Lisbon’s Funky New Hotel Has an Incredible View
The latest in the rapidly expanding Mama Shelter group brings some of its offbeat cool to Portugal’s storied capital.
Lisbon may be a city built on seven hills, but for those of us who love to walk it feels like it must be a few dozen. But an added bonus from such undulating topography (other than strong glutes) is that any chance you get to look out across its skyline is always rewarding–it’s truly one of Europe’s best.
That’s why the latest selection for Room Key, Beast Travel’s series on exciting new hotels, is Mama Shelter Lisboa, which has one of the city’s best new rooftops affording unobstructed views across this ancient metropolis.
Opened in January, the property is the newest from the brash Mama Shelter group which started in Paris a decade and a half ago and expanded across France and then to far flung locales like Los Angeles and Rio de Janeiro. Mama Shelter Lisboa is located just a few blocks from Parque Eduardo VII and the high-end shopping district of Avenida da Liberdade which climbs up and away from the city’s harbor.
The hotel’s decor is, intentionally, a lot–azulejos-inspired carpets, tabletops made of recycled materials, pastel pink and green staircases, Alice in Wonderland checkered bathroom. It’s the 21st century version of the Aesthetic Movement’s “Art for art’s sake” although here it’s very clearly “Art for Insta’s sake” as so much of the property’s modern pop décor will have you reaching for your phone and worrying if you’ve already put too many shots on your Story. The hotel itself is housed in a limestone-clad cube with its ground level covered in Viúva Lamego tiles.
There are 130 rooms in the hotel, ranging from Small which are what we would now call efficiently designed with queen-size beds to Large, which have kings and a separate sitting area. In between are the Medium rooms, some of which have terraces. All of the rooms have couches with loud tropical patterns as well as free movies (including, the hotel eagerly informs you, X-rated). One little detail I love is that the big walk-in showers have hooks on the wall inside, meaning you won’t have to get out in the cold after a steamy shower to grab your towel.
Mama Shelter Lisboa has two F&B options. The first is its restaurant, which they describe as a Portuguese twist on a French brasserie. You’ll see many of the dishes you’d find in any millennial hotel worldwide (artisanal pizzas, generous salads) but with local twists like a cod salad, sauteed clams, and pica-pau, a Portuguese dish made with gravy, beer, and bits of beef. When I visited in early April, almost everybody I talked to in the restaurant was from the neighborhood and the couple seated next to me claimed they’d been coming two or three times a week since it opened.
The second option is on the roof which not only has sweeping views of this city down to the Tagus River but also has DJs performing from Thursday on through the weekend.
Rooms at the Mama Shelter Lisboa start at 89 euros a night.