5 on November 06, 2013
Highest marks to Carmen and Joao. Everything everyone says about the friendliness, the cleanliness, the owners' knowledge of the town, the views, the marvelous breakfasts included in the price, is still true (we visited there in October, 2013). Even more, I knew nothing about touring the Douro or the town of Porto. However, by emailing Carmen in advance, I received her excellent suggestion to reserve with Douro Exclusive, a wonderful husband and wife tour team that showed us the Douro River and its port history, all in a comfortable van drive and river excursion. Carmen also arranged for tables at two fantastic restaurants packed with locals, both just steps away from the Guest House. Our room was small, but Carmen had kindly warned us about its size before we booked. During our stay, we certainly didn't mind the smallness of what turned out daily to be our sparkling, fresh-flower-enhanced room, overlooking the Douro, with a bed more comfortable than ours at home, and a shower with more hot water than we ever enjoyed in Paris. Highly recommended. Edie and Robert De Avila, California
5 on April 26, 2013
One of the best experiences we have had traveling! Truly beautiful B&B. Exquisitely decorated, fantastic location,wonderful hosts. Highly recommend when visiting Porto. We are already talking about a return visit!
5 on October 31, 2012
Guest House Douro is first rate. My wife and I had a great stay there last August. Carmen and Joao accommodated our every want and need, went above and beyond. We were pleased with every aspect of our visit, from the elegant yet comfortable room, to the delicious, varied breakfast, to the accurate directions and useful local tips and information. Fantastic bed and breakfast; we recommend it most highly.
5 on April 30, 2012
We recently stayed at Guest House Douro. Porto is a great city and Guest House Douro is perfectly located overlooking the Douro River. The owners, Carmen and Joao, were a great help in choosing places to dine and shop. Immaculate rooms, very comfortable beds, and delightful breakfasts (made even more delightful by Joao). We will definitely return
5 on April 29, 2012
We recently had our second visit to Guest House Douro. We had previously stayed there two years ago when visiting Porto on our honeymoon. We enjoyed Porto and Guest House Douro so much the first time that we wanted to visit it again and explore other parts of Portugal, including the Douro Valley and Lisbon. While we enjoyed the other parts of the country, our tour convinced us that Guest House Douro and the city of Porto are our favorites. Just like the first visit, the accomodations were immaculate, with no detail overlooked. The breakfast (included in the reasonably priced room rates) is phenomenal and showcases amazing fruits, cheeses, meats and breads of Portugal. The owners and staff are extremely friendly and had great insights into things to see, where to dine, shop and visit in the city. We had an amazing time and will certainly be back to Guest House Douro again.
4.8 on July 06, 2011
My boyfriend and I, stayed at this guest house for two days, and we really wish we could have stayed longer. Though the rooms were small, Carmen and Joao made us feel at home and welcome. They were able to provide us with places to see in Porto, as well as show us the best places to eat. I cannot wait to return.
5 on April 16, 2011
Guest House Douro is terrific. Carmen and Joao see to every detail. The maps they provide are hand marked IN ADVANCE with a variety of special places to visit; because they aren't preoccupied with marking maps on the spot, they are able to focus on guests' interests and tastes and then individualize their recommendations. By the time we reached Porto, we were ready to hire a private guide for a day, but found no need after several consultations with Carmen, Joao and their assistant. Cleanliness is sacrosanct. Best of all: when Carmen or Joao made dinner reservations on our behalf, we snagged the best table in the house! May the Guest House Douro never change.
4.8 on April 16, 2011
While the rooms are small, this is more then made up for by the location, the service, the cleanliness and the outstanding breakfast. The owners and the staff go out of their way to make your stay as if you were at home and knew the answers to everything. Ask and they will help you have a wonderful experience.
4.8 on January 20, 2011
My husband and I recently had a wonderful stay at the Douro guest house. Carmen and Joao are fantastic, as is their beautifully restored home. We received a very warm welcome from Carmen and enjoyed a glass of port while she explained a map of the city and pointed out highlights. She was full of valuable information that couldn´t be found in any of our guidebooks. Our room (102) was small, but expertly designed so we had plenty of room to organize our belongings. The best part of this room is its two beautiful windows overlooking the river and allowing for beautiful city views and lots of natural light. The design of the room (like everything about this guest house) is very tastefully done! We loved it. Joao served up a delicious breakfast of artisinal breads, pastries and cheese, along with a beautiful assortment of freshly cut fruits (including my favorite passion fruit!). Our last day of the stay, my husband was a little nervous about a phone interview for a job and Carmen even helped him prepare and recommended some excellent port tastings to help him relax. The interview turned out to be a great success!! We can´t wait to return here again soon. Highly recommended! Our only regret is that we didn´t stay longer!
