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Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel in Portugal [In-Depth Review]

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Ryan Smith
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Ryan Smith

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Ryan completed his goal of visiting every country in the world in December of 2023 and now plans to let his wife choose their destinations. Over the years, he’s written about award travel for publicat...
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At the end of February 2024, my wife and I spent 3 nights at the Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel, a Marriott property in northern Portugal’s largest city. The hotel opened less than a year before our visit, and everything still looked shiny during our stay.

The hotel had numerous pros, but the internet could definitely use an upgrade, and the light switches were unnecessarily complicated. But if that’s all I have to complain about, that means we had a great stay. We also loved the hotel’s location, its daily breakfast, and the perks we received because of my Marriott Bonvoy status.

Here’s what our stay was like and why you should consider staying here if you visit Porto.

Booking

The Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel is part of Marriott Bonvoy‘s Renaissance brand. To book our stay, I could’ve paid 69,000 points for our 3-night reservation. However, I chose not to.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel points pricing
Points pricing for our stay. Image Credit: Marriott

The hotel offered standard rooms for €121 (~$131) per night during our stay. Using 23,000 points per night at this price would have given a value of 0.57 cents per point, which is quite low given our valuation of Marriott Bonvoy points. Thus, we paid the cash rate for the Deluxe King City View, Guest room, 1 King.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel cash pricing
This was the cash pricing for our stay. Image Credit: Marriott

I applied a Nightly Upgrade Award to this reservation and received an email confirmation of this clearing 2 days before our arrival. While the suites do not appear to be bookable with points, the nightly rates run about €100 (~$108) more per night over the standard room.

As a Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite member, I earned 17.5x points per $1 spent (10 base points plus 75% bonus points), meaning I earned 6,951 points from this booking. I also earned 2,383 additional points by paying with my Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card to earn 6x points per $1 spent. With a current Marriott Bonvoy promotion, I also earned double Elite Night Credits and 1,000 bonus points per night during our stay.

In total, I came away with 12,334 points and 6 Elite Night Credits from this stay.

Location

The Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel isn’t in the historic old city of Porto near the Douro River. Instead, it’s in the Lapa neighborhood, and the hotel is a 5-minute walk from the Lapa metro station. This station is served by the A, B, C, E, and F metro lines, which we found really convenient during our stay. Using these, we could get anywhere we wanted to go in the city. The old town also could be reached by walking for about 20 minutes, if desired.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel location on Google Maps
The hotel was walking distance to the Lapa metro stop. Image Credit: Google Maps

If you arrive in Porto by plane, the train to the airport (line E) stops at Lapa, and the journey lasts about 20 minutes. Arriving by train, you can transfer to a metro line or catch a taxi to the hotel.

Hot Tip:

The walkway between the hotel and the Lapa metro stop had a lot of uneven pavement and rocks. When checking out, we decided to take an Uber to the Trindade metro station (the next stop) before catching the metro line that runs to the airport rather than rolling our heavy suitcases on this path.

Check-In

Pulling up in front of the hotel with our Uber driver, we could instantly tell this property was new. It just looked and felt young. The exterior design was really unique, as well.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel exterior
The Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel as viewed from the street.

As soon as the car stopped, a friendly bellhop came outside, greeting us in both English and Portuguese, welcoming us to the hotel, and offering to help with our luggage. He ushered us into the lobby while he stayed behind to gather our belongings from the trunk. On the right, we found 3 smaller reception desks, rather than a single large desk, and friendly employees ready to help.

We checked in with a young employee in training, while a supervisor ensured everything went smoothly. They scanned our passports, took a credit card for payment, confirmed the length of our stay, and confirmed our suite upgrade.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel lobby seating
We found seating and check-in counters in the lobby.

While looking around the lobby, this sign confirmed our suspicions. The Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel opened at the end of April 2023 — less than a year before our stay.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel inauguration sign
The hotel inauguration sign in the lobby confirmed why everything was so shiny.

