Some of us may find Lisbon a bit long on steeped-in-history palace-style hotels, and a bit short on the kind of mellow modernism that’s spread so widely across the rest of Europe. There’s one stylish little boutique, though, that’s hidden away in just about the last place you’d expect it; the York House occupies a convent building, dating back to the seventeenth century, in the upscale, largely residential Lapa district, a bit to the west of the city center, on a hill overlooking the Tagus.
It’s been a hotel for more than a hundred years, and the Carmelites’ loss was the tourists’ gain — what better for an urban escape than a place that’s literally cloistered? In its present incarnation it’s modern, yes, but still more a stylish hideaway than a party destination — we can all but guarantee that upon arrival you’ll find the entry so discreet you’ll wonder if you’ve got the wrong address.
Inside, the rooms still have something of the monastic about them, with their restrained colors, austere lines, and tasteful antiques, but they’re less about self-denial than about quiet luxury. There’s a restaurant, and a good one at that, occupying the old dining hall. You’re far enough from downtown for a little relaxation, but quite close to public transport, as well as the Museum of Ancient Art.
32, Rua das Janelas Verdes, Lisbon
+351 21 3962435