My Boyfriend and I stayed at the Quinta da Bouca d'Arques at the end of May having spent three days in Porto, we had just got engaged and so were looking forward to a romantic countryside getaway. (I have broken down my review below into sub sections, hope that helps!)
On the morning before we left Porto I received a text from Angelo the manager, saying he looked forward to welcoming us and offering his services should we need further directions to find the vineyard - a very good start!
The Estate grounds:
On arrival you head up the most beautiful drive covered in vines. We had arrived a little earlier than planned, so we had a chance to wander around the estate. It is made up of 7 diferent casa's, 2 are very modern (award winning design) and the rest are very traditional older buildings housed in the main building and the outer buildings. Some of the casa's have been updated and others are more traditional.
The first thing Angelo did was take us up to the communal living room and provided us with a lovely glass of Port to welcome us. It turned out we were the only guest booked in so we had the run of the place!
There is an honesty bar in the communal area where you can help yourself to the drinks in the fridge and tea's and coffee.
I had booked the Casa da Vinha for five nights, this is the apartment housed in the main house on the ground floor, the end wing of which is 300 years old!
The Vinha has a lovely metal four-poster bed (as pictured above) with a large living room which is equipped with TV, and DVD player. Also a microwave is provided and a fridge. The bathroom has a bathtub with shower within bath.
The rooms are cleaned everyday at from around 11am onwards, fresh towles, lovely soaps, exactly as you'd expect from a five star hotel!
Angelo explained that they did not run off timetables and they liked to provide a very relaxing environment for their guests. Breakfast would be laid out in the living room at 9am and we could get up at any time to consume the delicious selection of goodies. They provided fresh coffee in a thermos, warm milk, cereal, fresh bread rolls (brown and white) cheese and two selections of ham, and the most amazing freshly made jams! The apricot was scrummy! Plus some fruit and a pastry.
As this is a B&B you expect to then have to go out and buy all your other meals but the breakfast is so large that we ended up making sandwiches from all the left over's for our lunch. Perfect!
The Pool and Forest:
For the majority of our stay we relocated to their lovely pool and relaxed on the sun loungers. We also went on one walk up through the forest which is right behind the estate, Joao (the owner) kindly told us the best route to take. It was beautiful at the top of the hill with views all the way to the ocean. There are also bikes there that you can use free.
They provide a list of restaurants within the vicinity (25km max) to be honest we did not want to leave the estate! We only went out once to the local supermarket (10min drive away) and stocked up on some snack food and meat to cook on a little BBQ we bought for our dinners.
I was asked to provide some feedback before we left, and as with anywhere you stay there is always room for improvement, although in this case they were only very minor issues: 1) Perhaps a mosquito net on the windows or around the bed would have come in handy as they do come out at dusk. 2) a fan would have been good in the bedroom as their is no air-con and can get a little stuffy. But do bear in mind we were staying in probably the oldest casa on the property. The more modern apartments may be a bit cooler.
I cannot recommend this place highly enough for couples. It was perfect for what we were looking for - to switch off from our busy city lives and just relax in beautiful surroundings, read books, drink local wine, just enjoy the total peace and quiet.
I have never stayed in a B&B like this before, it has become my first choice for our next trip back to Portugal!
If any travellers want to ask me any more questions please feel free to message me. I hope you all enjoy it as much as we did!
The casa de Vinha is a very traditional appartment with its own verandha which is shaded. If you pre...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
8 June 2012
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Thanks for your suggestions, and we have good news 1) we bought a nice fan (vintage) to Casa da Vinha and 2) we'll arrange a mosquito net to put in Casa da Vinha bedroom and bathroom !
All the best and kind regards,
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC