Sam and I went on our first run together about 3 weeks into dating and a huge part of what I love about our relationship is that we can be active together and we value that so much. We spent his birthday rock climbing, we’ve cycled in Sweden last Summer and we regularly do Pilates and runs together. Our love for movement is shared and it’s a daily part of our lives so our perfect getaway would of course involve a lot of movement which is why we were so excited to spend 5 days at Feel Viana in Portugal with the Healthy Holiday Company. Feel Viana really did exceed my expectations and I’m very excited to share with you all the reasons why. I can’t recommend this hotel enough not only for the amount of activities on offer but for the hospitality, the food, the location, the rooms and the calming atmosphere that you can’t help but melt into from the moment you walk in to the serene spa and yoga area to the stunning walk down to the beach. A few days of peaceful paradise with a lot of fun movement, good food, wine and a cheeky espresso martini thrown in.
To get to Feel Viana it’s really easy. A two hour flight from Gatwick to Porto and then a 30 minute transfer and you are with coffee in hand in the beautiful chic lobby booking your activities and treatments for the week. I think next time we would tag on a little day exploring Porto too.
The hotel is set amongst pine trees right by the ocean and this part of Portugal is known to have it’s own micro climate; we noticed this as the wind is so strong down on the beach and why this area is hosting the World Windsurfing and Kitesurfing championships this June. The area is also becoming involved with initiative to include more Sustainable Surfing Products for the benfit of the ocean. More and more surfing clubs are joining this eco-initiative in hopes to curb the pollution. During an early morning trail run and stand up paddle boarding lesson we saw the dramatic Viana church set up on the hill. And when we took the fat bikes out one day we discovered even more beauty as we rode along the sand dunes and wooden pathways set amongst the trees and flowers. It really does feel like a little piece of paradise so close to Porto.
The sports team made me feel so relaxed when trying activities such as surfing and paddle boarding. We had such an excellent teacher for our surf lesson who was clear with instructions and I even managed to stand up for the first time. The paddle boarding was more peaceful but actually harder work than I thought and definitely worked my upper body- no need for any weight training that day.
As much as the outdoor activities are addictive, we also spent some time in the beautiful yoga studio and gym area. It has everything you need and makes working out stress free. I love to keep up a little Pilates and yoga when I’m away so it was amazing to have such a stunning space to practice in literally 3 minutes from our hotel room.
The hotel also has a spa and Sam and I enjoyed a couples massage. I hadn’t had a massage like this in ages and I drifted off to that super relaxed state between consciousness and sleep where your thoughts come and go and you just never want to leave. After an hour we were so chilled and enjoyed a calming tea in the indoor pool area. We didn’t spend much time in the spa as the weather was so glorious and there was so much to do outside but I was very tempted to book one of their facials. The hotel uses organic Voya products. I know I’ll be back.
I feel like this is somewhere we could come for a 4-5 days every year. I want it to be like a second home. The staff are so welcoming and feel more like a family. They got to know that Sam and I love lime with our sparkling water and would bring Sam extra cornbread which they homemake!
Moving on to the food at the hotel- I’ve sometimes not been very impressed with hotel food and usually like to eat out and try different restaurants in the area when I travel but this was a different story. On the first day we met the head chef and I was blown away by the menu. I could tell he had such a passion and talked me through the new sea bass dish for Summer which had wild garlic, pea puree and the most incredible hearty mushrooms. I then enjoyed this dish as well as many others on the menu for the next five days. The last night was the highlight with their Salmon fillet on purple potatoes, cod carpaccio and chocolate ganache, much deserved I feel after a very active few days.
I could talk about this trip for way more paragraphs but I’m aware that this post could get very long. Do not be put off by the fact this hotel is a sports hotel if you don’t feel like you are a sporty person. The pool area is a dream to chill out in and you can do as much or as little as you like. Yes the vibe overall vibe is health, wellness and fitness but you’ll see everyone with a glass of the special green wine from the area in hand after a long day and putting there feet up with a coffee in the plant filled lounge area overlooking the pine trees as the sunsets.
It was so lovely to spend quality time with Sam. I said we spend a lot of time together at home but are usually rushing to a job, meeting friends or figuring out what to make for dinner so to have no worries expect what to choose on the menu each night and whether to head out in the morning for a trail run, yoga session or some surfing was a dream. We are currently really busy with work and buying a flat so this was the perfect escape before a busy few months back home.
If I haven’t sold it to you enough already, you can watch my little vlog from the trip on my youtube this weekend. Subscribe to my channel here. I can’t wait to head back with all our friends one day and even in the future when we have a family. It’s perfect for children too. If you’d like to find out more about the hotel and how to book, visit The Healthy Holiday Company website here.
You can get free 30 minute massage during stays between September-December 2018 if they book through The Healthy Holiday Company and and quote Lottie. The Healthy Holiday Company offer 7x nights at FeelViana from £695pp based on two sharing a Garden Suite on a B&B basis, with return flights from London Gatwick to Porto.
I have not been paid for this post, I was invited to review the hotel for my blog and social channels. This is a completely honest review, all opinions are my own.
If you are thinking of booking and would like to ask me any other questions then leave a comment below and I’d be happy to answer.
Love, Lottie x