There are 5-star hotels, which we also love, but then we find those hotels that surprise us by allowing a totally different experience. This the case of the Bubble at Moinho do Maneio, which allows us to be lying in a comfortable bed and at the same time enjoy an unobstructed view of the stars. There are few accommodations that can provide something like this. It was this distinguishing factor between the other accommodations and hotels that brought us here. However, we quickly realised that there are far more reasons to stay at the Moinho do Maneio.
This is one of those experiences that fits perfectly into the concept of Glamping. Don’t know what it is? Let me explain. Glamping is the term used to define something like camping, but with glamour. A kind of luxury camping. It is an increasing trend and it´s a type of accommodation that we personally love. Glamping is perfect for those who privilege the contact with nature but don´t like abdicating the comfort of a hotel, such as a bed or a delicious breakfast.
This accommodation is located about 10km from Penamacor, in the district of Castelo Branco. It is ideally located for discovering the Historical Villages or the Serra da Malcata.
Of the 12 historical villages of Portugal, the nearest are Monsanto, which is about 22km from the accommodation, and Idanha-a-Velha, which is 30km away. Sortelha is about 40km. Belmonte is about 50km. Castelo Novo is also about 50km away.
Fundão and its wonderful cherries are at a distance of about 40km. Covilhã is also 50km away. Castelo Branco is about 60km. If you decide to visit Castelo Branco do not forget to include a visit to Jardim do Paço. Penha Garcia and its fossils are also no more than 30km away.
For those who wish to venture through Spanish lands, the border with Spain is less than 15km.
What is it like to sleep in the bubble?
We arrived at night and were warmly welcomed by Anabela and Rui, the owners of this accommodation, and by their lovely family of dogs. They showed us the property, our bathroom, took us to the bubble, and left at our disposal a key to the gate, in case we wanted to go somewhere at night. We spent the whole evening pacing the vast grounds of the property and trying to capture a good picture of the stars.
When it was time to sleep in our lovely, isolated bubble, we were already tired and sleepy. But how could we fall asleep when we had 5 billion stars over our head? Already lying on the bed and only with the light of the stars, we talked about everything and about nothing, under a starry sky that stretched before our eyes. We were awake until the moment we could no longer endure so much beauty. And then, we fell asleep in the warmth of our bubble.
I woke up early in the morning, with daylight shining. Maybe at 6 or 7 a.m. I put on a black blindfold to cover my eyes that our hosts left strategically in the bubble, I turned aside and fell asleep. I’m picky to get back to sleep when I have a beam of light entering my room. I imagined that I wouldn´t sleep any longer as soon as the first rays of sun came up. Strangely enough, I slept all night like a baby.
Valter woke me up before our alarm clock rang at 10 am to say it was hot in the bubble. I woke up from my deep sleep and, as soon as I woke up I could feel the sauna that our bubble had become, I got up straight away. Can’t imagine a more efficient alarm clock than the heat. What for us, was a good thing, as we always have serious problems of laziness when it comes to getting out of bed on our day off. Thanks to that, we got up and started enjoying the day earlier. We left the bubble, still half-awake and sat down in the puffs that were placed in the shade to contemplate the nature that surrounded us and to recover from the greenhouse effect of the bubble.
Questions and Information about Bubble:
#1 Are there outlets? Where can I charge my mobile phone?
This was also something that worried us. Since we always travel with our cameras and mobile phones, and sometimes, at the end of the day, there is no battery. But don´t worry, there is electricity in the bubble. The bubble has a lamp and a heater. The extension where the heater is connected has 3 outlets.
#2 There is no phone network at Moinho do Maneio
Yes, friends. This is the perfect place to disconnect from the outside world and enjoy good company. Literally! We strongly advise you to do all the communications you have to make before arrival.
#3 Where can I use the Bathroom?
There is a bathroom specially designed for guests on the bubble which is located about 200 meters from it. This bathroom is large, has 2 showers, 2 toilets and 1 washbasin. And right next to the bubble, there is a simpler bathroom with only a toilet. It’s enough to help you out if you wake up in the middle of the night with the urge to go to the toilet, and do not feel like having to walk to the other bathroom.
#4 The greenhouse effect that is felt inside the bubble during the day adversely affects the experience?
It didn´t affect at all our experience in the bubble. It is possible that the heat started earlier, but we were able to sleep, perfectly, until almost 10 am. We, who on our day off, whenever the alarm goes off, turn aside and go back to sleep, started enjoying our day at decent hours.
Moreover, there are so many activities to do in the surroundings and even inside the property, that the best is to spend the day actively exploring the many charms of this region. Did you know that you can start your day kayaking in the waters of the Bazágueda river? This is just one of the many possible ways of entertainment that you can experience at Moinho do Maneio. At night, after a day full of adventure, when the bubble is already fresh and inviting, it´s the perfect time to enjoy the peace, tranquillity and privilege of falling asleep under the stars.
#5 The bubble is only available during the warmer months
Moinho do Maneio has more rooms where you can stay overnight during all year. However, the bubble works only when the weather is good, somewhere between April/May and the end of October. As spring approaches and good days arrive, you can start to pay attention to the Moinho do Maneio Facebook page to find out if the bubble season has already started.
If you are a frequent reader of our hotel reviews, you probably know that breakfast is one thing we truly care about when choosing an accommodation. It’s what gives us a greater motivation to get out of bed. We love buffets breakfast as we truly love to have many choices of what to eat. The breakfast at Moinho do Maneio, certainly ranks high on our list of all-time favourite breakfasts!
There were 3 different types of cake. The chocolate cake made by Anabela was divine! We had 2 types of juice to choose from, orange and raspberry. There was also coffee, milk and water. At the table, we also found various cheeses, bread, jams. And we absolutely loved the delicious fruits served- cherries, blackberries and blueberries. The sweet yoghurt with cereals and blackberries was also to eat and cry for more. Needless to say, we ended the breakfast bursting at the seams.
In addition to the iconic bubble, Moinho do Maneio accommodation has 4 more houses to rent and will soon have another one. You can check all the accommodation they have to offer on the official website: Moinho do Maneio. Don´t forget to read the other article we wrote about this accommodation: 5 Reasons to Stay at Moinho do Maneio
The accommodation also has a swimming pool!
This is the friendly and sociable Jericho.
Anabela and Rui are lovely people and great hosts. They are committed to providing the best possible experience for their guests. In conversation with them, we could realise the enormous work they had over the years to make this property the special place it is today.
Price & Reservations
The price of one night at the bubble is 100 €.
The price of the houses per night varies between € 70 and € 85.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org / +351 277 394 399