A Conversation with Gonçalo about Sublime Comporta

April 8, 2022

Gonçalo Pessoa is the owner and creative mind behind Sublime Comporta, a five-star country retreat nestled in a stunning 17-hectare estate, surrounded by pine and cork trees.

A Conversation with Gonçalo about Sublime Comporta

“The original idea was to build a house for our family holidays but halfway we decided to transform it into a small boutique hotel.”
– Gonçalo Pessoa, Founder of Sublime Comporta

How did the idea of starting Sublime Comporta come about?

The original idea was to build a house for our family holidays but halfway through construction, we realised that Comporta was attracting high-end tourism and at the time, there weren't any accommodation options in the area. So, we decided to transform our house into a small boutique hotel, opening its doors in 2014 with 14 rooms, a restaurant and a spa.

Today you have 23 rooms, 22 cabana-style villas, a couple of restaurants and a spa. What's next and what are the biggest challenges when expanding?

We are in the process of expanding the brand ’Sublime Hotels’ to other locations in Portugal with Sublime Lisboa opening late this spring. This will be a beautiful townhouse located in Amoreiras with 15 rooms and suites and a special restaurant. Also, we will start the construction of our second resort in Comporta very soon. Here you’ll find 43 villas, several restaurants and facilities and a building totally dedicated to hosting events.

The biggest challenges when expanding are to keep the brand’s identity consistent with our values and mission, and to attract the most talented Human Resources to work for us in today’s scarce environment.

The main outdoor pool at Sublime Comporta.
The main outdoor pool at Sublime Comporta.

Like most hotel founders that we chat with, starting a hotel was a whole new experience for you. What part of running a hotel do you enjoy the most?

What I enjoy the most is developing new concepts and ideas and implementing them. Also, the opportunity to meet new people is very exciting and enriching.

What's your favourite object at Sublime Comporta and where did you get it?

The hotel is full of beautiful old doors from several parts of the world, like the Moroccan door in the spa building.

"I enjoy developing new concepts and ideas"
– Gonçalo Pessoa, Founder of Sublime Comporta

What are the things to do or see in Comporta that a first time visitor shouldn't miss?

The beach and the rice fields for sure!

Describe your perfect day off in Comporta.

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel, go horseback riding in the sand dunes, enjoy the beach at Carvalhal and have a late lunch at our beach club. Then return to the hotel for a spa treatment followed by a special dinner with friends at Food Circle.

Sublime Comporta Beach Club in Carvalhal Beach.
Sublime Comporta Beach Club in Carvalhal Beach.

What is your favourite hotel in the world?

My biggest inspiration are the AMAN resorts.

Thank you Gonçalo for the interview.

Here's hoping you create new memories here in Portugal. Tag us on Instagram (we would love it if you do!) and let us know how it goes. 🤗

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Joana and Sofia

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