As Lisbon continues its emergence as one of Europe’s most intriguing new destinations, fresh hotels are popping up all over the Portuguese capital. But the coastal city’s newest hospitality attraction isn’t actually new at all: Fresh from a multimillion-dollar makeover, the historic Tivoli Avenida Liberdade Lisboa is making waves as a new standard-bearer of European luxury.
Set within a historic building in the middle of the capital’s famous Avenida da Liberdade, the hotel reopened in April following an end-to-end facelift that saw rooms expanded and brightened with modern décor; a lobby that was completely transformed with a soaring atrium; and the iconic rooftop Sky Bar reenvisioned with a contemporary atmosphere that complements the stunning Lisbon skyline views.
But the most high-profile changes didn’t come until months later, when the rooftop restaurant was finally unveiled. Terraço finally reopened in August, with a menu by one of Portugal’s most celebrated chefs, Porto-based Rui Paula, who until this project had never helmed a kitchen in Lisbon. A chef inspired by his own upbringing, Paula created for Terraço a menu that brings traditional Portuguese cooking to elevated new heights, with more than a few subtle surprises, like slow-cooked baby goat (sourced from the center of the country) with couscous and pan-seared sea bass served atop xerém (Portugal’s answer to polenta).
Newer still is the six-room Tivoli Spa—the hotel’s first spa in its illustrious 85-year history—which opened in September with Lisbon’s first Biologique Recherche treatments. Beyond the French skincare brand’s signature facials, the spa also offers therapies with international influences, from a lomi-lomi massage inspired by Hawaiian curative practices to the Indian-influenced Tivoli Fusion, which uses a proprietary blend of oils with specific strokes and movements to relax the body, stimulate circulation, and restore the flow of energy.