Restaurant/gallery ‘House of Wonders’ in Cascais near Lisbon: lovely roof terrace, healthy food, recycled furniture, African articraft & Dutch owner Anna Catharina

The ‘House of Wonders’ is really worth a visit if you are in Portugal’s famous vacation spot Cascais. Looking for a healthy lunchtime snack or dinner this unique place is easy to find in the center of the former fishing village close to the beach. Easy to reach from Lisbon (30 min. by train)

Roof terrace ‘House of Wonders’ in Cascais: excellent relaxing place!

The lovely roof terrace with comfortable cushions is situated on the top of the beautiful building. Even in wintertime when the weather is good you can sit here and enjoy the fabulous bayview and the sunset.

Harbour- and seaview from roof terrace ‘House of Wonders’ Cascais

Anna De Bruin is from Dutch origin and owner of “House of Wonders” in Cascais. “I lived 20 years in Africa and South America, where I launched the 1st collection of recycled boat furniture in the Caribbean”.

Cafe Gallery ‘House of Wonders’ owner Anna Catharina de Bruin

Anna: ” I chose Portugal to live because this country is very human and very authentic. It’s a mix between Europe and Africa, where many people are connected to this continent and in spite of the crisis they are positive, like me”.

First floor cafe the “House of Wonders” Cascais, December 2012

You can enjoy a range of home cooked food from the cafe. It is not a vegetarian restaurant but there are good options available. The menu often offer home made soup, quiches, pies and very tasty salads.

Snack with presunto (traditional Portuguese ham)

The food is fantastic and also the very friendly staff! Prices are fair, like a quiche and salad (€ 7.50), vegetable soup (€ 3.50) and a glass of good Portuguese white wine (€3.75).

First floor cafe & art gallery the “House of Wonders” Cascais

The first floor cafe is also an art gallery and there are beautiful African artifacts for sale, mainly handmade. I met a nice lady from Boston: Lynn Kenney (picture). If you are traveling alone the “House of Wonders’ is a cozy place to meet other people from around the world.

First floor Cafe & art gallery “House of Wonders’ Cascais: Bernardo and Anna

Anna: “This project was my dream! I opened the “House of Wonders” in Cascais around 3 years ago – a beautiful space, very cozy. A unique concept that features furniture and decorative pieces in natural wood, made from old dhowns – abandoned boats from the beaches of the Swahili coast – Kenya, Tanzania and Mozambique.

Ground floor “House of Wonders” Cascais: beautiful recycled boat furniture from Africa

Website with information about how the abandoned boats make their way into Europe’s world of organic and chic furniture design

Cascais is easy to reach by train from Lisbon’s station Cais do Sodré (around 30 minutes). More about Cascais

First floor Cafe & art gallery “House of Wonders’ Cascais

Cafe Galeria House of Wonders Cascais: Largo da Misericordia  in the historic center of Cascais, Portugal. Phone (00351) 91 170 2428.

Facebook . Free WiFi.

House of Wonders Cascais roofterrace oct 13

Rooftop Cafe & art gallery “House of Wonders’ Cascais, October 2013

 

Bar “da Velha Senhora” (Old Lady’s bar) Lisbon: burlesque performances, glittering revue, fado, petiscos & the day ‘barefoot diva’ Cesária Évora died

If you like burlesque performances, glittering revue shows and cabaret a must-go place is bar “da Velha Senhora” (Old lady’s bar) in Lisbon! Video: ‘Hallooooooooooooooooooo!”  2 beautiful ladies invite you to enjoy the show

Bar da Velha Senhora” Cais do Sodré, Lisbon

While eating traditional Portuguese snacks (“petiscos“) you can enjoy various artistic performances. This bar is in the same typical Portuguese 18th-century building as “Pensão Amor” (a former ‘love’ guesthouse), with a wonderful unique décor and the same old burlesque, relaxed atmosphere. Also really worth a visit!

Stage Bar ”da Velha Senhora” Cais do Sodré, Lisbon

Inside, almost everything complies with the burlesque theme and imagery of Cais (river Tagus quai) do Sodré of the early twentieth century. The building itself – a cultural and artistic project – which includes Bar da Velha Senhora, witnesses the time that thirsty sailors docked in the harbor and spent their free time drinking booze and have fun with women.

Bar ”da Velha Senhora” Cais do Sodré, Lisbon

The stories of prostitutes and sailors are inseparable from Cais do Sodré, formerly known as Lisbon’s red light district with bars named after northern European capitals (like Copenhagen, or Roterdão, Rotterdam) to attract their sailors who stepped off their boats here.

