Estoril has a long and chequered history. It acquired a glamorous reputation during WW2 when Portugal’s ‘neutrality’ attracted English and German spies, as well as European royals and aristocrats.
The town has a certain faded grandeur charm now but is still fashionable and cosmopolitan with tennis courts, golf courses, an automobile race track and an attractive sandy beach with bars and restaurants.
The Estoril Casino is Europe’s largest and gives out some of the biggest weekly prizes in Europe. It was the inspiration for Ian Fleming’s James Bond and Casino Royale. The Hotel Palacio facing it appeared in one of James Bond’s first films (“On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”) and served as a backdrop for Richard Wilson’s enthralling novel, “A Small Death in Lisbon.” Top international shows are regularly hosted here.
Check out what Estoril & Cascais looked like in 1953 as the fishermen and women undertake their daily routines.
For additional historical information about Estoril, check out this site.