Step out the front door to the Bay of Cascais breakfront bordering the popular Praia da Ribeira Beach and the central square of Cascais. Even on a stormy day a walk along the beachfront is compelling.
VillaCascais Guesthouse History
VillaCascais Guesthouse is part of the Albatroz Group, a family business that includes The Albatroz hotel also in Cascais. Antonio Almeida, the uncle of the general manager of The Albatroz Hotel and VillaCascais Guesthouse, bought a small palace in 1983 that had been converted into an inn with eleven rooms. Uncle Antonio expanded the original inn to what is now The Albatroz Hotel.
Frederico’s father took over the business in 1998 and, building on the concept of converting noble houses into guest houses, purchased the 19th century home that is today VillaCascais Guesthouse. Once the house of the famous poet, Maria Amália Vaz de Carvalho, the Guesthouse closed for a full year of renovation and reopened in October 2015. Now owned by The Albatroz Group, it is still managed by the Almeida family.
VillaCascais Guesthouse Design
Villa Cascais was renovated by the famous interior design decorator, Paulo Lobo. The concept for the redesign was Portuguese with a flourish. The guesthouse is a unique and charming blend of modern design and beachy chic. Historic elements of the building are highlighted incorporating old Portugal into the overall ambience.
Rooms at VillaCascais Guesthouse
The rooms at VillaCascais follow the color scheme of the rest of the Guesthouse, Royal Blue, Olive Green and Grey. All rooms include breakfast with your stay. In addition there is cable television with international channels, free wi-fi, phones and air conditioning.
Superior Rooms are decorated in Royal Blue or Olive Green and are about 215 square feet. You can request a queen bed or two individual single beds. I was hosted by the Guesthouse for one night in an olive green Superior Room.
There was also a dresser with additional drawers. The bathroom was spacious and included a large walk-in shower.
Superior rooms at VillaCascais Guesthouse all come with a partial sea view.
The full sea view is what differentiates the Deluxe Sea View Rooms from the Superior Rooms with partial views. The view is over Cascais Bay and is stunning.
There is one Grand Deluxe Sea View room. It is decorated in grey tones and is about 376 square feet. This room is designed for a luxury getaway with three terraces and views over old Cascais, the Estoril Coast, the Fisherman’s beach and the ocean.
In June 2016 prices started at 125 Euros for Superior Rooms, 150 Euros for Deluxe Rooms and 260 Euros for the Grand Deluxe Sea View Penthouse.
Food and Beverages
I was fascinated by the Wine by the Glass system used in the Reserva restaurant and bar. The restaurant has seven wine by the glass machines located in the bar area. Using the machines you can choose a tasting of wine, a half glass or a full glass. There are 48 Portuguese and international wines which can be sampled in this unique way at reasonable prices. There are many other wines also offered served in the traditional way. To use the wine tasting machines you obtain a plastic card from the bartender. You insert the card in the machines and choose your wine and serving size. Your wine is dispensed into a glass. At the end of the evening you present your card to the bartender and settle your bill.
Restaurant O Reserva by Olivier
The restaurant at VillaCascais is the star of the show. It is tucked away up a small flight of stairs if you enter through the Guesthouse. There is also a separate entrance for those not staying at the Guesthouse.
Chef Olivier, a well-known Lisbon chef, put together the original concept and menu for Reserva. The menu features some of his recipes such as Royal Crab salad. Reserva is open for lunch or dinner. You can order wine off of the wine menu or use the wine machines to select various wines to sample with your meal.
There is also a small separate dining room that can be used for larger groups or a private party.
MilesGeek has posted a separate review of the restaurant. Here is a look at their dessert sampler platter.
VillaCascais Guesthouse is located on the Bay of Cascais 30 minutes by car from Lisbon. It is a five minute walk from Cascais train station from which trains run every 30 minutes between Cascais and Lisbon.
Overall Experience VillaCascais Guesthouse
Guesthouse is the right designation for VillaCascais. With it’s intimate atmosphere I felt like a guest at a beach house. I came back from a walk on a very rainy day dripping from head to toe. The person in reception offered to have someone dry my clothes for me if I felt they would not have time to dry before I needed to pack.
There is no tea and coffee service in the room. However, when I asked about tea I was told it was available in the bar any time. I commented that I was hoping to curl up with a cup of tea and book later in my room. Immediately I was told that they would take care of that for me. I returned to my room a little later to find a tray with an electric kettle, a large choice of teas and sugar. A pitcher of milk had been placed in my mini-fridge.
This personal service, sea views, convenient location and outstanding food all came together for a memorable stay at VillaCascais Guesthouse.