The hotel is placed right in front of the river Douro — literally a few steps from it — and 40 minutes away from Porto by car. It's a perfect mix between lots-of-activities and pure-relaxation-in-the-middle-of-nowhere kind of place. It's modern, recent, cosy, with incredible architecture and interior design, and full of character — lots of it. The service is outstanding — which is becoming a rare feature these days.
Every single detail of the hotel was thought about — it's full of nice touches. And there is none of those thousand-rules other hotels usually have in place. Want to play a snooker game in a full-size table? No need to book. Fancy swimming at 4am? Just do it. There are loads of different places to explore, and you will not find a closed door: Comfortable chairs everywhere to read a book or have a drink in a more private environment, a cinema room, resting areas, a library that makes you feel at home and outside terraces.
There are three swimming pools to choose from, all facing the river. As a bonus, the interior one has a fireplace — one of the many in the hotel, always-on, waiting for a guest to come in. The spa is excellent too and includes a three-showers-with-aroma circuit. The bedrooms facing the river allow you to wake up being part of a picture frame.
There are plenty of doors to open and rooms to explore. Find the round telephone from where you can order drinks. Take a selfie holding it and publish on Instagram using hashtag: #cultouristachallenge.
If you fancy doing something more, there are many activities to do around: walks organised by the hotel, boat trips, paddling, visiting Douro farms and taste their wine, and walk around very typical Portuguese villages.
Food-wise, apart from breakfast, the food is not the best you will get. The main restaurant called "Raiva" has a confusing menu with dishes that try too hard. Most people end up eating at the bar, which serves pizza and snacks — overpriced for the quality. Any of these is not enough to exclude Octant Douro from Cultourista's favourite list.
Visit the hotel website:
EN 222, KM 41, Vista Alegre, 4550-631, Raiva, Castelo de Paiva
(+351) 255 690 160