What: Probably the most interesting and exceptional hotel in Lisbon. History has it that it was here that Vasco da Gama was very warmly received on his return from India.

Where: On top of the St. George Castle on the Afacama Hill in the Portuguese capital of Lisbon.

Why: Not everything in luxury is about the modern, and this hotel is the perfect example of that. Steeped in history, it is for the beautiful tiled mosaics, dating back to 1730, that appear throughout the hotel; for the wonderful terraces with views over the terracotta-roofed city; and for the magnificently large suites, one even spanning four levels, that one must visit this hotel. There are only 10 suites in the Palacio Belmonte, and while all are equipped with fully modern bathrooms and antique furnishings, each has been appointed with very unique touches. From one featuring its own winter garden to another with a 360° view of Lisbon, each suite has its charm. Another addition to this cultural oasis is the well-stocked library, comprising over 4,000 publications. What better way to relax than leafing through your favorite novel and enjoying the sun while lounging by the large, black marble swimming pool on the hotel terrace?