We have spent the last three months travelling on an extended working trip. We have stayed in more than a dozen hotels '' fancy, budget, tourist-focused and intensively business oriented. Finally, in Porto, Portugal, we found a place that reminded us of the old joys of staying uin a nice hotel. Do you remember when there was a sense of mystery and excitement about stopping in at a new hotel, when visiting a place you had never been before. In this day and age, we have surrendered our sense of adventure for a basic desire for conformity. Most hotels are very much the same, with no distinguishign characteristics and very little charm. The only things that they really offer - beyond increments of luxury based on price -- are th adventages and disadventages of location.
Then, thanks to the formidable combination of Tripadvisor and Booking.com, we found Castelo de Sanata Catarina. What an unmitigated joy this place was. It is quirky, original, fascinating and fun. The rooms were comfortable, the service solid, the location reasonable and the price remarkable. Our ten year old daughter walked around in a sense of wonderment, exploring each room, running around outside in the garden, marvelling at the bewitching combination of kitzch, culture and creativity.
Other reviews will give you the downside -- no elevator in the castle, a less than exciting neighbourhood (five minutes from downtown Porto) and a few other small matters. One of our rooms had trouble with the heat. These are small things.
We had fun - and when was the last time that you visited a hotel and found simple pleasure in exploring the property? We would go back in a flash - and we intend to - and we hope that other travelers will step out of the ordinary a little and give this unique and quaint location a try.
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Castelo De Santa Catarina Hotel Porto
- Castelo De Santa Catarina Porto
- Castelo Santa Catarina