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Locals Only: Porto, Portugal

 After a recent visit to the Somelos mill in Portugal—where artisans make our lightweight, unstructured Ludlow blazer—we spent a day in nearby Porto with curator João Ribas. The Portugal native organized more than 100 exhibitions in the United States before becoming the deputy director of the Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art three years ago. He took us on a tour of Porto’s considerable charms, which draw visitors from around the world. 

While Porto may be best known as the namesake of port wine, this grand coastal city has a growing reputation as an art-and-design hub. Historic architecture from the 18th and 19th centuries—mixed with new buildings from modern star architects—serves as a grand backdrop to up-to-the-minute shops and restaurants. That mix is luring more and more travelers to this walkable, laid-back city. 

 “Porto is a city of recantos—corners, hidden alleys. You have to walk it to know it, and getting lost and stumbling on some hidden gem that becomes your favorite spot is part of the point.” 
João stops for coffee at Majestic Café,
a Belle Époque-style café that opened in 1921. 

“Porto is filled with many historic cafés and confeitarias [pastry shops], known as much for the particularity of their
architecture—varieties of distilled or populist versions of modernism—as for alluding to Portugal’s past. Some of the most popular are Café Ceuta, Café Atneia, Majestic Café and Confeitaria do Bolhão.” 
João shops for books in Kate Skateshop.

Having a glass of wine at the café and bookshop Café Candelabro, he wears our unstructured Ludlow cotton-linen blazer and slim broken-in pocket polo shirt. Shop all blazers and polos.

 “Food in Porto is all about simple, real, convivial—no frills, no fuss, no pretense. Gourmet here is used, after all, pejoratively. If you want to eat well in town, ask a local to recommend a tasca—a small and inexpensive, usually working-class and family-run restaurant. Taberna Santo Antonio? Casa das Iscas? A Badalhoca? Everyone has a favorite, and it’s part of our hospitality to make sure you eat well.” 

 “Porto’s antique bookstores, or alfarrabistas, are a world onto themselves, putting centuries of printed matter at your fingertips. While there are many throughout town, Livraria Academica, Candelabro and Manuel Ferreira are some of my favorites. But since Porto is also a thriving place for contemporary art and design, there are always plenty of new things to catch up on.” 

 “Right now I’m working on the next Ural Industrial Biennial in Russia, as well as building a series of projects in Serralves Park with five young architects from Porto, and an exhibition of the work of Gordon Matta-Clark that will be presented in Porto and Lisbon this year.” 



Serralves Museum of
Contemporary Art 

R. Dom João de Castro 210
Porto, Portugal 

Kate Skateshop 

R. de Santo Ildefonso
Santo Ildefonso, Portugal 


Majestic Café

Rua Santa Catarina 112
Porto, Portugal 

Café Candelabro 

Rua da Conceição 3
Porto, Portugal 

Special thanks to Majestic Café, Kate Skateshop, Café Candelabro and Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art.

Photographs by Bryan Derballa.
Styling by Scott Stephenson.

Shop all our unstructured Ludlow blazers here.
TAGS: personal style, mens, locals only, HowILudlow