First Comporta and now Melides. The laid back beach town an hour away from Lisbon is the place to find a holiday home, spend a vacation or just enjoy a day trip if you are in love with the Portuguese Comporta style which visualizes a very laid back artisanal mix embracing simplicity with an edge and since a few years is in high demand not only with the architectural and design scene.
Artists, designers and famous architects are inspired by the natural landscape and homegrown style. Jacques Grange was among the first, and Anselm Kiefer found a huge studio just large enough to position his XXL scale work.
You will discover hidden houses designed by renowned architects—Philippe Starck, Vincent van Duysen, and Manuel Aires Mateus popping out in between the dunes, needle wood trees and rice patties as if they had been always there.
You will find only relatively few hotels. One of the first is the Sublime and newly open this year the Quinta da Comporta.
But the Alentejo is not about hotels and tourism, it is about fine individual living, about hosting your friends at your house, cooking simple organic food.
If you feel Comporta became too busy for you by now, head on to Melides nearby. Sitting on the marketplace sipping a pingado is still relatively relaxed. There is only one street which you could call a “Highstreet” and one store, Vida Dura, a flower and ceramic shop that is the talk of the town and curates nicely the Alentejo holiday home style. Come and see.