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“Cheap and Cheerful but needs attention.”
Review of Hotel Sol e Mar

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Hotel Sol e Mar
Ranked #37 of 154 Hotels in Albufeira
scotland
Level 6 Contributor
126 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
“Cheap and Cheerful but needs attention.”
Reviewed 12 April 2013

We stayed in Sol e Mar for one week in April 2013. This was not our first visit so we knew what to expect.On entering our room stopped for a moment and realised how sparse it was.Having been in other hotels we realised how run down the Sole Mar has become.The fridge was positively ancient, falling to bits.Curtains have seen better days and as for the bed, be careful not to bump into wooden frame, can be painful.Television would be too old even for the charity shops. On the bright side , linens were clean and towels plentiful and view from balcony was stunning.
Reception as previously stated could certainly be more helpful but as there are a number of people working her would be unfair to compare all the same.
Dinning room. Without Placido, who did a wonderful job, the experience would have been pretty dismal.Furniture and fixings are in dire need of upgrading and the food needs a total revamp.Some of the"ornaments " above the food would be much sought after in the antiques roadshow they are so old! Food mediocre. Again on the positive side there was a wonderful view from top floor of the dining room.
Lounge was probably best part of the hotel.Comfortable seating and a pleasant bar area.Entertainment needs a revamp. Same keyboard player 5 nights a week a bit much.
Overall this is a great location right on beach but the management really need to consider spending some money to keep this hotel as the first class establishment it used to be before it crumbles into the sea along with much of the coastline.

Room Tip: choose any floor other than 4th as noise from dining room with chairs scraping could be annoying.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank katrinamac12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Perth
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 April 2013

Don't believe the bad reviews on this hotel we have just got back after a weeks holiday in this hotel and we could not fault it.
The location is great and the rooms are very big,clean and plenty of hot water. The bathrooms may need a little attention but nothing major. All the rooms have sea views which is something you don't get unless you pay for it.
My husband is a vegetarian and we read that they did not cater for vegetarians but this is not true each night they brought him a specially made veggie dish.The food for the rest of us was ok and we did not starve.
All the staff were helpful and always willing to talk to us nothing was too much trouble.
We would recommend anyone looking for a holiday in the old town don't overlook the Sol e Mar

Room Tip: we were in rooms 415/416 very handy as you only needed to go up 1 floor to the reception,Bar, and di...
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank VRSCOTLAND
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 April 2013

This is the third time my wife and I have stayed at this hotel. It is 4 years since our last visit, and we were really surprised at the way the standard of the hotel has fallen. There seems to be half the staff there was the last time we visited. When we first arrived, we noticed the shower head was lying in the bath, t5he bracket it should have been clipped into, was broken, and judging by the colour, had been broken for some time. I went to reception to report it, and was told no one was available to repair it until Monday, fair enough as it was easter weekend. I made a temporary repair with a shoelace, two weeks later, the lace is still there. Lets move onto the food and restaurant. The quality of the food is at very best average, mainly poor. The soup, is the same every night, the only thing that changes is the name of it. Meat, usually pork, is tough and leathery by the time its laid in an open topped tureen for two hours. Salad consists of limp lettuce, tomatoes, and sometimes cucumber. Now and again tuna appears. With a spattering of pasta/mayo combo if you get there in time. Most of the staff are extremely pleasant and helpful, one or two are at best surly. Breakfast. the usual procesed cheese and ham slices, cereal and yoghurt. Scrambled or hard fried eggs, tinned mushrooms, hot dogs or greasy chorizo lumps,that will later appear in that evenings soup. We were here two weeks, once in the first week Bacon appeared once, then on the day before we left appeared again. Obviously it went quickly, then a woman asked for more, half a tray was brought out, which the same woman immediately piled the whole lot on her plate, leaving three "slices" for the woman she had pushed in front of "!Excuse me, I asked for that bacon" Greedy and ignorant.
The standards at evening meal have dropped, even though there is a sign on the door stating long trousers must be worn by gentlemen, its never enforced, when someone walks in in shorts and a sweaty vest, no one enforces the rule. Again, lowering the standards.. No cheeseboard, no entertainment on a night, and few Germans, as they wont put up with poor standards the way brits seem to.
Three star at best, and that only because of the location. The awrds on the wall date back ten years. Thomsons, and Airtours have pulled out. no wonder.
Beds are clean. but the cleaners need a lesson in dusting. The whole place is in dire need of a serious re vamp.
Certainly wont be back. T

Room Tip: Dont stay on 4th floor. You get all the noise from chairs scraping in the restaurant.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Steelbonnet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 April 2013

I'm not going to dwell on the hotel too much, it's as most people say rooms a bit dated but acceptable, breakfast is ok and was always plenty of choice for us. Was a bit of a drain smell in room when we arrived but ran water down bidet and it went away. All the receptionist were helpful booking trips etc. and room was kept clean and serviced daily. The fact is the reason to pick this hotel is the location and views, every room has a sea view and its gorgeous.

To avoid the steps down to the main street, you either turn left out of hotel reception walk past steps then take 1st right which slopes down to main street (you'll also find the main entrance to restaurant Casa de Fonte here, lovely restaurant I had the best cooked swordfish steak I've ever had and husband had a lovely portugese steak. in summer it has a garden area covered by trees but for us the roof was shut as it was raining!). Or you can take lift to floor zero and go out through cafe, you cab get in this way but you need a code which is supplied on the info you get at check-in.

