Bairro Alto Hotel — Lisbon, Portugal
Lisbon’s Bairro Alto Hotel has re-opened bigger and better, courtesy of Pritzker prize-winning architect Eduardo Souto de Moura and Atelier Bastir, also responsible for the interiors of the original hotel.
To the original, ochre-coloured, 18th century house, which stands on one of Lisbon prettiest squares, three adjoining buildings have been added to form a block. A new dark wood and leather cocktail bar, 18.68, spills out onto the square behind it and a Pastelaria, fragrant with pasteis de nata, is open to the side street.
There are now 87 guestrooms, each drawing on Portuguese crafts from artisanal rugs to Costa Nova ceramics. Throughout the hotel, furniture mixes bespoke with vintage and antique, while contemporary art from Pedro Cabrita Reis, photographs by José Pedro Cortes and sculptures by Rui Chafes have now been joined by a large tapestry with a macramé base by Oficina 166, its design a nod to the city’s seven hills.
This sense of place continues in the new BAHR Restaurant & Bar, whose informal design by thestudio pays homage to its Bohemian neighbourhood. Amongst the benches by Valentin Loellmann, the chairs by Brazilian designer Jader Almeida and the tables by Lloyd Powell is artisanal china from Estúdio Neves. It is on these, with dishes like smoked goose barnacles and hake with egg and coriander, that Chef Nuno Mendes delivers Portugal on a plate.§