Books, gin and comfort in the Literary Man in Óbidos
Portugal, books and gin. Now there’s a combination that makes me happy! You can find all these ingredients together in a magnificent hotel called the Literary Man. It’s located in Óbidos, a charming medieval town in the centre of Portugal.
I don’t think I have ever found so many books in one place. The only thing I could think was: “Why is this not my house?”. The whole hotel is cramped with bookcases and shelves, exposing tens of thousands of books in all kinds of categories. Take your pick from children’s books, sleazy novels, best sellers, history books, scientific essays and even beautiful coffee table books. Many of the books are for sale, a selection of 3000 titles are only available in the library.
How do they get all these books? It’s the community that donates them. With the sales they make, the hotel sponsors local institutions that support social causes. So why not leave your holiday literature here and contribute to this great project?
Don’t worry, the hotel rooms are not packed with books too. There are different types, like the ‘convent’s old part’, six rooms with traditional wooden ceilings and old floors. Also in the older, more traditional part of the hotel, are the suites that have the same feel to them, but are a bit bigger. The more modern rooms are my personal favourite. This part is called the ‘flank of the nuns’, where minimalist eco-chic is combined with original handcrafted woodwork.
Food and drinks
Portugal has many great gins and I have been collecting them for quite some years now. No wonder the hotel’s Gin Bar really lifted my spirits. You can choose from over thirty gins, including my favourite from the Alentejo, called Sharish. Not a big gin fan? You can also try one of the ‘Literary Cocktails’, drinks based on famous writers and novels. Again, why is this not my house?
What would a Portuguese hotel be without a restaurant? Even if you’re not a hotel guest you can have a nice dinner here. Couples might go for the candle light romantic dinner, where you can choose your three course menu after enjoying your welcome drink in the reading lounge.
Can it get any better? Sure! This 18th century convent also has an old wine cellar, where rare Portuguese wines are resting for decades. This is not just a place to taste wine, but also to get a relaxing massage therapy. Hot stones or chocotherapy are waiting for you!
The Literary Man is a hotel on the Rua D` João d`Ornelas in Óbidos. It’s very close to the famous Óbidos Castle and shopping street. Don’t miss another very special book store in this town called Livraria do Mercado. This one is also an organic food market.
Óbidos is less than 250kms from Porto and less than a 100kms from Lisbon. Coastal town Peniche is about a half hour drive away. The famous Alcobaça Monastery lies less than 40kms to the north of Óbidos.
Check the hotel´s website for more details.
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