I stayed here for a week with 2 friends at the end of July. We're 3 girls in our 20s and this was our 5th visit to Albufeira so when we booked the Luna Miramar we knew what we were getting location-wise. It's more or less right in the middle of the Old Town and the Strip which are about a 15/20 minute stroll away or never more than 5 euros in a cab. The Albufeira shopping Centre is literally next to the hotel with a big Continente supermarket inside which is perfect if you are self catering like we were.
Originally there were 4 of us going so I had booked a Studio for 4 adults. In hindsight it was almost a blessing that our 4th member dropped out as we found the room quite compact for 3 adults and all their stuff, 4 would have been a real squeeze! We had 2 single beds pushed together to make a double and a sofa bed, the 4th person would have been sleeping on the pull out from underneath the sofa and we're not entirely sure where we would have put that - either they'd have been wedged between the sofa and the foot of the beds or in the kitchenette! Storage space was also a bit lacking as were hangers but not the end of the world. You could tell the room had recently been done up and it all looked fresh and clean, however, there were a few minor things that could improve it - a toilet roll holder, a full length mirror that wasn't in almost inaccessible corner by the door with little lighting and a few more plug sockets. The bathroom ventilation was also very noisy but didn't seem to do a great deal!
The kitchenette was well enough equipped for our needs - pots, a frying pan, plenty of plates/bowls/glasses/cutlery, chopping board, spatulas etc. the only thing missing was a sharp knife. As ever, no kettle and it's not really an issue to boil water in a pan but I never understand why they supply a coffee percolator and not a kettle. There was also a toaster, microwave and 2 ring hob. Bathroom and shower were fine. Our beds were made every day and towels changed a couple of times during our stay. We found the whole place to be very clean and can't fault the maid service.
The one real issue with this hotel is the swimming pool. Whilst they cannot physically cram any more sun loungers around the pool there just aren't enough to go round. Because this hotel also does All Inclusive this is likely not helped by the fact that people who have paid for AI want to stay by the pool and use it for their drinks/snacks rather than venture out. This unfortunately has lead to the usual race to put your towel on a sun bed situation and this is by far the worst hotel I've ever stayed at for this. On our first morning we woke up at 8am of our own accord, thought we'd get some sun cream on and go down to the pool but soon realised that wouldn't be happening when we saw the sea of towels from the balcony! By 7am pretty much all the sunbeds are taken - this is even more ridiculous when you consider that half the pool is in the shade in the morning and the other half is in the shade in the afternoon so people essentially go for sun beds based on what part of the day they want to sunbathe in. There are plenty of signs around telling you that you are not allowed to reserve beds but these are neither observed nor enforced and of course everyone moans about it but they still set their alarms for 6.30 to race down there anyway...Our only thought was there is a large patch of fake grass on the flat roof of the restaurant, is there no way sun beds could be put up there?
All the staff we came across at the hotel were lovely especially the people on reception during the day and the night porter too. They were always happy to call us a taxi and booked a trip to the water park for us and were just generally very friendly and welcoming. They were also very patient with my friend's requests to constantly reset the wifi box...There is wifi in reception but it does seem to go off a lot and drop in and out so don't expect to be able to do much more than send a few whatsapps home!
Overall this is a nice hotel, with a few more improvements it could be a really good hotel. The only thing that would stop me staying here again is the sun bed situation, if they could find a solution to that I would definitely return.
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- Also Known As:
- Perola Do Algarve Albufeira
- Perola Algarve
- Perola Do Algarve Hotel Albufeira
- Perola Portugal
- Smartline Miramar Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal