All of a sudden, Melides is the topic of conversation. Those who know the secret is now public may feel a little nostalgic, but that’s just how things are.
A half-hour from already well-known Comporta, the small town on Portugal’s Alentejo coast is already a household name.
And there are plenty of reasons to fall in love with Melides, starting with the neighborhood Galé beach, where a stunning red stone wall with five million-year-old fossils provides a striking backdrop to a lengthy, expansive expanse of sand.
Even if Comporta still has its inherent attractions, the scenery here still feels untamed, which is something that is (if we are being honest) becoming increasingly difficult to discover there.
The beach additionally has the benefit of never feeling crowded and is naturally beautiful.
Part of a roughly 30-mile stretch of beach that connects the village of Troia to nearby Sines, its waves are choppy and chilly, discouraging all but the most intrepid swimmers. However, this stretch has the additional benefit of having fewer mosquitoes.
With a 2013 commercial photoshoot in the picturesque port of Carrasqueira, designer Christian Louboutin helped put this region of Portugal on the map.
In 2023, the designer will open the boutique Hotel Vermelho. The Portuguese word “vermelho” (which translates to “red”) is an homage to the famed shoe designer Louboutin’s signature red soles.
The building is an eagerly anticipated addition of big-city flair to a community of fewer than 2,000 people. Olive, oak, and cork trees frame the views of the surrounding countryside from the Vermelho mansion, which is located in the charming village of Alentejo.
The village is situated in the foothills of the Serra da Grândola and features traditional Alentejo architecture.
In Tomasi di Lampedusa’s novel The Leopard, Tancredi says, “Everything must change for everything to remain the same.” This idea is echoed in Louboutin’s vision. The architect wants to revitalize the area while keeping its serene ambience.
The Hotel Vermelho will join Pa.te.os, a magnificent new hotel and architectural wonder created by Manuel Aires Mateus, so Louboutin is not alone.
The hotel, which is made up of a number of distinct villas, is redefining luxury in the middle of the countryside close to Melides.
The bohemian vibe, subtle charms (many of them undoubtedly bourgeois), and general sense of peace in this region of Portugal have also attracted Melides Art, an artists’ residence and contemporary art space.