Merging Palm Springs style with the Algarve’s sporty luxury, Sophie Ritchie discovers a stay of playful poise at The Magnolia Hotel
A pocket of Palm Springs on the edge of the beautifully manicured Quinta Do Lago, The Magnolia Hotel blends colourful prints with modern style and luxury amenities to create a property with a playful edge.
First opened in autumn 2017, its stylish design draws inspiration from the 1950’s retro motor-hotel – injecting a youthful spirit into the surroundings otherwise filled with velvety golf courses, enormous villas and five-star hotels.
Driving up to its huge neon sign prompts a double checking that you landed in Faro and not Miami, Beverly Hills or Vegas – the flamingo pink signage leaves you feeling like you’ve pitstopped in the middle of a USA road trip. But no, you’ve simply found a slice of them in one of Portugal’s most exclusive destinations.
Separated into three main buildings – two for rooms and a further designed for reception, dining and lounging, this boutique 74-room hotel also comes with a heated outdoor pool surrounded by rows of string lighting and banana yellow loungers.
Nestled further away from the main buildings and road, guests can also book seven bright pastel-coloured cottages for a more flexible self-catered stay.
Quirky yet cool, decor in the main reception area features pops of colour, scattered foliage, flamboyant artwork and plenty of light. There’s also plenty of chic seating, providing a space for both business meetings or lounging around after a tough morning on the green.
Standard rooms are not overly spacious, which makes them better suited for the explorers rather than the recliners. For something with more wiggle room, opt for one of the three suites to enjoy a larger space.
What rooms lack in size, they make up for in character – open the door to find chic furnishings, cool artwork hanging on the walls and large beds, which come complete with crisp 300 thread count cotton sheets.
Sit outside on the private balcony to bask in the sunshine or stand under the bathroom’s rain shower for a cascading waterfall across your back. There’s also thoughtful little extras to discover – like the welcoming platter of fruit or the handy USB and UK sockets.
Keeping to the classic motel design, ground floor rooms come with their own direct entrance whilst rooms on the upper floor can be reached via corridor.
Head to the equally photogenic restaurant for a dining space filled with pastel seating, trendy culinary books and intriguing light fixtures. Dishes, courtesy of Tom Briggs (ex-Soho House and Hoxton Grill) further reflect The Magnolia Hotel’s youthful and relaxed vibe.
The well-priced menu changes seasonally, but this winter’s selection includes superfood salads, grilled seabass and ‘The Mag Burger’, which comes loaded with melted cheese and a ‘secret’ ingredient.
Warn them ahead of visiting, but the kitchen’s also great at handling special dietary requirements.
Breakfast is also served here, serving up a buffet-style spread of pastries, cereals, breads, yoghurts and fresh fruits each morning. There’s also an egg station, plus a table laden with coffee and teas.
What To Do
There’s plenty to discover in Quinta Do Lago, from state-of-the-art sports facilities to restaurants galore. One of the Algarve’s most affluent areas, there’s plenty to enjoy within its gated community.
For the foodies, head to Pure if it’s wholesome lunches and fruit-packed smoothies you like or book a table at Bovino for award-winning steaks that’ll make any carnivore drool.
Lake lovers can’t miss a visit to Caso do Lago for superbly fresh seafood with a nautical theme. In hotter months, the next-door water-sports activities make the perfect way to work up an appetite.
There’s also Dano’s, a lively sports bar meets airy restaurant found at The Campus. Think live music, friendly service and plenty of spatchcock chicken from the open kitchen.
With all that feasting, The Campus’ excellent facilities make the perfect way to sweat or stretch it out. Quinta do Lago’s sports hub, this modern space provides everything from top class tennis and padel to steam room sessions and pilates.
It’s been specifically designed to meet the needs of top athletes, resulting in seriously impressive gym equipment and fitness studios.
However, if you’re an outdoor lover, pick up a ride at The Bike Shed (or even one of The Magnolia’s own pastel cycles) and head out for an afternoon of exploring – the nearby Praia Quinta do Lago makes the perfect scenic escapade before heading back to The Magnolia’s neon entrance.
The Wordrobe Verdict
Giving Palm Springs a run for its money, this modern hotel merges retro glamour with luxury furnishings to create a stay that’s not only Instagrammable but comfortable too.
Bringing a unique approach to the Algarve’s traditional hotel scene, book a room at The Magnolia Hotel to enjoy Quinta Do Lago’s exclusive surroundings in playfully poised style.
Make it happen
Standard rooms start from £69 on a B&B basis. To find out more and make a booking, please click here or phone (+351) 289 390 705).