I’ve always wanted to go to Portugal. It’s not too far away from the UK and it’s got great wine and amazing pastel de natas. What’s not to love? Okay, also add in beaches and amazing city breaks with Lisbon and Faro and you pretty much nailed it. It’s a country that has long been on my hit list for both cultural, sightseeing and foodie reasons (read more about my Portuguese foodie adventures HERE). So, it didn’t take me much convincing to head to Faro and turn my trip into an ultra-long weekend with four days booked in at the Magnolia Hotel within Quinta do Lago.
What is Quinta do Lago you say? Quinta do Lago is a resort and residential estate in the Algarve region of Portugal. The resort has a multitude of restaurants and hotels you can stay it and is set within a peaceful and beautiful area and also not far from the beach. Basically, it’s everything you need if you want to have a peaceful and relaxing holiday but still have a city break just a hop, skip and jump away as central Faro is only about 15 minutes away by taxi.
I think this is the best of both worlds really because if you stay at the Magnolia Hotel within the Quinta do Lago region you have a peaceful environment plus access to the beach via the free bicycles you can rent out from the hotel. And then of course Faro with all its restaurants and markets is just a stone’s throw away.
The Magnolia Hotel itself is what I would class as a boutique hotel within the Quinta do Lago resort, making it quite unique as it sits among bigger and fancier chains of hotels of the likes of the Conrad Algarve. If you like that unique feel, then it’s a hotel for you as it’s best to think of this as the Beverly Hills Hotel meets South Beach. Lots of pinks and blush tones with palm prints and bright colours. Basically, it’s an Instagram dream and a lot of thought has been put into the décor.
I stayed 3 nights at the hotel and really loved it. It was full of extremely good-looking Swedish football players I must say(being close to The Campus where football players go to train in the off-season), the staff were amazing (special thanks to Andrew who looked after us the whole time) and the vibe was chilled and peaceful. I mean, what more could you want? The food is amazing as well so I hope you will definitely read my guide to all things foodie HERE.
This is a hotel suited to both types of people who like to stay at the hotel the whole time they are on holiday to relax or those who like to get out and explore. I like to get out and explore but I like to also be able to relax. The hotel has a fabulous pool and also steam room/sauna which always gets bonus points in my eyes (being a sauna addict). Literally, I need to get a sauna installed in my home I think!
If you want coffee or cocktails (or both) then the hotel can of course provide them so really you could cater to every need here. I think a big selling point to this property is that you can hire out a bicycle for free and cycle to the beach within 10 minutes. And by beach, I mean real beach with miles of sand and waves. A beach you can swim in – to be clear. This is no tiny little rocky beach we are talking about here. The views are amazing!
Faro itself is great to explore and its well worth a visit during the daytime hours. The Old Town is stunning – with winding alleyways, cobbled streets, orange trees, quaint architecture and a real character. Here you will find little cafes and restaurants and it’s perfect for spending a few hours and stopping every so often for a coffee or wine. I also went to an amazing rooftop bar with views of the marina while I was there and it’s worth a glass of wine (only 2 Euros!) and a view of the sunset. Value for money is good when it comes to eating and drinking in Faro as well, compared to UK prices.
If you want to see some photos of my trip during my stay at The Magnolia Hotel and also in Faro make sure to follow me on Instagram @beautyrocksblog and scroll down and you will surely see them!
For more about The Magnolia Hotel see HERE.