From antique furniture stores to a wellness clinic and a very photogenic bookshop, here’s why you must visit Lisbon’s LXFactory
Positioned below Lisbon’s eye-catching Ponte de 25 Abril, LXFactory is a bridge of its own kind, between the city’s past and present. Self-dubbed, a “creative island”, the venue is at the heart of Lisbon’s artistic scene and occupies what was once one of the Portuguese capital’s most prosperous fabric factories.
Today, it’s a collective of independent stores and cafes – some housed in disused shipping containers – that offers an imaginative array of goods, from slices of homemade cheesecake to vintage furniture, Portuguese wine and locally made textiles.
As Sónia Teles Fernandes, a representative of LXFactory explains: “this place is special because it’s all about the people here, and the way LXFactory nurtures and champions their creative projects and endeavours. LXFactory is where creativity goes to play and when you have that kind of environment, people will always step out of their box and do what they truly feel and want to do. When you get down to it, it’s simply about the people that are attracted to this kind of concept and that flourish when you create an environment that will give them space to grow in any direction they want.”
Whether you’re looking for interior décor inspiration or simply in search of Lisbon best coffee, here’s where you’ll find it at LXFactory.
For those always on mission to find that perfect cup of coffee, Wish Slow Coffee House are the resident experts on all things caffeinated. This light-filled café has a friendly atmosphere and, most importantly, serves a superlative cup of coffee. Whether you prefer a flat white, French press or a Matcha latte, enjoy your favourite brew with Wish’s delicious continental breakfast platter, freshly baked goods or light bites.
LXFactory has no shortage of options for hungry visitors. A Mesa (literally translating to, ‘the table’) is a pizzeria with a wonderfully convivial atmosphere thanks to its long table that seats up to 50 diners. Order the Marville pizza, topped with Portuguese smoked sausage, soft cheese and chicken breast.
A restaurant inspired by the canteen that would have served the original factory workers, Cantina is the place to go for tasty Portuguese fare. This quirky eatery repurposes original furnishings and fittings and dishes up hearty plates, including an exemplary fish stew.
For an unconventional take on traditional dining, The Therapist is both a natural health clinic with wellbeing workshops and a café serving nourishing, wholesome dishes. Drop by to learn more about Ayurvedic medicine, take a short course on better time management, and tuck into a mood boosting, plant-based meal.
Exploring the many delights that LXFactory has to offer can be a tiring business, but luckily the venue has several options for visitors in need of an energy boost. LXCheesecake has a proprietor who goes by the name of Madame Cheeselova and serves up homemade cheesecake slices (such as the popular Lemon Meringue) to those in need of a treat. For a chocolate fix, visit Landeau; previously established in Lisbon’s Chiado neighbourhood, its chocolate cake is famous for good reason. Meanwhile, Oh!Brigadeiro is dedicated to the dainty and delectable Brazilian confection of the same name. Here, you’ll find the traditional chocolate brigadeiros alongside more imaginative flavours, such as pasteis del nata and peanut butter.
When the sun goes down, visitors will find there’s still plenty of fun to be had at LXFactory. Enjoy a beer or cocktail at Café na Fabrica, which has a pleasant outside terrace for balmy evenings. Furthermore, LXFactory itself is a regular venue for concerts, theatre performances and film screenings, so there’s plenty to keep you entertained long into the evening.
MoreThanWine allows you to take some of Portugal’s most delicious produce home with you. Alongside a thoughtful selection of Portuguese wine, the gourmet goodies stocked here include traditional Portuguese tinned sardines, olive oil, honey and cheese. Either take your goods to go or eat in and enjoy a plate of regional cheese and charcuterie accompanied by a glass of Portuguese red wine.
Interiors inspiration is easy to find within LXFactory, especially at décor store Pura Cal. From larger pieces of vintage or upcycled furniture to locally made textiles and pretty pottery, it’s very hard to leave Pure Cal empty handed. For further inspiration, head to the appropriately named Retroshop, which showcases an assortment of vintage signs, art and furniture.
Highly photogenic, it’s tempting to simply stand and admire Ler Devagar’s rows upon rows of fiction, poetry, art and travel books. Once you’ve had a chance to browse the floor-to-ceiling selection, pick up a few volumes and peruse them in the comfort of the in-house café or bar.
LXFactory holds a weekly Sunday flea market, LX Market. A lovely way to spend a leisurely weekend morning, wander from stall to stall admiring the eclectic range of work by local artists alongside crafts including handmade jewellery and a large amount of vintage homewares.