11 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
"Spent a fantastic long weekend here.
The room was great, location was great, and so was the food. The food may not be to everyones taste but the menu is available on line and you don't have to eat here as Lisbon has some great places to eat, all at affordable prices. We eat in on our first night and for two people including wine it was 137 euros
The only thing we didn't get chance to try was the spa, as it was full - and it was only available for hotel guests so that speaks for it's self.
The staff were really helpful and directed us to unusual restaurants
I would definately come back"
- Travel date: Tue 23rd of October 2012
A very enjoyable stay at the Lapa
"We stayed for 2 nights at the Lapa Palace at the end of October '06 having booked through Leading Hotels of the World. We got a fantastic rate of 250 Euros per night.
We arrived into Lisbon by car, which is a very bad idea if you are considering doing so! It took us nearly an hour to find the hotel which we found was only signposted as 'Hotel' and as newcomers to the city, 'Hotel' could have mean't any hotel! Lapa Palace is located in a quiet residential/diplomatic area of Lisbon. On arrival the bellman unloaded our car and valet parked it for us in their secure garage until we left.
We were warmly welcomed by the reception staff who then showed us to our room which overlooked the pool and had great views overlooking the city. The room was a good size and had an enclosed balcony with sliding doors which allowed the gentle breeze from the harbour to blow into the room. The bathroom was luxuriously furnished and featured Lapa Palace's own toiletries.
The first evening we dined at the Hotel Cipriani restaurant where we tried the 'Menu Degustante' for 70 Euros per person. Well by the end of the meal we were completely stuffed! The service was of an excellent standard in the restaurant - our only thing we found and disliked was that everything was very hushed in the restaurant, although the guitar player did add a nice touch.
The following day, afer exploring the city, we returned to the hotel and sat by the heated pool. The pool and garden areas are fabulous and it was great to swim outside in October as the pool temperature was just right. One complaint we did have was it took ages to order and be served with a drink - we must have waited at least 20-30 mins for our drink to be brought to us by the pool - and we were the only one's sat around it!
That evening we dined in their Bar Tejo Rio where the food selection was excellent and this was also coupled by an extensive wine menu and good intimate service.
Breakfast is served one floor down from the reception area, where you either sit inside or al fresco in the courtyard. The hot and cold buffet was extensive, although I was disappointed that unless you specially ordered hot items, that the eggs, bacon and sausages were served from a hot plate which inevitably doesn't make them so fresh. The American breakfast (hot and cold selection) was 25 Euros per person if not included in your rate.
The hotel has 2 broadband speed PC's for internet access and is free of charge, you just need a login from the concierge which is valid for one hour. We found the concierge very helpful as well.
One final point we noticed was that security was extremely tight with plain clothes officers noticeably working at the main entrance which was reassuring. One guesses that they regularly have to deal with VIP's and they certainly looked equipped to deal with any problems.
In conclusion I would return to the Lapa Palace again, and would recommend it to other visiting Lisbon."
- Travel date: Thu 9th of November 2006
An oasis in Lisbon
"We loved our stay at the Lapa Palace. The hotel is an oasis snuggled in a remote residential area of Lisbon. The staff is exemplary without exception. Our deluxe room was charming and really quite comfortable. I do find it offensive, nay perhaps even stupid for a hotel in this class to charge 12 Euros per day for internet service. I've stayed in Embassy Suites for $89. with free wireless access."
- Travel date: Sun 5th of November 2006
an average orient express property!
"i'm a huge fan of orient express hotels and for the most part this hotel is within the normal range of high service. i rate it only as "neutral/average" because i found it lacking in character....building not really as described as a lovely old palace and because it lacked atmosphere (which may have been because we were off season). we had a junior suite was i thought was small and basic relative to the cost. the pool area was quite uninspiring (and it was definitely pool weather whilst we were there!) and the spa was nice but not fab. service usual high standard but overall lacked the wow factor you get with most orient express hotels."
- Travel date: Tue 31st of October 2006
"Spent 3 nights at Lapa Palace recently and had a wonderful time. We were touring Portugal and began our stay at the Lapa with 2 nights in a city/river view room in the garden wing of the hotel. The room was very nice - great bed, good lighting, excellent bathroom (heated floors and towel warmers a big plus) and a small terrace with room for a table and two chairs.
The atmosphere at the hotel was somewhat formal, but the performance of the staff was superb, so I can overlook a slightly more stuffy feel.
Don't miss the breakfast - it's fantastic - the best of all the hotels on our stay.The bar's a nice place for lunch (great chicken caesar salad) or a drink, but quite pricey. Didn't do any dinners here, the formal restaurant wasn't our style.
We came back at the end of our trip for one more night at the Lapa before heading home. Upon getting to our room, we heard loud noise from next door. Apparently, there'd been a plumbing problem and it was still being repaired. My husband went to the front desk to enquire when the work would be done and we were immediately moved and upgraded to a deluxe room in the palace portion of the hotel. It was nice to see a room on that side, slightly nicer furnishings, slightly bigger bathroom, another lovely comfortable bed. Having said that, I wouldn't pay for the difference in the two rooms. Having a city/river view room on the garden wing ensures you're high enough up to have a little more privacy. Nothing else is really needed."
