Portugal’s capital, Lisbon, has never been cooler. In fact, it was recently named “top city millennials” love these days. Lisbon is interesting because it allows visitors enough time to venture through the country to see many regions during a single visit. You can go from the centre of Lisbon to the small rural coastal town of Cascais in around 30 minutes by train. The capital also hosts a year-round Food and Chef-Oriented Market (Time Out Market Lisboa) and allows you to discover vibrant neighborhoods, classic restaurants and newcomers in a pleasant mix of history and modernity. Apart from Lisbon’s food scene, let’s not forget to mention the beaches, surfing, music festivals, golf courses, the varied landscapes and, above all, the Portuguese people, who are seen as fashionable, open-minded and welcoming.

Also worth knowing is that the luxurious and trustworthy Intercontinental Hotel brand has gone bold in Portugal, providing you options on where to stay during your next trip to this hot-list destination. With two stunning hotels that each stand out, the choice between Lisbon, the capital, or Cascais, the beach-town, will not come easy. After experiencing both properties: the Intercontinental Cascais-Estoril and the Intercontinental Lisbon, we suggest exploring both. One offers a premium beach-front location with incredible views of the Portuguese Riviera while the other is centrally located, offering both a modern and urban feel. By visiting the two locations, you will be able to explore the urban side of Lisbon and the boho/beach bum side of it too.

Seeing Cascais

Set in the Oceanfront of the Atlantic, the impressive and relatively new Intercontinental Cascais-Estoril hotel is a true masterpiece. The modern and technological top-of-the-line rooms offer premium Ocean views, private balconies, luxurious king beds and contemporary bathroom facilities including chromeotherapy. In the morning, you will be able to enjoy a generous continental breakfast on the sunny terrace overlooking the ocean before heading to the gorgeous outdoor pool – a rarity in Portugal.

This luxury oceanfront hotel is also ideally located; right in front of the Monte Estoril train station where you will be able get to downtown Lisbon in less than 30 minutes. The beach and boardwalk is also within footsteps, allowing you to explore the Lisbon beaches, walk to the Cascais marina, or bike your way to the historical castles perched on top of the Portuguese coastline. Take a sunbath on Praia de Cascais or try paddleboarding near the marina. Intercontiental Cascais-Estoril is also home to a world-class spa and a fine dining restaurant, Atlantico, that features a premium terrace overlooking, again, the ocean. This one-of-a-kind property stands out by its bold and modern architecture in the middle of the historic town of Cascais, where it’s all about the view, in an ultra-modern luxury setting.

Discovering Lisbon

After a few days at the beach, you might want to head into the big city. With the train station at your doorstep, there are no excuses! Lisbon is the epitome of cool and you must discover it, even if it is just for a night or two. See it come alive at night, walk the festive Chiado district and have cocktails on the latest rooftops that have recently opened all around town. For your stay, the Intercontinental Lisbon is a sophisticated and modern urban hotel located right in the center of it all.

Offering a peaceful location at a short walk from the upmarket Avenida da Liberdade, the InterContinental Lisbon hotel provides refined rooms and suites overlooking Lisbon’s historic old town. The hotel also offers a stylish Uptown Bar, and an international-twist on Portuguese cuisine at the new Akla restaurant. While in Lisbon, start the day with a visit to the hilltop, 11th-century São Jorge Castle, and admire the sweeping views from its high walls. At the nearby Portas do Sol, you can take the historic tram 28 for a ride through the Old Town and please do not forget that a visit to the Time Out Market Lisboa is a must.

This small, colorful and diverse country has so much to offer that you might want to spend more than a few nights in the Lisbon area. Rent a car and explore Portugal’s other regions: Douro, Porto, Algarve, etc. There is so much to see, and considering it is still more affordable than many other European countries, this is a perfect time to visit Portugal.