Visiting Lisbon is always a pleasure, even on cold winter days. Its streets, the sea, and especially the neighborhoods always hold an adventure that is both surprising and seductive.
Among the many neighborhoods that make up the city, a very special one is the Alvalade neighborhood, referred to as one of the “new neighborhoods”. It’s not far from downtown.
Alvalade, like the Arriero neighborhood, was a project of 1940s design in what was called the Soft Portuguese style, where concrete and clear forms, simple and practical designs were markers in the search for modern urban spaces.
Among its landmarks is the old Cinema Imperio, which is still considered as one of the highlights of the late 1940s architecture. It was turned into a cafe and restaurant and restored to the glamour of the golden age about six years ago.
The building was designed by Cassiano Branco in 1947. Currently, its interior is decorated with black and white photos of movie stars and film objects that pay homage to the golden age of cinema.
To start a tour of this neighborhood, first walk down the Avenida da Igreja, where it’s quite fun to shop. Then follow the Avenida Roma to find somewhere for a bite or a drink. At number 45 of this busy avenue, you’ll find Frutalmeidas, which offers delicious juices made from fruits like mango, strawberry or melon, Requeijãa or Maçã pastries, and a dish of the day. Frutalmeidas is open Monday to Saturday from 8 am to 8 pm.
Here you can easily find old ladies dressed in haute couture alongside musicians, poets, anarchists and punks, whose first expressions in Portugal were once in this same area.
If you enjoy parks, the great outdoors, and sports, you won’t want to miss visiting the park 1º de Maio, located in the northern part of the district. Built in 1959, it’s a space for thousands of regular football matches, tennis, mini-golf and basketball games. Cultural activities and fairs such as the Alternative Festival of the Earth are also held here.
Alvalade Stadium is home to the Sporting Club of Portugal and one of the largest stadiums in the country, which you probably would want to see.
A nice quiet place to live, Alvalade is also a lively area. There are new and old pubs, parks and convenience stores as well as stylish shops and cafes.
A great place to spend the afternoon is the salón de té Ó Chá, located in a privileged area near the main avenue and has Chinese motif and ambiance. You can find more than seventy different varieties of teas produced in Asia, Africa and Latin America. I would recommend the Portuguese tea from the Azores as well as the delicious cakes and scones.
And lastly, when we speak of Bars, Grog is the place you won’t want to miss. This small, pleasant venue is located near the Plaza de Santo Antonio, but is still somewhat of a secret and very popular with its neighbors. The decor is from the 70s, with black walls and red vinyl seats. Their shakes are famous, especially the one with Gooseberries, and the toast with cheese and pickles, salmon or chicken is also good.
Take a break this winter in one of our apartments in Lisbon city center , and don´t forget to check out the active Alvalade neighborhood.
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