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“New Inatel Praia.............mixed feelings........”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of INATEL Albufeira

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INATEL Albufeira
Ranked #53 of 163 Hotels in Albufeira
The Netherlands
Level Contributor
50 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“New Inatel Praia.............mixed feelings........”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 June 2014

Having just read a recent review I'd agree with most of the comments.
We booked a sea view room with balcony, however the sun was right above the hotel and the balcony had no sun whatsoever all day.
We paid €37 a night to upgrade to a suite which had partial sun until 5.30pm - sea view.
The rooms are spotless, modern and exceed 3* level,
The breakfast was far below expectations - very basic and unacceptable at times.
Green, hard scrambled eggs, leather curled up fried eggs and no fresh fruit whatsoever.
No sweet pastries etc and the machine coffee and orange juice was awful.
One Sunday there were no eggs, croissants, hardly any rolls & no strawberry jam at 9.30am!
I spoke to Mr Fernando Marquis the manager and was delighted to see fresh fruit etc the next few days - all in all needs improved.
The hotel provides only breakfast and a beach cafe - evening meals are at the cheaper hotel behind.....
Pool.......at the hotel behind.......
Bar..........at the hotel behind.....
Entertainment........at the hotel behind.......
Tea coffee ( after 7pm ) .......at the hotel behind.......

In other words, the beach hotel is far more expensive and yet you have to walk to the other hotel for most facilities - very strange concept and beautiful location and facilities being under utilised.
The hotel has no soul or atmosphere.
In general I would have to agree with the unfriendly reception staff, however Sonia was always courteous and hospitable & Carla in housekeeping wonderful.
Maria Rita at the cafe was hardworking and always friendly - thank you.

I feel most of the staff struggled with English and therefore appeared disinterested.
This area needs improved.

For a €100 a night for B&B per room ( more in peak ) the facilities are non existent.
I felt it was more like an apartment complex with expensive hotel prices.
It has lots of potential.

In saying that I met many lovely Portuguese guests and thoroughly enjoyed their company during breakfast - several embraced us on departure. Shame other facilities couldn't develop the atmosphere further.
However the Portuguese pay much less than other residents to stay here!

With drastic improvements or a more reasonable price I would return.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Laura M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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240 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (41)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
105 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 May 2014 via mobile

I'd like to take exception with the review 'rude cleaners', written by someone who hadn't even stayed there!!! We did stay 28 days HB with Mercury Direct. This was our first time in Portugal, our first impression of the hotel was excellent, the receptionist was friendly, knew our name and quickly checked us in despite the fact we arrived before mid day! Room was exceptionally clean but a little spartan, TV but only one or two English language chanels, working fridge, a safe (charge to use), well appointed shower room, wall mounted hair dryer. Food as discribed by the previous reviewer, there were more choices according to the number of guests, pasta dishes appeared when a group of Italians arrived. I was delighted to use a self service laundry room situated on the ground floor. The downstairs bars weren't open while we were there, did make the otherwise lovely area feel a bit clinical. The only bar was situated on the first floor behind the restaurant, had an old fashioned feel, two areas with large TV, constantly tuned to football. We did find all the staff very friendly and helpful, this includes the cleaners. The gardens and grounds were beautifully kept, the pool likewise with daily temperature, PH and chlorine levels recorded outside the changing room. I also agree with the previous reviewer concerning the French motivator, we left on May 1st, so only had to endure the noise for a day or two! The location is superb, very close to the 'old town', even walkable to the 'new town'. All in all marvellously good value.

Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank snannysnow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Darwen
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 May 2014

Our second visit to the INATEL - not the renovated one on the beach. Whether it is because we are "well known" at this hotel (we have been using the cafe on the beach for 19 years) but our welcome is always warm and friendly. The staff are excellent, Manager Sr. Fernando and his wife always kind and ready to chat. Since our visit last year the renovated INATEL PRAIA has opened and a lot of the staff have gone across to work there, The dining room staff are therefore fairly new to us apart from a few. Some do not have English but are easy to get along with and certainly not a problem - all smiles is the order of the day!! The food is generally excellent. We had ample fish dishes, a superb Sea Bass, Perch, Salmon etc with plenty of veg and fruit - huge grapes for instance. The puddings could do with an upgrade though, creme caramel and various cakes. There is also an excellent wine list, try Monseraz or Monte Velho but the house wine is very acceptable too. Another innovation is the provision of hot dinner plates from a dispenser. My wife also enjoyed making her own toast!! The only drawback during our holiday was the French contingent who brought their own animation team so we had noisy music and Aquagym in the pool from 4 - 5pm with a guy who played the music and blew a whistle whilst he pranced about on the pool side whilst about nine to a dozen tried to follow his movements in the pool!! I understand they finish in September! The bedrooms are always spotlessly clean, are very quiet and although the hotel was full there was barely a sound after 10pm although there were dances (six) in two weeks in the huge bar.
One drawback also is the continuous football, Benfica - Juventus etc., etc., but one gets used to it after a brandy or two and great for football enthusiasts of course!!
There is a regular bus service at the bottom of the drive (every 20 minutes) into Albufeira (Linia Green) and to "The Strip" area (Linia Azure) and the gardens are a picture!!
We love this place as you may gather and it does upset me to hear of cold food, poor coffee, rude staff - in fact you can make the coffee to your own liking by pressing various buttons on the machine. Thanks again, Sr. Fernando, Teresa and the wonderful staff - we hope to see you again in October.

Room Tip: If you like the sun during the day and especially a sea view then it is possible to upgrade from the...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank amazedDarwen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manhattan
Level Contributor
27 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2014

I've been delaying this review in the hopes of reading what changes have been made since our visit last October. Since there have been so few reviews, however, I decided it was time to go ahead and add our experience to help others who might be interested in this hotel.

