The meeting point for Lisbon's coolest people to have a drink in the evening, eat dinner or have a Sunday brunch.
Many people don't even know that beyond the Decadente and Insólito restaurant/bars there is a hotel both original and lively, one of the few in Lisbon with two very different lodging options: the economic one, with triple bunk beds, and the posh one, with double suites including a terrace facing the São Pedro de Alcântara viewpoint or the castle hill. One of the aims of the Independent Collective brand is to appeal to more than one market segment. What this actually means is a hotel where backpackers and moneyed tourists rub shoulders – but no guests under age 16 are allowed.
It is one of the city's coolest hotels thanks not only to a bold décor – mixing antiques and old TV sets with designer furniture – but to the charming century-old building, with its wooden floors, painted ceilings and big wide windows; it was once the residence of the Swiss ambassador.
The young staff make the hotel hum smoothly. They will let you know about the city's secrets and local hotspots. Or you may download the hotel's app, The Lisbon Experience, and walk around Lisbon as if you were a native.
At the Decadente, expect modern cuisine inspired by traditional flavours, while Insólito has a fusion menu including famous Santini brand ice cream. The former has a small backyard (make a reservation if you want a place in the sun), while the latter has a panoramic terrace with a bar where Lisboners congregate in droves in the evening. Both serve breakfast. Rooms have no phone but there is free wi-fi everywhere.
If you stay in a bunk bed, there is a shared area with a kitchen and a launderette.
Time Out tip: As soon as you step outside the hotel, you'll realize you're full of options. To your left is the Príncipe Real with its shops and restaurants that guarantee a full day's entertainment (go to the Quiosque da Oliveira in the Principe Real garden to mix with the locals for an evening beer). Downward, only a few metres way, is the Glória Lift, a 19th century cable railway carrying passengers from the Bairro Alto to the Avenida da Liberdade.