But times have changed: nowaydays it is a great area to go out at night! Musicbox is a trendy hotspot for live bands and DJ’s, disco clubs Tokyo and Jamaica became two of the most loved alternative clubs in Lisbon.

Bar ”da Velha Senhora” & DJ Rycardo Lisbon, December 17, 2011

I will never forget the day Cesária Évora died, December 17, 2011. Early in the evening we went to Bar da Velha Senhora. When DJ Rycardo started to play the famous and wonderful songs of Cesária, suddenly all the people in the bar started spontaneously clapping their hands and some began to cry … I still get goosebumps thinking about that day…!

Bar ”da Velha Senhora” & DJ Rycardo Lisbon: the day Cesária Évora died

A woman jumped on the table and started to dance…….   Amazing!

Popular singer Cesária Évora, “the Barefoot Diva’, has made Cape (Cabo) Verde famous all over the world. She generally performed in bare feet, as a sign of solidarity for the large number of women and children back home in the Cape Verdean Islands who cannot afford shoes.

Cesária Évora: ‘Saudade’  (youtube). More about former Portuguese colony Cape Verde (from 1456-1975)

Bar ”da Velha Senhora” Cais do Sodré, Lisbon

Rua Nova do Carvalho 38, Cais do Sodré, Lisbon, tel. (00351)351 213 468 479. Open: Tuesday to Sunday 6pm to 4am

Metro: Cais do Sodré. Facebook.com/bardavelhasenhora

Lisbon tourist guide Josephine: walk in area Mouraria, maze of narrow Moorish style streets, shopping, Ginja, Fado & restaurant São Cristóvão

Josephine Lucassen is a professional guide, licensed by the city of Lisbon. She loves it to organise private walking tours for a group of tourists in this old and wonderful city!

Mouraria, Lisbon: Escadinhas de São Cristóvão & Josephine Lucassen, guide

Example: a walking tour through the oldest parts of Lisbon, the popular districts of Alfama and Mouraria, the ancient areas that have survived the earthquake of 1755. The many winding alleys still show the traces of the Moorish domination (from 711-1108). It is said that Fado music was born in Mouraria around 1820.

Authentic apartment for rent in this old area: 3 bedrooms and a very nice quiet patio (30 m2)

Mouraria Lisbon: stairs to Rua de São Cristóvão

The best way to start this walk is from Rua da Madalena and then climb the stairs Escadinhas de São Cristóvão.

Mouraria Lisbon: Rua de São Cristóvão in wintertime

Josephine: “I was born in Holland in a small village in Drente. After some travel jobs (f.e. Hotelplan) I prefered to live in Portugal. I’m happily married to a sympathetic Portuguese man, Jorge. Together we have 2 children. My curiosity and also the beauty of Portugal made me decide to study at the University of Lisbon. Now I am a professional,  licenced tourist guide with a lot of experience and a passion for history”.

Artisanat Portugais vintage & curiosites

‘A Loja': Artisanat Portugais, vintage & Curiosités, Rua de São Cristóvão 3

Josephine: “On the corner of this street there’s a nice shop for tourists with typical Portuguese pottery and much more. We continue our walk in the small alleys of the Mouraria area and then we enjoy a drink in one of the pubs: the famous Portuguese liqueur Ginja (or Ginjinha), a must when you visit Lisbon!”

A sua saúde! (cheers!) Josephine in Mouraria Lisbon, area with lots of old bars and narrow streets.

Ginjinha, or simply Ginja, is a liqueur made of a cherry-like berry called (not surprisingly) Ginja. The berries are fermented into a brandy that’s slightly bitter, slightly sweet and very sticky. It is a favourite liqueur of many Portuguese. You can order a Ginja for little money, with or without a cherry in it.

Mouraria Lisbon: historical area with tiny steets and small bars

Josephine: “Where shall we enjoy lunch? Maybe this small restaurant with delicious Cape Verdian dishes (Cape Verde is a former colony of Portugal  from 1462 till 1975). After lunch we walk to Rua do Capelão, to visit the house of the first fadista, Maria Severa. Maria died very young after a passionate liaison with a nobleman in 1846. This house will be a fado museum. Also born in Mouraria: Mariza. Amália Rodrigues, ‘queen of Fado’ was born nearby.

Restaurant São Cristóvão Mouraria: owner Maria Levy and Josephine

Restaurant São Cristóvão is a small family-run restaurant, favorite place among locals for its Cape Verdean- and other African dishes. The menu also includes typical Portuguese cuisine such as codfish (bacalhau) and sardines (sardinhas). Moamba de Galinha (Angolan chicken stew) is a very popular dish: € 7.

