Europe's Next Big Things

 Porto, Portugal

Porto, Portugal

Pack your bags... 

The sun is out and we have summer in Europe on our minds! Why not go beyond France and Italy? Scroll down for our favorite next big things across the pond! 

 

Lisbon & Porto

WHY NOW? There is so much to explore in Portugal's capital. This enchanting city with its cobblestone alleys, well preserved neighborhoods, and insane views make the Portugal experience real. Lisbon and Porto are both cities filed with culture and history. Walking the streets and you'll hear unforgettable strains of Fado, beautiful traditional Portuguese music. Whether you want to party, sit on the beach, or walk the streets you'll be drawn in by the city's secrets.

Things to do: There's not shortage of things to do in Lisbon, you can literally wander around the city and get lost exploring.

  • Walk through the neighborhood of Bairo Alto, home to funky shops and fun cafes, Baixa, to enjoy some of Lisbon's tourist attractions, and Principe Real, the Soho of Lisbon. 
  • Take a train ride to Sintra and see the colorful fairy tale Pena Palace with its incredible gardens.
  • Take a stop by two smaller palace's that are no less glorious: Quinta da Regaleira and Monserrate.
  • Take a drive to see the scenic Cabo da Rocca, the beach own of Dascals.
  • Shop at  Embaixada, Lisbon's shopping mall. 

Dining: One of the perks of traveling to Lisbon is that the food and wine are incredibly affordable. In addition to this, there are so many options that we have a hard time choosing to eat! 

  • Get an authentic pastel de nata,  a divinely creamy egg custard surrounded by a flaky puff pastry crust, from the famous Pasteis de Bele or pick on up from Manteigaria, a bakery near Bairo Alto. 
  • Pick up lunch from the yummy Casa de Praia Bar and Tapas that has more than enough options that'll keep your mouth watering. 
  • Have dinner at the casual Bairro de Avillez, where you'll have a truly incredible meal. 
  • Or, you can just have a meal at any of the many seafood restaurants that Portugal is famous for.

Accommodations: With rooms designed with a certain urban sophistication, we love the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon because its the perfect place to stay while exploring Portuguese culture in Lisbon. This hotel offers a luxurious spa and pool along with four restaurants where you can enjoy a diverse wine collection and excellent sea food. We love their dining options, its hard to decide between dining at the Almada Negreios Lounge, the Ritz Bar, Varanda Restaurant, or O Japones! 

We find that, being just a short drive away from central Lisbon, is only one of the perks of staying at the Olissippo Lapa Palace. This hotel has rooms that are the perfect combination of tradition and elegance. We love this hotel because whether we choose to relax at the spa or explore all that's in Lisbon, the Olissippo Lapa Palace is the perfect hotel to call home base. 

Last, but not least, we're totally excited about the reopening of the the reinvented Bairro Alto Hotel this fall. This hotel is perfect for the traveler that loves staying in boutique hotels. Situated in prime location between the towns of Bairro Alto and Chiado this hotel is currently under a multi-million dollar renovation. 


Ireland 

WHY NOW? Ireland will forever be an iconic and exciting place for an adventure, but some new options have savvy clients turning toward the Emerald Isle before the word gets out. You'll feel Ireland's unique magic whether you sleep in a castle for the night, get muddy at an Irish Music Festival, or hop a train to take it all in in style.

For a unique experience, reserve your spot on the brand new Belmond Grand Hibernian train throughout Ireland, where you can tour Ireland like never before without navigating the infamously narrow roads on your own. With gorgeous accommodations, upscale dining halls, and nightly entertainment the Belmond train experience offers a couple of different types of tours of Ireland in which the train travels at night and makes stops at famous, interesting, and fun places in Ireland during the day. If you want to see Ireland in all of its natural glory while staying at luxurious hotel, this is the perfect option for you. 

Accommodations: Following a multi-million dollar makeover, Adare Manor is a great base of operations with plenty on property to immerse yourself in the setting - its more than just a hotel, its an experience. With a lavish welcome, it'll feel like a homecoming when you visit. Spacious and luxurious rooms aren't all the Adare Manor has to offer, there's much more. In additional to the traditional spa, pool, and fitness center the Adare Manor offers a bunch of experiences which allows guests have the real Ireland experience. You can enjoy archery, horseback riding, golf, and fishing. For some more unique activities try falconry and interact with the most beautiful birds, do some game shooting, or have an opportunity at the Irish gun dog experience. For a more relaxed activity explore the Irish countryside on traditional Pashley bikes, take a historical tour, or a walk of the woodland. 


Mallorca

WHY NOW? Mallorca is more than just gorgeous beaches, it's a breath of fresh air at a pace that will make you want to linger. Trade the party scene of Ibiza or the deep dark blue of the Cote d'Azur for the lowkey vibes, enchanting landscape and the crystalline shallows of this more authentic island.