5 on November 04, 2010
We spent two nights at the Guest House Douro in October. Our only regret was not staying longer! GHD is perfectly situated for a tourist. This gorgeous B&B is right on the riverfront and a short walk to all of the sights, restaurants, and public transportation in Porto. We stayed in room 302, which had a wonderful view of the Douro River. Our room was small (typical for European accommodations), but was cleverly furnished to make the best use of space. Despite the size, our room was incredibly comfortable. The lavish bed linens made for a perfect night’s sleep and the bathroom felt like a mini-spa! Our room was equipped with a flat screen TV (with programming from around the world), bathrobes and slippers, bottled water and a safe. Guest House Douro is an ultra-modern gem in one of Portugal’s most historic cities. It is immaculately clean. The décor is stunning and tasteful with clean lines and bold colors. Each morning we were greeted by Joao at breakfast. Artfully plated fruit, meats, cheeses, yogurt and fresh bread were always waiting for us. Various coffee drinks and tea were also available. Not to mention wonderful conversation and suggestions on how to spend the day from Joao. Carmen was available to guests in the evening. She always had perfect insight on what to do and most importantly – where to go for dinner. Her recommendations were wonderful, and when Carmen made a reservation for us, we were pampered when we arrived at the restaurant! Carmen was always willing to accommodate any request….from a wakeup call from a nap, to making arrangements for a taxi, to helping American tourists communicate with area businesses in Portuguese! It is obvious that Carmen and Joao have devoted their lives to their business. They love what they do and they truly love their guests. The accommodations are superb, but is the warmth and friendliness of the innkeepers that really make Guest House Douro special.
5 on July 21, 2010
We found this guest house by chance, and I have to say - since returning to the US, I've been dreaming about going back. It was a perfect break. The guesthouse owners, Carmen and Joao moved from Canada to open the hotel and it is clearly a labor of love. The breakfast was a wonderful aray of home made and locally sourced foods and fruits, the rooms are small but wonderfully furnished and equiped - we honestly wanted for nothing. They welcomed us on arrival with a glass of port and made reservations immediately for our first night's dinner at a local restaurant where Carmen and Joao take all their meals! They steered us to all the must-sees in Porto - which included experiencing the wonderful Port tours - yes we purchased a lot - and if you plan on coming here - make sure you leave room in your checked baggage to take some back... don't forget you can't put it in your handbagage! And you WILL want to take some back! The beach is a short bus ride away, and there aer river tours leaving from in front of the hotel. I highly recommend this city and this particular hotel. I can't wait to go back!
5 on April 28, 2010
My husband and I and our two teenage daughters stayed here in April 2010. The girls had room 301, and we had room 102, and both were extremely comfortable rooms. Room 301 is a bit longer, with two chairs in it and two twin beds, and room 102 had a European double bed, which is slightly larger than the ones in the states, so we were not crowded at all. It had an amazing view of the river. There is nothing new I can add to all the wonderful reviews you will read. From the moment we stepped into João and Carmen's home, we were treated like family, complete with hugs. My 14 year old probably said it best when when she said,"This was the best vacation ever." When I asked her why, she said it was because the atmosphere was great. This was in due part to our gracious hosts. I highly recommend visiting Portugal (so much to see) and there is no better place to stay! We will definitely be back!
5 on December 02, 2009
We stayed at GHD for five nights in Nov. The house is fabulous with wonderful rooms and views. Everything about it is superb - fresh breakfasts, comfy bed, great location, tasteful decor. Carmen and Joao were fantastic hosts. They gave us excellent recommendations and were very helpful every step of the way. It was wonderful to be pampered and have a hassle-free holiday. Porto is a beautiful city and Guest House Douro is the icing on the cake!
