“Comporta is a favored weekend getaway for Lisbon’s elite”
“There are a handful of places that defy certain rules of economics: the Hamptons in the ’70s, St. Barth in the ’80s, José Ignacio and Trancoso in the early 2000s” reporter Ann Abel starts by saying in her article for Forbes. “The next of these places is Comporta, a cluster of coastal Portuguese villages about an hour’s drive from Lisbon.”, she adds.
“Comporta is a favored weekend getaway for Lisbon’s elite, as well as other in-the-know Europeans”. The article then goes on to mention some of the celebrities who have a house in Comporta, such as Christian Louboutin, Jacques Grange, Philippe Starck and Anselm Kiefer. Some of these houses are even built in the traditional “Comporta cabana” style, with thatched roofs and walls. However, Abel also draws her readership’s attention to the fact that nothing can be built along the 40 kilometer stretch of “pristine white beach”.
Forbes praises the fact that Comporta has stayed true to itself, looking like “any other southern Portuguese town”, with sparkling white buildings decorated with blue trims and terra-cotta roofs, little thatched huts, narrow streets, and “small squares dotted with red café umbrellas advertising Sagres beer.” However, there are also shops selling handmade handkerchiefs for 200€ and the “unassuming minimercado is stocked with caviar, pink Himalayan salt, imported cheese and French Champagne.”
“Until a few years ago, the only way into Comporta was to have the right friends or to rent a private villa”, they say. As of 2014, though, there’s Sublime Comporta Hotel, which is, according to the magazine, “sublimely comfortable”. This hotel has a series of private villas with equally private pools on offer and the main building which works like a meeting point. “The glass windows are inscribed with quotes from Winston Churchill, Mark Twain and Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa”.
According to Forbes, one of the reasons why Sublime is one of the main attractions in Comporta is its wild, natural surroundings. Also the interiors “emphasize the outdoors, with natural materials, understated tones and floor-to-ceiling windows.” To reproduce the casual tone of the Comporta typical dinners, in which people invite their friends into their houses in the evening, Sublime Comporta gave Sem Porta (without a door), its restaurant, a facelift. The menu is now longer and more varied and it is possible to organize private dinners there.
The magazine also points out that “along with the endless beaches, the area brims with the beauty of Alentejo: cork trees, vineyards, and gleaming-green rice fields.” According to them, the best way to explore the village is on horseback. You may opt for the rides organized by Cavalos na Areia (Madonna has ridden twice with them), which take you through the hills, over the rice fields, the dunes, and also along the beach. Forbes still recommends Sal, the restaurant at Praia do Pego, and praises their octopus salad and excellent regionally produced rosé wine.
Title photo credits: Time Out
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