First, contrary to what some others have discussed on this review site and in the forum, one does not have to be Portuguese to stay in the "new" hotel. We did hear mostly Portuguese spoken during our visit, but we also encountered some French, British, Spanish and Italian guests in the hotel. If, however, you need to be surrounded by fellow English speaking guests when you are on holiday, then this hotel would not be for you.

We stayed during the first two weeks of October last year in a one bedroom suite on the third floor. The terrace, accessible from sliding doors from both the living room and bedroom, was enormous and provided an incredible view of the beach and ocean. It was furnished with two lounge chairs as well as a small patio table with two chairs and still it looked empty. The lounge chairs were of good quality but the plastic patio table and chairs seemed out of place on such a grand terrace. Artificial grass was laid out on the floor of the terrace, something that I did not like, as I wondered what kind of a mosquito trap that might be during the summer. Perhaps not an issue, but it certainly seemed as though it could be.

The suite itself is really better designed for a couple than a family. Although there are flat screen TVs mounted in both the living room and bedroom which would be suitable for a family booking, the bathroom has an unusual design with a glass wall separating it from the bedroom. The overhead light in the bathroom streams brightly into the bedroom through the glass wall. No way not to wake up your sleeping companion in the middle of the night if the light is switched on. Also, although huge, the bathroom does not have a tub, something that those traveling with young children or just wishing for a good long soak might miss.

During the time of our visit, the hotel was still very much putting in the finishing touches to the rooms and working out some of the kinks that had presented themselves. We watched them work on a temperamental light sensor in the hallway, install safes in the rooms above the mini-fridge, etc. Possibly, there was something they had planned for that glass wall I mentioned. I also thought it odd that there was only storage in the entry way leading to the living room, but again perhaps there were plans to add additional furniture in the bedroom.

We weren't thrilled with breakfast. No fresh fruit at all, which is not acceptable for the Algarve where melons and oranges grow in abundance. The coffee in the breakfast room was also terrible. No reason for that either, since the Inatel outdoor cafe in the back of the hotel (a popular public cafe which was very busy during our stay) had great coffee. There was a limited selection of continental items at breakfast, certainly not up to the standard we expected. We were told, however, that the kitchen in the building was not yet fully operational, so again this may have all improved greatly since our visit. Perhaps this also explains the inedible scrambled eggs suffering in the warmer each morning. The breakfast room itself, however, was clean and inviting, the dining staff friendly and super quick to clear tables. There were several large windows facing the ocean and one could also sit outside on the patio and dine al fresco and listen to the sounds of the gulls and the surf.

We went up to the inland Inatel for lunch one day just to see what the dining room looked like and what kind of food was served. They put on an inexpensive buffet daily, both lunch and dinner, and all hotel guests receive a discount off the public prices for these meals. For those interested in trying a Portuguese all you can eat buffet, it's a great deal and a well kept secret. I imagine there are many who would like to try some Portuguese specialties they see on menus but don't want to order an entire entree just in case they don't like it. The menus are changed daily and are posted in both hotels. We spoke to some guests who reported that the breakfast fare was better there as well. Guests from the hotel can have breakfast in either hotel, but we didn't bother.

As far as the "rude cleaners" that another reviewer reported, we didn't encounter any. In fact, the housekeeping staff were always incredibly friendly and greeted us with a smile and a "Bom Dia." The reception staff, however, were a mixed bag. The reception desk is positioned in clear view of the main entrance, yet no one ever greeted us, and rarely even lifted a head when we passed. The reception staff at the inland hotel behaved much differently when we went to check out the other building. They were very professional and courteous, seeking to assist both their guests and outside visitors, and were clearly well-trained in the art of hospitality.

Parking is free at both hotels, an added bonus, and the parking lot is gated and well lit at night. The pool in front of the older building is open to guests of both hotels.

Will we stay again in the future? Not this year, but most likely in the future. However, next time we would book a regular ocean front room, not a suite. Quite possibly, and hopefully, many of the negative comments I've made no longer apply and were merely the growing pains of a new hotel.

Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
11 Thank alfagar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 February 2014

walked in here on way back from old town as wanted to see what it was like to hopefully book for a later date, as its right on beach and very close to old town thought it would be perfect.
walking in wasnt very impressed very cold looking lobby bit like a hospital ! on way out was basically told to get out by a rude cleaner never in all my travels have i seen this they usually welcome you in hoping you will like what you see and book, i wont be booking here

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank janice w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 January 2014

hotel and gardens spotlessly clean room was at the rear of the hotel so didnt catch the sun,all staff helpfull very few spoke english food not to my taste and often cold breakfast was the same thing every day not sure if the chefs can cook eggs, food apart had a great holiday beach only 2 minuet walk, gypsy market was a let down, check around ticket office prices many differ.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank onestoplil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Doncaster, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2014

stayed in the 'old one' recently,theyve built a new one just across the road which is on the beach,but dont be put off by that,the rooms are modern,clean and tidy,the bathroom was good,couldnt fault any of it.reception staff were always helpful,and they must have updated the breakfast menu as we got a propper breakfast,not just coissants and cheese.well situated for the local beach which is a really nice stretch of coast,10 mins to the old town,a little further to the strip if thats youre thing,but all within walking distance.went out of season so no noise or mayhem,but tbh its far enough away from drunks falling out of bars.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank startedlatein2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about INATEL Albufeira

Property: INATEL Albufeira
Address: Avenida Henrique, Albufeira 8201-862, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Albufeira
#14 Best Value Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — INATEL Albufeira 3*
Number of rooms: 214
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
INATEL Albufeira Algarve, Portugal

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