Posts Tageados ‘POrtugal’

Modernist Travel 2016

18/February, 2016 por Loreak Mendian

A view of Lisbon

It seems like it was just yesterday, but it’s already been 365 days since the last time we sent a couple of Modernistas out to explore (part of) the world. And believe it or not, we were looking forward to this moment, to send two of our most loyal followers out once again to some place where we’d like to go. Well, in 2016, that place is Lisbon.

The city of fados, Belem pastries, trams, Pessoa and other less typical things. Narrow streets filled with shops, which are in turn filled with things, raised cobblestones, clothes hung out to dry, iron architecture, the Tagus (or as they call it, the Tejo) River.

It might not be a trip to a paradise island in the Caribbean, but there are still many interesting corners to discover, both in Lisbon itself and in the surrounding area. Towns such as Sintra (nothing less than a UNESCO World Heritage Site), with its castles and many small palaces, or kilometer-long beaches, such as the white-sand Cascais beach.


Cascais, the cliffs known as La boca del Infierno (Hellmouth)

The trip consists of spending 7 days in the country’s capital, doing whatever you like or following a route based on certain little recommendations and invitations that we will offer. We provide more details about this route on Instagram, but for now we can tell you that 2 winners will stay at our beloved Baixa House, a place we couldn’t feel prouder of, where we’d live if we could. With rooms where attention has been paid to every last detail, including breakfasts based on top-quality fresh products, with a presentation that goes beyond beautiful.

Baixa House

Mythical places around the city that are not to be missed include the shopA Vida Portuguesa, which sells traditional items and textiles (it has another shop in nearby Porto); if for nothing else, the area and its charm make it worthy of a visit.


For a great place to eat, we’ve arranged to visit the Trindade Brewery, with its pretty patio-like area, which makes the food taste even better.


The monument that continues to astound us every time we see it is the Santa Justa Elevator, the construction of which finished in 1902. It reminds us of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, although it seems that there was no relation between the two designers. Built entirely from iron and with a height of 45 meters, it serves the purpose of connecting the neighborhood of Chiado above with Baixa Pombalina. It’s worth going up for the views of the city down below. There are other elevators in the city, such as the one in Bica, but these are funiculars, which have their own charm, but are completely different.


On another note, someone who has made a name in the architecture of this country is Álvaro Siza. If you’re in Porto, be sure to visit the Da Boa Nova Restaurant and the pools at Leça de Palmeira. In Lisbon, you can see the pavilion he designed to represent Portugal at the Lisbon World Exposition 1998.



Something we still love and that inspires many of the graphics we use on our prints, etc. are the designs found on the pavement of their squares; they are two-tone, usually in black and white, and create almost hypnotic shapes.


Well, little by little, we’ll tell you more. We’re not going to reveal all the secrets on the first day, after all! To find out the names of the lucky people who are taking this trip, visit our Facebook page. Remember that to be eligible for this and much more, such as terrific special offers and exclusive gifts, you can become a Modernista at any of our Loreak Mendian shops and our online store (those who are already members highly recommend it).

Until next time!

Sebastião Rodrigues

16/July, 2012 por Loreak Mendian

We’re starting this week with a post on Portuguese Graphics design eminence Sebastião Rodrigues, and with every reason to do so!

Sebastião Rodrigues’ projects are born out of curiosity and research. Such curiosity led him to travelling all over Europe, absorbing everything he saw and applying it to his work with just a touch of roots and Portuguese tradition – truth be told, if someone told us that Sebastião comes actually from some Northern country, we would believe it.
We personally love the covers he designed for Almanaque, very much in the style of people we admire such as Paul Rand, Saul Bass, Olle Eksell…

For more info, there is a Facebook page that features loads of work by this amazing graphic designer.

Men’s Pants in Striped Ceramic

18/April, 2012 por Loreak Mendian

68% algodon 28% polyamida ceramica 4% elastano | 240 gr/m

The Striped Ceramic fabric, manufactured by the renowned Portuguese brand Riopele, is a staple in our Spring/Summer collections. It’s an elastic fabric that provides a light feeling and requires almost no ironing. It is probably one of our most recommended items for the summer, due to its transpirability and clean touch, which is great when the weather gets really hot. Riopele has combined tradition and innovation since 1927 – 85 years of history and three generations are witness to its brilliant path.

You will find the Striped Ceramic fabric in our pants and bermudas (both chino style), and also in Sokoa and the five-pocket model Redondo (both slim-fit).

The Sokoa model features such details as double buttoning zip, YKK zipper and customized rivets on the item’s pressure points:

Sokoa (front view)

The backside

Distinctive features of the Sokoa

The Redondo model, in turn, not only has a leather label on the backside with the Loreak Mendian Jeans logo (the five-pocket family), but also has a small rectangular white label on the rear pocket. Plus of course, the white round rivet– a classic in Loreak Mendian™ pants.

Redondo (front view)

The backside, with a white circle rivet

Details of the Redondo

You will be able to recognize this fabric thanks to the label we stick on every Loreak Mendian™ item we have manufactured with it:



20/February, 2012 por Loreak Mendian

Thanks to an online newspaper we visit every now and then, we have discovered this Portuguese design studio based in Lisbon. A cursory glance at their web is enough to see that these people create not so much design as small works of art – their installations always seem to convey a certain type of mood.

We were particularly impressed by the USMA clock, which was jointly developed with André Gonçalves.

A clock that brings back old sensations from the past, like those triggered by something as uncommon in our times as can be the sound of bells chiming every hour.

