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VidaMar Resort Hotel Algarve
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Reviews (1,092)
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Reviewed 16 August 2014

There is one thing you have to know about this hotel, and it’s both positive and negative. That is that most of the hotel customers are Portuguese.

It’s all about rhythms. So, being a largely Portuguese hotel, there are hardly any German guests. I am sure we are all grateful to be in a hotel, where we don’t have to get up at 4.45 in the morning to fight it out over the beachbeds round the pool, aren’t we? Major positive. Portuguese guests have an entirely different rhythm which sees them rise for a late breakfast, and consequently at 9.30-10.00 you will still be able to stroll out to the pools and find your beachbeds and sunshades, no problem.

However, and it is a big however, the different rhythms see the Portuguese families have a late dinner and pile out into the hotel lobby and bars from 20.30 onwards, where they make an awful noise until 23.00, sometimes later. You have to know this. If you innocently think you can have a relaxing evening talking, reading, drinking or playing on your PC, you are mistaken. The huge, tall atrium where reception is situated is truly cavernous and magnifies the sounds up to a dreadful cacophany, as children of all ages run, fight, cry, scream, do cartwheels, even impale themselves on the cacti. All around you. There is little the reception staff could do about this, even if they wanted to, it is a design failure. And there is nowhere else to go. The sound goes straight into the bars unimpeded, and there are no sofas or chairs anywhere else quieter. I looked, even on other floors, zero.

So, what’s good about this hotel?

We found the reception staff and porters very courteous and helpful, speaking exceptionally good English. Our porter even took the time to show us around. They spoiled this at reception on the last evening, when they forgot to relay the order for early packed breakfast on to the kitchens, and we went without breakfast the following morning. But apart from that we had no problems here at all.

The hotel is connected to the fine beach by a long wooden causeway, which entails a pleasant 5 minute walk. The sandy beach is great for families, and the sea very safe for bathing.

The three hotel pools are built surrounded by a huge brown slatted wooden terrace, which we found very good indeed. The umbrellas and beachbeds are good. There were seemingly always enough loungers, even on very busy days.

The organised daytime entertainment (animacao) was understated but quite well done, without disturbing those not interested. Good for the kids.

The main pool is very large, clean and warm enough. Good temperature indeed. The pool flooring needs some maintenance, but I guess that will be solved at the end of the season.

We followed advice on room choice, secured a room on the top floor, which had a good sea view (paid for) and was reasonably quiet in the evening, very quiet at night, no noise from neighbours. (If you are lower, there is a probably a risk of noise from the evening entertainments and the screeching bunfights on the ground floor.

Very nice lawns everywhere, which could be used by guests too.

For a couple of days we had a rented car. The hotel has a spacious underground carpark open to all guests.

What’s not so good about this hotel?

The room we had is spacious, modern , stylish. Great shower. Unfortunately, the design-think was not that great. An open-plan bathroom, with the sink actually part of the open room, may be a contender for prizes, but is not that practical for the guests really. Washing your hands at night you will likely wake the sleepers. Aside from the small bedside tables, there was no table in the room. Unusual, inconvenient at times. I didn’t find the double bed that comfortable, but it is new and in good condition; maybe I am the problem.

Strange behaviour by the bedmakers: plenty of shampoos, but the (used) soap would disappear, unreplaced. Why? Some of the towels would disappear (why?), unreplaced, but perhaps reappear the next day. Both dressing gowns disappeared, unreplaced. Why? Strange indeed. And we were not very impressed by the cobweb which continued to grow fascinatingly on the balcony throughout our stay.

The small kiddies’ pool is good, but wasted. Within 5 minutes even the youngest kids worked out that the other smaller pool is much warmer, and they migrated. This warm pool is in itself a good idea, but it attracted so many guests all day, that it was often full to bursting with people of all ages. We decided we were not entirely happy with the possible hygienic consequences of all this, so this pool was avoided. Our daughter did however use it, and survived.

The café beside the pool was run by willing, pleasant, hard-working staff. The prices were fair. It is a shame that the food on offer was not that inspiring, and seemingly every dish was bizarrely accompanied by a handful of crisps (‘chips’ on the menu). So, we gave up on this, organised our own lunches and used the bar for drinks and ices only.

We grew a bit tired of the food in the main restaurant. Breakfasts OK, but no wow-factor at all. We found the main dishes in the evening relatively uninspiring, so ended up concentrating on the salads instead. I think the hotel is playing it safe on food, which is perhaps understandable in a new establishment, but the result is a bland offering. There are alternative restaurants in the hotel. We tried the Italian, which was of good quality, but we were not going to get fat on the quantities, so did not return.