5 on November 11, 2009
Great service, Joao and Carmen are lovely people and make your stay extremely personal and enjoyable. They treat you like family! The rooms are very modern and have nice amenities, I wish my home will one day look like the Guest House Douro. The location is amazing, right on the river, easy to get to everywhere, even if you just want to walk along the River. The breakfasts were incredible, tons of fresh fruit, excellent meats and cheeses, fresh squeezed orange juice, etc. Also, you can truly relax since Carmen and Joao will book everything for you. Definitely 5 stars, more if I could!
5 on October 07, 2009
My husband and I just returned from 10 days traveling through Portugal with my cousin and her husband. When we had to leave Carmen and Joao, we cried - really. We're all close to retirement age so we've been to a lot of cities, a lot of hotels, a lot of b&b's. We didn't stay at a hotel - we stayed in Carmen and Joao's home. From the minute the cab squeezed thru the street, restaurant tables on both sides, we knew this was something special. We were greated like old friends. Had our first taste of port as a welcome drink. Guest House is a completely renovated old building - so much charm from the outside and so stunning on the inside. They opened in January of this year and have created a masterpiece of tranquility and beauty. The rooms are modern and perfectly appointed. And the fragrance of the sheets! Breakfast is a dream of fresh fruit, fresh coffee, breads, yogurt, all hosted by Joao, which is the best part. He is the most personable, knowledgeable man. We wanted to take him home with us! And Carmen - she is the best combo of avant garde chic and impeccable hostess! There are some things in life that can't be properly described but need to be experienced. Guest House Douro is one of those things. Porto is a great city - rent a car (Joao can make those arrangements) and go to the Douro valley. And make sure Carmen makes a reservation for you in the restaurant on the beach (begins with "S" but not sure of the name). So much to see, so little time. We so enjoyed the city and the company of our new friends Carmen and Joao. We will fondly remember our visit to Porto for so many reasons. Go and experience the Guest House - you will never regret it.
5 on September 20, 2009
We were so pleased with every aspect of our stay at Guest House Douro, starting with Carmen and Joao! Besides being charming and fun people, they were absolutely the best hosts - from suggestions for dining to directions to everywhere! Our room was spotless, the bed was blissfully comfortable, and the breakfasts were delicious and plentiful. Their location is ideal for sightseeing on both sides of the river. We will definitely stay with them when we return to Porto! Jennie and David, San Francisco CA USA
5 on September 14, 2009
Janet and I visited Carmen & Joao with our friends Dave & Alison from 5 September to 9 September 2009 and they were first rate hosts and did everything possible to make sure our stay was as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. We were given advice on the best places to visit and the best places to eat and drink. The weather was wonderful too and it was just the perfect few days away. Joao's breakfasts are awesome! Thanks again Carmen and Joao
5 on August 31, 2009
Carmen and Joao have recently opened a boutique guest house overlooking the River Douro in Portugal. Everything is brand new and offers great value right in the centre of the historical district of Porto. The interiors are welcoming and spotlessly clean, the beds are comfortable and the showers great, but our lovely hosts totally capped it off. Nothing was too much trouble when they welcomed us into their ‘home away home’ and took time to suggest the most important sights to see. We felt like long lost friends. Breakfast with Joao was a joy with great conversation enlightening us all about the area and Portugal generally as well as the best fruit plates we have ever experienced! I also conversed for some months over the internet with Carmen, who made many great suggestions on what would be important to our trip to Portugal (another reason our trip was such a success). Porto is definitely off the main tourist track, but it can be an eye-opening adventure in one of Portugal’s most historical areas. The Douro Guest House is a wonderful base in which to explore the old area or take a walk over the closest bridge to the port district opposite. The new concert hall and many restaurants along the coast in the more modern area should also be visited to understand the full and wonderful charm of Porto. We would definitely return to the Guest House Douro and our dear friends!
