Tuesday, 12 December 2017

World’s best tourist destination is... Portugal! | Portugal Resident

World’s best tourist destination is... Portugal!

For the first time in the history of the “Tourism Oscars” World Travel Awards, Portugal has won the title of leading destination.
Following on from Best European Destination glory clinched in October (click here), the country has literally hit the glass ceiling.
Click on the image for complete info

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Portugal o melhor da Europa... outra vez - Visao.pt

Pelo segundo ano consecutivo, os leitores do USA Today, um dos jornais americanos de maior tiragem, deram-nos o primeiro lugar na lista anual dos dez melhores países europeus

Rita Montez in http://visao.sapo.pt/

People say Portugal is a breathtaking country...

"Portugal é menos icónico do que os países famosos, mas oferece uma riqueza de oportunidades aos viajantes: aldeias de charme, comida excelente, música regional fascinante, oportunidades culturais, uma costa bonita e até surf de categoria mundial". O cartão de visita que surge no USA Today (o jornal que mais vende nos EUA, com uma circulação acima dos 1,6 milhões de exemplares diários) ilustra bem o charme que nos é atribuído. Desta vez, Portugal foi eleito pelos leitores de todo o mundo do jornal como o melhor destino da Europa em 2015 - tal como já havia sucedido em 2014. A votação foi uma das mais renhidas, mas ainda assim o País, "muitas vezes subestimado, tem toda a pompa para ser uma bonita cidade europeia", sublinha o jornal, deixando para trás destinos como Itália, Aústria e Alemanha, em segundo, terceiro e quarto lugares.

"Portugal, aparentemente, roubou os corações dos nossos leitores, assegurando o maior número de votos", refere o USA Today. As calçadas e os castelos medievais, as praias ensolaradas, uma cozinha deliciosa e a História por explorar são atributos que fazem de Portugal um destino de eleição. "Quer esteja a nadar nas águas azul-turquesa, bebericando um copo de porto num café da cidade do Porto ou ouvindo o lamento melancólico do fado em Lisboa, a beleza discreta de Portugal é óbvia."

Porto em alta

Numa outra votação, mas ainda no USA Today, o Porto surge em destaque ao ser considerado o melhor destino romântico por descobrir. Nesta votação, o jornal pediu a um painel de especialistas em turismo romântico para elegeram os 20 melhores destinos onde o romance não é um atributo famoso. A ideia era encontrar locais para fugas íntimas fora dos circuitos mais conhecidos. O resultado foi a eleição do Porto, à frente de Mackinac, nos EUA e Rothenburg ob der Tauber, na Alemanha. Para os especialistas, o vinho, a arquitetura medieval e o charme do Velho Mundo fazem da cidade o melhor destino do mundo para namorar.

Ler mais: http://visao.sapo.pt/portugal-o-melhor-da-europa-outra-vez=f827796#ixzz3j1iWT9cb

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Portugal is shaking up the wine world - USA TODAY

Portugal is shaking up the wine world:


LISBON, Portugal — The world's greatest wine region? If you're thinking Bordeaux, Burgundy or Napa Valley, it may be time to think again.

Wines from Portugal's Douro Valley claimed three of the top four places in Wine Spectator's 2014 top 100 ranking — including the No. 1 spot awarded to Dow's 2011 Vintage Port. "It's been famous for producing extraordinary ports for over 300 years and it's got a unique beauty all its own," says Paul Symington, whose family produces the top wine. "There are many superlatives that you can apply to the Douro. Many of us argue it's the most beautiful wine-growing area in the world."

Although the Douro is still best known for its ports — wines fortified with brandy traditionally served before or after a meal — the region's table wines are also generating excitement in the world of wine.Third on Wine Spectator's list is the Chryseia red wine, also produced by the Symington family in collaboration with French winemaker Bruno Prats.

In fourth place came another red from higher up the Douro River: the Quinta do Vale Meao 2011, described by Wine Spectator as "a lush, seductive red, filled to the brim with an array of dark fruit." "For the last few years, a whole bunch of people have been making some really serious red and white wines here," Symington said in an interview. "To get the Wine Spectator, which is comfortably and by a country mile the most powerful wine magazine in the world, to turn a spotlight on the Douro for its red wines as well as its great port, is a remarkable achievement."