Mouraria, Lisbon, a hidden place: beautiful very old tiles (azulejos)

Portugal is famous for its decorative tiles (azulejos). In Mouraria there’s a hidden place where you find beautiful tiles representing biblical- and scenes of Portugal’s rich history and culture. Azulejos are found on the interior and exterior of churches, palaces and ordinary houses.

Square Martim Moniz February 2013: Kiosk ‘A Preta’:  João (Johnny)

Josephine: “Then we finish our trip enjoying a drink in the sun at square Martim Moniz, nowadays with lots of terraces and food kiosks. This is where the historic Mouraria neighborhood starts, a multicultural area. The food here is also very good. Johnny worked a few years in Amsterdam. He speaks a little Dutch (‘lekker!‘)

Lisbon Square Martim Moniz: Kiosk ‘A Preta’: guide Josephine & ???

This man, for both of us completely unknown, asked me to make a picture of him together with this beautiful lady  :-)

Starting point legendary tram 28

This square Martim Moniz is also the starting point for the legendary tram 28, a ‘must- do’ Lisbon attraction.

Alfama, historical area in Lisbon: Escadinhas Santo Estêvão

Private city walking tours

Josephine: “For for some years I organize private walking tours for groups. Many tourists miss the hidden gems of Lisbon, simply because they did not know about them!

Lisbon river Tagus viewpoint (miradouro) Santa Catarina or Adamastor

Josephine: “Another idea for a 4-hour walking tour is a start near the river Tagus: Cais do Sodré, famous fish market Mercado do Ribeiro, cute and famous little tram to the top of the Bica area, river Tagus viewpoint Santa Catarina, bohemien neighborhood Bairro Alto, along Sao Bento palace, park in Principe Real with one of the oldest cedar trees in Lisbon. Finally Rossio, a wonderful square with historical buildings and of course: liqueur Ginja!

Tourist attraction Lisbon: sculpture Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa, kissed by a young girl more than 75 years after his dead….

Tailored Tours

“How about a tour tailored to your specific needs? A walking full day tour combined with old trams and funiculars would be a perfect idea”.

Price: from € 15, 00 per person (4 hours) Full day tour € 25 pp.  Minimum 4 people (max. 10).

Mail josephinelucassen@yahoo.com or call: 00351 966 361 983

“My favorite place in Lisbon? Pffffffff, not easy, one of them is river viewpoint Portas do Sol, especially by night…..amazing!”

Tagus river viewpoint (Miradouro) Portas do Sol, Alfama Lisbon

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon: Alps, Swiss cheese fondue, French 40s music, funny 70s retro décor, Heidi & owners Marc and Sindi

Cheese fondue in Lisbon? Yes! In Príncipe Real (near Bairro Alto) you can find bistro Edelweiss with flavors of the Swiss Alps in a warm retro decor, inspired by the ’70s. Swiss specialties such as cherry brandy cheese fondue are always on the menu and of course the famous Swiss chocolates.

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon cheese fondue Swiss decor cow

Bistro Edelweiss in neighborhood Príncipe Real Lisbon. Cow: Greta

The cheese fondue (€ 25 for two people) is classic: bread or potatoes, dipped in a fondue made with various Swiss cheeses and a “secret ingredient” which is a Portuguese cheese. Of course accompanied by cherry brandy (schwarzwälder kirschwasser), lit. black forest cherry water…

Erika likes cheese fondue

Bistro Edelweiss in Lisbon: cheese fondue (€ 25  for two people)

They keep changing the menu, but some specialties are always available, like Scharzwälder Schinken (Black Forest ham) with cornichons and onions, Suure Mocke (a starter: beef braised in vinegar and cream sauce) and Bratwurst mit Zwiebelsauce und Rösti (Sausage with onion sauce and Rösti). You can find the daily menu on their facebook page.

Bistro Edelweiss in Lisbon & the very sympathetic owners Marc and Sindi

Marc discovered this space a few years ago, the perfect place for the restaurant he and Sindi (Swiss origin) had in mind to open. With a background in architecture, Marc, born in Canada but emigrated to Switzerland, designed the decoration of the bistro. The retro furniture is remarkable and the space is filled with funny 70s details, like the television with a crackling fireplace and a cuckoo clock.

The famous song Edelweiss (Youtube) is written in 1959 ;-)

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon, December 2012

This Bistro recreates the ambience of the Swiss Alps (painted on the windows) in Lisbon. The atmosphere is a mix of 70s retro and a ski resort. Sindi studied at the Hotel School in Switzerland and worked in several hotels in the country.

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon: starter salad with chicory and beetroot € 5.50

My friend Erika enjoyed the cheese fondue, I tried the onion soup € 4.00: very good! Bottle of fine white Portuguese wine € 14.00. The biological apple mousse dessert (sobremesa) is one of the specialties of Sindi, the chef who runs the kitchen and creates new menus regularly. Fish and vegetarian dishes are also on the menu and of course German beer.

