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“19th century charm, 21st century tackiness” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Pestana Palace Hotel & National Monument

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Pestana Palace Hotel & National Monument
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Rua Jau 54, Lisbon 1300-314, Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #11 of 219 hotels in Lisbon
Lisbon, Portugal
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
60 hotel reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
117 helpful votes 117 helpful votes
“19th century charm, 21st century tackiness”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2010

Living in isbon, I don't often have the chance to sleep in my own hometown. Have done it a few times in the past, mainly due to home improvement or to enjoy a weekend by a pool. There are not that many hotels in Lisbon with an outdoor pool (I wonder why? It has to be great for business in such a hot city), and after spending a weekend at Tivoli's tiny pool, we decided to give Pestana a try. Because the rate was in the 200 Euros region, we also slept there. I already knew the palace and it really is a very beautiful venue, with a much more authentic feel then the Lapa Palace. Ate once at the Valle Flor which was very impressive food wise and was at the time being considered for a michelin star. That never happened, and the chef eventually left. Prices remain high though.
I booked through Leading Hotels, which gave me an upgrade. I get there are worse rooms in the hotel than the one we got, but boy, was it a disappointment! From the moment you leave the actual Palace to got to your room (there are just a few suites in the palace itself, all the lesser accommodation is spread across three new wings), the Pestana brand really kicks in. The hallways have hideous carpets and awful panelling, with a incoherent collection of cheap looking art works, with mismatched frames. This is the way the chain thought they could turn an ordinary modern hotel wing into a palace. They fail and it shows. The room left quite a lot to be desired. A nice desk, two nice chairs, but with worn out fabrics, a nicely design closet terribly veneered, a cheap looking LCD, with bad picture quality, and three horrid paintings scattered around the walls. There was this odd looking feature in the wall next to the bed, a built in mirror, framed by wood panelling and a naif fresco featuring a palm tree. It would have been hilarious if we weren't paying for it. The bathroom was a disgrace. Not more than 5 sqm, with a tiny tub doubling as a shower, with clear traces of water infiltration, dingy faucets and a white curtain. Is this supposed to be a 5 star palace in a national monument? What a mockery.
We ordered the breakfast to our room. Terrible mistake. 44 Euros, and we got a basket of bread (quite dry, probably frozen?) and croissants, 4 slices of cheese, two orange juices (not freshly squeezed), very watery coffee and milk. The side of pancakes was an extra (5 Euros) and it looked as bad as it tasted.
Pool area was nice, the pool itself is beautiful, although the space around it is limited, as it is surrounded by the spa wing. Food in the garden pavilion was reasonably priced for what you get and the overall service was fairly attentive, nothing being to much trouble. At check out I was introduced to the manager who took note of my complaints.
I would not recommend this hotel to anyone visiting Lisbon, unless you were to stay in the suite. Even so, I do think Lapa Palace is a better option, albeit more expensive.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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2 reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2010

You want a hotel that makes a lasting impression? You want a hotel that gives something beyond what a normal five star hotel gives you? You like to be treated as an individual not just another visiting tourist? Then the Pestana Palace Hotel gives you all that. And more!
The Pestana Palace is my first option when going to Lisbon, and luckily for me I have nearly always been able to stay there.
It is a place (and a national monument as well), and being there, surrounded by its beautiful gardens gives one a sense of well-being that is difficult to surpass.
You get such personal attention from the staff and are looked after so excellently, that you feel an intimacy that is seldom found in large, five star hotels.
The staff couldn't be nicer and they anticipate your every need. And should you require that extra special information or have some other 'difficult' request, be rest assured that the staff at the Pestana Palace will do all in their power to supply you with all you need or ask for.
Breakfast time is a dream come true. It is both serene and relaxing. You are looked after superbly and the buffet is extraordinary! Especially the 'hot choice', consisting of the most delicious delicacies, different every day (my favourites)!!!.
The walks in the gardens re-charges your soul.
The pool is an oasis in the midst of a busy city.
Dining in the beautiful restaurant is a trip to the past yet the food is full of modern and experimental treats of the highest standards.
The bar is the perfect place to wind down after having explored Lisbon. Such a beautiful city!
And when it is time to retire, you sink into those heavenly pillows and fall asleep feeling relaxed and totally content.
Don't miss staying at the Pestana Palace when visiting Lisbon. In fact: don't miss visiting Lisbon, for the combined experience of Lisbon and the Pestana Palace Hotel will give you an experience that you will want to repeat again and again.
Which is what I do whenever possible.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2010

