Spectacular homes overlooking the greens and the Atlantic; world-class golf; fine dining, chic cafes and even a cool beach bar – its all to be found at Quinta do Lago, the upscale leisure and real estate development just 15-minutes from Faro’s International Airport, on the beautiful Algarve.
Quinta do Lago runs from The Magnolia Hotel, to the north, right down to the waters of the Ria Formosa, close to one of southern Europe’s most stunning natural parks. Here, you can take the wooden footbridge walkway, and arrive at the glorious beach in the south shores of Portugal.
Combining expansive, tranquil nature, a vast beach, manicured golf courses, some fab restaurants, and stylish hotels, my visit to Quinta do Lago confirmed just how much the destination has to offer guests.
For foodies, the draw is the superb selection of restaurants and bars. I discovered that each had a distinct identity and style, with varied menus – yet they all shared the Quinta do Lago commitment to style and quality.
I found it to be consistently one of the best places to dine in the area, for the quality of food, service and restaurant design.
In addition to the ‘19th hole’ golf club houses, there are almost a dozen other places to chill out with a drink or enjoy time with friends and family over a relaxing meal. Here’s just a handful of the highlights I discovered.
This is a cool, yet understated beach bar is secluded within the sand dunes of the Quinta do Lago beach. It’s the place for a lunch of fresh seafood with hot piri-piri sauce.
Caso do Lago
Found on the lake, the Caso do Lago fish restaurant, with chic interiors of fishing paraphernalia, was an excellent choice for a leisurely lunch.
The style was relaxed yet delivered with impeccably good taste and flair. The menu was full of tempting dishes – we tried the fresh salt & pepper calamari. It was so good! Perfect, light tempura, and soft texture with a spicy chilli & coriander mayo dip.
The seared wild scallops were deliciously plump and meaty with the light champagne beurre blanc sauce.
Try also the grilled tiger prawn salad is a generous dish – or if you can always try the fish of the day, expertly filled and served at your table.
I just loved the look and feel of the Bovino Steakhouse.
It was superbly designed, creating a stylish environment to enjoy a dinner. The long bar, and also the terrace are both tempting places to get the evening started with cocktails.
To eat, I chose the Chateaubriand; expertly cooked and innovatively served on its own table top grill. I saw from the menu there was also seafood salads, fish from the grill, pasta etc. so a varied choice, but really if you come here you much try the exceptional steaks.
KoKo Café Bar
Throughout the resort there are lots of cool terrace café bars, juice bars, and small eateries for informal meals, light snacks or just a gourmet coffee. KoKo is one of these and is right on one of the golf courses.
It was a fun and relaxed place for a fresh, crispy pizza and great coffee.
This fine-dining restaurant with a menu of French cuisine is looking better than ever after its remodelling. Chef Yannick Guichaoua’s creative Mediterranean dishes make for a memorable evening. The setting is as breath-taking as always, with charming olive tree gardens, a striking infinity pool, and a roof top terrace for sundowners and dinner.
With so much tempting cuisine it’s a good idea to stay active whilst staying at Quinta do Lago – and there’s plenty for families as well as professional athletes.
The 2.3 km Quinta do Lago trail is perfect for jogging or cycling and is a fun way to get to see the nature of the estate. In addition, the Sao Lourenco trail at 3.2km takes in the different wetland landscapes and gives an opportunity to see some of the multitude of wildlife on the edge of the natural park.
If you don’t just want to hike around the water, how about getting on the water – with a sailing dinghy on the lake!
Of course, many visitors come for the championship golf courses, which have hosted 8 Portuguese Opens and many international tournaments. Whilst for professional athletes, there’s also The Campus.
The Campus, an elite sporting complex, is a unique, cutting edge performance environment for athletes and international sporting team.
It is new this year and looks set to have a significant impact on the profile of Quinta do Lago.
The facilities being put in place, from the Hybrid Desso Grassmaster football pitch; the acrylic Greensett courts, the synthetic clay tennis courts, padel courts, swimming pool; hydrotherapy centre, and high-performance centre with gym, physiotherapy suite all combine to create a truly world-class environment. It’s set to become one the finest all-year training facilities in Europe.
Quinta do Lago offers superb real estate; stunning architect designed homes; some of which are also available for vacation rentals. There is also a 5-star hotel, the Conrad Algarve for visitors, and now, right on the doorstep of the resort, is The Magnolia Hotel.
The property which has been completely remodelled for the 2018 season, bringing together cool 1950s motel Americana and contemporary Mediterranean styling. It’s a friendly and on-trend enclave for millennials, the young at heart and visiting athletes.
The modern rooms focus on quality, like 5-star standard beds, Egyptian cotton linens, huge plush towels, super-fast Wi-Fi. There’s a heated all-season swimming pool with cocktail bar; tennis court, bicycles; well-equipped gym; and spa treatment rooms.
45 Years of Style
Quinta do Lago has certainly seduced me. I was truly impressed by the style and quality of the entire resort. This year sees the fruition of some major, high profile investments, so even if you have been here before, it’s time you came back – after al it looks as if 2018 is most definitely Portugal’s year.
Quinta do Lago, Algarve, Portugal