5 on July 16, 2009
My husband and I recently spent three days at the Guest House Douro as part of our 50th wedding anniversary celebration in Portugal. It exceeded our expectations in every way. As we drove down the great little street on which the Guest House is located, both Carmen and John came out to welcome us. They helped us in with our luggage and John accompanied my husband to the nearby carpark (safe and guarded). As we unpacked, Carmen arrived with two glasses of chilled white Port - we decided that was a new and perfect way to begin our stay. We had been unable to reserve a river view room but we loved throwing open the windows to watch the lively street scene below. We were concerned that the noise from the street would disturb us at night, but the quality, high tech windows ensured that that would not happen. Where to have dinner must be one of the most frequently asked questions by guests of b and b owners. Carmen and John had the perfect answer: a little bistro type, mom and pop restaurant right around the corner . It had no pretensions but excellent fresh fish, and the owner's choice of accompanying wine. We returned a second evening. Possibly the most memorable part of our Guest House stay was John's beautiful breakfast. We had seen him returning from the fruit market each day where he is allowed to pick out the best there. The individual fruit plates were the work of an artist. They were accompanied by yogurt, breads and excellent espresso. To say we were happy at Carmen and John's would be an understatement. They have thought of every detail - from the fine bedding to the sound-proof plumbing system. Our hosts are determined to give their guests the best quality care in every aspect of a high end bed and breakfast. That is what they provide. Thanks, Carmen and John, for making our time in Porto so memorable. Helen and John - Saskatchewan, Canada
5 on July 15, 2009
This guest house was fantastic! We paid a little extra for the room with the private balcony overlooking the river, and though it was a little small, it more than made up for it with a fantastic view. The room itself was very nice- luxurious appointments and impeccably clean. "Reservations" for the continental breakfast were required (i.e. they needed to know what time you'd be there since the breakfast room is very small), but it was personally (and cheerfully!) served by Carmen or Joao. Tasty (and beautifully presented) fresh fruit, rolls and bread, yogurt, coffee, etc. The front door is very nondescript- but sure to have the address with you. There is a little plaque near the door buzzer with the name on it - this is the only sign. Carmen and Joao were amazing hosts. We felt like we were staying with good friends they took such good care of us. Definitely let them make your reservations for dinner- they did not steer us wrong.! They also helped us plan our day which was great. We really enjoyed just chatting with them at the end of the day over a glass of port. They even brought us champagne as it was our honeymoon! This place is not to be missed!!
5 on July 14, 2009
Guest House Douro was a major highlight of our trip to Portugal. Four of us traveled to Porto for a conference in early June 2009, and we stayed at Guest House Douro for 6 nights. As soon as we arrived, I knew we’d made the right choice. Carmen and João made us feel right at home, and the luxury of Guest House Douro was clear as soon as we stepped through the door. The house itself is a beautifully restored old building, very modern inside with gorgeous design details – Carmen has great taste and she’s thought of everything. The rooms are small but very luxurious. Everything is amazingly clean and modern and of beautiful quality. I have not slept as well since leaving that amazing bed, with the sounds of accordion music along the river drifting in my window. The breakfasts that João served up every morning were fabulous – fresh, delicious and beautifully presented – and with all the café com leite you can drink. The location was absolutely perfect – right in the heart of the old city, along the river, walking distance to everything including the conference centre which was only 5 minutes away. Carmen and João also provided lots of great advice on things to see and places to eat. They made it very easy to relax and enjoy the conference and make the most of our time in Porto. I would recommend Guest House Douro to anyone heading to Porto – on vacation or for business. I can’t wait to go back with friends or family!
5 on May 26, 2009
this is a rare find - a boutique guest house to the highest standards; excellent breakfasts; great location and friendly and attentive hosts in Carmen and Joao Y&J Ottawa
5 on May 25, 2009
Carmen and Joao: Once again, thanks for an absolutely wonderful stay. You are a class act! Your warmth, friendliness, attention to detail are an unbeatable combination. I hope to return soon. Best of luck to both of you. Donna (Toronto, Canada)
5 on May 23, 2009
Our stay at the Guest House Douro was one of the best hotel experiences of the many trips we have taken to Europe. This stylish and modern establishment is very well located and very well appointed with personality developed by its two charming owners, Carmen and Joao. You can tell form your visit that a lot of thought, love and intensity has gone into the development of the Guest House Douro. The rooms are cozy, providing quality fixtures and furnishings. The bed was one of the most comfortable I've slept in in a hotel, most of us would want one in our homes! If you are lucky enough to get one of the river view rooms, you will enjoy a classic view of the river, bridge and the "port houses" on the far side. You can plan your Port tasting route right from your bedroom window. The Breakfast was terrific! Joao is the morning chief and takes pride in a well set table and quality food prepared and displayed in a 5 star manner. You are greeted each day with a complete place setting of flatware and spotless white china. The breakfast consisted of mixed meats, cheeses and the best variety of fruit available. Joao's motto - "The best of the fresh" and he delivered. He will also provide you with an individually made coffee of your choice each morning. If want to chat, ask him about starting a business in Portugal and the local contractors - very interesting. Carmen is an excellent hostess and spent a lot of time chatting with my Daughter and I. They both provided excellent directions and recommendations for local activities and restaurants. This was a truly FANTASTIC stay with a wonderful couple. We wish them many years of success. Hopefully we will be able to return again soon.
