Toss the orthopaedic footwear and bring on the Manolos! Madeira may once have been a destination for primarily blue-rinse coach guests, but it has evolved into a stylish island discovered by a new generation of travellers. Three members of Design Hotels™ are an intrinsic part of this development: The Vine, Choupana Hills and Estalagem da Ponta do Sol. They have brought a breath of fresh air along with contemporary design and modern lifestyle to the Portuguese paradise in the Atlantic Ocean. Each hotel provides a unique travel experience. The Vine is the island’s newest design hotel in the heart of the capital Funchal. With its rooftop terrace, Vinotherapy spa and Michelin-starred chef, the hotel is the place to stay for style mavens, young couples or other hedonists. Others may prefer to head to the hills – Choupana Hills – a perfect hideaway in the mountains of Funchal. Here Asian-inspired design and spa tradition make for a Zen-like experience. Estalagem da Ponta do Sol captivates guests with its spectacular views from the top of a cliff and its minimalist design. Home to several music festivals, this is where lovers of beats and rhythms will find their groove.
Generous space and pared-down sophistication are the trademarks of this new property located in the centre of the island’s capital Funchal. The Vine takes its name and inspiration from the island’s world famous Madeira wine. Interiors represent the vision of award-winning local designer Nini Andrade Silva who created a four colour concept, reflecting the maturation of a grapevine throughout the seasons. At the hotel’s spa, guests can indulge in a large offering of Vinotherapy treatments with products made of the finest grapes. Madeira’s new hotspot is the hotel’s rooftop terrace on the sixth floor. Here, guests swim in the infinity pool, relax on the ultra large sunbeds or enjoy a cocktail at the open-air bar – aptly named 360º for its spectacular views. It’s also the setting for chill-out parties, which happen every Saturday. Lounge music and Brazilian cocktails evoke a party mood attracting locals and hotel guests. www.designhotels.com/the_vine_hotel
Choupana Hills was a trendsetter for the region. It was Madeira’s second design hotel and has attracted a new segment of visitors to Madeira – young urban professionals. For guests who want to get away from it all, this is it! Peacefully nestled in the mountains high over Funchal in a lush sub tropical environment, the resort perfectly combines Asian and African accents with local materials. Natural resources, colours and lighting bring about a laid-back ambience that transports guests into the island state-of-mind. For ultimate relaxation, guests can head to Choupana Hills’ award-winning spa that features outdoor and indoor pools, a sauna, an authentic Turkish bath and six treatment rooms. Or they can simply rest in their rooms, which are all located in bungalows. Innovative cuisine with a mix of local and exotic products is served at Restaurante Xôpana, one of the first fusion restaurants in Madeira. To balance out all the relaxation, guests are invited to go paragliding high over the mountains of Funchal, scuba diving in the nearby sea or take a hike on the Levada walk that crosses the hotel. www.designhotels.com/choupana_hills
Estalagem da Ponta do Sol
Set on a top of a cliff, a more spectacular location is difficult to imagine. All of the hotel’s sections divide themselves along slate outcrops that tumble down to the sea. Estalagem da Ponta do Sol results from the renovation of an old “quinta”, a mansion house dating back to the 19th century. The architecture of this stark white getaway enhances the natural beauty of its surroundings and creates a chic yet relaxed atmosphere. From the infinity swimming pool, guests can enjoy unlimited views of the Atlantic Ocean, which seems just a dive away. Those looking for more adventure can do jeep safaris and rock climbing. Throughout the year, Estalagem da Ponta do Sol sponsors several music festivals, including MADEIRADIG, an annual festival for digital art and electronic music, attracting guests and artists from all over the world. The after hour sessions take place at the hotel’s chill-out bar bringing together the public and artists in a relaxed party atmosphere. www.designhotels.com/pontadosol