The Astounding Destination of the Year 2021: Melides, Alentejo
The prestigious magazine Condé Nast Traveller has released its travel guide's list for 2021 with plenty of choices, ranging from Central America to Australia to Portugal. But there is a destination in the list that has made a surprise it is in Portugal (in which by the way the only destination of the country figured the list) and its name is Melides, on the Alentejo coast. The author writes that Melides is already nicknamed by those who know it as the "new Comporta", although with few boutique hotels and modern art galleries. Instead, there are deserted beaches and miles of vineyards, rice fields, and cork oaks that are slowly attracting artists. Although she points out that the destination "remains fortunately little known", being still possible to find local residents playing cards, the journalist remembers that among the famous with the home in this destination is Philippe Starck.
As you can see, Melides is definitely the next luxury destination, filled with unique and very luxurious options. Furthermore, the location is perfect for those who enjoy privacy, after all the alluring Alentejo offers this and much more. So let's unveil a little bit more about this destination.
The village of Melides in Portugal is incredibly charming and not that big. While visiting this amazing village you will sense that the atmosphere is quiet, friendly, and very pleasant. The atmosphere is vibrant due to its people, the farmers, and the fishermen that sell the fresh fish and fruit, and vegetables from their farms. Furthermore, and while exploring the alleys of the village’s ancient center, you can see 18th- and 19th-century properties with woodwork and wrought-iron balconies of the period. The ruins of the old church of “Santa Marinha” (late 15th century) are also worth a detour. Its impressive columns, walls, and buttresses are still clearly visible. Besides these unique historic characteristics, you will see that the biggest unique feature of this village is the Melides lagoon. It is a large lagoon that cuts across the land and flows down to the beach. Also, the water flows through the pine forest, rice paddies, and meadows of Melides. It thus creates a rich natural area for the flora and fauna it shelters. Since 2010, it has been classified as a “protected area of national interest”.
Where to Stay
Melides is definitely the center stage of Portugal for the upcoming year due to the many openings of hotels in this village. In 2016, after being invited by the "Financial Times" to create a roadmap for the Alentejo, the famed shoe designer, Christian Louboutin presented to the world his new Melides house: simple but luxurious and with an incredible design. Still, he is was not happy and in some way felt that he wasn't showing his deep love for Portugal. So his next move? He decided to open a luxury boutique hotel that will have 15 rooms, a restaurant, and many other areas. Its opening will be already in 2021. Furthermore, it wasn't only Christian Louboutin that understood that Melides was the "new Comporta" or even the "new Hamptons", Turkish investors also understood this, and the Umay Resort is already in construction too (picture above) in which its opening will be in 2022. The resort has shell-spades, it will have 28 rooms, villas, treehouses, an overhead pool, a restaurant and so much more. As you can see, many projects will be opening next year, where you will savor Melides through all the luxurious comfort that you deserve and can imagine.
Where to Eat
As you may know, Alentejo is a wine-producing region with a long tradition. Their wines are very awarded and recognition worldwide. It always surprises wine lovers due to its excellence. After all, the aromas, and colors as unique as the landscape, make these wines very unique. Moreover, from the fragrant flavors of the Alentejo cuisine to the wines, you will learn that you will end your journey with an even richer palate. In addition, there a lot of places where you can enjoy the gastronomy of Alentejo in Melides, one that we suggest is the Twopack kitchen where you can experience a gourmet barbecue in the middle of nature that translates in a certain way into a fabulous country picnic.
What to Do
Melides is a place where is possible to do many amazing activities, especially outdoors. Some of them consist of horse riding, ballooning, golf, birdwatching, nature walks, paddle, yoga, and so many other fantastic ones. Furthermore, you can spice a notch these activities, after all, you the travel elite deserve the best that life has to offer. So why not enjoy a horse ride on a pristine beach of Melides and enjoy it with a wine tasting? In another hand, you can also choose one of these activities or another that you have dreamed to do, and why not add a little surprise with your favorite wines excellence the delicious Alentejo cheeses, and the fragrant flavors of the Alentejo cuisine? It will surely be a much richer and more complete experience.
By booking your 2020 or 2021 tour in Portugal with us you will have flexibility in the future, plus our Covid-19 Health and Safety Guidelines. Through these unique times, we are available to plan, reschedule, and move your trip around your needs, as always. If your new dates may no longer work with your initial travel plan, a dedicated consultant will be available to tailor and reschedule your tour in Portugal according to your needs and preferences, and to assure you that you will have the best and most memorable experiences.
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