Portugal Hotel Investment: Urban Centres Top Resorts

There’s a reason Portuguese holidays are synonymous with blue seas, sunshine and sandy beaches. The country has invested heavily in its tourism sector over the past two decades, targeting sun seekers and surfers. While instability in competing destinations such as Turkey and Egypt has given the sector a boost, the Algarve and Madeira saw their first decrease in occupancy rates in 2018.

But these resort locations are just two of Portugal’s four main tourist regions and, for the urban centres of Lisbon and Porto, 2018 was a different story entirely.

Porto hotels enjoyed a record year, with nearly 8m overnight stays -- an increase of 5.9% on the previous year. This helped push the revenue per available room (RevPar) for the city up a whopping 9%. Lisbon charted similar growth, with a 7.9% increase in RevPar.

Porto hotels enjoyed a record year, with nearly 8m overnight stays -- an increase of 5.9% on the previous year. This helped push the revenue per available room (RevPar) for the city up a whopping 9%. Lisbon charted similar growth, with a 7.9% increase in RevPar.

The number of overnight stays in Lisbon held steady in 2018, with visitors to the city spending an average of six days[1] there. This is compared to 3.6 days per visitor in Porto. Cogress’s Market Analysis team chalked this up to a trend among remote workers towards extended stays in the Portuguese capital.

Europe’s digital nomad hub

This group of remote workers have earned the label ‘Digital Nomads’. They represent a cohort of 25-35-year olds who work online and aren’t tied to a specific location, allowing them to move around the world working as they do.

Thanks to high-speed internet, cheap desk space and low living costs, Portugal is the main hub for digital nomads in Europe. The top destination for this group is Lisbon and has been since 2017. The city’s growing digital nomad population has been blamed for increasing rents and a lack of short-term housing, with an absence of affordable accommodation often listed as a major pain point for remote workers.

Marrying the two markets

One hotel chain that has reaped the benefits of catering to the digital nomad in Portugal is Selina. This multi-million dollar, international hospitality brand is backed by a host of high profile VCs. It has made its name providing beautiful, authentic hotel spaces where digital nomads, freelancers, locals and tourists can work, stay and play.

Digital Nomads represent a cohort of 25-35-year olds who work online and aren’t tied to a specific location.

Selina already operates one hotel in Lisbon and has its sights set on others. Its first Lisbon hotel, Secret Garden, boasts an occupancy rate of c.90% and is one of only half a dozen co-living and working spaces suitable for digital nomads in the city. It is the only one to include a pool, co-working area and entertainment venue.

Outside of Lisbon, the chain has sites in Ericeira, Milfontes and Porto, and is looking to expand still further.

 

Hotel Investment Opportunities in Portugal

In 2019, Cogress and Selina signed a landmark deal, giving our investor community and exclusive opportunity to invest in portfolios of Selina hotels across the UK and Portugal.

See our Live Investment Opportunities to find out more.

 

References 

[1] 2018. Selina market research. Porto Roadmap.

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