All three of the top wines were from 2011. That was an exceptional year for the vineyards that rise on terraced hillsides from the banks of the Douro as it snakes 130 miles through northern Portugal from the Spanish border toward the old city of Oporto on the Atlantic Ocean.

The success is no flash-in-the-pan. Although the Douro is one of the world's oldest demarcated wine regions, dating back to 1756, the international reputation of its table wines began to take off in the 1990s, when producers started to move away from the centuries-old reliance on port wine to turn out quality dry reds and whites. Improved refrigeration techniques and the scrapping of arcane laws designed to protect traditional port producers triggered the change, says Mario Negreiros, who revived his family wine business in 2004. It freed producers to exploit the region's unique attributes for producing table wines. "It's a mountain wine region. It's got micro-climates and micro-micro-climates. On the same vineyard you can have two slopes with completely different characteristics," says the journalist-turned-producer of smooth, dark reds bearing the Negreiros family name. Proximity to the river also affects the wines variety in the soils. "Then there's the unique winemaking tradition," he adds. "All that contributes to the richness of the wines that are made there. It's a complex region, complex like the wine that it produces."

The region's success in developing table wines is also partly explained by the emergence of a new generation of oenologists, or winemaking experts, coming out of the University of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro in the wine-growing region's main city of Vila Real. "They started introducing new techniques and new ideas and we all began to realize we could take the same grape varieties that we were using to make these great and historical ports and make some really interesting red wines," Symington says. "That's really what has captured people's imagination." The university's alumni include Rui Cunha, a renowned oenologist who's reviving quality wine production at the historic Quinta da Boavista estate in collaboration with French winemaker Jean-Claude Berrouet, famed for his work on the legendary Petrus wines in Bordeaux. "The Douro has everything," Cunha said in a telephone interview. "It has history, it has great soil, it's got unique grape varieties, it's got a fantastic climate. It all means we can produce very distinct wines of great quality." "It takes time for a wine region to really affirm itself," he added, "so it's amazing the international recognition the Douro is getting when you consider that the transformation of the region into a producer of red and white table wines only got underway in the 1990s." 

Beyond its great winemaking conditions, the region is uniquely beautiful. The slow-moving Douro River — whose name means "golden" in Portuguese — meanders through vine-covered hills dotted with stately white-painted quintas, or manors, built by the old wine-producing families. UNESCO declared the region a World Heritage site in 2001.

Wine tourism is gathering pace with the opening of wine hotels such as Quinta do Vallado and The Yeatman, set among the wine lodges where port has been blended and stored for centuries just across the river from Oporto's historic center, another World Heritage site. Many of the port lodges carry the names of the old families, including Taylor, Graham and Cockburn, that once dominated the export of the sweet, fortified wines to Britain. Port has been a favored tipple there since the early 1700s, when supplies of wine from France were interrupted by war. 

Paul Symington's Scottish great-grandfather married into one of the Anglo-Portuguese port wine dynasties after moving to Oporto in 1882. Five generations on, the Symingtons are the region's biggest vineyard owners, running a business with a $105 million turnover. This year, the Symingtons released 650 bottles of a 130-year-old port wine called Ne Oublie (Don't Forget) as a tribute to their Scottish ancestor. It retails at around $7,000 a bottle. That wasn't on the Wine Spectator top 100 list, which was selected from 18,000 wines sampled by the New York-based magazine's reviewers during the year. Prices of the winning Dow's vintage port have more than doubled to over $250 in Portuguese stores since its ranking was announced last month.

Still, many of the region's great wines are a bargain compared to prices charged by French and Italian competitors. The Portal Colheita 2011 red, which ranked 27th in Wine Spectator's top 100, can be snapped up online for $15 a bottle. Douro winemakers are convinced the current surge in international interest is just the start. "This is going to continue," says Cunha, whose first Quinta da Boavista wines are due to hit the market in 2016. "This international recognition is giving our producers more strength to keep producing these great wines. That's what we're here for."