- Travel date: Mon 23rd of October 2006
"This hotel is very attractive, in a good location and with nice rooms and generally friendly staff. However, the hotel seemed very aware of its own importance and position, and there was a general ambience of arrogance and superiority, rather than enjoyment. Even in the restaurant, the meal was over shadowed by an atmosphere of 'better than thou', which spolied any enjoyment. A real pity as the hotel is set in lovely grounds and has potential to really ensure you love your stay. Not great value for money and not somewhere I would want to return to."
- Travel date: Thu 28th of September 2006
One of the best city sanctuary hotels
"I had high expectations and wasn't sure I'd be thrilled with the fact that you have to taxi into town all the time, but at 4 euro a ride and 15 minutes it was no big deal and the Ritz/4 Seasons is not so close a walk to anything important anyway. This hotel has so much more charm as well and the setting in the embassy district is also a delight. The main building has an eclectic mix of rooms surrounding a beautiful garden; I had a beautifully decorated junior suite at the top of the main building with a great view of the city and river, a small terrace and an alcove office. Food and beverage was excellent; the Italian restaurant and the pool lunch were excellent. Spa was fine. Concierge is very attentive and helpful. The garden view rooms are airy and spacious but more traditional -- I like the main building palace wing. The Royal Suite was lovely in Louis the XIV style and there was a nice deluxe room on the 6th floor with a beautiful bathroom and funky window overlooking the river. The tower suite on the 7th floor was also interesting, but may not be worth the premium they charge for it. unless you're with that someone special for a special occasion No BBC World on the TV, which is a minus for me and I expected that in a hotel of this caliber. Otherwise, it's like living in a garden apartment set apart from the city and I really liked it alot. Orient Express has a beautiful property here and the top-notch staff is of course part of the package."
- Travel date: Mon 25th of September 2006
One of the best European hotels we have stayed in.
"My fiance and I have just returned from a 5 night stay at the Lapa, which we had been looking forward to for ages.
Suffice it to say, the Lapa was a delight and the staff are a credit to VSOE. Every possible whim you as a customer could possibly have, they would indulge, without question, with good humour and respect for the customer's wishes.
I think we both got a bit more than we bargained for with the spa - a previous poster who commented that her massage was "not deep enough"(!) - I can politely say that no such issue was encountered by either of us, it was plenty deep enough thank you!
As has also been mentioned, the Lapa is not cheap. At this end of the market, this is to be expected. Having said that, the prices were broadly reprasentative of what you would expect to find at this class of hotel regardless of where in Portugal you would have stayed/eaten/drank. (delete as applicable!).
I found myself (rightly or wrongly) comparing the Lapa to the only other hotel I have stayed in at this class, specifically the Mina A Salam in Dubai. This is not really fair as it is not really comparing like with like, except insofar as the standards of customer service are concerned. In this sense, there could be possibly a little more attention to detail in the infrastructure of the hotel - odd spots where a lick of paint could be used to cover up odd marks, etc - but this is being really pernickity. In terms of what we went to the Lapa to do - explore Lisbon, spend time relaxing doing nothing and enjoying great cuisine and fine service - the Lapa met all of these objectives without a problem. Specific praise for the room service staff, concierges and cleaners is also warranted. The standards of all three were as good, if not better than I have seen anywhere else in Europe or the US.
The only downside to the stay was the experience of TAP Business Class, which was a massive disappointment. Add that to a theft from our baggage at Lisbon airport on the return leg and as a result, a bit of the shine was taken off the stay.
None of this can be laid at the door of the Lapa however. As I have said, the hotel and its staff and management are a credit to VSOE and we would both be more than happy to reccomend this establishment to any discerning customer visiting Lisbon."
- Travel date: Thu 21st of September 2006
Excellent hotel and service
"Have just returned from a 1 week stay at the Lapa Palace and would not hesitate in recommending the hotel to anyone.
We stayed with our 8 year old son and were all made to feel very welcome and comforable. This is a truly excellent hotel with service to match without being at all pretentious.
Were given lots of advise on places to visit
On the whole had a truly memorable stay. Will definately return"
- Travel date: Mon 31st of July 2006
"Lisbon is a great city, to find the right hotel, like everywhere, not so easy. If you like smaller, boutique type of hotels, then the Lapa Palace is definitely THE place to stayy. Great atmosphere, fantastic food and excellent staff. A luxury hotel with a lot of charme. I am already looking forward to my next stay."
- Travel date: Sun 23rd of July 2006
Expensive hotel earns every star
"The Lapa Palace hotel is amazing. A few surprises at the start - you will be in the middle of an unassuming neighborhood which is home to several embassies and is about 1.5 miles from the pier. Honestly you may find that there is simply no need to ever leave the property.
This is a classic hotel - from the lush landscape, to the amazing quiet pool area, to the fabulous little spa - no detail seems forgotten.
I stayed for a work function but brought my husband and son with me. The hotel was happy to upgrade me to a room that accommodated an extra bed for my boy. It had a lovely balcony that overlooked the pool, fountains, and the river/bay. Was so well appointed I just don't know what to say. They even had a little bundle of toys and bubble bath to give my son when we checked-in.
Food was very expensive, but good. If I had any recommendation, it would be that they expand their weekend brunch to include the items from the room service menu.
The spa treatments were good - but if you indulge it is best to be clear with the front desk what you expect from a massage. Mine was a little weak. But the facial was world class and competed with any I've had worldwide.
Am very happy we experienced this hotel. Cannot say enough about the level of service and how welcoming they were. Thanks Lapa Palace."
- Travel date: Fri 21st of July 2006