As aspiring MBAs try to figure out the best place to pursue their business degree, it’s not only a school and specific program you need to be thinking about, but also where in the world you want to be.
As destinations go, Lisbon really is a place that has it all. A report from Expat Insider ranked Lisbon the 6th best location for expats in the world in 2018, judging the country by its quality of life, happiness, and cost of living.
In Lisbon, you can take advantage of a warm climate perfect for de-stressing, proximity to the sea where you can spend your downtime, and (most importantly) unwind at the end of a long day with some of the world’s best wines from the surrounding area.
But it’s not just in your leisure time that you’ll appreciate the city; Lisbon is also becoming an important hub for startups and business investment.
Forbes ranked Portugal the 25th best country for business last year, and the city of Lisbon boasts 32 incubators and accelerators as well as being home to the highest rate of women business founders in the world in 2017—all things that point towards the city being a great choice for your MBA.
If you need more convincing, here are six amazing experiences you can only have by studying your MBA at The Lisbon MBA:
6. Learn from a wealth of cultures
As Portugal’s capital, Lisbon is a flourishing multicultural center, and the same is true of The Lisbon MBA, which was ranked number one in the world for international experience by the Financial Times.
50% of students on the MBA are international, making it the perfect place to exchange ideas and immerse yourself in new thinking. When you’re done in class, head to Alfama—Lisbon’s oldest area—to see the grand architecture, authentic restaurants, and community atmosphere that’s a product of Lisbon’s melting-pot history.
5. Head to the beach on your study breaks
Though studying might seem like an all-consuming project during your MBA, the downtime is just as important, and what better city to relax in than Lisbon?
Here, you can quite literally escape to the beach, as Nova’s new campus benefits from a fantastic location on the seafront. In a city of two halves—city and beach—you’ll always find something new to explore.
4. Immerse yourself in global business
Lisbon airport boasts more than 130 direct flights a day, and is also conveniently in the same time zone as London, making the city an ideal business location.
In fact, plenty of multinationals have chosen Lisbon for their base, meaning you’ll be able to explore plenty of world institutions during your time in the city, including Mercedez-Benz, who opened a digital tech hub there in 2017.
As for the program itself, The Lisbon MBA is a collaborative effort between Nova School of Business and Economics, Católica Lisbon, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management, giving you a varied look at the world of business, with an MIT immersion allowing students to experience life in a different city during their studies.
3. Unwind with some of the best food
It’s no secret that Lisbon holds one of the world’s best culinary scenes, and eating a delicious meal can be a great way to unwind when you’re drowning in business concepts.
If you’re a fan of the iconic pastel de nata, a Portugese custard pastry, Lisbon is the place to be—did you know that only three people in the world know the original, and coveted, recipe for pastel de nata, and all three of those people are in Lisbon?
2. Take advantage of one of Europe’s best startup environments
Overseas investment in Lisbon has grown 30% each year since 2016, making the city a hotbed for creativity and innovation.
As more funds are poured into technological development, the city is becoming a great place to start your business—7,264 companies were created in Lisbon last year, according to the entrepreneurship portal Made of Lisboa.
By studying on The Lisbon MBA, you’re at the heart of this creativity, with NOVA ranked the best Portuguese business school by the Financial Times last year.
1. Relax with a river cruise at the end of the week
Lisbon doesn’t only benefit from the sea—the Tejo river is also a focal point of the city, and a trip down its length is the perfect place to end a packed week of classes.
De-stress as you meander the winding river valley, and get to know your fellow Lisbon MBA classmates, who come from backgrounds as varied as technology, healthcare, education, retail, and construction.