We booked their 4 bed flat, two single beds and two camp beds. It is not in the hotel, just a few doors down over the ice cream store, because of this you don’t get breakfast. It is in an excellent location for the park (opposite the gate), the market, shops, restaurants, supermarket, cinema and bus station (a 5 minute walk – 10 minutes with 4 cases). A good car hire firm is a 25 minute walk north or 5 minutes in a taxi to the north. Access to the motorway is a short drive.
You need to bear in mind what you get for your money, it’s a really inexpensive option giving you a living room, bedroom, shower room (there is a bath but it is tiny), kitchen with gas cooker, large fridge freezer, microwave and small table and chairs. The living room has a couch, table with 4 chairs, coffee table and a TV that receives several Portuguese channels. WiFi is weak but available, there is a login and password. There’s one wardrobe for clothes storage and several small drawers around the flat, there’s not many hangers (4) so we were living out of the suitcase most of the time. However, for the price, overall it’s really quite nice. There is a store that sells absolutely everything at the top of the lane so we could have bought extra hangers there but, as seasoned travellers, we just couldn’t be bothered.
There is a washing machine but make sure you get a full tutorial on it because it is small and cranky. We failed to understand how to seal it properly and they had to call in the plumber (two days later, pretty good for getting hold of a plumber), then accused us of loading it with 10 kilos of clothes, amusing when you think how much 10 kg of clothes is. In fact there was a fraction over 4 kg of clothes and an awful lot of water, I must admit that the angry phone call telling us that we’d need to pay for it if we’d broken it was a bit unpleasant but fortunately, once we understood how to seal it, it worked perfectly. Drying is on lines strung outside the kitchen window, pegs in the kitchen drawer. There are no indoor drying facilities for rainy days, we used the chairs in the kitchen.
Remember this place is roomy and inexpensive, it is a nice flat, but at that price you expect issues. You need to be prepared to buy equipment for the kitchen if you plan to cook. We bought washing up liquid, a tea pot, carving knife (there were only plate knives), cereal bowls, salt and pepper. There are 5 wine glasses and 6 cups but only 2 mugs, so if there are more of you and you prefer mugs you’ll need to buy more. We also bought matches because the lighter on the cooker doesn’t work. There is no kettle so water has to be boiled in a pan. Excellent coffee is available in the park at Smash Café or in the market square but no coffee making facilities in the flat. We’ve left the knife and matches for you, the rest we’ll take home.
Cleaning occurs every two days, the beds are changed and made up and the floor is wiped, TP is replenished, soap is left, unless you are staying an odd number of days and then there is no servicing on your last day.
Parking: the hotel has two parking places reserved at the front of the hotel, effectively these are always occupied, there is parking on the roads around – especially at the far side of the park, but it will mean a bit of a walk, fortunately we like walking. If you are fortunate enough to get one of these places you’ll need to get a token from the hotel desk to display.
One entertaining aspect is the chorus of electric shutters that goes off at 8 a.m. in the shops and rooms around, we didn’t need our alarm clock at all.
In summary we had a nice time here, there were a few moments during the bad temper of the washing machine debacle when I was glad we have a solicitor in Lisbon – it looked like we were going to need her for a while, but this is a nice flat, in a nice place and it is no great problem equipping it with the necessities for cooking and eating.