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Luxury Time Travel In Northern Portugal: Vidago Palace

Vidago Palace, Portugal. Photo Vidago Palace.

By Ann Abel

For all its grandeur and loveliness today, Vidago Palace, a lavish resort in the far north of Portugal, did not get off to the most auspicious of starts. In the early 20th century, when thermal springs resorts were all the rage, King Carlos I wanted a luxurious palace to retreat with his entourage and to welcome nobility from around the world. He commissioned a palace—on par with the best thermal springs resorts in Europe—in 1908. Shortly thereafter, he was assassinated.

The palace was completed as planned, and the grand opening was scheduled for October 6, 1910, with his son and successor, King Manuel II, in attendance. But Manuel II was deposed in the republican revolution of October 5, so he never saw the place either. The opening went ahead as expected, but now with the hotel as a symbol of the implantation of the Portuguese Republic … continue reading


Ann Abel is a travel writer and editor and was a senior editor at ForbesLife. She writes for Forbes, Departures, Conde Nast Traveller, Robb Report, Afar, National Geographic Traveler, Islands, Hemispheres, Brides, Modern Bride, Well + Good NYC, and other print and online publications.”In the name of lifestyle journalism, ” she says, ” I’ve gotten a tattoo in Bora Bora, been bitten by a massage therapist, and flown small aircraft above three continents.” She lives in Lisbon.

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