spotlight on lisbon | annie graham.
Name: Annie Graham
Star sign: Aquarius
Hometown: Jefferson, Ohio
How long have you lived in Lisbon? 1 year
What do you do here? I'm a textile designer and artist.
Describe yourself in 3 words or less: I make patterns.
What gets you out of bed each day? The promise of a surprise.
What makes Lisbon special? The unique quality of light and air; the crumbling melancholy grandeur of times past; and the many colorful patterned azulejos (wall tiles) decorating the facades. Also the steep hills and multitude of stone stairs provide a great opportunity for "urban hiking", a current obsession of mine.
We only have 24 hours here, what should we see/do? Lisbon is quite lovely to wander in, especially in the historical center of town. Take the morning to explore Alfama and Mouraria, traditional neighborhoods with narrow, winding streets, overflowing with authentic sights, sounds and smells. Don't miss the Castelo de São Jorge at the top of Alfama for an amazing view of the city.
The opposite hill across the Baixa also has a nice Miradouro (lookout point) called X that you can take a cable car up to. This neighborhood is called Principe Real, and is full of boutiques and restaurants- a perfect spot for lunch and a stroll. The garden at the top of the hill is super lovely, with a farmers market and little flea market on Saturday mornings.
In the afternoon, head to Belém, a neighborhood famous for it's pastry (Pasteis de Belém) and monuments near the river. Tour an amazing monastery (Jeronimos Monastery), one of the oldest in Europe or take in an art or science exhibition at the Museu da Electricidade, housed in a beautiful old power station.
Have dinner in Chiado and afterwards a drink at Pensão Amor down in Cais do Sodré, an old whorehouse turned bar, with vivacious interiors and a library of sex books. Dance the night away at Brownie, a small unmarked club in Principe Real where the cool kids hang out.
Favorite rooftop for a drink? Park! Tree-filled terrace with the best sunset views, funky tunes, and chilled out vibes. Also my favorite spot to have my Portuguese classes.
Best casual dinner? Sea Me in Chiado for inventive fusion seafood and fish, excellent sushi, and Prego (traditional Portuguese meat sandwiches, often eaten after seafood.)
Best fancy dinner? I've never had a real fancy dinner in Lisbon; the vibe I love here is understated and unassuming- my other favorites include: Cantinho do Avillez- (Chiado) Michelin Star chef, simple Portuguese cuisine, simple ambiance; Taberna Ideal (Santos) to try petiscos (Portuguese tapas); and Taberna Moderna (Alfama) for delicious Portuguese fusion and a sophisticated gin bar.
Where should we shop? Principe Real, LX Factory, Feira da Ladra (Saturday morning flea market in Alfama).
Favorite weekend getaway outside Lisbon? And why? Surfer's Lodge Peniche! Amazing local food, excellent surf lessons, beautiful beaches, hot surfers….what more could you ask for?!
What’s on your stereo? Glass Animals, Jungle, Hozier, SBTRKT, Tennis.
And who is inspiring you right now? The painter Angela Dufresne; and Dries Van Noten with his incredible Spring 2015 collection!
Words you live by… Never grow up!
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