No Solo Agua Vilamora marina, Portugal

If you’ve ever been to the glitzy Spanish resort of Marbella, you may well have visited one of the beach clubs. If so, you’ve perhaps baulked at the prices, amazed that you sometimes have to pay to lie down before you’ve even started to shell out for expensive drinks!

If you want to experience an opulent beach club vibe in beautiful surroundings, but don’t wish to take out a second mortgage to do so, Portugal holds the answer, and the answer is No Solo Agua.

No Solo Agua operates two beach clubs, one in Vilamoura and the other on Portimão Marina at the end of the resort of Praia da Rocha. We suggest you head straight to the latter, as the Vilamoura option is underwhelming by comparison.

No Solo Agua in Portimão has everything you could need for a glamorous day by the sea: A pool area, a private beach, several bars, luxurious food options, and a wide range of places to sit or lounge, ranging from huge sofas, to bed structures that can accommodate six people.

There’s usually no charge for this luxurious seating – you just need to get there early and be prepared to pay for food and drink. This is admittedly at the expensive end of the scale for the Algarve, but still extremely economical if you go back to the Marbella comparison.

During the summer months, daytime sunbathing sessions segue into sunset DJ sets. Then it’s time for dinner or sushi before the night party begins. Being present here as day turns to night is a wonderful experience, as you get to see how the seating and dancing areas are creatively lit.

Then, the only thing to do is order another caipirinha, and decide whether No Solo Agua is more of a paradise by day or by night. It’s certainly a close contest.