Enquiry to Check-out: how it all works
TRIP PLANNING is an exciting part of your upcoming travel adventure, so don’t be shy with questions about things to do, how to get around, etc.
PLEASE NOTE that availability and rates are subject to change. Reservations are only confirmed upon receipt of payment. Emails and enquiries do not constitute tentative reservations nor a commitment to hold dates for the enquirer.
On this page
- Enquiries & Booking
- Discounts & Special Offers
- Arrival & Check-in
- Parking & Transportation – Lisbon
- Parking & Transportation – Algarve
Enquiries & Booking
Getting to a Booking
A Booking Deposit and acceptance of our Rental Agreement secure your reservation. If you are ready to Book Now, you may do so, and pay your deposit by credit card via Stripe.com. Should you prefer to pay through WorldPay, using PayPal or with a bank transfer, you may arrange to do so by submitting an Enquiry.
Can you tell me about this neighbourhood, please?
Lisbon: The best thing about our Lisbon properties is that they are so close to the most visited sites, but you come home each evening to peace and quiet. This is not a high-noise, high-traffic neighborhood like the Bairro Alto. Around here, neighbors look after one other, children play ball in the street, bread is baked daily, and if you forget your wallet, well, just pay another day.
More specifically, our townhomes, Casa Villa Serra and Casa Joaquina, are on a tiny, private lane overlooking the Praça dos Restauradores. This means that they are a 10 minute walk up from the Rossio, the very center of Lisbon. The neighbors include a famous Portuguese actor and a nephew of Amália Rodrigues.
Four minutes away from the houses, you’ll find our apartment, Casa Santana, on a residencial street tucked just above the Rossio. Though none are jaw-droppingly famous, these neighbors are also quintessentially Portuguese, a delightfully friendly mix of old-timers and young professionals.
For more details and photographs, please visit our introduction to Pena–Arroios.
Armona Island: Armona Island (“Ilha de Armona”) is a pedestrian-only island, owned and managed by the Ria Formosa National Park. The walk-on ferry from Olhão, the Algarve’s largest fishing port, runs every 15 minutes. The quick boat ride keeps the Algarve crowds away… the loooooong sandy beaches on Armona are almost empty in the mornings and evenings. The more hidden of Armona’s beaches — like the one directly behind Casa Armona— have plenty of room, even in August.
For all the other details–where to eat, shop, etc.–please see our introduction to Armona Island.
Discounts & Special Offers
Types Of Payment
- What payment options do you offer?We accept payment by credit card, either using Stripe (for automatic online booking), WorldPay or PayPal. If you have a European bank account, we can also provide details for a bank transfer. Under some very specific circumstances (mostly last-minute trips) we will even take cash.
- Do you offer discounts for long-term rentals?Depending on the specifics, we sometimes offer a 15% discount for stays in excess of three consecutive weeks. However, long-term rentals are not our preference.
- What is your cancellation policy?For our official cancelation policy, please see our Rental Agreement. The short version is, we strongly encourage our guests to purchase travel insurance. We understand that most cancellations are unplanned and, usually, for traumatic reasons; however, we can not provide insurance for those who opt to not purchase it themselves.The booking deposit is non-refundable. If you cancel at least 60 days in advance, any amount you have paid exceeding the deposit is fully refundable. After that, any refund you receive will depend on the terms of your rental insurance provider: we will provide you with any documentation you may need to make a claim, but we cannot provide a refund.More recently, we have had some success re-selling cancelled nights at a discount. In these cases, we have been able to refund approximately 50% of the cancelling guest’s payment. However, this is not a guarantee.
- May I review a copy of the Rental Agreement?Indeed you may: VisitingPortugal Rental Agreement
The Booking Deposit is 30% of the total rental amount.
The remaining amount (70%) is due 60 days prior to check-in. Reservations made within 60 days of arrival are due in full at booking.
If we do not receive your Final Payment at least 60 days prior to your arrival, your reservation will be cancelled.
See Rental Agreement for full details.
- Travel Insurance: Please purchase travel insurance for protection against emergency change-of-plans. All cancellations are unplanned and, usually, for traumatic reasons; however, we can not provide insurance for those who opt to not purchase it themselves.
- Cancellation by Us: Once your booking is confirmed, we will not accept any other offers — no matter how financially attractive — for your chosen dates. Barring a major outage or act of God, your reservation is guaranteed.
- Cancellation by Guest: Upon receipt of emailed notice from you, we will cancel your reservation and, within 48 hours, email an invoice reflecting all payments received. You can then deliver this invoice to your Travel Insurance provider.
- Cancellation Refund: The amount of refund depends upon the terms and conditions of your Travel Insurance company; they will be responsible for any reimbursement of payments.
Arrival & Check-in
Standard check-in is 4pm, check-out is 10am. Non-standard check-in and check-out times must be pre-approved in writing prior to arrival. Fortunately, we can often be flexible about this if (a) you coordinate non-standard times with us well in advance of your arrival and (b) there are no other guests leaving/entering on your arrival/departure dates.
Guests are responsible for damages exceeding normal wear and tear. A refundable damage deposit is due in cash at check-in. The deposit is €100, or the equivalent amount in your home currency.
As of January 2017, and more than 1700 guests, we have only withheld two (2) damage deposits. (Both deposits were graciously offered by the guests when they called to report what happened.)
You will forfeit your entire damage deposit for allowing anyone to smoke anywhere on the premises, including the terraces. Per the Rental Agreement, we also have the right to immediately terminate your occupancy with no refund of monies received. Tar and feathers are not out of the question. (Those of us who are allergic to smoke thank you for your understanding.)
How far are the houses from the airport?
Lisbon: The houses in Lisbon are about 20 minutes from the airport.
Armona Island: The closest airport to Casa Armona is the Faro Airport. From Faro, it is a 25 minute drive to Olhão, where you can catch the ferry to Armona Island. We can arrange for a driver to pick you up at the Faro Airport, if you’d like, to make your trip as easy as possible.
Can we take the metro when we arrive in Lisbon?
We do not recommend the metro for your arrival in Lisbon. A private transfer or–if you prefer–an Uber/taxi will be much easier and less stressful after a long flight. If you really, really want to take the metro, please be sure to let us know: we have specific directions that will help you find the easiest way up the hill.
Once you’ve settled in to your house in Lisbon, had a look at the neghbourhood and don’t have luggage to carry, the metro is a great way to get around the city.How do we check-in?
We will send you directions for reaching the property (in English for you, in Portuguese for your taxi driver), contact details, and confirmation of your specific check-in time.
Lisbon: We are fortunate to live here year-round, so someone from our family will be waiting at the property to welcome you, deliver your keys, answer any last-minute questions and give you a quick neighborhood tour.
Armona Island: Paulo Nunes of our Algarve team will meet you at the house and make sure you have everything you need. He can also provide information on tours, boat rentals, and all sorts of other fun things.
Parking & Transportation – Lisbon
Parking & Transportation – Algarve
- Wait, there are no cars on Armona Island?No, Armona Island is (almost) pedestrian-only. There are a few bicycles, kids with roller skates or scooters, and the occational electric buggy that the Park staff uses for maintenance. But the “streets” are really just sidwalks, and almost everybody is on foot.
- Is there parking?There is parking in Olhão, near the ferry dock. Some of the street parking is free, but look carefully at the signs. There is also paid, secure long-term parking underground near the Pingo Doce grocery store.
- What if we don’t have a car?It’s easy to get to Armona Island even if you don’t have a car. If you’re flying in to Faro, you can take a taxi to Olhão, or we can arrange for a private transfer. If you’re coming from another part of Portugal, the trains are excellent. Once you arrive at the Olhão train station, you can take a taxi (or even walk, if you’re feeling adventurous) down to the ferry dock.
- How does the ferry work?The ferry from Olhão takes about 15 minutes and runs several times a day. In June and September, there are 9 boats per day, and in July/August there is a boat every hour. The city of Olhão posts the ferry schedule for all of the islandsonline; you’ll want to look at the timetable for Olhão/Armona.