Possibly the best boutique hotel in the Algarve
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Beach | Food & wine | Relaxation
Situated in the Algarve’s eastern most corner, nestled across the river from Spain, Grand House is a stunning Belle Époque hotel, a revived Grand Dame that received a new lease of life, becoming the first five-star hotel in the historical town of Vila Real de Santo António.
Curl up with a book in one of the hotel’s nooks, linger in the cosy library and embark on a journey back in time. Honouring the hotel’s rich history, the 30 rooms and suites boast an array of period details, including intricate molding, antique pieces and glamorous crystal-festooned chandeliers. With an eclectic style suited to the taste of the Twenties, the hotels décor is an elegant transition between Art Nouveau and Classical Composition with a Colonial touch.
The hotel is right on the main street, facing the River Guadiana that separates Portugal and Spain; a small ferry runs between the two sides. Behind the hotel is the town’s main square with church, shops and cafés. San António beach is a few minutes away by car and neighbouring town Castro Marim is worth visiting for its medieval castle and impressive salt pans.
The emphasis is on the glamour of the 'Roaring Twenties', achieved through a mix of antiques, colonial design, nautical colours in the public areas and muted colours in the bedrooms. Old prints, white orchids, wood panelling and stucco work are all flooded with natural light.
The Grand Beach Club has a contemporary, breezy, vibe with rattan lamps suspended from the ceiling, lots of candles and huge open doors out to a deck and the water beyond. The Grand Club House, opening late 2019, is housed in the town’s oldest building – the original Customs House – and dates back to 1774.
Facilities are limited by the size of the hotel but every effort is made to deliver everything and anything a guest might want. One bedroom acts as a spa room, with massages on demand. The Grand Club House has a concept store and a private cinema. The impressive list of experiences include riding on a beach in nearby Tavira and an outdoor spa in neighbouring Castro Marim; after your skin is coated in clay, you soak in the natural salt ponds.
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