Riposte x O'Apartamento

6th March 2016

It’s a well-known fact that you get a different perspective to a city when you see it through the eyes of a local. Away from the tourist traps and over priced restaurants, there is always another side to a city. Recently we were invited to Lisbon by the wonderful people behind O’Apartamento to host a symposium featuring a selection of inspiring Portuguese women.It was through this wonderful team of people that we saw an insider’s glimpse of Lisbon and fell in love with the city. Whilst there we ate in amazing restaurants, visited stimulating museums and hosted a symposium in an old feminist association hall.

"The idea is to connect people, to bring new perspectives to the city"

O’Apartamento is run by one of the best people we’ve met in ages. Armando Ribeiro is a rare breed, he has a real passion for bringing people together, a genuine interest in others and he loves the city he lives in. Once a month Armando and his team invite various interesting people and magazines over to Lisbon to host a range of events, talks, exhibitions and pop up shops, either at the apartment they call home or at other brilliant venues in the city. The idea is to connect people, to bring new perspectives to the city and show a side of Lisbon you wouldn’t get by following Time Out recommendations. They’ve hosted collaborations with the likes of Cereal, Freunde von Freunden, 38 Hours and their 2016 line up sees chef Nuno Mendez returning to Lisbon to launch a new project as well the guys behind Brown Book who will also be making a visit.

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For our visit Armando and his team organized an inspiring programme of events and visits. We started with a special dinner at Eleven inspired by Babette's Feast; the five-course dinner was delicious, accompanied by a vast view over the whole of Lisbon.  Friday we visited theGulbenkian Museum and Mude (Lisbon’s design museum) two spaces with ambition and shows to rival many London galleries. We ate way too many Portuguese tarts and ended up atCantinho do Avillez for dinner. We stayed at the Four Seasons which is like the hotel of your dreams, pure indulgence and class so it was back for a night cap in the bar.

"The beauty of working with local Portuguese manufacturers"

On Saturday we headed to the O’Apartamento HQ for a tasty lunch prepared by the team and met with the other women from the symposium we were hosting later in the day. We chatted female pleasure and shame with Elsa Viegas, the founder of Bijoux IndiscretsAna Aragao told us about training to be an architect and leaving it behind to become an artist. Filipa Júlio, the founder at designer of Josefinas told us about the beauty of working with local Portuguese manufacturers who are like her family and we had close and personal chats about life with the beautiful Fado singer Katya Guerreiro.

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After lunch we headed to Casa Independente for the symposium. Casa Independente is an old feminist association hall which is now a bar, café and gig space. As soon as you step into the space you feel a sense of history, of heritage - it is a really special place. Ran by Patricia and her business partner, it made the perfect setting for the symposium. Our editor Danielle kicked off the presentations followed by Elsa, Ana, Filipa and Katya. They all shared their inspiring stories with humour and personal elements. In front of an audience of 70 it was an intimate experience with a bunch of very warm, ambitious and intelligent women all doing fascinating things.

"Travel has the ability to change the way you think, to change your ambitions and expectations and to make you look at
things differently."

Walking through Lisbon afterwards we stopped by Vida Portuguesa to check out their covetable collection of Portuguese products. Afterwards we had a fun dinner at Duplex where they’d prepared a special menu for us of local fish and wild boar risotto.

Travel has the ability to change the way you think, to change your ambitions and expectations and to make you look at things differently. Our trip to Lisbon definitely did all of those things. We met an amazing bunch of people who welcomed us and inspired us. We learned you should always be available, always really take the time to listen and do more than what is asked of you. Three great lessons to take away from a great trip. 

Thanks to Armando, Paula, Vasco, Inez, Anna and Patricia. Migas forever!