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Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel, Lisbon

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Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

WE ARRIVED IN PORTUGAL’S LARGEST CITY (and capital) after a quick afternoon flight, landing in driving late-November rain just after nightfall. After Sarah‘s fantastic City Guide, published here in August 2012, it would be a little over two years until we would have the chance to visit one of the oldest cities in the world. In fact, LISBON is the oldest city in Western Europe, predating other modern European capitals such as Paris, London and Rome by centuries . . .

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

And despite the rain, needless to say, we were very much looking forward to Lisbon’s famous subtropical-Mediterranean climate, for the city is known for having the warmest winters in Europe, with an average temperature of 15 °C (59 °F) from December to February.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | LisboaOur trip was part business, part pleasure, and part reconnaissance (more about that later); business, in that we had been invited to visit & stay for a part of time at the Inspira Santa Marta Hotel (above), to learn more about its environmental sustainability initiatives which pervade everything, from “the use of low environmental impact materials or the rational use of paper”, to energy that is derived 100% from renewable sources, and solar panels for water heating. The hotel, in partnership with Pump Aid, has also sponsored the construction of water pumps and sanitation infrastructures in sub-Saharan Africa, co-financing and installing three potable water pumps in three villages of Malawi.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Above and below, beauty sleep and travelling not-so-lightly . . .
Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Below, another section of the hotel lobby, where handmade pieces of art created by the Portuguese Association for Autistic People (APPDA) members are on display and sold, with all revenue reverting back to the organisation to provide services for people with autism and their families. Inspira Santa Marta Hotel also sponsors fundraising events for LACO, the Association for Breast Cancer; ABRACO, a Portuguese non-profit organisation supporting people affected by HIV/AIDS; and Fundacao Osorio de Castro, a charity for children with cancer.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

At Inspira Santa Marta Hotel, we try to reduce carbon footprint as much as possible and strive daily to create a better environment for us and for future generations.Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Above, freshly baked Portuguese pastries at a nearby padaria, including the world famous pastéis de nata, or custard tarts, and bicas, or espressos, of which we would have several cups a day in cafés and sunny kiosk terraces along the way . . .

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

The hotel’s sustainability policy also extends to their restaurant, Open Brasserie Mediterrânica, where we stopped for breakfast each morning before dashing out for the day. The restaurant uses fresh, local and seasonal produce, and whenever possible, uses organic products in the preparation of their dishes. Open Brasserie also offers gluten-free options.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Did you know : “Lisbon is the 7th-most-visited city in Southern Europe, after Istanbul, Rome, Barcelona, Madrid, Athens and Milan.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.” ―Anita DesaiPlaces : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

During our stay, we were also invited for dinner at Open Brasserie Mediterrânica, run by Chef João Silva, whose menu was inspired by the tastes of Portuguese Cuisine, using Mediterranean ingredients and techniques to share the most distinctive tastes of Portugal, “with a selection of dishes which invite one to discover [the] gastronomic culture” through local products such as chestnut from the Tràs-os-Montes region, sweet potato from Aljezur, fish from the Portuguese coast, and desserts based on national ingredients such as eucalyptus honey, and the Rocha pear.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Above, Vieiras coradas, puré de abóbora assada com vinagrete de mão de porco e coentros (scallops & butternut squash purée) to start, Peixe da Costa Portuguesa, proveniente de pesca artesanal e sustentável e uma guarnição a condizer (fish from the Portuguese sea coast for me), Barriga de porco crocante cozinhada lentamente, com estufado de feijão encarnado biológico (slow-cooked crispy pork belly with stewed organic red beans) for P, and Mousse de chocolate, espuma de caramelo e manteiga de amendoim (chocolate mousse, caramel foam & peanut butter) to finish.

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Above, a beautiful shop ceiling & winter roses at the mercado.Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

For more information about Inspira Santa Marta Hotel, visit: www.inspirahotels.com

R. de Santa Marta 48
Lisboa, 1150-297
Phone: +351 210 440 900

Places : Inspira Santa Marta Hotel | Lisboa

{p.s.} More about our trip to Portugal to follow, including a slideshow of Lisbon by instagram, as well as more beautiful photos & a City Guide. xR.

 


All photographs by P.F.M. & Roséline

 
7 Notes
  • valvacious said...

    Simply beautiful…I can imagine being there from all the vivid photos. Great work!!

  • My husband and I traveled Portugal and Spain for three weeks last summer. Lisbon was beautiful. Seeing your images reminded me of just how much we enjoyed our stay. The hotel looks fabulous!
    Best, Heather @ Stylemindchic Lifestyle

  • Hello! I’m from Portugal but I live up north.
    Lisboa is a fantastic city, with a light and shades of unparalleled beauty.
    however, and since I am from the north, could not help to recommend you a trip to Porto… a more gray city, more dramatic, yet magnificent!
    Just love your work! It’s such an inspiration!
    Congrats!

  • Erica said...

    Amazing post! My boyfriend and I are planning a trip to Lisbon in March – can’t wait to see your next post soon!

  • I followed the adventure on instagram! Love the photos!
    Great article. Congratulations!
    I am Portuguese, but right now I do not live in Portugal. Oh how I miss my beautiful country! <3

    kisses,
    ivaniasmode.com

  • Beautiful post Roséline! and how I love love the images!!

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