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon: retro furniture & map of Switzerland on the wall

Three years ago Marc and Sindi opened the HEIDI bar in the legendary neighborhood Bairro Alto in Lisbon. The bar is closed because now they want to devote themselves exclusively to their Bistro. More info about the song:(wikipedia) Edelweiss

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon

Bistro Edelweiss Lisbon: closed on Tuesday. Dinners only (from 18h to 24h). Prices: entrees between € 3.50 and € 7.50, main dishes between € 12 and 15. Rua de São Marçal, 2, Lisbon. Phone 00351 21 346 5324.

Saint George’s Castle Lisbon overlooking lively square Martim Moniz: multicultural delicacies, aphrodisiacs, market, terraces, events calendar, (live) music & starting point tourist tram 28

When you travel to Lisbon it is a must to visit the legendary St. George’s castle. Walking from the beautiful  Rossio square to Castelo de São Jorge, you will cross square Praça Martim Moniz (GOOGLE MAP), starting point of the legendary tram 28, a ‘must do’ Lisbon attraction.

Square Martim Moniz February 2013: Kiosk ‘A Preta’ (‘The Black’) : João (Johnny) and his sister Luiza Gabriel

Short term rentals: my 3bedroom authentic apartment (110 m2) in this historical part of Lisbon with a lovely patio, 5 minutes walk from this square

Kiosk with a tropical touch. João and his sister Luiza (DJ Lady G Brown) serve super good hamburgers, delicious pinchos (meat on a stick), salades and fresh juices. They were born in Angola, a former colony of Portugal (from the 16th century to 1975). They moved to Lisbon in 1982. Johnny worked a few years in Amsterdam and he speaks a little Dutch (‘lekker!‘)

Kiosk ‘A Preta’ Square Martim Moniz Lisbon; hamburger with salad and potatoes € 5,50. Delicious! Salad: 4.00 €

Square Martim Moniz, located in the most multicultural area in Lisbon is nowadays a place where you can enjoy a light (also vega) meal in the sun: a meeting of cultures that will host delicacies from the four corners of the world, in the weekends there’s a market selling biological products, shops, music and shows.

Monthly events calendar Square Martim Moniz Mercado de Fusão

Castle of Saint Jorge (Castelo de São Jorge ) overlooking square Martim Moniz Lisbon

Here you can eat samosas, or a pizza, or ice cream, or a hamburger, or a vegetarian snack … drinking a cold beer, listen to live music or a DJ and enjoy the warm summer evenings. The Castelo de São Jorge overlooking the historical centre of Lisbon, and the entire square has a view of the castle.

Square Martim Moniz February 2013: vegetarian kiosk Erva & Carla Contige

Kiosk with green cuisine: vegetarian, vegan and macrobiotic specialities, made with fresh ingredients and prepared with love by Carla Contige…. You must try the salad, full of fruit, greens and seeds, or a Vega burger (€ 5). Besides: Carla is a very beautiful girl….. :-)

Square Martim Moniz November 2013: kiosk mr. LEADER (BBQMM)

Kiosk with a cook of Chinese origin. I tasted his creation of an empadão, a mix of minced meat and mashed potatoes.

Empadão (pie) mix: minced meat with mashed potatoes, linguiça (smoke cured pork sausage seasoned with garlic and paprika), bacon an dried chili peppers

Delicious! ( 3.50 euro)

Square Martim Moniz Mercado de Fusão December 2012: aphrodisiacs and liqueurs like Licor de Merda (made of shit)  ;-)

The Liqor de Merda was born in 1974. It is a Portuguese alcoholic drink and the literal translation is “Shit liqueur”. Portugal went through a turbulent period marked by the struggle bewteen left and right. It was made to “honour” the government and, despite being a milk licor, it is said that it’s made with the best different types of shit.

Square Martim Moniz Kiosk ‘A Preta’ November 2012: here you can enjoy sun and music (DJ is Rycardo)

YouTube Square Martim Moniz Lisbon

On Thursdays and Fridays from 3 PM to midnight there’s a DJ ( Soul, Funcky, Reggae, World Music, Jazz and more..) to liven up the square and to get you in the mood for the weekend. Here you can find all the cultures and flavours from around the world: 10 fast food kiosks from various continents, America, Africa, Europe and Asia that await you for an alternative dining experience.

Square Martim Moniz Lisbon: people are invited to dance for ONE BILLION RISING, February 14, Valentines day 2013

There’s also a stage on the square, always ready to host concerts, lectures, workshops and much more….. A Fun Track is also available in one of the kiosks, which rents pedal karts, streetsurfing boards, scooters, skateboards and roller skates for both children and adults.

