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Welcome to a world of travel, entertainment and culture, curated from a global collective of writers, photojournalists and artists. Each article of our award-winning magazine is sure to inspire, no matter which of our destinations you call home.
 
 
The Street
            Back to Open Skies

Travel to Lisbon

 
 

Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon

1 May 2014

Words: Christopher Beanland / Images: Pedro Guimarães

The journey to Rua Dom Pedro V is one of the most dramatic in Europe. Catch the yellow and white Elevador da Glória Carris funicular from Restauradores up to the Bairro Alto, swiftly turning on your heels at the top to take in the startling vista of the city centre laid out before you. Rua Dom Pedro V runs gently upwards to the right, skirting between the Bairro Alto and Principe Real districts, acting as a kind of bridge between the scruffy former and the more refined latter. The street runs northwest towards the Principe Real gardens, where its name changes to Rua da Escola Politécnica. Two names, one street, and one abiding philosophy: creativity meets enterprise. This is one of Lisbon’s hippest shopping streets. For a long time antique dealers had their shops here, and you can see the evidence of that in new shops, such as Manuel Castilho, and old ones, such as Solar. Antiques fill the fascinating 1920s-style bar, Pavilhao Chines, at Rua Dom Pedro 89, and the antiques dealers were the inspiration behind the many gallerists and fashion designers who now base themselves on the street. Finally, don’t forget to take in the buildings on Rua Dom Pedro V, each painted in a unique shade, ranging from red to pink to cream, and each with beautiful cast iron balconies and wooden window shutters.

Kolovrat 79

Lisbon has accepted Lidija Kolovrat, owner of Kolovrat 79, as one of its own. Kolovrat was born in 1962 in Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina, but she settled in Portugal permanently during the 1990s, when her homeland was torn apart by a bitter sectarian war. Kolovrat is something of a renaissance woman: artist, designer, party thrower. She’s as much at ease making jewellery as clothes. One of her most famous tropes is the “Royalty is the best policy” print, composed of portraits of former kings and queens of Portugal, which you can find in store on accessories and dresses. At this shop, Kolovrat 79 (named for its location at 79 Dom Pedro V) it’s not just about buying Kolovrat’s designs, there are also regular events: classes, concerts and showcases of works by other artists and designers. The Portuguese film Desassossego was even shot here. 

79, Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1387 4536
lidijakolovrat.org

O Prego da Peixaria

One of a new breed of hip ‘small plate’ restaurants characterised by limited menus, no reservations policies and reasonable prices, O Prego da Peixaria, up on Escola Politcenica, is similar in style to Mishkin’s or Polpetto in London, where this craze has really reached its apotheosis. But in Lisbon, it’s a novelty, which is why the queues here can sometimes be long. But tough it out, the food will ease the pain of waiting. The menu comprises stomach-fillers such as Portuguese ‘bolo’ buns filled with a variety of lipsmacking fillings: Azores tuna and Algarve salt flower; Portobello mushroom, arugula and tomato; or cuttlefish, salmon and tomato. The scruffy chic décor and young crowd add to the hipster vibe, making it one of the coolest little places in Lisbon for a relaxed dinner. 

40, Rua da Escola Politécnica, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1347 1356
opregodapeixaria.com.pt

Charcutaria Moy

There’s a real sense of care and attention to detail at Charcutaria Moy; the owners really know their food and drink, and they love to share their discoveries with customers. This place is particularly renowned for its teas, stocking numerous varieties and brands such as Kusmi, a French boutique label based in Paris that sells some delicious Russian-style teas and fruit-flavoured infusions. To further prove the point that you don’t just have to indulge in Portuguese delicacies here, Charcutaria Moy offers brightly coloured farfalle pasta from Italy, jams and preserved fruits in jars from England, Belgian chocolates and coffees from Africa and South America. But if you do want to buy local delights, fret not: the best Portuguese cheeses and tarts are also on sale, as is the famous port wine from the Duoro. 

111, Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1346 7011

São Mamede

We think of Rua Dom Pedro V today as being the result of a fairly recent gentrification project, which has seen swathes of Lisbon’s ancient city centre restored and re-invigorated. But São Mamede’s history stretches much further back, to 1968, and it has several locations in the capital, as well as offshoots in both Porto and Amancil, on the Algarve. The gallery is housed in a very old building with brick- arched roofs and stone floors, and Lisbon’s history comes to life through both the art and the architecture here. São Mamede has hosted exhibitions by Portuguese artists such as Areal, Cruzeiro Seixas and Cesariny, and Lisbon, with its unique topography and global culture clashes, is as surreal a town as Barcelona, so it’s no real surprise that Surrealism is always well represented in shows here. 

167 Rua da Escola Politécnica
Tel: +351 2 1397 3255
saomamede.com

Quiosque de Refresco

Kiosks are a Lisbon institution. The small, eccentric structures, usually located on a pavement, or in a park or public square, allow Lisbon residents to interact with their city – to enjoy fresh air, a spot of people watching and a coffee. Lisbon-born journalist Catarina Portas and her friend, the architect João Regal, are renovating many of these previously derelict kiosks. Tipped for success by Monocle, Portas is also the woman behind the shop A Vida Portuguesa and the home brand Ma Casa Portuguesa, but in the past couple of years the kiosks have been her focus. There is one on the corner of Praça do Príncipe Real, close to Rua Dom Pedro V. Quiosque de Refresco serving archly traditional Lisbon drinks, such as flavoured milk with cinnamon and lemon peel, liquorice juice and cold tea, as well as sandwiches filled with sardine paté and cod paté with chickpea cream. 

Praça do Príncipe Real, Lisbon
facebook.com/quiosquederefresco/info

spaço B

Simplicity never goes out of fashion, and if there’s one boutique on Rua Dom Pedro V that truly embraces the minimalist aesthetic, it is Espaço B. Encased in white walls, a white ceiling and smooth concrete floors, with carefully selected collections of clothing and shoes, this boutique’s pared-down style is reminiscent of an art gallery. Clothes bearing labels such as those of French street couture purveyors Misericordia hang from its rails, while its tables display jewellery by local designers such as Morfologica. It won’t be a surprise to learn that Lisbon power couple José Luís Barbosa and wife Leonor Barata are the interior designers and former stylists behind this chic shop. 

120, Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1346 1210
espaco-b.com

Solar

Whenever you’re strolling around Lisbon you should make sure to look up. The best free art show in Europe will be staring back down at you: Lisbon’s tiled facades. These wondrous works of fired clay are mostly blue and white; sometimes there’s a bit of yellow and green thrown in, too. The tiles adorn many of Lisbon’s buildings, public and private. It’s natural, then, that you might fall in love with them so much that you want to bring a batch home. And Solar is the place to come if you feel that urge getting the better of you. It’s an atmospheric old place, with cellars and a patio out the back both rammed with tiles in racks. Stocking both new tiles and a variety of antique tiles from different historical periods, Solar is a real treasure trove. Dom Pedro V may be looking forwards, but Solar is happy to look back. 

68 to 70, Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1048 2358
solar.com.pt

Alexandra Moura

In March this year, at ModaLisboa, Lisbon’s growing fashion week, Alexandra Moura cemented her position as one of Portugal’s top designers. The 41-year-old Portuguese exhibited sometimes severe styling in her autumn/winter 2014 collection, accessorising her models with chunky wooden necklaces and bracelets. It won her many admiring notices, and further boosted the profile of her slinky little boutique on Rua Dom Pedro V. The boutique is small but perfectly formed, bare-walled and minimal, elegant and sophisticated – with the fashion taking centre stage, of course. Coats are Moura’s speciality, and Elle’s UK edition recently encouraged readers to come to this very shop to buy their autumn coat, lest they be left out in the fashion (and real world) cold. 

77, Rua Dom Pedro V, Lisbon
Tel: +351 2 1314 2511
alexandramoura.com

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