Consisting of nine islands, and approximately 2400 miles from the east coast of the United States, The Azores are probably one of the most undiscovered destinations within a 4-hour flight from the East Coast of the USA.
The islands are characterized by dramatic volcanic landscapes, deep lakes, lush green pastures, fishing villages, and rows of blue hydrangeas. The largest island of São Miguel is home to the capital of Ponta Delgada, and the only place in the world where pineapples are grown in greenhouses, and home to Europes oldest and only remaining tea plantation.
In the Azores, you can get a cappuccino for a buck, eat an amazingly fresh gourmet meal for under $20, and stay at a sophisticated designer hotel for under $140 per night. Conveniently located beside the Ponta Delgada marina and just a ten-minute drive from the airport, The Azor Hotel is a vibrant and cosmopolitan hotel within walking distance of the cities charming, historic whitewashed buildings and the vibrant waterfront promenade.
Offering 123 upscale rooms with amazing views, the design is stylish and authentic making use of local materials such as wood and stone to maintain connections with the outdoors. Despite the design-forward aesthetic, the hotel ambiance is pleasantly warm, unpretentious, and comfortable.
I stayed in a sleek Sea View Room with a private balcony that had outstanding views of the busy marina and the Ocean. The decor was simple but sophisticated with clean lines and wood accents that refer to the natural surroundings of the island. The bathrooms were luxurious and the room had modern conveniences like a Nespresso machine, which is a nice touch for those of us who like an espresso right out of bed.
The Azor Hotel has a complimentary breakfast buffet which rivals any that I have experienced and was one of the highlights of my stay. You can choose from a large selection of locally sourced bread, cheeses, meats, and fruit, or have the chef whip up an omelet or other hot dishes. The Azor Hotel does a great job of keeping products local, so I recommend trying some dishes that you don’t get every day to truly experience the Azores.
Traveling to the Azores from the USA is easy with direct flights from Boston on Azores Airlines and if you are looking to travel on to Europe you can consider a stopover of up to 7 days in the Azores.