A day in Lisbon and a stay at Martinhal Chiado

OK before I start this post, somebody tell me how my tiny little newborn is almost two?!

Last week we took a trip to Lisbon, a city I'd wanted to visit for so long for a whirl wind two nights and one full day. It gave us the perfect taster of how beautiful and colourful a place it is and I can't wait to go back one day for longer.

We were guests at the new Martinhal Chiado family apartments in the heart of the city and then spent a further three nights at the Martinal Cascais hotel resort just half an hour out of the city.  It was honestly one of the best family holiday experiences we've had yet and I can't wait to share the second part of our stay with you next week. I've also made a video of our week at both locations which will go live tomorrow (the 14th) if you fancy a watch as I do a full apartment tour.

The first thing to notice about Martinhal is just how child focussed they are. Children are made to feel so welcome rather than tolerated which is a feel you can get from some luxury hotels. On arrival the kids were greeted with drawstring bags with hats and a softie for Mabli and beach ball for Wilf. Throughout our stay (at both properties, but more on that later) we never felt stressed to keep our kids quiet or not let them run etc they were embraced as being children and met with smiles by all the staff (and other guests) alike.

Had to get that classic shot of the Lisbon trams, the 28 apparently is very famous. We didn't actually take a trip on one as we were only there for one full day but I'd love to go back when the kids are a bit bigger and go round sightseeing.

Martinhal is well known for its amazing childcare and although we'd planned for Wilf to go into the kids club at the resort (where we had almost three days) we thought we wouldn't at this one because we only read had one full day and we were in the city. However after being shown around on arrival Wilf was SO desperate to go in straight away and we were so impressed with how it looked that we decided to spend the morning walking around the beautiful city with only Mabli which was actually such a nice experience.

Mabli is almost two now and it was such a treat to spend some quality time with her just dealing with one childs needs. Obviously we love spending time with both our children but there is something to be said about one on one time with each child occasionally and with there being a 4 year age gap their needs are often quite different.

I mean just look at her face!

Taking a stroll along the sea front

Our view from our window in our apartment.

Who can resist a cheesy family picture hey? I just loved this spot in the apartment.

After dragging Wilf away from kids club (we found him singing songs from the Sound Of Music ha!) we all had some lunch in our apartment which are all decorated so perfectly. Each apartment differs slightly but follows the same Scandinavian theme, and features art work by Kruella d'Enfer.

We always like to stay in apartments generally as we love having the space and also being able to cook for ourselves. Obviously being in a city like Lisbon you have so many places to eat (and we did get burgers from Honorato which were AMAZING) but with little kids its always nice to have the option to cook for ourselves or earlier than maybe some places might open for dinner. It's also a bit easier as we are a veggie family.

At Martinhal they really do think of everything for families, from organising transfers with car seats to all sorts of pushchairs and prams available. At breakfast there is a kids table where your children can run off and play whilst you finish your coffee in peace or some parents pay a bit extra for one of the kids club staff to take them down to breakfast too if needed. The staff are so attentive and treat their jobs with so much enthusiasm and warmth.

We felt like our mini break at the Martinhal Chiado apartments was the perfect mix of us time / family time / city life and luxury break. I loved having the option of the having amazing childcare, (although Mabli was a tiny bit little for it this time round) we both said if we return to the city we want to stay there again. Being able to explore with the family and then maybe using the bedtime service of a film at kids club so we could go out for a meal.

I'll be posting about our trip to Cascais next week so do come back and have a read if you want to see what we got up to there! Especially as it was our three year anniversary whilst we were staying (that's flown by!).

We were guests at Martinhal but all words and thoughts are my own

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