In grand style

In grand style

In grand style


Grand House

A grand style aerial view of a city with boats docked in the harbor.

The hospitality at the historic Grand House hotel, in a beautiful setting in the Algarve, feeds the soul as well as the senses

The Oxford Dictionary of English defines luxury as “a state of great comfort or elegance”. At the Grand House, a five-star boutique hotel on Portugal’s discreet eastern Algarve, there is certainly great comfort and elegance. But the team has also devoted careful thought to its deeper meaning.

“Genuine luxury is about a deep connection with guests and emotional hospitality,” says Grand House General Manager Marita Barth. “First-class accommodation and excellent service are essential, of course, but we pride ourselves not just on serving our guests, but being with our guests: talking, smiling, storytelling.”

The Grand House’s refined roots go back to 1926, when it opened as the Hotel Guadiana, Portugal’s first “grand” hotel of the south. After a period of decline, the hotel was restored to its 1920s glory, reopening in 2019. Marita has been involved with the project since its inception and believes guests should feel they are staying in a beautiful old family home. “Then we add the things you can’t buy,” she explains. “Time and space to truly unwind, the feeling you and your wellbeing are being cared for.”

Authenticity, simplicity and soul are the watchwords at Grand House, where staff encourage guests to explore the beautiful local surroundings. A typical Grand House adventure might be a leisurely excursion to sample exquisite local oysters, seated on a plain bench among locals in an excellent but unassuming restaurant. “Guests remember simple, soulful, authentic experiences like this far more than gold taps in their bathrooms,” says Marita.

The Grand House is cradled by breathtaking scenery, including two areas of unspoilt wilderness, Ria Formosa Natural Park and Castro Marim Nature Reserve, with its salt marshes. Then there is the leisurely Guadiana River, a natural border with Spain. Everywhere, the eastern Algarve’s big skies and endless white beaches feed the soul.

Grand House guests can also enjoy the hotel’s own Beach Club, where old-world hospitality is fused with a contemporary, barefoot vibe. “Our Beach Club ambience is really special,” says Marita. “You can relax on your lounger with the sound of the waves a few metres away, watching as the sun sets and the fishing boats come in. It sums up our motto perfectly: ‘Ain’t life Grand!’”