28 November, 2011

Martinhal Magic in Portugal

As regular readers of my blog will know, I am a big fan of Portugal and I love to discover new places I think my followers will love. A couple of months ago, I visited a stunning beach hotel that Tatler magazine describes as the "hottest ticket this year" - a description I find hard to disagree with. Hotel Martinhal is located in the south of Portugal near the town of Sagres, in the western Algarve.

Positioned within the grounds of Martinhal Beach Resort it is the first five-star property in the Sagres region; and has just 38 rooms (including two beach suites), all with private balconies or terraces with impressive ocean views. Hotel guests have full access to all the other resort facilities; but even if you're not a staying here; the staff are very welcoming if you pop in for a meal, or even just a drink.

The hotel sits in a beautiful location looking onto Martinhal beach, which is large enough to still feel uncrowded in the busy summer months. It can be a wild stretch of sand, with the Atlantic battering the shore, but even in high season, I've always managed to find a grassy sand dune to shelter in.

It has to be said that the hotel's designers have made the most of the scenery, and I loved sitting on the large terrace sipping a cocktail and taking in the view. The cocktail bar and lounge are located on the hotel's first floor, alongside a Portuguese fine dining restaurant (O Terraço) which is gorgeous as the sun sets. There are also two beach bars. 

The interior of the hotel and rooms are striking. Furniture was commissioned from Michael Sodeau, whose work features in London's Victoria & Albert museum. His designs use Portuguese cork and wood, and give a modern but comfortable feel to the interior. 

I was originally drawn to this area for its stunning beach; but will now return and use the hotel facilities, whether it be for a cocktail as the sun goes down, or to try a local delicacy in one of the restaurants or bars. Stunning, and very special....trust me - this is a serious find!

For more information on Martinhal Beach Resort, please visit www.martinhal.com/hotel-martinhal

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