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Sunday, 10 August 2014

Europe Winners 2014 — World Travel Awards

Portugal clinches 16 Awards

Europe's Leading AirlineLufthansa
Europe's Leading Airline - Business ClassSwiss International Air Lines
Europe's Leading Airline LoungeLufthansa First Class Lounges, Frankfurt Airport, Germany
Europe's Leading Airline to AfricaTAP Portugal
Europe's Leading Airline to AsiaBritish Airways
Europe's Leading Airline to North AmericaVirgin Atlantic Airways
Europe's Leading Airline to South AmericaTAP Portugal
Europe's Leading AirportZurich Airport, Switzerland
Europe's Leading Airport HotelHilton Frankfurt Airport, Germany
Europe's Leading All Inclusive ResortPestana Porto Santo Beach Resort & Spa, Portugal
Europe's Leading All Suite HotelHotel Les Ottomans, Turkey
Europe's Leading Beach DestinationCorfu, Greece
Europe's Leading Beach ResortPullman Timi Ama Sardegna, Italy
Europe's Leading Boutique HotelVila Joya, Portugal
Europe's Leading Boutique ResortChoupana Hills Resort & Spa, Portugal
Europe's Leading Business Car Rental CompanyAvis
Europe's Leading Business HotelMövenpick Hotel Istanbul, Turkey
Europe's Leading Car Rental CompanyEuropcar
Europe's Leading Casino ResortLopesan Costa Meloneras, Spain
Europe's Leading Charter AirlineMonarch Airlines
Europe's Leading Chauffeur CompanySixt Limousine Service
Europe's Leading City Break DestinationGeneva, Switzerland
Europe's Leading City HotelHôtel Fouquet's Barrière Paris, France
Europe's Leading Conference HotelHilton Molino Stucky, Venice, Italy
Europe's Leading Cruise DestinationLisbon, Portugal
Europe's Leading Cruise LineNorwegian Cruise Line
Europe's Leading Cruise PortPorto de Lisboa, Portugal
Europe's Leading Cruise Travel AgentCruise.co.uk
Europe's Leading Design HotelThe Vine Hotel, Portugal
Europe's Leading DestinationYorkshire, England
Europe's Leading Destination Management CompanyKuoni Destination Management
Europe's Leading Family ResortAngel's Peninsula, Turkey
Europe's Leading Ferry OperatorDFDS Seaways
Europe's Leading Ferry WebsiteThe Travel Gateway Ltd (aferry.com)
Europe's Leading Fully Integrated ResortCornelia Diamond Golf Resort & Spa, Turkey
Europe's Leading Green HotelICEHOTEL, Sweden
Europe's Leading HotelCiragan Palace Kempinski Istanbul, Turkey
Europe's Leading Hotel & SpaSilence Istanbul Hotel & Convention Center, Turkey
Europe's Leading Hotel BrandHilton Hotels & Resorts
Europe's Leading Hotel ResidencesPine Cliffs Residence, Albufeira, Portugal
Europe's Leading Hotel SuitePalladio Suite @ Belmond Hotel Cipriani, Italy
Europe's Leading Incentive & Incoming AgencyDE&HA Tourism
Europe's Leading Island DestinationMadeira Islands
Europe's Leading Island ResortPullman Timi Ama Sardegna, Italy
Europe's Leading Landmark HotelBairro Alto Hotel, Portugal
Europe's Leading Leisure ResortTitanic Deluxe Belek, Turkey
Europe's Leading Lifestyle HotelRixos Premium Bodrum, Turkey
Europe's Leading Lifestyle ResortGeinberg5 Private Spa Villas
Europe's Leading Low-Cost AirlineeasyJet
Europe's Leading Luxury All-Inclusive ResortConcorde De Luxe Resort, Turkey
Europe's Leading Luxury Beach VillasPorto Zante Villas, Greece
Europe's Leading Luxury Business HotelRadisson Royal Hotel, Moscow, Russia
Europe's Leading Luxury Car Rental CompanyAvis Prestige
Europe's Leading Luxury HotelBelmond Hotel Cipriani, Italy
Europe's Leading Luxury ResortConrad Algarve, Portugal
Europe's Leading Luxury Spa ResortCornelia Diamond Golf Resort & Spa, Turkey
Europe's Leading Luxury TrainVenice Simplon Orient-Express
Europe's Leading Marketing CampaignWelcome To Yorkshire
Europe's Leading Meetings & Conference CentreGrand Resort Lagonissi, Greece
Europe's Leading Meetings & Conference DestinationBarcelona, Spain
Europe's Leading MICE HotelRadisson Royal Hotel, Moscow, Russia
Europe's Leading New HotelInterContinental Davos, Switzerland
Europe's Leading New ResortRadisson Blu Paradise Resort & Spa, Sochi, Russia
Europe's Leading Private Beach HotelPorto Zante Villas, Greece
Europe's Leading Private Jet CharterSkytime Jets
Europe's Leading Regional AirlineAegean Airlines
Europe's Leading ResortForte Village Resort, Italy
Europe's Leading River Cruise CompanyDouroAzul
Europe's Leading Serviced Apartment BrandFrasers Hospitality
Europe's Leading Serviced ApartmentsFraser Suites Le Claridge Champs-Elysées, France
Europe's Leading Spa & Wellness ResortSianji Wellbeing Resort, Turkey
Europe's Leading Spa HotelDivani Apollon Palace & Thalasso, Greece
Europe's Leading Spa ResortCornelia Diamond Golf Resort & Spa, Turkey
Europe's Leading Sports ResortForte Village Resort, Italy
Europe's Leading Themed ResortDisneyland Paris, France
Europe's Leading Tour OperatorThomas Cook
Europe's Leading Tourist AttractionAcropolis, Athens, Greece
Europe's Leading Tourist BoardTurismo de Portugal
Europe's Leading Travel AgencyExpedia
Europe's Leading Travel ClubDreamTrips
Europe's Leading Travel Management CompanyFCm Travel Solutions
Europe's Leading Travel Merchandising Solution ProviderDatalex
Europe's Leading Travel Technology ProviderIllusions Online
Europe's Leading VillaVilla Lidia at Forte Village Resort, Italy
Europe's Leading Villa ResortMartinhal Beach Resort & Hotel, Portugal
Europe's Leading Wellness HotelGrand Hotel Lienz, Austria
Europe's Most Romantic ResortVila Vita Parc, Portugal
Europe's Responsible Tourism AwardCosta Navarino, Greece
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Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Beautiful Porto, Portugal

