In search of the Lisbon Blues? Read Australian Financial Review

What a surprise it is waking up to a Lisbon feature that doesn’t mention Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, Castelo São Jorge, Torre de Belém, Elevador de Santa Justa or all the other attractions you find in most other features in guidebooks, newspapers, magazines, travel blogs etc.

Instead of doing what everybody does, Jessica Friedmann tries to describe the the vibe as she writes about the local feeling of ‘saudade’ – the Lisbon Blues – in her story in Australian Financial Review.

A very easy-to-read historical back ground with a brief introduction to the most popular poets, a few explanations of ‘symbols’ and a few relevant venues.

A must-read for travelers who don’t have the possibility of moving here and wants a short cut to the Lisbon feel.


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Lovers searching for the Lisbon Blues from Miradouro da Senhora do Monte, 1 minute from Tings Lisbon. But they are not looking at Alfarma as AFR writes. You can’t see Alfama from here. Instead it’s Mouraria they can see below their feet. Who knows – maybe they will walk down and listen to Fado only 5 minutes away? Or they will follow the food steps of the most influential poets in Graça only a few minutes walk behind them?



AFR logoThrough sailors’ expeditions, and Portugal’s later troubled colonial endeavours, the sea brought back aspects of Brazilian and African languages and cultures that blended unexpectedly, but harmoniously, with its Moorish heritage.

“It’s like the tide: a wave goes out, a wave comes in” says Pires. “Everything became entwined, and we learnt the pleasure of seducing through language. Here, love and language are united. That’s why we’re poets”.

Read more in Australian Financial Review


Lisbon, a city of secret poetry, music and embroidered handkerchiefs

We can’t remember having seen embroidered handkerchiefs mentioned in any Lisbon travel features before. We only know about Portuguese tradition of embroidery because a friend of ours does embroidered bridal dresses and is looking for embroidery when she is in town. But after reading the sad – but romantic – background explanation we will definitely give embroideries an extra look next time we visit A Vida Portuguesa on Intendente – also only 5 minutes walk down hill from Tings Lisbon.


AFR logoThe streets of Bairro Alto and nearby Alfama are still crammed with fado venues, but many have become tourist traps. Vieira and Sophie suggest a trip to nearby Mouraria, to what locals simply call the Casa da Severa – Severa’s house.

This tiny, whitewashed house on the edge of a square is officially known as Maria da Mouraria, after Maria Severa, one of the most famous singers of the genre, and is now a family-run fado restaurant.

Read more in Australian Financial Review


Jessica Friedmann is right. When it comes to Fado Alfarma has become a tourist trap

You need to know people and places if you want to find the few places that still has a local feel. Especially in the tourist season.

Mouraria – only 5 minutes walk down the hill from Tings Lisbon – is a better option. But even this part of town has become very touristic.

Only a few years ago Casa da Severa was the place to watch Fado. Today the place is so packed that there are chairs outside to get room for people. But the whole neighbourhood is worth a visit. Lots of cozy cafes, lots of paintings and lots of sculptures. All portraying the Fado artists that used to live and sing here.


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A Vida Portuguesa (next to the beautiful tiles-shop) from a early Lisbon-visit – when Intendente was the Red Light District and traffic still allowed on this beautiful square. One of our favorite places to hang out with lots of super cafes, restaurants and events. Today Intendente and around has become one of the most happening parts of Lisbon


After reading Australia Financial Review we realize that the reason why we love Graça so much is because it has the Lisbon Blues

We are surrounded by poetry – in only 20 minute you can discover some of the most influential poets in the Street Art Meets Literature in Graca 20 minutes walk, you get embroidery in A Vida Portuguesa only 5 minutes walk from us or at the Tuesday & Saturday flea market at Campo de Santa Clara in our back yard.

Even Fado is (still) less touristic here in Graça – you just need to look for it.


We know – the quality of this video is not the best. But we’re sure you get an idea about the ambiance in our local Fado Bar.



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