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“Not up to Riu standard”

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ClubHotel Riu Guarana
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Olhos de Agua
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 31 October 2013

I will never stay at this hotel again! It looks quite nice on the surface, but when you stay here it is not up to the standards I expect from a Riu. It is rated as a 4* and I think this is pushing it. I'd say its more like a 3* and thats being generous. I've stayed in Riu hotels before and they really are beautiful and its a name you can trust. So I thought this hotel should be good. How wrong I was.
The weather didn't help the situation as it rained most of the week we were there, but we were confined to the hotel. There is nothing to do here! Most of the guests spent the rainy days sitting bored out of their minds in the main bar with a game of bingo to keep them entertained. Even on nice days there really isn't much to do. The facilities are very limited and they charge for pretty much everything except the basics in the all inclusive plan. The pools are clean but not heated, so in the october weather you can't stay in the water for too long as you get cold very quickly.
The rooms are very basic and very outdated. We had a family room at 1st but had to change it the family rooms come with 2 marble steps leading to a sitting area. Now with a 10 month old who is crawling and learning to walk these steps are very dangerous. Not the most ideal rooms for families with young children.
We changed it to a suite (which we were told we were booking in the 1st place) and were charged an extra £300 for the privilege of wanting to move to the room we had booked and a safer room for a our daughter.
This room had a separate bedroom and lounge. The bedroom was the same as the standards room, just a bed and clothes storage. All out dated furniture and linens. The lounge was furnished with 1 sofa bed and a table. That was it! There was a built in cupboard with a tv on. But the room was very sparse!
The beds are rock hard. I considered sleeping on the floor 1 night as it would have been more comfortable.
The restaurant - the table cloths were stained most of the time and the cutlery was very old and worn.
The food was awful, unless you enjoy eating copious amounts of fat and salt that is. And there was not a huge choice. Every meal had the same fish, pork and chicken, alleged baked mini potatoes and some sort of traditional Portuguese dish. The only variation would be alternate days would be lamb, veal or rabbit.
Everything was fried, including the veg! I watched the 'chefs' 1 night heat up some tinned veg - they poured it into a frying pan, douse the veg in oil and salt and they fried it! By the end of each meal, the plates were swimming in grease. 1 lady were spoke to stopped eating the food altogether and lived on bread and plain pasta for the week. You couldn't feed very young children this food. We took our own food for our daughter and thank god we did.
A lot pf people, including myself and my partner, were struck with a mystery rash. It is too much of a coincidence that so many people had the same rash appear on the 1st morning of staying at this hotel. So its either an allergic reaction to what they wash the linens in or a reaction to the food.
The staff were really friendly and brilliant with our little girl. But that is probably the only good thing about this hotel. I will never stay here again. And I advise anyone thinking about booking this place - DON'T!

Room Tip: Book a different hotel!
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
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3  Thank Asto35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 October 2013

My wife and self have just returned after 10 nights at the Riu Guarana and it was fantastic.

I emailed the hotel prior to departure requesting a room with a pool view. They replied by email stating Thomson holidays had only booked a land view room on our behalf but they would check availability. On arrival our wishes were granted with a beautiful sea and pool view from the room. The hotel is immaculate.

The choice of drinks and quality were absolutely fine and the food was cooked perfectly and plentiful with loads of choice.

We sampled the Asian restaurant on a couple of occasions which needs to be pre booked which is effortless and the standard was exceptional. The grill restaurant was not open as we were nearing the end of season.

I love lamb chops and these were available on at least four occasions during our visit to the main restaurant.

We also visited the hotel's indoor pool which consisted of a hydro pool, Jacuzzi, Sauna and plunge pool and its design would sit well in a millionaires mansion as it is so nice.

There is also a gym and wellness centre that carry out holistic therapies at an extra charge. My wife had a pedicure at a cost of 32 euros which is expensive, but there is little else to spend your money on.

The hotel is All Inclusive with food and drinks available from 8am in the morning until 1am if you wish to visit the night club. During our stay I did not witness any drunkenness or over indulgence in the dining rooms.

The entertainment was provided by the six member animation team who worked tirelessly all day
It was amateurish but the bar salon where they performed always commanded a full audience.

The beds in the rooms are hard but we soon got used to them. There were also plenty of sun beds
with a minority of early morning reservations which was not necessary.