Thursday, 31 July 2014

A guide to Portugal’s Alentejo region, home of Europe’s finest beaches | Travel | The Guardian

A guide to Portugal’s Alentejo region, home of Europe’s finest beaches | Travel | The Guardian

Praia da Zambujeira, Portugal.

Praia da Zambujeira, Portugal. Photograph: Municipio Odemira/Turismo do Alentejo

Herdade da Nespereira windmill house, Alentejo, Portugal

Herdade da Nespereira windmill house, Alentejo, Portugal. Photograph: PR

Cerca do Sul guest house, Alentejo, Portugal

Cerca do Sul guest house is painted in the traditional Alentejo colours of white with a blue trim.

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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Lello Bookstore: The Most Beautiful Bookstore in the World | BOOK RIOT

Lello Bookstore: The Most Beautiful Bookstore in the World | BOOK RIOT

"Little did I know that when I went looking for the oldest bookstore in the world, I would find, just up the coast of the same country, what could very well be the most beautiful bookstore in the world. The Lello Bookstore was built in 1906 in Porto, Portugal by The Lello Brothers (Antonio and Jose) who formerly owned another bookstore a few streets away. Their new bookstore is one of the most ornate bookstores in the world, mixing Neo-Gothic and Art Dec elements (especially the facade, pictured below). Carved wood ceilings, a stain-glassed roof, an undulating, opulent red staircase, and even a built-in wheel-barrow on rails for moving the store’s 120,000 all make the Lello seem like the bookstore out of some fantasy-world (J.K. Rowling herself lived in Porto for a short while)."

by Jeff

About Jeff

Jeff O'Neal is the editor of Book Riot. He also co-hosts The Book Riot Podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @readingape
All images credit to http://bookriot.com/
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