famous international brands, are a mere 15 minute walk. 15 minutes in another direction will lead you to trendy bars and quirky eateries. So if you are looking to be ensconced in luxury whilst having all of the attractions of Lisbon at your fingertips, the Four Seasons Lisbon is the place to be.

Address: R. Rodrigo da Fonseca 88, 1099-039 Lisboa, Portugal


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