A city that almost never sleeps, Lisbon is well-known for its vibrant nightlife but there are still plenty of hidden treasures to discover. Looking a little harder after dark, visitors can happen upon the likes of a 1920s-style speakeasy, an outdoor terrace that’s loved by local hipsters or a cosy cellar bar that specialises in live music. Here’s our pick of the best secret bars in Lisbon.
Soul Garden, Av. Columbano Bordalo Pinheiro 105, 1099-031 Lisboa
Corinthia Lisbon’s outdoor space is a haven of cool shade, laidback beats and sparkling cocktails. Located in a secluded garden, set below the level of the main street, those sitting in the lounge have the impression of being a million miles away from a busy city. The lounge is a popular spot among the after-work crowd and perfect for an al fresco tipple in summer, while the menu includes ceviche, tempura and other light bites.
Foxtrot, Tv. Santa Teresa 28, 1200-405 Lisboa
More is definitely more at Foxtrot. An opulent Art Deco cellar bar on an unassuming São Bento street, this Roaring Twenties speakeasy is wall-to-wall bottles, trinkets and baubles with the Deco décor turned up to 11. There’s no doubt Foxtrot is one suave, dapper gentleman but as one of Lisbon’s oldest bars – clocking in at 40 years – he’s a little rough round the edges too, which only adds to the charm. Aside from the 1920s time-capsule vibes, Foxtrot’s superior mixology makes it a destination to seek out. Expect innovative takes on classics (the Smoked Negroni is just the right blend of bitter and sweet) and outrageously presented house creations such as Sorry, It’s Not Tea, a devilishly fruity concoction in a giant teapot.
Red Frog Speakeasy, Rua do Salitre 5ª, 1250-096 Lisboa
With no signage and guests required to ring a doorbell under a red frog on the wall for entry, Red Frog Speakeasy is certainly one of the most secret bars in Lisbon. Designed like a classic American speakeasy, this award-winning venue produces some of the most tantalising concoctions in Lisbon. Designed to intrigue all senses, each cocktail is imaginatively presented and arrives accompanied by a small ceramic red frog. The American Gangster, a potent mix of Bulleit Bourbon, Madeira, amaro, maple, coffee, cocoa and tobacco leaves comes highly recommended, as does Los Misterios, made with Siete Misterios mezcal, gentian mead, melon, watercress, avocado leaves and smoked naga chilli. Don’t leave without trying to find the secret room, accessed by a hidden door.
LXFactory, Edifício E, R. Rodrigues de Faria 103, 1300-501 Lisboa
Once a near-derelict industrial space, LXFactory was co-opted by an enterprising bunch of creatives who’ve transformed the vast site into a professional and social hub. It’s largely occupied by up-and-coming fashion, art and design brands – and where the cool crowd resides, on-trend watering holes won’t be far away. Settle a bench with a beer at Café na Fábrica and rub shoulders with locals in the sunshine.
Tejo Bar, 1100 451, Beco do Vigário 1A, Lisboa
Unpretentious, unassuming, unheard of (pretty much), Tejo Bar is a little slice of Lisbon, dive bar style. The secret neighbourhood cellar bar is where locals go to see live music and jamming sessions accompanied by lashings of Vinho Verde. With various takes on the Portuguese guitar hung on the walls, the vibe is authentic and really gets going as the clock strikes midnight. Head here to get your fill of Fado along with diverse world music.
PARK, Calçada do Combro, 58 Bairro Alto, 1200-115, Lisboa
Taking its name from its former life as a rooftop car park, PARK is now one of the Portuguese capital’s best bars thanks to its staggering city panoramas, plethora of strategically placed plants and excellent drinks menu. Sip on a refreshing Cucumber Collins as you make the most of the venue’s entertainment schedule including live DJ sets, movie screenings and themed evenings. Those feeling peckish can satisfy themselves with one of PARK’s delicious burgers.
Monkey Mash, Praça Alegria 66A, 1250-001 Lisboa
Riding high on the success of Red Frog Speakeasy (see above), owners Paulo Gomez and Emanuel Minêz opened the small but perfectly formed Monkey Mash. Like it’s more established sibling, you need to ring a doorbell to be invited in, and the cocktails are certainly as sophisticated, but that’s where the similarity ends. This breezy little lounge bar models itself on the Hawaiian tropics and serves plenty of clever wit alongside its elegantly crafted Piña Coladas.
Pavilhão Chinês, R. Dom Pedro V 89, 1250-093 Lisboa
Commandeering a former Chinese grocery, Pavilhão Chinês is a labyrinth of rooms that bristle with antique treasures and objets d’art. Vintage dolls, model planes, war memorabilia and posters all jostle for space in these busy interiors. As a museum, it would be a rewarding visit, and as a bar, it’s even better. Settle back with an Old Fashioned in one of the booths and pore over the millions of trinkets in the ceiling-high glass cabinets.
Toca Da Raposa, R. da Condessa 45, 1200-302 Lisboa
Translated as the Fox Hut, Toca da Raposa has just enough room for 30 guests at a time, and this intimate space is some of the most coveted real estate in town. Helmed by Constança Cordeiro, who brushed up her cocktail-making skills during three years in London, this sophisticated little bar serves drinks that absolutely dazzle. Ingenious local ingredients such as olive oil, honey and Mateus Rosé are intelligently combined to make this secret bar one of Lisbon’s best.
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