Square Martim Moniz Lisbon, December 2012

Every day the kiosks are open from 10:00 till midnightOn Thursdays and Fridays from 3 PM to midnight there’s a DJ . Every Saturday and Sunday a Fusion market is held here, Mercado de fusão (10h às 19h), bringing together the Martim Moniz retail trade with famous shops in the city.

Near this square is the starting point of the legendary tram 28.

Knight & hero Martim Moniz: stylized depiction in the square’s metro station

But who was Martim Moniz? He was a hero! He sacrificed himself in 1147. According to the legend, Martim Moniz was a knight participating in the Christian invasion force, led by king Afonso I of Portugal. At one point in the siege of São Jorge Castle, he saw the Moors closing the castle doors. He led an attack on the doors, and sacrificed himself by lodging himself in the doorway, preventing the defenders from fully closing the door.

Rob Plews December 2012 Praca Martim Moniz kiosk A Preta

Rob Plews square Martim Moniz Lisbon December 2012 Kiosk’ A Preta’

Mercado de fusão on Facebook

Designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo in Lisbon & his Art Nouveau style atelier, once dictator Salazar’s private jewelry store

If you visit Lisbon it’s a nice idea to walk up the little hill from Praça Martim Moniz to the famous castle (Castelo São Jorge) . In a street called Calçada de Santo André  nr. 15 you will see an atelier on the right side with a beautiful façade in Portuguese Art Nouveau style.

Lisbon designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo & his atelier in beautiful Art Nouveau style

Here you can find designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo, 19 years old, at work in his atelier. Sebastião: ‘ This place is amazing! I was looking around to find my own atelier in Lisbon, because I created wire designs in my bedroom at home but the place was soon too small…..and then I found this, it’s  just like a dream….!

Lisbon designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo at work in his atelier, Calçada de Santo André 15, Lisbon

Sebastião: ‘ two years ago the owner of this jewelry store, signor Barata, passed away. This name is quite common in Portugal, but it means cockroach ;-)  . The place has a long history, around 80 years ago it was a workshop where watches and clocks were made and repaired, and then signor Barata bought the entire building, because he loved the Art Nouveau façade. Now his son owns the atelier, I could rent it for a nice price including the use of all the tools his father used.

Designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo in Lisbon & a ring with Christmas balls, created from brass and silver

Signor Barata was a very creative man and he was the private jeweler of Portugal’s dictator António de Oliveira Salazar, president of the Council of Ministers of Portugal from 1932 to 1968. In the shop there’s still a book with beautiful drawings and designs of fine and stunning jewelry creations.

Beautiful drawing of a tiara design in the book of sr. Barata, former owner of the jewelry store

Sebastião:  ”When I was young I always wanted to become an archaeologist , but at the age of 12 I started to create wire designs . And the passion for jewelery was always there, as far as I can remember I felt attracted to windows filled with beautiful designs.

Designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo’s atelier in Lisbon: beautiful Art Nouveau style

“These types of Art Nouveau buildings were very popular and especially built for jewelry stores, because the front is made entirely of iron and therefore not very attractive to burglars. As far as I know this is still the only place in Lisbon with the tradition to create and to sell jewelry”

Sebastião Saraiva Lobo’s wire design INSECT (15 euro):  patio of my apartment in Lisbon (short term rentals)

In the late 19th to early 20th centuries, Art Nouveau was a trendy off-shoot of the Arts & Crafts movement. It is characterized by organic shapes found in nature. Art Nouveau started in Paris, and quickly spread across Europe, with each country incorporating the style within their traditional architecture. In Portugal, Art Nouveau (Arte Novo) found a home largely in Lisbon, Porto and Aveiro. The Art Nouveau was late and short-lived in Portugal. Began around the year 1905 and ended 15 years later in 1920.

Designer Sebastião Saraiva Lobo , Calçada de Santo André  nr. 15 in Lisbon. E-mail: sebastiao.lobo@gmail.com, tel. 00351 910641549.

Window dressing atelier Sebastião Saraiva Lobo Lisbon, wire designcockroaches ;-)

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‘Tapada das Necessidades’ Lisbon: remarkable cactus garden, Palace gossip, free access & setting for a picnic usually seen in films

Exotic garden Tapada das Necessidades in Lisbon is a guarded secret even the most Lisboetas don’t know about. Beautiful grounds and palace peeling pink paint, with an incredible cactus garden and a setting for a picnic you usually only see in films. Since a few years it’s open to the public/tourists and it’s free!

