When I travel my accommodation choices are frequently made by which place is the cheapest and best located for exploring the location. It is very rare I spend more than necessary on a room because I know I will rarely be in it. However, Portugal was an exception. While searching for accommodation we looked at apartments in Lisbon but were more drawn to the surrounding areas. We had previously spent five days on a city break in Barcelona and were keen for a bit of a beach holiday. This was the first step away from our normal central location. The second was paying more for an apartment with a pool instead of going for the cheapest to fit our needs. The result was perfect.
As I’ve mentioned before, Airbnb has fast become one of my favourite accommodation choices especially as I find us growing out of hostel dorm rooms but not wanting to spend the big bucks on a private hostel room or even a hotel. Our apartment in Estoril was described as fancy and the addition of a pool had me sold on this property, the first time I found it. I of course ended up booking it.
Our host Maria had been excellent at communicating beforehand and met us at the property even being very flexible when we arrived much later than planned. She was friendly and professional about showing us around and explaining everything we needed to know from what level the exit was to giving directions to the supermarket. As we entered the apartment it looked just like the pictures: bright, airy and colourful. First impressions were very good. And second impressions were even better as Maria presented us with a bottle of wine and some sweet treats from the cafe opposite. A cafe which would become our daily breakfast stop because the waiters were so friendly and the prices so cheap.
Throughout our week here we throughly enjoyed the apartment. Everything was in perfect working order and very clean. The bed was comfy, the surrounding area quiet and the bathroom huge. There were maps and leaflets about Cascais (the nearby town) and Lisbon as well as a beautiful map decorating a wall. As we had opted for a more expensive apartment which we had entirely to ourselves (the first Airbnb experience of this) we made the most of the cooking facilities by preparing some meals ourselves. There was ample space for lounging around, a TV for us to experience some Portuguese shows (I don’t speak a word so that was interesting) and patio doors which opened to let even more light in. Although a studio layout it didn’t feel small at all and was perfect for a holiday let. My only complaint – it was very light in the morning and I was awake by 8am every morning, still at least I didn’t waste any of the day.
However, the most important part of this rental was the pool. This was a communal affair which hadn’t been absolutely clear on the listing (be careful of this with Airbnb). Ultimately it didn’t matter as the pool was always quiet, we only ever experienced one or two other people there with us at any time but mostly we had it to ourselves. Like most communal pools there were toilet facilities and rules to abide by but none of this matter once comfy on the sun loungers. We were lucky that the pool had sun all day round and although the water was unheated, it was exactly what you needed with the hot sun.
The apartment was located around 10 minutes from a train station and 2 minutes from the bus stop. From the train station it was 35 minutes to Lisbon and a very easy trip to make. The nearest beach was also an easy 10 minutes walk away. Estoril was nothing fancy and had very few places to eat but this didn’t matter was Cascais was an short 2km away. We dined here on the evenings we didn’t cook for ourselves and didn’t feel like we were trekking miles for dinner. This Airbnb rental was perfect for what we wanted: a relaxing beach and pool holiday.
For six nights we paid £376 between two of us, this was priced at £49 per a night and includes a £30 cleaning fee and £50 Airbnb charge.
This makes the property £188 each for the trip and £31.33 each per a night.