Not many flowers around the hotel. A shame.

What else should you know? There is a perfectly adequate supermarket about ten minutes walk away. Directions from reception.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
6  Thank John M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2014

Myself and my wife have just come back from an excellent week at the vidamar we where made very welcome from arrival until the day we left the customer service is top class and working in the retail sector myself I know good customer service and these guys where top of their game ,the room was fantastic ,very big and had everything in it ,the food was of a very high standard with a great choice every nite we also ate during the day at mama Mia and this Italian is class the gin bar is well stock however I think the beer selection should be more as superbock is the only draft beer on sale this I think this needs to change as u need an selection on draft beers not bottle beer overall an excellent hotel and even better staff I can't single out one person as all where truly professional see u next august

Room Tip: We stayed on third floor resort view and the room was top class
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
7  Thank Kevin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2014 via mobile

We are currently staying at the hotel and our stay so far has been excellent! A warm welcome on arrival, with very clear hotel information. Large, stylish room which is very adequate for our family of four. Beautiful bathroom. Hotel pools are superb, especially the heated one for the children-the only difficulty is persuading them to get out! No problems at all getting a sun lounger, it is such a joy to look out of our window at 9am and not see all the loungers reserved which you so often get on holidays! Beach is a 5 minute stroll down a wooden, purpose built path. Food is excellent in the main, buffet style restaurant, lots of choice even for our fussy little eaters! Staff throughout the hotel are very polite and helpful. Only minor issues are not being able to book the other restaurants on the hotel site for 4 days. Also, new guests could do with a quick guide to the buffet restaurant. Some food (e.g. the childrens food) is tucked away in another part of the restaurant and it took us two nights to find it! A room guide would also be useful- especially how to work the air conditioning! However, as I said, these are very minor issues! An excellent hotel, we would definitely book again!

Stayed: August 2014
7  Thank RECD338
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2014

We have just come back from an excellent week at the Vidamar resort, staying in a villa. Our accommodation was amazing, four bedrooms, with more than enough space for two families sharing (4 adults, 3 kids). The pictures on their website really do not do justice to the villas once there.
The food was fantastic, plenty of choice during both dinner and breakfast whilst maintaining very good quality. The service throughout the hotel was excellent and we felt that they could not do enough to help.
The main pool area is impressive, loads of space, great sized pools and two bars (the cocktail bar was a particular favourite. You have to try the "Cosmo Pool" at the Tika Cocktail Bar.
The only negative was that we had to come home.
I can not wait to go back there.

Room Tip: The villas are amazing, a great help for us being a large group, if you can get an end plot do. Spacious inside and out, great views and great pool.
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Robert H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2014

We stayed at the hotel on a half board basis from 13th July to 23rd on a half-board basis (2 adults and 2 kids aged 7 and 4). We had a great time and would really recommend it. The hotel has many guests from Portugal and Spain however it caters for all nationalities and we were made to feel very welcome by everyone we met.

This is a modern hotel so all the furnishings are new and excellent quality - no plastic chairs or tables. The reception area is stunning and the rooms are a good size and well furnished. The main buffet restaurant is huge so it never felt overly busy. The food was excellent, lots of choice so no complaints at all. We tried the Italian and seafood restaurants and would recommend.

The pool area in the hotel is a real highlight. It has 3 pools, one heated which is great for kids - ours were in the pool from 9.30 each morning. This is a huge space so again didn't feel overcrowded at any point. Also, no need to rush down for a lounger at 7am - loungers and parasols (excellent quality) were plentiful. The area is surrounded by palm trees so also has lots of shaded areas.

The service at the hotel was excellent, a real highlight. All staff we had dealings with were helpful and competent. Some were quite new and still learning, others were clearly experienced and excellent at their job. A special mention of one waiter - Paulo Ribeiro - he was fabulous. He made a real effort to look after us.

The hotel is a 5 minute walk to an excellent beach so the setting is ideal. It's a 10 minute walk to a supermarket which is well stocked. The cost of a taxi into Albufeira old town was 15 Euro's each way - the hotel can book this for you.

The only thing the hotel doesn't have is a kids playground. They have plenty of space so hopefully this is something they have plans for. The kids evening entertainment also isn't great. It's held in what I would say is a conference room - more suited to business meetings than kids shows. This is on a different floor from the bar and has no character. I'm sure this is something the hotel will improve upon as they have everything else just about perfect.

We would recommend this hotel and will visit again.

Room Tip: Ask for a pool view room
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank J M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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