Tapada das Necessidades garden Lisbon: birthday picnic party June 2012

Between the famous Prazeres cemetery (also really worth a visit!) and the river Tagus (Tejo) you can find this large (about 10 ha) exotical park, including a wonderful picnic area, a network of walkways, historical buildings, a garden and lakes. The grounds of the palace contain a remarkable collection of exotic plants known as “Tapada das Necessidades”.

Tapada das Necessidades Lisbon: Lilja & the candy-pink birthday cake, June 2012

Our lovely friend Lilja (70!) from England, born in Iceland, was invited for a surprise birthday picnic. This beautiful lady likes shopping, like handbags, hats and shoes, and she loves to try on every pair of shoes before deciding whether to buy anything at all ;-)  . That’s why this special birthday cake: a pink ‘hat’ decorated with elegant ladies shoes and a small handbag on top.

Exotic garden ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ Lisbon: prime location for a picnic or a lazy afternoon

The Palace (Palácio) das Necessidades was built in the 18th century in gratitude for prayers answered by Nossa Senhora das Necessidades (Our Lady of the Needs, a title dedicated to the Virgin Mary), whose first devotional chapel stood on this site. Nowadays this palace is a Portuguese National Monument

Garden ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ Lisbon: walk through the immense, amazing garden

The ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ has been the stage for some important events in Portuguese history, as exemplified in the famous case of the box that king Dom Pedro V installed at the door, in wich everyone could leave their messages and complaints to the sovereign.

From 1910, the palace remained unoccupied for almost 40 years. In around 1950 it became the headquarters of the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Garden Tapada das Necessidades Lisbon: Rob and Felipe, June 2012

It is really wonderful to walk in this garden, you have the feeling that it’s all yours, because there are almost no other people around… In the park are no sanitairy facilities, the guardians at the entrance cried: ” enough trees here”!…. ;-)  There are three lakes surrounded by exotic vegetation, sculptures, a waterfall, a fountain and a pool. Really beautiful but faded elegance….

“Hello? Thank you! I’m currently in Lisbon.. Yes! Celebrating my 70th birthday”

Besides: officially the few small pink-washed cottages in this park were once the little prince’s playhouses. But there are rumors that young women lived in those little pink houses, being the mistresses of the king …  ;-)

One of the little pink-painted houses in the garden: playhouse for the little prince?

The abandoned buildings create a mysterious atmosphere…..and inside there’ s a lot of trash…….   More pictures of this park, the historical buildings and the exotic plants and flowers: Beautiful garden pictures getportugal.com

Tapada das Necessidades garden Lisbon: entrance/exit near the Palace

How to get there? Take the 28 tram to Prazeres. The main entrance of the park Tapada das Necessidades is through the Largo das Necessidades. This park is open to the public every day of the week – including Saturdays and Sundays, the entrance is guarded but entry is free.

The Palace (Palácio) das Necessidades, June 2012

Open: wintertime 8h – 18h (from Monday u/i Friday), from 10h – 18h (Saturday and Sunday). Summertine 8h – 19h (from Monday u/i Friday), from 10h – 19h (Saturday/Sunday)

Unique bar ‘Pensão Amor’ (Pension Amor) Lisbon in former red light district Cais do Sodré: sailors, art, culture & pole dance

Rua Nova do Carvalho in Lisbon, located behind the famous market near the river Tagus, was for decades known as a street in the city’s red light district with bars named after northern European capitals (like CopenhagenOslo or Roterdão , Rotterdam) to attract the sailors who stepped off their boats here.

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: wonderful drawings on the walls of the stairs

‘Pensão Amor’ is located in a typical Portuguese 18th-century building. Once a cheap pension with rooms rented by the hour to prostitutes and their clients to enjoy a short moment of love ;-) . Along the 5 floors of the building you can admire remake copies of old posters from burlesque shows and peep shows.

Drawing artists Mario Belem & Hugo ‘Makarov’ Martins’ website and movie

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: burlesque decor & ceilings with frescoes

The ceilings of this former ‘guesthouse’ are painted with frescoes, the walls are covered with mirrors, paintings and old posters, and decorative pieces give the space an old burlesque, relaxed atmosphere. Amazing! The wonderful décor is recalling the history of the building.

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: the pole dance room

Now ‘Pensão Amor’ is one of the most popular bars in Lisbon with various spaces for events like concerts, ateliers, a book store (love/erotica), a trendy hair saloon, bars and a bar with Peruvian specialties. The pole dance room is decorated with leopard and gold. Pole dance workshops are held here to learn the tricks of seduction…

Rua Nova do Carvalho, hip and trendy street in Lisbon

Cais do Sodré  is transformated into a hip and trendy area and Rua Nova do Carvalho is a street lined with hip bars and clubs that become crowded after 2AM when the bars in the legendary area Bairro Alto start to close. More remarkable bars in this street: bar/cafe Sol e Pesca, and Bar da Velha Senhora

‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon – Erika Reusens admires the bar in burlesque style

The bar has two entrances:  Rua do Alecrim 19  including an outside café terrace) and on Rua Nova do Carvalho.