Try it for a one of a kind combination of authentic culture and European fine living without quite such heavy competition in high season. 

Things to do: While staying in Mallorca you can choose to enjoy the island life or explore Mallorca. Stop by the iconic Palma Cathedral and adventure in the Cueves Del Ranch,  interconnected underground caves. 

Accommodations: There's an oasis of tranquility at the Belmond La Residencia - tried and true luxury paired with incredible mountain views. We love this hotel because whether you choose to stay in a room suite or villa, you'll find the rooms in the Belmond La Residencia to be the highlight of your stay. They offer authentic Mallorcan activities such as ceramics, sculpting, a tour of the secrets of Palma, and a donkey trail. If this isn't enough, they also have a state of the art spa and countless dining options to chose from. We love enjoying authentic Mallorcan cuisine with a twist at hotel restaurants including El Olivo, Cafe Miro, the Pool Restaurant, and Son Fony. 

For those looking for a new buzzy place to stay, look no further than Virgin Limited Edition's new Son Bunyola, which has private villas you can rent out for a friends' weekend.These villas were designed with a modern chicness combined with charming Mallorca old school style. The gorgeous pool, amazing views, and incredible food make it the perfect villa to rent out with your friends or for a multi-gen family excursion. 


Montenegro

WHY NOW? Montenegro is one of the most stunning places in the world where towering fjords dramatically plunge into the sea peppered with postcard villages all overlooking the Emerald Green Adriadic. The best part of it all, the sparkling new Air Serbia, owned by Etihad Airline, will blow you away with its comfort, level of service and incredible value.

 Montenegro

Montenegro

Accommodations: Stay at the incredible Aman Sveti Stefan set in a 1,500 year old fisherman’s village on a private island with dreamy 20,000 sft spa adjoined by an 8 bedroom mansion that used to be the home of the former president.   And when you are done with basking in the sun, get active with a host of outdoor mountain activities like white water rafting, hiking, mountain biking, zip lining and caving.   


Berlin

WHY NOW? Berlin has always been a city of art and self expression. Although it went through some dark times, it is now a vibrant city constant change, creativity and reinvention that honors its history at every chance. This manifests in new contemporary art galleries opening like aquabitArt and Sprüth Magers Berlin. Take a trip in the summer and enjoy a myriad of outdoor festivals celebrating art, music, and culture, like the Classic Open Air at Gendarmenmarkt. Or, stop in to Berlin's Fashion Week for some edgier style. 

Things to do: Berlin is a city filled with rich history. No matter where you go, there's a story on every corner. 

  • Pergamon Museum- Take a tour of this museum which has several fantastic artifacts, including the huge Altar of Zeus and the famous Ishtar Gate from Babylon.
  • Take a stop to see the architecturally renowned Reichstag Building, which is home to the German Parliament and was the base of the government of the Weimar Republic before it was seized by the Nazis.  
  • Honor Berlin, and Germany's, history by walking through a Holocaust Memorial or a the Berlin Wall Memorial. 
  • Enjoy some music at a concert of the Berlin Philharmonic
  • Stop by contemporary art galleries opening such as aquabitArt and Sprüth Magers Berlin
  • Take a trip in the summer and enjoy Classic Open Air at Gendarmenmarkt, a music festival.
  • Stop by Berlin's Fashion Week to see the newest in style. 

 

Accommodations: Located in central Berlin, the new Orania Berlin (below) has a calm beauty blending subtle Asian influences and a casual elegance. We love Orania for its casual but comfortable rooms and unusual perks. Guests enjoy concerts included in the nightly rate! 

Hotel Adlon Kempinski is an iconic hotel with gorgeous rooms located in prime location. You can't go wrong with the ever-relevant icon, facing the famous Brandenberg Gate in the heart of the city, with exclusive boutiques, museums and art galleries just minutes away. We find that one of the biggest perks of staying here is the countless dining options they have. You can grab a cup of coffee and a quick bite at Adlon To Go, enjoy cocktails at Sru Bua Bar or have meal at Resturant Quarre, Lorenz Adlon Esszimer, or Sra Bua by Tim Ruae. 

We love the elegant, Art-Deco Waldorf Astoria Berlin for the unbeatable floor-to ceiling views of the city from the Tower Suites. In addition to spacious and homey rooms, the Waldorf Astoria boasts an impeccable Guerlain Spa, the only one in Germany. 

Another option is the offbeat, cozy and chic Das Stue, in the diplomatic sector, with its' unique direct access to and views overlooking the Berlin Zoo.  The beautiful architecture of the hotel is as part of the experience of the hotel as the relaxing spa, three restaurants, or the nightly live music. All of these combined with comfortable rooms makes for unforgettable stay. 

Posted on April 26, 2018 .