After staying at the sister location, the Pestana Promenade in Madeira, we decided to book a few days at this location in Lisbon. We had such a delightful stay at the Madeira property and were intrigued at the idea of staying in a castle. The Castle itself was exactly as advertised, beautifully adorned with some parlors that was reminiscent of royalty. The buffet breakfast was exceptional as there were a multitude of items to choose from. The property is very well maintained with lots of areas to sit and enjoy the scenery. The only qualms I have with our stay there is that since I am North American, we have ice machines available in most of all our hotels. Perhaps it is because they cater more to the European clientele so some of the things we are used to, were unavailable( Ice, Iron and Ironing board). When I requested some ice from the bartender to take to my room I was told I had to order it and there would be a Three Euro charge. When we had brought a meal to enjoy in our rooms we were told that plates, and cutlery were subject to a three Euro charge although I went there to pick it up myself. I consider myself a frequent traveller and I was appalled by the extra charges. One of the rooms we booked was listed as a “Garden View” room. When you open the windows all you can see is a tree obstructing your view of any garden. Since the room charges were based on certain types of views and location, I think they ought to stop charging extra for a garden view room. The rooms themselves were clean and well kept, but they weren’t as nice as you would have expected coming from another one of their properties and because they are listed as a five star world class location. Because I have worked in hospitality, I understand where the extra charges would need to be levied . I just felt that charges need to be placed on more relevant items. Due to our trip plans changing as we decided to stay at another location longer, we had to cancel the rest of our reservations. This is not to say we weren’t considering a change already. All I can say is: it’s very beautiful there; some of the rooms were just ok; and beware of the extra charges. I think it would be unlikely we would return to that location. I also found the Front desk staff to be a bit curt.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marlow, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2010

I went to the Pestana Palace when looking into holding our European Conference in 2011 in Lisbon. The Pestana was one of several options for the event, so it was fortunate that it was the one I chose to stay at whilst assessing all the options. Additionally, it was my 30th wedding anniversary whilst I planned to be there, so I took my wife so that we could have that day off together. She was there to check out the potential Companion Programme as well.

In short, it looks like a Palace, with amazing Luis XV & XVI rooms, it feels like a palace, and one is treated like royalty regardless of where one is staying. (You do have the option of staying in the Royal Suites if you want as well, but I didn’t).

The staff was great, nothing was too much trouble, they were always friendly and always very attentive without being remotely intrusive.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dublin
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2010

This hotel is a very special residence. As soon as you arrive you can feel that it is steeped in history but also smartly kept and well maintained for modern travelers.
The dining experience is second to none. Dinner is Michelin star quality. We remember with some humour if we would like to retire to the bar with our vintage port! The three chocolate dessert is also a stand out memory.
The artwork throughout the hotel is very impressive.
The pool and spa are also worth mentioning as this adds another element to your stay.
I'd recommend this as a great place to stay for a special weekend in Lisbon such as an engagement, special birthday or anniversary.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange, CT USA
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2010

We stayed 4 nights at the Palace last month and found nothing wanting at this stunning property. Excellent service, immaculate standards met or exceeded by the staff at all levels. Despite its somewhat out-of-center location, we did not find it inconvenient to most major attractions in Lisbon. We had high hopes for this Pestana owned property, as we had just finished a family wedding stay in Faial, Azores at the Pousada de Santa Cruz, managed through the Pestana Group. This company seems to get it right...we are looking forward to trying their newest hotel in London. Our room faced the manicured botantical garden from the second level. A welcome bowl of fruit, though past its prime, was sent to the room with a nice note from the Manager. Front desk staff was professional, easily handled an optional private car tour, and will change currency with no commission at a reasonable rate. Taxis are always on the doorstep or a brief call away. We dined one night in the beautiful hotel restaurant, also the site of the delicious included breakfast. The bar and lounge was very attractive and comfortable, with the tuxedo-clad pianist adding a nice touch. On a value basis it would be hard to top this hotel.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2010

The Pestana Palace is a sanctuary in a somewhat uninspiring city in which some parts are riddled with poverty - although the countryside is a different story.

It is a bit of a way from city, which for us it is a good thing and cabs are cheap in Lisbon anyway. The Upon check in, one of the receptionists showed us the facilities of the hotel - dining, garden, pool, etc, before escorting us to our room. Lovely gesture. The rooms are a bit smallish but adequate and we have a veranda facing the beautiful garden. They also offer free access to the internet in their business centre.

We also dine a their magnificent Valle Flor restaurant which exudes elegance. Food was absolutely lovely and was worth the price.

Overall, my stay in Lisbon was well worth it - thanks to Pestana.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Pestana Palace Hotel & National Monument

Address: Rua Jau 54, Lisbon 1300-314, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Estremadura > Lisbon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Business Hotel in Lisbon
#6 Spa Hotel in Lisbon
#10 Family Hotel in Lisbon
#11 Luxury Hotel in Lisbon
#11 Romantic Hotel in Lisbon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Pestana Palace Hotel & National Monument 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pestana Palace Hotel & National Monument, member of the "The Leading Hotels of the World", is a 5 star hotel in a 19th century palace located in the city of Lisbon, and its gardens, with a variety of plants and subtropical trees, are classified as "National Monument". ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pestana Palace Lisbon
Hotel Pestana Palace

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