The trip to the Fiesa sand statues which also included a visit to an equestrian centre to see the Lusitano horses was a great day out and excellent value.

Room Tip: email the hotel prior to arrival requesting a pool view
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Horkwind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2013

Four couples stayed here for three nights on October the 18th to celebrate significant birthdays this year. This is the best hotel I have ever stayed in. Excellent food service staff bedrooms. Could not find a single fault with this beautiful place. Will definitely be back. Looking for a transfer from faro you won't get better than yellowfish transfers they are so reliable and friendly. An excellent service. My only complaint on this trip was that it went too fast.

  • Stayed: October 2013
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3  Thank Shirlel34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 October 2013

We are just back from a lovely restfull week in this hotel everthing was great the staff work realy hard to make sure you enjoy your stay with them .As it is an alinclusive hotel I don't think tea and coffee making facilities are needed in the rooms as other people have suggested .Our room was overlooking one of the pools so this was a bonus for us as I only booked 9 days before and we had the sun shining on our room till late evening even though it was October .I would recommend this hotel to anyone as it had all the facilities we would expect from a premier hotel In summer I expect it would get very busy with lots of families so I would not go then ..

Room Tip: High floor rooms on the pool sides
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Sammysunshine2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 October 2013 via mobile

As soon as we arrived we we welcomed with a complimentary drink and bottle of water, room was spotless and cleaned every day, beds were firm but we asked for a mattress protector and got on the same day! Food was cooked fresh in front of you every day with plenty of choice and a difference selection every day! Indoor pool, jacuzzi and sauna are a must! The staff are brilliant and so full of energy and each one goes out of their way to help you no matter what time of day or night! Although it rained a few days the hotel and staff made my holiday the best I've ever had and I'm already looking to book up for next year! I'd advise anyone and everyone to go and visit this place!

Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Jonofan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 October 2013

We spent two weeks here from 22nd September to 6th october the hotel was very nice very clean and staff were very nice and helpful the entertainment team were good quite amaturish but they tried hard.This hotel is not up to the usual RIU standards there were no tea or coffee making facilities the fridge was empty not even water you had to collect from reception.They had some rules in the information pack in the room but these were never kept such as no reserving sunbeds
there were towels on sunbeds from about 7.30 in the morning and still there after 11 am with no one sitting on them and the sunbeds were very uncomfortable and quite a lot of them were broken and nearly all had been stuck together with black duct tape.there was a rule that gentlemen had to wear long trousers in the dining room in the evening every night there were people in shorts some men even wore swim shorts and some girls wore shorts that were so short you could see their bottoms in to dinner . the food was very repetitive and bland desserts were the same every night and the grill restaurant closed the day after we got there also we had to ask for a mattress toper as the beds were rock hard .We have been to Riu Hotels before but this one did not match up to them

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view the road side was a little noisey
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Ann J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 October 2013

My wife and i stayed there late October 2013 and found the hotel to be excellent and way above our expectations. Having been in some of the best hotels in the world we found this a most enjoyable stay and the staff could not do enough to ensure a pleasant stay. There is a nice hidden gem of a indoor swimming pool and spa etc.

On one evening returning to the room the hotel had setup a champagne bar within the lift which had went down a dream with holiday makers and was much talked out by many

Top marks to staff and management

Room Tip: All room are excellent and if your looking for sunshine all day ask for pool view
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Tom B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Guarana

Address: Quinta do Milharo | Olhos D'Agua - Algarve, Olhos de Agua, Albufeira 08200, Portugal
Phone Number:
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira > Olhos de Agua
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Olhos de Agua
Price Range: £107 - £296 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — ClubHotel Riu Guarana 4*
Number of rooms: 500
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Renovated in 2017. Located in Olhos d'Agua in the Algarve. 6-Storey main building and 2-storey annex building. 15 Minutes' walk from Praia da Falesia beach. Access to a small cove from the hotel Riu Palace Algarve is via cliff side steps (an approximate 10 minute walk). 8 Km from Albufeira. 500 M from various shops. 35 Km from the airport. 500 M from a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clubhotel Riu Guarana Albufeira
Clubhotel Riu Guarana Hotel Albufeira
ClubHotel Riu Guarana Portugal/Algarve - Albufeira

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