Elite Benefits

In addition to the confirmed upgrade, we received several additional benefits from my Titanium Elite status. These included a welcome drink at the bar, redeemable with this coupon, and either 1,000 bonus points or a $10 food and beverage credit (per stay, not per day).

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel welcome drink coupon
We got this welcome drink coupon at check-in.

We also were given complimentary daily breakfast, which isn’t guaranteed at all hotels in the Marriott Bonvoy brand. Lastly, we were told that the items in the minibar in our room were complimentary and would be restocked daily by housekeeping. Tea and coffee were provided for us at no charge each morning at the bar, available from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. These benefits provided a considerable amount of free food and drinks.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel welcome letter
We got this welcome letter from the hotel.

Lastly, we received a 30% discount on laundry, daily turndown service, and waived parking fees (though we didn’t need this perk). There also was an offer of 24/7 butler service, but we didn’t test this out.

Amenities

Elevators

There were 3 elevators between the lobby and the restaurant. These arrived quickly whenever we needed them and were consistently clean.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel elevator bank
This is the elevator bank, as seen on the fourth floor.

The elevators had a wood-and-mirrors design that made them look much bigger than they were. Just 3 or 4 people in an elevator felt very full.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel elevator interior
Inside of the elevators.

Near the elevators, brass placards listed the floors and their amenities.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel floor signage
Signage indicated which floors had which amenities.

Rooftop Pool

The pool was on the fifth floor — the top floor of the hotel — and accessed through automatic sliding doors.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel rooftop pool bar entrance
Sliding doors opened to the rooftop area.

With the construction going on behind the hotel, the views and ambiance weren’t great, but the pool deck itself was beautiful. Multiple lounge chairs flanked the pool.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel rooftop pool
The rooftop pool had a view of a crane during our stay.

As the pool and bar were half a flight of stairs above the entryway, there was a mobility lift for those who needed it.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel rooftop chair lift
A lift could help those with mobility issues near the rooftop bar and pool.

Fitness Center

The gym was also on the fifth floor, flanked by floor-to-ceiling windows on 2 sides to provide views during a workout. We originally thought the rings hanging from the ceiling were for exercise, but they were just for decoration — each with lights built into the wooden handle.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel gym bikes and ring lights
Cardio equipment and ring lights filled the gym.

The fitness center wasn’t large in any sense of the word, but it offered free weights, exercise balls, a multifunctional weight machine, and half a dozen cardio machines.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel free weights
Free weights and exercise balls waited to be used in the gym.

Near the gym’s entrance, a cabinet held towels, tissues, and drinking water.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel gym towels and water
Towels and drinking water in the fitness center.

Internet

Wi-Fi at the hotel left something to be desired. No matter where we were in the hotel, we got average speeds around 10 Mbps. That’s … not great.

Internet speed test Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel
Speeds weren’t great here. Image Credit: Speedtest

Parking

Self-parking was available for €15 per day (~$16). Parking was available in 2 underground garage floors, connected via the hotel’s elevators.

Seating Areas

The hotel had several seating areas around the property, such as this outdoor space off the lobby. It even had heat lamps for the cool evenings.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel outdoor seating near lobby
Outdoor seating off the main lobby had a heat lamp for evenings.

This space between the lobby, bar, and restaurant also provided additional seating.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bar area seating
This was the seating near the bar.

Pets

Dogs and cats were welcome at the hotel, though you could have a maximum of 1 pet in your room. The maximum weight for your pet was 20 kilograms (44 pounds), and there was a nonrefundable pet fee of €45 per night ($49).

Meeting Rooms

On floor -1, there was a surprising amount of meeting and event space. Rooms could be divided or opened up to create a 700-seat convention room. Multiple conferences were happening at the hotel during our stay, and this place was buzzing throughout the day. There were also toilets for guests and several chairs and sofas for waiting comfortably between sessions.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel conference area
These were the entrances to the conference rooms on the underground level during a rare quiet moment.

