“200-year-old rural guesthouse surrounded by vines and olive groves, with gorgeous gardens and elegant pool”
A row of converted workers’ cottages house 6 wonderfully big (or enormous) suites, each with classy interiors straight out of the sort of glossy magazine you drool over. Expect country rugs on cool slate floors, shuttered windows and candles everywhere. Beds are smartly dressed in white linen and warmed with cosy duvets in winter. Raw wood ceilings preside over alcoves decorated with clay pots.
All are great value for money, but if you intend to be lazy and stay put all day, splash out on first-floor Suite 488 which has a private balcony. It’s cool and shady in the heat of the day, blissfully quiet but for birds, and enormous for 2 people. The other suites each have seating outside their doors on the communal terrace. On our most recent visit we stayed in pink colour-washed Junior Suite 82 - we slept brilliantly and left restored.
Most bathrooms have tubs with overhead showers, plus you get thick towelling robes, slippers and a fragrant shower gel and body lotion. Usefully, each room has a mini fridge, and a kettle to make herbal teas. Three rooms have air con.
Breakfast is served in the main house; there are 2 fireplaces for winter mornings, thick walls and shuttered windows to keep you cool in high summer. Help yourself from the vast, immaculate buffet: fresh peaches and melon, seeds and cereals, big ham and cheese platters, freshly-squeezed orange juice, vine tomatoes and olive oil. Also, a Nespresso coffee machine, and the most important element of a fine Portuguese breakfast: cake. Orlanda whips up a fresh one every day - coconut, chocolate, orange - and all are delicious.
If you exclusively hire the whole property, you get the run of Orlanda's gorgeous kitchen, which has anything and everything you could need, including basics like oil, herbs, washing up liquid, bin bags...
Expect to eat well if you dine out. Just a 5-minute drive away, we enjoyed an enormous plate of traditional Portuguese Bacalhau (salt cod with potatoes and onions) at O Espalha Brasas - rustic, great value and front-row seats to the evening’s sun set. If you want the best in the area, head to the old town of Estremoz; try friendly São Rosas (smart tables, delicious meat and fish dishes, and an impressive wine list) or Cadeia Quinhentista (exceptional upmarket cuisine and great cocktails). Orlanda will advise on what’s hot and what's not.
Children are welcome and will enjoy the pool, but this is a quiet rural area and may not be ideal for kids with short attention spans. Most guests are couples in search of a peaceful break.
Babies (0-1 years), Children (4-12 years)
Suite 480 is the best option for families, with space for 3 children's beds. All rooms can hold a baby cot; Junior Suites and Suites can also hold at least 1 extra bed.
Baby cots available on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking