Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel, Portugal

Cradled in a valley in the Serras de Aire e Candeeiros Natural Park, the Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel can be found 70 miles north of Lisbon in the rural hamlet of AlvadosWednesday, 15 March 2017

By National Geographic Traveller The Collection

Cradled in a valley in the Serras de Aire e Candeeiros Natural Park, the Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel can be found 70 miles north of Lisbon in the rural hamlet of Alvados. Set against a backdrop of olive grove-cloaked hills, the boutique hotel is home to just 12 rooms, each individually designed to evoke different emotions, from the fantasy of the candy-coloured Magic room to the monochrome decor, bowler hat lamps and old-fashioned clocks of the nostalgic Past Times room.

A combination of organic meals, beautiful countryside and healthy activities is designed to soothe even the most stressed-out guest. Ripe for exploration, the natural park is crisscrossed by hiking trails and there’s the chance to go cycling and horse-riding, courtesy of the nearby Alcaria Equestrian Centre.

More than an hotel, Cooking and Nature is a retreat, fusing a beautiful natural environment with a relaxing escape for body and mind. It offers several wellness programmes that include cooking lessons for healthy, plant-based meals, yoga classes, contemplation time, meditative nature walks, as well as Arabic baths and intuitive massages.

Entering Baths D’Aire evokes an immediate sense of tranquility and cosiness. The three pools with their different temperatures (frigidarium, tepidarium and caldarium) and dim lighting transport guests to the medinas of the Arab world, and conversations are respectfully maintained in a low voice to retain the magic. Nestled between the pools is a comfortable seating area that allows visitors to relax while drinking delicious herbal tea.

The jewel in the hotel’s crown, though, is arguably its healthy cuisine. In addition to seasonal menus made from regional produce and garnished with herbs from the on-site garden, the foodie experience includes cookery lessons — giving guests the skills to replicate chef Nuno Barros’ Portuguese dishes and to sample local wines, cheese, olive oil and homemade Alvados bread.

The hotel is close to three UNESCO World Heritage Site monasteries — Tomar, Batalha and Alcobaça — and 20 minutes from must-sees Fátima and Nazaré, and 10 minutes from one of Portugal’s natural wonders, the Mira d’Aire caves.

Don’t miss

Boost circulation with a circuit of the Arabic baths — the frigidarium, tepidarium and caldarium, each a different temperature

Need to know

Key Treatments

• Massages: nature, ayurvedic, relaxation with essential oils, aromas of nature, candlelight
• Yoga classes

Key Facilities

• 12 rooms
• Restaurant
• Honesty bar
• Kitchen for cooking lessons
• Arabic baths
• 2 outdoor pools
• Hiking trails with free GPS
• Free bikes
• Babysitting service

Contact Information

cookinghotel.com
T: +351 244 447 000,
E: info@cookinghotel.com

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