If you travel a lot, hotels often tend to blur into one and they all seem the same. You get a small room with a bed, and not much else. This doesn’t always have to be the case though. I recently discovered a different type of hotel while I was on a business trip to Lisbon; it is something called an Aparthotel.
Basically it is a mix between a furnished apartment and a hotel… all the conveniences of a hotel with the at-home feel that a private apartment gives you. You get a nice bedroom, a small well equipped kitchen and a separate bathroom. Most Aparthotels also provide well stocked mini-bars and a nice on-site restaurant.
Staying in Lisbon
The particular hotel I stayed in was the Solplay Aparthotel in Lisbon. It’s located a bit outside the city centre, near the National Stadium, but this isn’t really an inconvenience since the hotel provides shuttle buses, and a taxi ride either way isn’t expensive. A few of the features that really stood out for me included the incredibly well equipped gym, the piano bar and the absolutely amazing views of the river. There is also a very nice swimming pool, a sauna, a jacuzzi, and even a cinema room.
When I arrived the staff were amazingly helpful, and everyone I talked to spoke fluent English making the check-in process a breeze. I was pleasantly surprised at the size of the rooms – my room was almost 50 square metres, the same size as my own apartment back home. To say that I was stunned by the aparthotel is an understatement. The best surprise for me though was when I walked into the living room area, and saw the big French doors leading out to my very own balcony with a view. I just stood there taking in the warm sunshine and watched the cruise ships pass on their way out to the Atlantic. If anyone asks me if an Aparthotel is a good idea, they will get a resounding “Yes, definitely!”