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“It really is Paradise!”
Review of Vila Joya

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Vila Joya
Ranked #15 of 154 Hotels in Albufeira
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
47 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“It really is Paradise!”
Reviewed 6 November 2011

They say 'welcome to paradise' and they are not wrong. The only 2 star Michelin Restaurant in Portugal in this really incredible and unique boutique hotel perched on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Their Spa is also outstanding and the staff ratio is unbelievable. I am going back for their Gourmet Festival in January where they host over 20 Michelin Star Chefs every night for 10 days!

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled on business
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Helpful?
2 Thank LordShowbiz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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225 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New York, New York, United States
Level Contributor
266 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 140 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 October 2011

I've had the privilege of staying at a few beachside resorts in my time, and Vila Joya has the double distinction of being the best and the first located in Europe. The service is impeccable, bearing a crazy ratio of staff to guests, and the food is dazzling -- it's not for nothing that the place earned the only two Michelin stars in the country of Portugal. If you have the dosh, go to Algarve and stay here.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank BillScurry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lisbon, Portugal
Level Contributor
67 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 September 2011

Vila jóia is An experience.
We Stayed there for the 3rd time . We were given a brand new suite that was astonishing.
Most beautiful furniture and decoration, open bathroom in the bed room, balcony overdose the sea.
Service is perfect as usual só is the food. We missed the always present butler wellcoming you To paradise but he retired. He was relaxes by a peculiar spanish caracheter .
Vila jóia is An. Experience of a lifetime.

Room Tip: The regular rooms don't meet expectations The new suites are smashing
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  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Clara G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2011

We stayed here for one night in June and ate at the restaurant. The spa, grounds and view is incredible but our room was very basic. The food in the restaurant was very good but in comparison to other similar restaurants not particularly memorable. The atmosphere for us was too stuffy and quiet and the staffs were a bit too discreet. No offer of placing bags in room/car was a bit of a disappointment.

Generally speaking not the experience we expected but we are probably not there target customer.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Bertolucci77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
125 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 299 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 May 2011

A change in our booking dates meant that the hotel accommodated us by upgrading from the Royal Suite 2001 to the Alegria Suite. Whilst large, the quality of the suite was really lacking and I would have been very upset had we been paying the appropriate room price.
With a late arrival on the first night, we had booked the inclusive dinner for the second and third nights. In truth, the first night we were provided with some excellent tapas style dishes which whetted our appetites for the coming dinners.
The second night, Tuesday, dinner was excellent. A 6 course tasting menu adapted to suit our no meat diet. However, the following evening can only be described as appalling.
First course, salmon tartare and smoked salmon which, whilst freshly smoked, was home cooking at best. Second course, chicken curry and rice (in our case, adapted to spaghetti with prawns, fresh pasta but way overcooked). Third course, ice cream with something, by that time we had given up. And this is claimed to be Michelin star cuisine.
Our (very good) waiter quietly told us that this it what chef does every Wednesday. Why, nobody seems to know. However, the only certainty is that book a Wednesday and you will not get the standard of food of other nights. I do not know of another Michelin starred establishment that would deliberately lower standards in this way.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
11 Thank Richard D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 December 2010

Stayed here for 2 nights after having had a rather indifferent stay at the Vilalara a few miles away... The Vilajoya is a real gem - ticked all our boxes.. The restaurant (2 Michelin stars) is extraordinary, some of the most inventive and exquisite food we've had anywhere, and on a teraace beautifully overlooking the plush grounds sloping down to the sea below, with the waves often crashing.. quite a unique setting to savour some very great food, presented with much style..

The hotel is very beautiful - small and full of detail. The grounds are adorable, I spent some wonderful hours lying on a deckchair under the trees, listening to the waves crashing below, occasionally popping over to the beach (30 seconds walk) for a dip. The beach is public, with a really delightful beach-cabin style bar- hard not to love it.

Our (standard) room was really simple, which some people may find a smell drawback, but we loved the way the doors opened to the garden with the sea just beyond

The spa is a delight, small and very atmospheric, overlooking the ocean.

Generally great service - a pricy and memorable place, to return to whenever one can.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank londonartist10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boulder, Colorado
Level Contributor
101 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2010

We stayed here for just two nights for our 30th anniversary (I know, I know....). Anyway, we were greeted warmly but I'm not sure the room was ready because they were very insistent on the welcome drink on the terrace. The grounds were beautiful with a lovely view of the sea and a pool in a garden like surrounding. The room was basic but they gave some really nice touches like rose petals in the shape of a heart on our bed to acknowledge our anniversary. We did opt for the gala dinner which was delicious but be prepared for a long evening and lots of food. The restaurant sits on an open terrace with a fantastic sea view. The hotel is obviously a favorite with the Germans. We saw one or two other couples from somewhere else but being or speaking German clearly makes you an insider. The spa was nice but there seemed to be some confusion about tipping. The hotel wants tips collected centrally but I'm not sure the staff are on board with this. The access to the beach was easy and fun. Some nice beaches and little tidal areas to explore. We were driving and I think we would have felt a bit trapped without the car. One night we drove in to Albufeira which was fun but basically a place for beer, jeans and English/Irish singers. All in all you pay a premium price to stay at this hotel and it largely lives up to the cost.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank TravellingColoradans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Vila Joya

Property: Vila Joya
Address: Praia da Gale, Albufeira 8201-902, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Albufeira
#7 Spa Hotel in Albufeira
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Albufeira
#12 Luxury Hotel in Albufeira
#22 Romantic Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Vila Joya 5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Vila Joya resembles a small oriental palazzo and is nestled in a breathtaking garden setting on a cliff with stunning views facing the sea. Winner of the 2016 Europe's Leading Boutique Hotel Awards, this Albufeira beach resort also boasts a two Michelin star Restaurant and features luxurious spa resort accommodations, exclusive golf packages, and rejuvenating body treatments. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vila Joya Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal
Vila Joya Hotel Albufeira

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