Birthday Trip: Lisbon and the Azores!

For my birthday, I’m headed to Portugal! A perfect storm of factors led me to pick Portugal as the next country to visit:

  1. My coworker is from Portugal and always talks about how amazing it is
  2. Conde Nast Traveler’s podcast recently covered Portugal as an excellent European destination
  3. One Mile at a Time recently blogged about Azores Airlines

I’m a bit short on miles right now, so I decided to book economy tickets on TAP Portugal, Ryanair, and Azores Airlines.

First, we’re flying from San Francisco to Lisbon, with a three-hour layover in JFK. For our six-night stay in Lisbon, we booked a beautiful 1-bedroom Airbnb for only $113/night. The host promptly messaged us with a guide to Lisbon and an offer to arrange airport transportation. ❤

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Super cute Airbnb in Lisbon

We’ll stay in Lisbon for about ~6 days, exploring the city and maybe doing a couple day trips. I’m particularly excited for all the beautiful tilework in Lisbon:

After Lisbon, we’re headed to Sao Miguel, the largest island in the Azores. Our nonstop, one-way flight on Ryanair was ~$60 per person. We’ll be staying in Sao Miguel for four nights, which means it’s the perfect opportunity to utilize my Citi Prestige’s fourth night free benefit. I booked four nights at the Azor Hotel, which is part of SPG’s Design Hotels portfolio.

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Azor Hotel

The last time I used my Citi Prestige fourth night free benefit was for my stay at the Hyatt Regency Tokyo. The booking process has changed for the better — now you can simply send an email to the concierge with all your information and they will complete the booking for you. However, I sent my email on a Friday evening and I was worried that the room would sell out:

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I am very susceptible to the “Only 1 room left” urgency tactic.

What to do on a Friday night at 1am when you’re worried a hotel in the middle of the Atlantic might sell out? I ended up calling the concierge and within minutes, I had locked down our reservation. The following Monday, I received an email with my reservation and confirming my savings of ~$218.

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In preparation for our trip to the Azores, we watched Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations episode that takes place in the Azores:

I’m so excited for this trip! If you have any recommendations for Lisbon or Sao Miguel, let me know 😀 🇵🇹

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