Fast food and fine decor don’t always go hand in hand, but at Porto’s former Imperial Cafe, the two come together in what is often called the “most beautiful McDonald’s in the world.”
It opened in 1995 in the space previously occupied by the famous Portuguese coffeeshop, which was an icon in the 1930s. The building retained many of the original Art Deco features including the ornate ceilings, chandeliers, and a large stained glass wall, which is currently behind the counter.
It is unclear if the staircases are original, but they have been constructed to complement the style of the interiors. Outside is the massive eagle which was the symbol of the old Imperial.
People often visit to snap pictures of the unlikely but amazing synthesis.
Know Before You Go
The public transport system in Porto is good including a modern light rail system (runs underground in city centre, best station Aliados) and a historic tramway as well as numerous tourist buses. The main rail station is a couple of minutes away.