Six Senses Douro Valley
Quinta Vale de Abraão
Samodães 5100-758 Lamego
+351 254 660 600, sixsenses.com
The Pitch A luxury resort, with a sustainable ethos, nestled in the hills of the Douro Valley wine country a 90-minute drive from Porto. The Six Senses brand is all about offering guests a wellness-focused experience inspired to the property’s surrounding environment. The resort, the main building of which is a 19th-century manor, was fully renovated in 2015, and the 22-acre property includes two swimming pools, a spa, multiple restaurants, a wine library and an organic garden. Guests can choose from among 57 accommodations that include rooms, suites or villas (two of which have their own pools) and can customize their stay to focus on wellness (there are multiple fitness activities daily, from aerial yoga to 5-kilometre runs); adventure (from nature hikes to tree climbing); or a variety of wine-related excursions.
What We Love Where to start? The drive in to the Douro Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is up one hillside and down another until the vineyards come into view — the scenery will leave you gobsmacked. The property itself is a postcard come to life, mixing modern luxury with a homespun, cozy vibe. While it’s a luxury resort, you always feel connected to nature here, whether you’re sitting on your private balcony listening to the birds chirping or at a workshop at the spa’s alchemy bar learning to make your own body scrub or lip balm from natural ingredients. When it comes time for a siesta or to turn in for the night, more understated luxury awaits you. The quiet rooms offer modern amenities like electronically controlled A/C, lights and curtains, but also a spa-like retreat with natural (and yummy-smelling) soaps and shampoos, a rain shower that maintains the view of the outdoors, and an organic bed, hand-made in Dorset, England, that is so cozy you’ll be Googling “where to buy the bed at the Six Senses Douro Valley” after your first night’s sleep.
Don’t Miss You’ll want to spend as much time outdoors here — the scenery is really the star of the show. Start your day at the outdoor infinity pool and watch as the vineyards rising up all around you come into view as the sun burns off the morning fog before heading to an outdoor yoga class or a treatment at the spa (windows allow you to see out so you don’t feel like you’re wasting time indoors). And if you’re not dining al fresco every meal, then you’re doing it wrong. The chef’s table and barbecue by the organic garden is a particular highlight, with a handful of communal tables nestled under trellises strewn with tiny lights that bathe the space in a warm glow as the sun goes down. Take note: Your glass of sangria will never, ever be empty.
Rooms from €270 in low season; €520 in high season.