1-Bedroom Suite

Getting off the elevator on the fourth floor, we followed the signs and turned left. We immediately noticed the almost hidden nature of the rooms and the ice machine, found only because of this subdued lettering next to a part of the wooden wall paneling that opened.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel ice machine in hallway
The ice machine near our room.

Further down, our room, 437, continued this subdued layout, with the door only noticeable because of the number and the handle — next to this lamp. I loved this layout. It made for a very clean look.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel room 437 entrance
Our door, room 437, was almost hidden.

Going inside, we found an entryway with much more than just a door and a coat hook.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel entryway
The entryway to our suite had a lot going on.

On the right, we found the minibar with chips, a bottle of wine, a kettle, and a coffee machine.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel mini bar
Our suite’s minibar offered lots.

A drawer underneath had tea and coffee supplies.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel mini bar coffee tea supplies
There were plenty of coffee and tea supplies in our room.

And a minifridge down below had sodas, soda water, bottled water, and beer.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel mini bar fridge
Our minifridge’s contents were complimentary.

Closest to the door, there was a generous closet with hangers, an ironing board, an iron, and a small safe.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel closet hangers safe shelves
The closet near the entrance to our suite was spacious.

Guest Bathroom

Opposite the closet, a sliding door led to a smaller bathroom that I’ll call the guest bathroom.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel second bathroom sliding door
The sliding door led to the second bathroom.

It had a toilet and sink, which I expected when I saw it.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel second bathroom sinks and toilet
So far, no surprises inside the second bathroom.

And the sink had the standard toiletries, plus tissues and drinking glasses.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel second bathroom toiletries
Toiletries in the second bathroom, as expected.

But this bathroom also had a shower, which was a surprise. Thus, our 1-bedroom suite had 2 full bathrooms.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel second bathroom shower
The shower in the second bathroom — the surprise!

Living Room

Moving in further, there was a living room that wasn’t large but also didn’t feel cramped. It had a large painting, sofa, and lamps along one wall, plus a coffee table, rug, and stools in the center.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite living room
Our suite’s living room.

Near the balcony was a desk and chair. We found bottled water, glasses, a notepad, and a bowl of fruit with a welcome note on the desk.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite living room desk
The desk in the living room.

The note welcomed us and thanked me for my brand loyalty.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite living room note on desk
Staff had left a welcome note on the desk for when we arrived.

At such a new hotel, we were surprised to find scuffs and evidence of touch-up paint on the corner from the entryway into the living room.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel living room scruffed wall
Scuffs on the wall in the living room, looking toward the main door.

Bedroom

Another sliding door led to the bedroom.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bedroom sliding door
The sliding door to the bedroom.

This was my favorite area of the suite. I really liked the layout and soft palette. There was a full-length mirror on one side of the bed, plus a bench at the foot of the bed.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom
Looking from the sliding door into the bedroom.

Other furniture included a chair and lamp in the corner and a TV opposite the bed.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom chairs TV desk
The furniture in our suite’s bedroom.

Near the door, there was a desk with a chair and a mirror (that was a surprise).

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom desk
The desk in our bedroom.

The bed was comfortable, and the sheets were soft. Unfortunately, the pillows were the type where you put your head on them and then fall through the pillow into nothingness.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bed
The king-size bed in our suite.

Each side of the bed had a nightstand, lamp, and control panel with both light switches and outlets. We were surprised that such a new property had USB-A charging points but didn’t use universal outlets. One side of the bed also had a phone.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom phone and lamp
The lap, phone, and switches next to one side of the bed.

The nightstands had 2 drawers each.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite night stand
Both sides had an identical nightstand.

Closer to the bathroom, there was a generous closet with glass doors. Inside, we had hangers and bathrobes, plus lots of storage space.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom closet
Our bedroom’s closet.

The drawers in the center compartment had laundry bags (plus a price list for laundry service), slippers, and padded satin hangers.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom closet drawers
Drawer contents in the bedroom closet.