5 on April 14, 2009
Merci à Carmen et Joao pour leur accueil dans leur maison, décoré avec gout et style, des chambres propres au design moderne et élégant, avec une vue splendide sur le Douro, un endroit qui respire le bien-être et le romantisme. Le petit-déjeuner préparé par les soins de Joao, est excellent et raffiné. Nous avons suivi les bons conseils de nos hôtes, qui nous ont permis de découvrir de magnifiques endroits et de charmants restaurants. Si il y a un endroit où résider à Porto, c'est bien cette adresse, où nous retourneront avec plaisir. Sophie & Nicolas Avril 2009
5 on April 12, 2009
To stay in a place which is not impersonal; where the proprietors are absolutely charming and welcoming; which has an incredible location with respect to the sights to be seen in Porto; where the included breakfast is tasty and presented with the standards of a 5-star hotel, but served with the warmth within a family kitchen; Guest House Douro is truly a gem. Congratulations to Carmen and Joao! You truly have the gift for making your guest house one of the finest places I have stayed. The attention to detail, including the welcome port wine, your warmth and most importantly your sense of humour will make weary travellers feel alive again to explore the beautiful city in which you have chosen to hang your hat. Lynn...Leiria,Portugal/Calgary, Canada
4.8 on March 30, 2009
We had a wonderful time at Guest house Douro. We spent 4 days in room 402 which enjoys a breathtaking view over Douro river. The house is spotless and extremly well located, at a walking distance of all touristic places. Carmen and Joao are great hosts and will do anything to make your stay comfortable.
5 on January 27, 2009
What a perfect place to stay. The rooms are so clean, meticulously decorated with such style, modern and beautiful. How happy were we to finally get off our plane from New York, be greeted by the nicest couple, go to a room that was so relaxing (I think it was the chocolate brown shades and the pink bed that made it feel so warm and cozy) with the most amazing views of the river. It was such a nice contrast - it was rainy and cold outside, but modern and warm and inviting inside. The bed lived up to my high expectations (it was very comfortable), as did the delicious breakfast. It was such a different experience than what I normally see in Europe. The couple is from Canada, so they speak at 3 or 4 languages very well. I think they also used to be in the hospitality industry because they were so attentive to my needs - even anticipating our need for privacy, directions, etc. It was 5 star service all the way. I can't say enough good things and I will definitely be back.
5 on January 12, 2009
Guest House Douro is a place with style and uniqueness. I was the first guest to stay in this place and I had to say this place provided me with the most memorable experience in my Portugal trip. Unlike other European hotels which are usually old and outdated, Guest House Douro is modern and posh and yet blends in very well with its neighborhood. this place also has its characters and you can feel that from its design, furniture, witty use of colours and lightings, owners put their heart and soul to it and I just totally fell in love with this place. Situated along the river front forming part of the 17th century architecture, Guest House Douro was converted from an old 17th century building, the room I stayed has a small balcony and a gorgeous river view, it is tastefully decorated with classic modern furniture, bed is very comfortable with very nice bed sheets. The curtain in my room is purple violet in colour hanging in front of the white wooden window frame. I had such a romantic time staying in the room enjoying the quietness and overseeing the river at night. Owner is a very sweet friendly couple from Canada. I had such a wonderful dinner with them on the 1st night (they brought me to a very secretive place of good value - go check with them for dinner places !!!) and during my stay, they had made a lot of good recommendations to me on places to visit and wine cellar tour. Breakfast was a great surprise to me, the dining room though small is very posh and uniquely decorated (owner Carmen has a very good eye), Joao her husband served me with a very delicious fruit plate and a plate of parma ham and cheese (it came with both strong and mild taste cheese) !!! I have to say, if you are looking for some elements in your trip which is more than just sightseeing, if you are looking for a bit of personal touch in the place you stay, this Guest House Douro which is of excellent value is the place to be.