Pensão Amor Art & culture, Bars | Cocktails (< 22:00) € 8.00, beer € 3. (+351)213143399. Mon – Wed 12:00 – 02:00, Thu – Fri 12:00 – 04:00, Sat 18:00 – 04:00

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon – stairs to the bar

More about this area: Portugaldailyview & video

 

Restaurant ‘O Poéta': Portuguese and international cuisine close to Cascais’ beach, famous vacation spot & easily reached from Lisbon

Cascais is a famous vacation spot in Portugal by the sea quite close to Lisbon (about 25 km; 30 minutes by train, 15-20 minutes by car). Great beaches, and a promenade that connects Cascais to Lisbon providing one of the most spectacular costal walks available.

Cascais: in the background the pink-coloured Restaurant bar ‘O Poéta’

Cascais (more pictures and wiki info) is a pleasant mix of history, tourism and local life. Once a small fishing village, nowadays a smart resort town, packed with elegant boutiques, luxury hotels and restaurants. But still many small colourful fishing boats bobbing up and down in the water in front of the village’s sea front. Fresh fish every day!

Fishing boats in the bay of Cascais, Portugal: Praia dos Pescadores

Cascais is situated on the north side of the mouth of the River Tejo which flows through the Portuguese capital, Lisbon. Cascais’ popularity dates from 1870, when King Luís I decided to convert the 17th century Citadela here into his summer residence.

Cascais, very popular place for tourists: Rua Direita

Portuguese pavement workers are real artists: what a lovely design, you feel like you’re walking  on waves like Jesus did ;-) . Cascais is a popular vacation spot for both Portuguese and foreign tourists, with a small city center. One can find quality shops here and once you reach Rua Direita, which is a must when visiting Cascais, the shops are rich and varied.

Terrace restaurant, cafe & bar ‘O Poéta’ Cascais, Largo Luís de Camões

Where to find a good restaurant? There are restaurants everywhere but I prefer the friendly atmosphere of restaurant ‘O Poéta’, located in the center of Cascais on a cozy square, Largo Luís de Camõesjust near the famous poet’s statue, and just a few steps away from the beach. 

Avoid the agressive waiters on this square trying to entice you to eat in their restaurant.

Restaurant/cafe ‘O Poéta’ Cascais

The service is very friendly and the food and the wine are excellent. They serve all different kinds of food, so it’s an ideal place for groups. Football lovers can watch the matches: huge screens are strategically placed outside and inside the restaurant. Locals like this place too!

Restaurant ‘O Poéta’ Cascais: picanha

My almoço (lunch): picanha (delicious rump cover), € 11.50, glass of white wine € 2.75, small bottle of water € 2.00. Fish-lovers will be in seventh heaven here. Try the cataplana, a seafood platter served with rice or potatoes. But they also serve tajines (maroccan dishes, € 14.90) and pasta dishes. There’s also a beautiful restaurant inside on the first floor.

Restaurant/bar ‘O Poéta’ Cascais: owner Ayyildiz (l)

Owner of restaurant ‘O Poéta’ is Ayyildiz. Together with his Portuguese wife Paula he bought the restaurant in 2009.

Ayyildiz: ” I was born in Turkey, at the age of 18 I moved to Holland. During 11 years I worked in several restaurants (he still speaks fluently Dutch). Then I moved to Portugal. Our restaurant is famous for the beef tenderloin and the tournedos (from France). And the fish, like the boneless sea bass. Portuguese people are used to it but most tourists do not like bones”.  Visit ‘O Poeta”s website. Rua Regimento 19 de Infantaria, 55-61 (Largo de Camões), phone (351) 309 900 818, Cascais.

Cascais beach & a lazy Sunday afternoon in September

This beach is only five mins walking distance from restaurant ‘O Poéta’ . But there’s much more to find in Cascais and the Estoril coast, like a vibrant nightlife and a rich cultural life. More: Cascais’ guide  (Cascais and Estoril Coast guide) for travelling and fun information.