The light switches left something to be desired. By the time we left the hotel, we still hadn’t mastered them. Some of the icons for what type of light the switch controlled didn’t make sense to us, so we got in the habit of just pushing buttons until we found the light we wanted, not really understanding the process.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite bedroom light switches
That’s a lot of buttons for the lights!

We also loved how closing the bathroom door (right side) and living room door (left side) isolated the bedroom from sound and light, with the help of some fantastic blackout curtains. This made the room very dark and quiet at night.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel doors closed in bedroom
Inside the bedroom with the living room and bathroom doors closed.

Master Bathroom

The master bathroom was the only area with a standard door, not a sliding barn door. It had a matte black color.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bathroom door closed
The closed bathroom door.

We loved the dual sinks and ample counter space here.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom dual sinks
Dual sinks for the win!

There was an outlet and a makeup mirror with a ring light on one side, plus mirrors galore.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bathroom outlet and makeup mirror
An outlet and makeup mirror in the master bathroom.

Under the sink, we found a hair dryer, towels, and a scale on the floor. The floor had a fun tile pattern.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom towels under sink
Towels, hair dryer, and a scale under the sinks.

On the right side, the shower had a glass wall and glass door, and it felt incredibly spacious inside. Options for rainfall and handheld showerheads were available.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bathroom shower
The shower in the main bathroom.

Pump bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and body wash were attached to the walls. We’d never heard of the Tokyo Milk brand before, but the products had a nice spring scent.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom toiletries in shower
Pump bottles in the shower in the master bathroom.

Near the shower, there were 2 sturdy hooks for our towels.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom towel hooks on wall
Towel hooks on the wall near the shower.

To the left, a frosted door led to the toilet.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom door to toilet
The door to the toilet area in the master bathroom.

This area was quite spacious and private.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel master bathroom toilet
The toilet in the master bathroom.

Balcony

Off the living room, we had a very small balcony with a half-glass wall letting in fresh air. With the massive construction project going on outside, we assumed this would also let in a lot of dust, so we kept the balcony door closed.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel suite balocny table and chairs
Table and chairs on our small balcony.

Views over the construction site weren’t much, but we could see the city beyond.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel view from room
The not-great view from our room.

Food and Beverage

Restaurant

The hotel’s sole restaurant was to the left of the elevators — the opposite direction of the check-in desk — and past the bar. A sign at the entrance said to wait to be seated. The restaurant had multiple seating types, and arriving before the breakfast rush meant you could choose your preferred type and location.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel restaurant seating
Seating at the hotel’s sole restaurant.

Options were abundant, offering something for everyone in your group. And the offerings included various types of food from different countries.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast food on table
We ate well every morning here.

Pastries and breads were numerous.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet pastries
There was plenty of pastry and bread.

There were 6 to 8 hot dishes each morning, always including some type of Portuguese dish and some type of potato.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet hot dishes
Hot dishes on the breakfast buffet.

For example, there were hash browns and a local fish dish one morning.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet fish hash browns
Hash browns and a fish dish on the buffet.

Dishes were labeled for clarity, but there were no allergen indications.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet labels
All dishes had labels but no allergy indications.

Further down the buffet, there were cold cuts and veggie sticks.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet cold cuts
Cold cuts on the breakfast buffet.

There were also nuts, seeds, several types of jams, yogurt, and various milks.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast buffet jams milks
Jams galore and milk options.

Staff also provided an egg menu each morning. Options included fried eggs, omelets, eggs Benedict, and more. If you just wanted scrambled eggs, those were available from the buffet.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel breakfast eggs menu
The egg menu at breakfast.

Staff also took orders for tea and coffee, including espresso drinks. And you could get apple juice or orange juice from the staff, but we found the orange juice really tart and didn’t get it after the first day.

The restaurant served 3 meals per day. We had difficulty getting a clear answer on times for lunch and dinner, as these seemed to change depending on who we asked. Breakfast, however, was served from 7 to 10:30 a.m. on weekdays and until 11 a.m. on weekends.

