Lisboa is an exhaustively designed, full-featured typeface family that reveals its character and distinctiveness in complex settings. It features a large complement of ligatures, lining and old-style figures, expert characters, arrows, brackets, and symbols - for both the sans and regular weights.

Originally designed for a Portuguese magazine in 2000, it demanded high readability at small sizes. That year, Ricardo Santos began a set of matching dingbats, influenced by signs and symbols found in Lisbon.

In the original Lisboa the forms of the letters are neohumanist, with "hooked head" terminals. Lisboa has a medium contrast with a left-angled stress on the strokes. Lisboa Sans lacks the hook-head terminals, but its structure and proportions are the same. The simplicity of the sans weight created very strong readability at small sizes.