Cascais in September

There’s a promenade that connects Cascais to Lisbon providing one of the most spectacular costal walks available, free bike-rental for tourists, and the nearby (5 km, easily accessible by bus or by train) popular Guincho beach is one of the best windsurfing beaches in Europe. Strong northern winds are predominant during summer time (June–August) as well as smaller north-west swells, making this beach ideal for windsurfing and kitesurfing.  YouTube movie Graham goes Guincho

Cascais: Museum Conde Castro Guimarães

This Municipal Museum is near by the sea and it keeps a very original architecture because its aim is to promote art. The palace is from 19th century and it was property of Manuel Castro Guimarães (a Portuguese Count from Cascais). More….

How to get there from Lisbon?

Lisbon, train to Cascais

Cascais is easy to reach from Lisbon by train: ‘Linha de Cascais’ (name of the train line joining Lisbon to Cascais) from Cais do Sodré, Lisbon’s major bus, metro, ferry and trainstation. Return ticket: around 5 euro.

Cascais, September 2011

Excellent gastronomy Lisbon: restaurant Pharmacia overlooking theTagus river, pharmaceutical paraphernalia Museum & “LSD” cocktail

Restaurant Pharmacia in Lisbon is integrated into the Pharmacy Museum just near Tagus river viewpoint (miradouro) Santa Catarina or Adamastor. The remarkable décor is inspired by pharmacies of the past, the menu is a surprise and the service is warm!

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon – the garden in summertime on a Sunday afternoon

Restaurant Pharmacia is integrated into the Museum of Pharmacy (Museu da Farmácia). In Portuguese farmácia literally means “Drug Store” and it truly holds onto its name, since it is located at the building of the Portuguese National Drug Store Association. The remarkable interior is inspired by classic old pharmacies.

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon – very nice waiters dressed in white lab coats

When you enter the restaurant, you are shown to your table by somebody wearing a white lab coat. The menu is mainly focused on Portuguese cuisine, and “petiscos”  (small dishes), but the restaurant also has a bar, serving all kinds of drinks and light snacks. One of its fine features is the outside terrace. The restaurant does not close after lunch and ‘a la carte’ service throughout the day is available.

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon: long lunch with good friend Erika Reusens

We enjoyed a delicious lunch: Salada Legumes (vegetable salad) € 7,90, Pica Pau Lombo (beef tenderloin) € 8,90, Rolinhos Beringela (eggplant rolls filled with basil and cream cheese) € 6,90, Bat. Fritas (french fries) € 3, bottle of great Portuguese white wine: Passadouro: € 16,00. Agua (bottle of water, 1 liter) € 2. Coffee € 1. Bill: € 45,70. For dinner you also have the choice of a special menu of several dishes (€ 28, without drinks).

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon, integrated into the Museum of Pharmacy

Inaugurated in June 1996, the Pharmacy Museum is the only museum of Universal History in Portugal and one of the most complete in the world. The collection is based on pieces that represent 5000 years of history of health in civilizations as diverse as Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Rome, Greece, Islam, South America, China, Tibet, Japan, Africa, and modern Europe. YouTube movie Pharmacy Museum of Lisbon

Museum open from Monday– Friday: 10am – 6pm. Closed Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays.

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon

Inside the building you will find the wall of old medicine cabinets full of glass drug containers, medicine vials, and bottles of all kinds. Also the wallpaper is a tribute to the pharmacy. Your plain water will be served in an old ether bottle, the bottle holder is wearing a red cross logo…

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon: restaurant inside & vintage items

The remarkable interior uses almost exclusively vintage and antique items and some pieces that are on loan from the museum. The menu card is a pharmacy notebook and even your soup will be served in a small vial.

But the comparison with a pharmacy stops here: the food in a hospital is totally different…. ;-) ;-)

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon – bottle of wine served in a measuring cup

Even the bottle of wine is served in a plastic measuring cup…. And the cocktails here all have ‘drug’ names, like ‘LSD’ cocktail (whisky and ginjinha). How about a cocktailibuprofen’ ? (Cachaça licor and lemon juice), or try a paracetamol cocktail (honey, melon and ginger beer)  ;-)

Restaurant Pharmacia Lisbon, Rua Marechal Saldanha 1, Lisbon. Phone: (00351) 213 462 146. Open from Tuesday – Sunday from 13:00 – 01:00

Restaurant Pharmacia is overlooking the Tagus river

Looking for a nice holiday apartment in Lisbon? My house has 3 bedrooms, a sunny and quiet patio in the historical part of Lisbon, Mouraria, near square Martim Moniz, starting point tram 28, metro and buses.

Nearby: Miradouro (viewpoint) Adamastor. More……..

……your coffee…….

BTW: famous artist Damien Hirst tried his hand at the restaurant business in 1998 when he opened the art-filled Pharmacy Restaurant + Bar in London. Filled with pseudo-scientific pharmacy-themed items, Hirst curated every design element from metallic pill-printed wallpaper and pill-shaped ashtrays.

More…….