They have approached other projects from very different angles, but they always seem to give that concept/installation feel to everything they do:

Thank God for Portugal!

16/December, 2011 por Loreak Mendian


We’re starting a new section in which people that we know tell us about places where they have been spending a few days, or even longer spells.
Our first guests are Ana and María, two sisters who tell us about their holiday in lovely old Lisbon.

If you’ve got three days to spare and you don’t know what to do or where to go, we advise you to take a trip to Portugal (or to Lisbon, to be more precise), and for several reasons: for a start, you don’t need to take a plane – you can get there on a night train, which is always nice, at least for us. This is what we did:

Once you arrive in the neighbouring country, we recommend you to stay at Baixa House, where María treated us very nicely and explained all the city’s subtleties, as well as handing us beautiful maps and a lot of cards with very interesting addresses.



Here is the address of her blog: My Lisbon House, in which she explains carefully all you need to know about Lisbon, and more.
As for the apartments, they’re really nice – check these pictures and judge for yourself. The only con is that you might not want to leave the house. Greetings to María from here, and our heartfelt thanks for her generous hospitality!


First we decided to go to Belem, for which we jumped on a very cute wooden tramway. To us, Belem= ‘Natas’ – sure, those Gerónimo cakes are spectacular and deservingly popular, but the cherry topping of the area are truly those small cakes of Brie with cinnamon. Simply exquisite: a real success.


On our way back home, we stopped at that famous bridge called XXX, where we found a really nice second-hand-dealer who had very interesting things to tell us. Four steps later we had crossed the bridge and old decadent Lisbon had given way to modern Brooklyn – yes, derelict warehouses that have been squatted and turned into bars, shops, architectural studios, biological supermarkets…very interesting.


Once in central Lisbon, we feel tired and we need to refresh our throats with some vinho verde, so we take heed of our friend Pessoa, who invites us to a drink at his favourite bar: La Brasireira, with a beautiful decor.


And suddenly it’s time for dinner. What could be better than an old beer factory for tasting the famous Portuguese bacalhau Cervejaria Trindade (rua Nova da Trindade, 20c) is the name of the place: good, nice and cheap.

The following morning… surprise! Some pixies have left a small bag by the door with warm, freshly baked bread for breakfast. And if that wasn’t enough, in the fridge there’s also juice, cheese, yoghourt, cereals and other delicacies that fill us with joy and energy.


Today it’s time for museums and churches (as my sister says: ‘the entrance is free, and they’ve got chairs to sit on’).
First of all, an unmissable visit to the Museo Mude: a former bank turned-museum in which the traditional structure has been totally respected – as you follow the itinerary, you even pass through the old safe and the meeting rooms, all very curious. And watch out for Fernando Brizio, he might steal your heart!


Later on we went to the Castelho, walking up a very steep slope. Luckily the way is paved with churches and viewpoints to stop and rest for a while (comfortable shoes are strongly advised, and of course, no heels). As we arrive, we find a restaurant with a nice viewpoint. The place is almost a circus, it’s extremely charming and the views are great. We can’t say much about the food other than it looked really fabulous, as the place was really packed and we didn’t get to sample it.


As we tried to access San Antonio’s church (the saint who takes care of love affairs) in order to present him with a few ‘chines’ in exchange for a boyfriend, we arrived at home – no small feat, given that the two hours of the way up had turned into five minutes on our way down.
All that there was left to do was to buy a pack of beers and return home for a deserved rest. Out with those shoes!

As soon as we finished eating we resumed our tour. No time to be wasted on siestas when the sun is setting at five pm. We got on the Bica train that goes up to the Barrio Alto. The tramway itself is an attraction. As it goes up climbing, you can glimpse the Tajo behind the rooftops of the sloped little houses. Gorgeous! Once we were up there, we enjoyed the breathtaking views from Mirador de Santa Catalina, surrounded by locals relaxing at dusk and having a quiet beer. No such luck for us, dedicated tourists who only had a quick look since it was already getting dark.


The Barrio Alto and the Chiado are full of temptations; there are all sorts of stores (our favourites are always the ironmongers’ and the drugstores), bars and cafés. But we managed to get to San Roque’s church, another example of Portuguese Baroque style that reminds us, just like the Jerónimos, of the splendour of Portugal during the colonial period.


After this paradinha we resume our journey with a stop at the Mirador de Graça, where another tramway takes us to the Príncipe Real square, with its hundred-year old trees. The views are supposed to be great from here, but the night had been faster than us. So we took it easy and stopped for a beer at the Café Chino. An amazing place, with the most diverse array of collections on display (from lead soldiers to little black men).

And after some provisioning, a bit of shopping. The best stores: Vida Portuguesa, Vistalegre….

A Vida Portuguesa

A Vida Portuguesa


Our last day in Lisbon has arrived. First, the customary shopping: tablecloths, dishcloths and all sorts of textile items in Portuguese cotton. The best ones are the shops on our street, where you can also get tablecloth fabric by the metre (if you’re crafty enough). And if you want to customize your tablecloth, there are dozens of haberdashers’ in which you can find all sorts of threads, flounces, embroidered strips… you name it. Enough to spend the whole morning!

But make room for a stop at Catalina’s perfume shop, which will transport you to another era. We must still cross the river Tajo. There are ferries every 20 minutes, and you can pay the fare using the same transport card that applies for the underground, the buses and the tramways – very handy!


This is a city worth visiting. We strongly encourage you to do it.