Finding a beachfront hotel that's both affordable and awesome is no easy feat. But leave it up to Portugal, a country that's already packed with the works (temperate weather, sweet port wine, friendly locals, and a rich and colorful history, to name a few) to make it a downright breeze. From kid-friendly options the whole family can enjoy to romantic getaways for couples, there's something for all types of vacation itineraries. Here, we rounded up nine of our wallet-friendly favorites.
Hotels have been priced for October 2016.
Located in Algarve, a beloved tourist destination, this all-inclusive hotel is a solid choice for both families and younger, party-oriented folks. The latter will appreciate the hotel’s prime cliffside beach location and nearby nightclubs, while the former will find enjoyment at the popular kids’ club with bouncy castle (only offered during peak season), two-tiered swimming pool, and waterslides. The 177 apartment-style rooms all come equipped with kitchenettes, dining and living areas, and terraces. And unforgettable ocean views are the cherry on top.
Conveniently situated about 10 minutes away from the popular Old Town of Albufeira, Clube Praia da Oura is the larger sister spot to the aforementioned Oura-View Beach Club. With 564 apartment-style rooms, this property is also suited for both families and friends. Accommodation options include studios and one- or two-bedroom apartments and vary between recently renovated and more dated. In addition to a terrace, each apartment comes with a stovetop and microwave (or oven in some). But for those who prefer to eat out, there are plenty of nice local restaurants nearby. Oh, and all-inclusive options are available, too.
While Vidamar Resort Algarve has a higher price point than some of the other beachfront properties in the region, it’s still an affordable option. Secluded, yet still close enough to Albufeira (20 minutes by car), this charming hotel, which overlooks the dunes of Salgados Beach, is ideal for guests seeking a calm and quiet getaway. For those who want to stay in tip-top shape (or bliss out), there’s a deluxe health club and spa with weights, cardio equipment, a whirlpool, sauna, steam bath, and more. After sweating it out, fuel up at one of the four on-site restaurants, then cool down in any of the three outdoor pools.
Positioned right on Vilamoura Beach, just a short walk from the marina, the 323-room Crowne Plaza Vilamoura is one of the most luxurious hotels in the area. Comfy beds, stylish decor, and marble bathrooms with rain showers make guests feel at home immediately. And with a large lagoon-style pool and plenty of sun loungers, the property takes relaxing very seriously. This off-duty vibe also spills out onto the rest of hotel, from the on-site putting green and group fitness classes to the spa with an indoor pool and hammam, two bars, and outdoor multi-sports court.
Couples looking for a romantic, upscale experience will enjoy their stay at the 195-room Pestana Alvor Praia. Located on a cliff on the outskirts of town, this property shows off its beautifully manicured lawns on the outside. Inside, the rooms, which are outfitted with beachy decor (think blue-and-yellow striped duvets and crisp white walls), are warm and inviting. Even better, most digs come with balconies that boast spectacular sea views.
This 61-room hotel, which overlooks Alvor Bay and sits close to the sprawling Prainha Village, frequently attracts both families and couples. When booking, guests can choose between three room styles — a cozy studio or one- or two-bedroom apartment that comes with a kitchenette and balcony. Once you’ve arrived, take advantage of the several dining options, including a beach bar and restaurant built into a cliff. We recommend Canico Restaurant, which is open seasonally and serves up fantastic beach views alongside delicious seafood and cocktails.
This modern Algarve property does not allow guests under 13 years old, which can be appealing for some and a drawback for others. As a result, guests who do spend the night here will appreciate the peaceful atmosphere. Bonus: The strategic location provides easy access to Bicos Beach during the day and Albufeira’s nightlife after dark. Folks can also opt to spend the afternoon by the poolside bar before moving up to the rooftop bar for panoramic views and creative cocktails. Plus, a bright atrium with funky wall art as well as minimalist rooms — many of which feature sea views — round out the stay nicely.
Located in Cascais, 40 minutes west of Lisbon, this picturesque family-run hotel boasts a rooftop patio that towers over the beach, a beautiful promenade, and ferris wheel. Recently renovated, the well-maintained, eco-friendly space also offers guests 113 rooms (half with balconies overlooking the sea) plus five banquet rooms for special events. Whatever you do, don’t miss golden hour here, which is best viewed from the rooftop or on the seaside terrace.
Set on a long stretch of sandy beach, this all-inclusive, kid-friendly resort is the ultimate city escape. The rooms, which are spread across 15 low-rise buildings, are smartly decorated with bright and modern touches, tiled floors, and sliding doors that open to furnished balconies or terraces (some with sea views). Beyond the bedroom, there’s plenty to do and see, from swimming in the sea and dancing at the disco to perfecting your tennis game on the outdoor courts.