Other restaurants we liked were; Il Brigante an Italian restaurant, great food, ambience and service (Go down into square, across to the right and go up the last street on right with Indian restaurant at bottom (Rua Alves Correia I think), Il Brigante is right at top of street. Louisiana on Fisherman's beach does lovely relaxed lunches. Atrium on main street just down from hotel has a Portugese nights (Mon, Weds, Sat) with music, in season probably best to book, food very nice. There's also 2 nice fish restaurants if yiu turn left out of hotel restaurant and go up the hill, both on the right with views out across sea and outside terraces. Rock Cafe in square is nice and cheap for a evening drink and people watching if you sit outside.

One thing to note is there's some fairly steep but short hills around the hotel can be tough goingup/down these for anyone with walking difficulties although you can get round them by walking along the beach

Room Tip: We asked for a quiet room and were on 3rd floor very near end and other than noise of sea it was qui...
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
2 Thank sasperella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
northern ireland
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 April 2013

We stayed here for a week over Easter with our 7month old baby. The hotel is great, and the old town is beautiful!

We arrived early on 29th (around 10am) and although there were no rooms available we only had to wait 30mins despite being there much earlier than check-in times! There was no cot in the room but it arrived a few hours later!

Our room was very clean & although not a modern 4star it had everything you needed, not to mention spectacular views! There is only a 14inch tv on the wall however despite us generally needing a tv no matter where we go, the sound of the waves and the ocean were all you needed at this hotel and we didnt even use the tv!

We left the balcony door opened at night slightly & whether it was the beds or the sound of the ocean, we slept better than we have in months!

The only issue we had with the hotel was on the first evening. We noticed a lot of ants around the ceiling in the bathroom. Throughout the night they got a lot worse, also moving around the edge of the bedroom floor. We spoke to reception at 7.30am & had moved to a new room by 10am! After this we only saw a couple the rest of the week!

Breakfast is from 8-10 and previous reviews mention that it is poor. I have to disagree! There was a great selection of food & although they may have ran out of some foods they were generally replenished within 5 minutes!

The selection included croissants, ciabatta, brown & white bread, crusty rolls, toast, ham, cheese, fresh fruit, yoghurts, tomatoes & cucumber. The hot food included bacon or sausage, scrambled or fried eggs, boiled eggs, beans, French toast, tomatoes & mushrooms. There were cereals, fruit juice, tea & coffee! How that wouldn't please everyone I've no idea!

Staff were very friendly & coffee on the terrace was lovely. We didnt eat lunch or dinner in the hotel as the old town had so many lovely restaurants but the food looked good!

The hotel is right on the beach & although in the evening there is either a steep hill to climb back up to the hotel, or a big flight of steps, it's only 2-3minute walk into the main square!

The hotel pool was very dark & small - we didn't fancy it, but u have the beach on your door step! .... & the ballroom style music in the evenings isn't really encouraging anyone under about 65 to stay in for a drink!!! (Very very dated style)

Overall the hotel is very clean, friendly, convenient, and we would definitely return- however don't expect a modern 4star hotel. For the price, it's perfect!

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank vm019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
N Ireland
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2013

Hi everone, Just back from a weeks half board at Sol E Mar. Quite enjoyable. Food was good, bearing in mind that you're in Portugal ie:- continental although you could have as near a full Irish/English fry up in morning and dinner was fairly good as well. The hotel is right on the beach and all rooms have sea views. Bedrooms are very roomy and yes bathrooms could do with some updating, but bear in mind you only sleep and shower in rooms. The hotel in right in the centre of the old town and very central to local bars where there is loads of craic. Hotel staff I must say couldn't be anymore friendly and helpful. Free Internet to use. The bar and restuarant are on the fifth floor with wonderful views. Would we stay there again, YES no bother.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank reviloroo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
edinburgh
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2013

Stayed b+b for 5 nights with our 9year old granddaughter. Hotel is clean,comfortable and goes without saying the perfect location. Granddaughter loved that beach was 2mins away and loved watching the waves from the balcony. Special thanks to Louis and Lucio for making her "special cocktails"(non alcholic) . Don't get why people moan about the decor-could'nt get craftsmen to make it in this day and age! Overall a great hotel and would go back.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank EdinburghEdingirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Sol e Mar

Property: Hotel Sol e Mar
Address: Rua Jose Bernardino de Sousa 12, Albufeira 8200-146, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#26 On the Beach Hotel in Albufeira
#27 Romantic Hotel in Albufeira
#30 Luxury Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Sol e Mar 4*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located directly on the beach in the centre of Albufeira, the 4-star Sol e Mar Resort features 2 restaurants, 2 bars and a heated indoor pool. The Sol e Mar rooms benefit from private balconies with sea views, as well as a TV with satellite channels. Every room has a refrigerator and an en suite bathroom with a hairdryer. Sunrise Restaurant serves lavish buffet meals accompanies by sea views; Sunset Restaurant offers a la carte regional and international cuisine. There is also a cocktail bar, an ice cream parlour and live evening entertainment. Hotel Sol e Mar is just 3 minutes' walk from Albufeira's Archaeological Museum. Bicycles can be rented from the hotel - perfect for exploring the old town and picturesque clifftops. Free Wi-Fi is available in its public areas. Faro International Airport is 30 minutes' drive from Hotel Sol e Mar. On-site car hire is available. Free public parking is available within 400 metres from the hotel ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sol e Mar Hotel
Hotel Sol e Mar Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal

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