Bar

Between the restaurant and the lobby, there was a full-service bar. While the hotel’s website lists it as “open for lunch and dinner,” we never saw anyone having lunch here. Dinner time was a different story, however. This place was hopping in the evenings.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel bar
The bar was just off the lobby.

Rooftop Bar

Open from 5 to 11 p.m., the rooftop bar served more than just drinks; it also had light bites and desserts.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel rooftop tables and chairs
Tables and chairs near the bar.

There were both alcoholic and nonalcoholic options, and there were good vantage points over the city.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel rooftop seating
Seating near the pool and bar.

Room Service

Room service was available from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. When we arrived in our room, along with the “do not disturb” sign, we also found a breakfast ordering card that we could hang on the door the night before — much like what you might find on a cruise ship or in many U.S. hotels decades ago. This was convenient if you wanted breakfast in bed.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel room service menu on door
A menu and “do not disturb” sign inside our room.

The menu inside this card was extensive.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel room service menu
Menu for overnight breakfast requests via room service.

Service

Service was consistently good at the hotel. There’s no moment I can point to and say, “This was exceptional,” but an overall pattern of good service without letdowns made for a positive experience. Let’s look at some examples of how the staff provided continuously good service.

Despite the hotel being very busy with conventions and guests, the cleaning was impressive. The hotel’s public spaces were super clean at all times.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel guest floor hallway
The fourth-floor hallway was kept clean at all times.

When getting my welcome drink at the bar, I had to wait for a handful of other people to place their orders. Despite being alone at the bar, the bartender still found time to smile at patrons, say thank you, and work efficiently without appearing flustered.

And breakfast staff each morning greeted us in a friendly manner (in both English and Portuguese, as they weren’t sure which language guests would prefer) before showing us to a table, asking if we wanted coffee, and providing the eggs menu before we dug into the buffet. Moreover, the buffet was kept clean, organized, and stocked. That’s a tricky combination at a busy hotel.

When we got housekeeping service, the cleaning crew did a thorough job of not just cleaning but also restocking the minibar.

One surprising aspect of service, however, was that the hotel used paper “do not disturb” signs instead of something sturdier or digital. That was unexpected at a brand-new hotel.

Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel do not disturb sign
The “do not disturb” sign on our door.

At check-in and checkout, employees were friendly, helpful, and efficient. There was no above-and-beyond moment, but a lot of good moments of service added up to a great experience.

Final Thoughts

When we rolled our suitcases out of the elevator, staff at the front desk already took that as a sign we were checking out and saved what they were working on so they could attend to us. With no room charges to settle, the process was quite simple. The friendly woman at the counter asked us to check that we had our passports and other documents, then a bellhop offered to help with our luggage as our Uber driver arrived.

While Wi-Fi was slow and the view over a construction site was drab, there were many positives at the Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel. The location was excellent, the service was great, and the breakfast was deliciously filling. I’d definitely stay here again if I went back to Porto.

The information regarding the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

Frequently Asked Questions

When did the Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel open?

The hotel opened on April 27, 2023. It was dedicated by the city’s mayor.

How many rooms are at the Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel?

The hotel has a total of 250 rooms across 5 floors.

What loyalty program is Renaissance Porto Lapa Hotel in?

Renaissance is one of the Marriott Bonvoy brands. That means you can book this hotel with Marriott Bonvoy points, just like you can with other Marriott Bonvoy-participating hotels.

Are Renaissance hotels luxury?

Renaissance is one of the luxury brands within Marriott Bonvoy. That means you can expect quality design features and upscale amenities.

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About Ryan Smith

Ryan completed his goal of visiting every country in the world in December of 2023 and now plans to let his wife choose their destinations. Over the years, he’s written about award travel for publications including AwardWallet, The Points Guy, USA Today Blueprint, CNBC Select, Tripadvisor, and Forbes Advisor.

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