London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies

Luxury child friendly hotels in Portugal: Martinhal by Chitra Stern

Late last year I have been very lucky to have brunch with Chitra Stern, the visionary mum and entrepreneur behind Martinhal, the brilliant child friendly hotels in Portugal.

Brunch with Chitra Stern

Brunch with Chitra Stern

Martinhal story is fascinating and Chitra’s entrepreneurial journey is nothing less of remarkable. A month after Lehman’s collapse and September 2008 financial mayhem, Chitra and her husband Roman embarked on developing Sagres resort, the first of Martinhal properties. From training as an engineer and working for PWC, Chitra managed wonderfully to make her visions and dreams happen – a lot of hard work, commitment and impeccable business practice. The inspiration lied mostly in their 4 kids and their own holidays after the children arrived. Now in 2017 Chitra and Roman have 4 brilliant child friendly hotels in Portugal graciously spread: Martinhal  Sagres, Quinta de Lago, Lisbon and Cascais.

Martinhal Portugal resorts fill a huge gap in the hospitality market where parents and kids needs are equally addressed and all parties could have their space and ZEN moments – true luxury family retreats.

Chitra’s mantras include parents enjoying their breakfast and cappuccinos with the foam still on, mums having their me & spa time and couples reconnecting whilst kiddies are excellently looked after and entertained.

All in easy reach when decommissioned cars and play areas are around for breakfast; huge kidsclubs stays opened until 10pm and around the corner there are state of art spa and hotel facilities; idyllic outdoors are on the site; trained creche and kidsclub personnel will step in whenever one needs/ wants and baby concierge is there in case items are forgotten or simply not fitting into your luggage.

Raposinhos means little foxes and children are encouraged to be the same: active and inquisitive.

Not only KIDSSORTED (so to speak), but Martinhal Portugal stands out from the mass family holidays by contemporary design and well blending with picturesque Portuguese landscapes. No ugly tall blocks (a sore to the eyes in certain Mediterranean areas!); but little villas spread graciously around the coast or landscapes.

Chitra and Roman retained the charm and history; you’ll find the names of old houses and even beautiful stone ceilings in the kids club at Chiado. Interiors are matching the exteriors and they are functional and beautiful. There’s a tone of beautiful local art as they have been working with Portuguese painters in all of their properties. There are also lots more: gorgeous outdoors – seaside and countryside, sailing, riding, golf, city tripping.

Palacio de Pena, Sintra with kids

Palacio de Pena, Sintra with kids

And with Portugal being known as the California of Europe, Martinhal resorts make the perfect luxury family retreats pretty much the whole year round.

Martinhal Portugal: Cascais kidsclub: child friendly hotels in Portugal

Martinhal Portugal: Cascais kidsclub

Zenbabytravel team tested Martinhal Cascais half term October and all parties fell in love. End of October we have been blessed with 4 days of sunshine and temperatures between 25-30DC. We also wrote extensively about our 4 days in Cascais (article in here)– the area is filled with gems including Unesco patrimony Sintra, Michelin star restaurants by Cascais coast and of course the beautiful Lisbon. Just afraid that 4 days in Cascais (video link in here) were not quite enough, so we are planning again a Lisbon citybreak of course with Martinhal.

Zenbabytravel team has been also super lucky to stay with Martinhal Sagres in August and September 2020 and got to rave about the best things to do with kids in Algarve, Martinhal stunning ocean villas and super child friendly facilities. 2020 has been a year full of challenges but ultimately very exciting year for Chitra and Roman, celebrating 10 years since Martinhal Sagres has been opened. To many more, we are looking forward to going back again and more celebrations together!

Suitcases and Sandcastles

Country Kids

19 comments on “Luxury child friendly hotels in Portugal: Martinhal by Chitra Stern

  1. Lisa Marie
    January 9, 2018

    That sounds like a really cool family hotel. Looks like you and your kids had a great time in Portugal! 🙂 #CityTripping

  2. dearmummyblog
    January 9, 2018

    We’ve heard great things about Martinhal resorts and would love to stay with them. We’ve yet to visit Portugal as a family x #CityTripping

  3. Alex - My LIfe Long Holiday
    January 9, 2018

    I love the sound of this place, I’m off now to mark the resorts on my google maps for a future trip, we often find ourselves in Portugal with the family – thanks for sharing! #citytripping

  4. MummyTravels
    January 9, 2018

    I’ve been to the Sagres original and would love to try the new Lisbon one – just perfect for families. Thanks for linking up with #citytripping

    • Zen Babytravel
      January 15, 2018

      Pleasure Cathy! We’d also love to see Sagres, heard great stuff about!

  5. scots2travel
    January 10, 2018

    Really interesting to discover more about the history of the brand.

    • Zen Babytravel
      January 12, 2018

      Absolutely! It takes to be a mum of 4 to design to perfection the concepts & hotels! Keep us posted on your visit!

  6. Leona
    January 10, 2018

    I love any hotel that is both family friendly and luxury’s it sounds like my kind of place #citytripping

    • Zen Babytravel
      January 15, 2018

      Good to hear Leona, this is indeed your kind of place then !

  7. Clare Thomson
    January 12, 2018

    We’d love to stay at one of the Martinhal properties. We fell in love with Lisbon the year before last and we’re so keen to visit other parts of the country. Stylish family luxury hotels are on the rise and thank goodness for that. Thanks for sharing this inspiring story on #FarawayFiles

    • Zen Babytravel
      January 12, 2018

      Thank goodness but mostly thanks to amazing momtrepreneurs like Chitra! They are the real game changers for the industry and holiday savers for us all! 😉 Pleasure to link in as usual Clare!

  8. fifi + hop
    January 13, 2018

    What an inspirational story. Hard work, ambition and vision can make dreams come true! These hotels sound like every parent’s wish, I’m earmarking this in the event we visit Portugal some day (have only been without the kids). Thanks for linking up with #farawayfiles

    • Zen Babytravel
      January 15, 2018

      Pleasure to link in as always, keep us posted on your adventures in Portugal with the kids!

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  10. Coombe Mill
    February 17, 2018

    Sounds like the family have done really well and crate a great family holiday experience. How wonderful to go out there and test it all too, the weather looks lovely there in October. I remember going to a sales conference in November years ago in Portugal and it was cold and wet which put me off returning with the family, you did much better.

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

  11. Merlinda Little
    February 18, 2018

    I cant help but to be in awe of that lovely weather! What a lovely place and what an amazing experience too! #countrykids

  12. Emma Thatcher
    February 22, 2018

    Wow these resorts sound like they’d be perfect for my little family! It looks fantastic. #CountryKids

  13. Wave to Mummy
    February 23, 2018

    Looks lovely, and I have heard lots of good things of the Martinhal – all these pictures look gorgeous! #countrykids

  14. Pingback: Algarve with kids - Vila Vita Parc Portugal - Zenbabytravel

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