Lisbon – the city of Gothic grit and glamour…
Seven cinematic hillsides overlooking the Rio Tejo cradle Lisbon’s postcard-perfect panorama of cobbled alleyways, ancient ruins and white-domed cathedrals – a captivating scene crafted over centuries.
Lisbon’s trademark seven hills are spread across the cityscape like lofty guardians of colour and history. Capped by a collection of terraces known as miradouros (viewpoints), a must-see web of no-filter-necessary views over Lisbon, the Tejo and beyond is formed. Our favourite miradouros – Portas do Sol, São Pedro de Alcântara, da Graça, da Senhora do Monte, Santa Luzia and, of course, Castelo de São Jorge – all offer stunning spots to get your bearings and while away afternoons over bica (espresso), elegant glasses of Touriga Nacional or refreshing pitchers of sangria, while rubbernecking the city’s stupendous horizons.
Cheap booze and the absence of open-container laws means Lisbon loves a night on the town! Don’t be fooled by Bairro’s Alto’s sleepy daytime feel – by night, these narrow cobbled lanes transform into one of Europe’s most raucous drinking locales. Student dives, traditional fado houses and upscale wine bars merrily coexist among the muddled mess. In Cais do Sodré, Pink Street and environs are home to some of the city’s classic nightclubs and rowdiest cocktail bars, while trendier megaclubs stretch along the waterfront from Santos to Santa Apolónia. Last call? Sunrise!
Read more: https://lonelyplanet.com/portugal/lisbon
Our hotel is a short distance away from Lisbon Airport while still providing seamless access to the city center. Once you’ve checked in, relish in a 4-star experience in the hotel rooms and suites, all of which feature floor-to-ceiling windows, high-speed Wi-Fi and private balconies. Awaken refreshed and all rooms offer the perfect balance of space, light and comfort.
The history of the Jews in Portugal reaches back over two thousand years and is directly related to Sephardi history, representing communities that originated in the Iberian Peninsula.
King Alfonso I of Portugal entrusted Yahia Ben Yahi III with the post of supervisor of tax collection and nominated him the first Chief-Rabbi of Portugal(a position always appointed by the King of Portugal). Jewish communities had been established prior to these years; an example of Jewish expansion can be seen in the town of Leiria founded by King Alfonso I in 1135. The importance of the Jewish population to the development of the urban economy can be inferred from charters Alfonso granted in 1170 to the non-Christian merchants living in Lisbon, Almada, Palmela and Alcacer These charters guaranteed the Jewish minorities in the towns freedom of worship and the use of traditional law-codes.
Until the 15th century, some Jews occupied prominent places in Portuguese political and economic life. For example, Isaac Abrabanel was the treasurer of King Afonso V of Portugal. Many also had an active role in the Portuguese culture, and they kept their reputation of diplomats and merchants. By this time, Lisbon and Évora were home to important Jewish communities. The Inquisition had been established in Spain in 1478 to repress heresy, especially among the many Jews who were suspected to secretly practice their old faith. After the conquest of Granada, the Spanish crown had ordered the expulsion of the Jewish population, many Spanish Jews fled to Portugal. Portugal was the destination of most Jews who chose to leave Spain after their expulsion in 1492. Around 60,000 Jews had decided to move to the neighboring Kingdom of Portugal, a minor Jewish population was already residing in Portugal. When Manuel I of Portugal married a daughter of the Spanish rulers, he was pressed to align his policies with theirs. In December 1496, all Jews and Muslims who refused to be baptized were to be expelled. King Manuel I decided to use the port of Lisbon to ship the Jews of Portugal, delaying their expulsion the Jewish communities were forced into Portuguese society.
In 1497, Vasco da Gama took Abraham Zacuto’s tables and the astrolabe with him on the maiden trip to India. It would continue to be used by Portuguese ships thereafter to reach far destinations such as Brazil and India.
A new chapter for Jews in Portugal was marked by World War II. From 1929 Portugal was under the nationalist regime of António de Oliveira Salazar, but Portuguese nationalism was not grounded on race or biology. In 1938, he sent a telegram to the Portuguese Embassy in Berlin ordering that it should be made clear to the German Reich that Portuguese law did not allow any distinction based on race and therefore Portuguese Jewish citizens could not be discriminated against.
Later, when Nazi anti-Semitic policies became evident, the community got actively involved in rescue operations leveraging their friendship with Salazar.
The Jewish Community of Lisbon was officially recognized in 1913. It brings together the Jews of Lisbon. Its headquarters are on Avenida Alexandre Herculano, no.59 in Lisbon, where the synagogue Shaaré Tikvah (Gates of Hope) is located. According to its official website, the purpose of the Jewish Community of Lisbon is to promote religious education for the new generations according to the values of Judaism, to recruit new members and to strengthen its engagement in the local and national affairs, by means of dialogue and interaction with the authorities as well as with civil and religious institutions.