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“lovely long weekend” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Balaia Mar Hotel

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Balaia Mar Hotel
Ranked #26 of 162 Hotels in Albufeira
Certificate of Excellence
Durham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“lovely long weekend”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2014

Got a good deal for a long weekend so we thought we'd try it. Hotel very clean, rooms small but comfortable, good shower and large bathroom. We had sunbeds on our balcony which was excellent. Pool lovely and the staff were marvellous. We'd never been to Portugal and they gave us great directions, called taxis, provided a resort map and did our online bookings for us. Very impressed. Bar staff friendly also. Breakfast nice too.
we walked along the cliffs to olhua d'agua for lunch. Gorgeous small resort, lovely food. We had a taxi (8euros) into albufiera old town which is brilliant. A taxi to oura, for a wild night on the strip, very lively.
all in all we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Kaz049
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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743 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (152)
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English first
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 April 2014

was here last oct for a chillout week,this hotel stood out because of the ratings and tranquilty of it.had a great room over looking the pool.the hotel was as headling says peacefull and very quiet.the staff work hard and always serve you as quick as possible,theres also a supermarket across the road which sells everything really.the pool is great but can be a bit cold at times.you can get the sun all day round if not by the pool then by your balcony.about 10 mins down the road there is a fantastic beach which is great and usually quite busy.inside the hotel is quiet at night apart from the pool room,where drinks have to be paid for,but still a goodnight if you want a night in.the hotel usually offer a shuttle bus to the old town or strip as you are a bit of a distance away.the food at hotel is good and always something on to eat,even during the day,but sometimes can be a bit luke warm,but apart from that the hotel deserves its great rating as its a small,welcoming place and worht paying a visit to sometime for sure,watch out for santos the barman hes a great laugh l

Room Tip: anyones over looking the pool you get the sun till late at night
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank gary e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 November 2013

We arrived at the hotel having received a good deal through 'on the beach'. We had gone for half board as we knew we would probably want to go out a lot, and I was glad we had done this. We spoke to someone else on an all inclusive deal and they stopped giving all inclusive customers drinks at a certain time, after which you had to pay for them. If we had been doing this I would have been disappointed.
Room:
The room was clean and had everything you needed - not very fancy and I do think we got the only room in the whole place without a balcony. We were going to complain but as we had got settled we decided we would be happy where we were (so cannot complain too much as we did not give the hotel any chance to change it).

Facilities:
The hotel bar had plenty of pool tables which provided some entertainment in the evenings. The bar wasn't super expensive, although a little more expensive than the local pubs. You did however have to pay for the pool on a time basis, but I'm not sure they charged us every time as our hotel bill at the end of the trip was quite low.
There was a small shop below the hotel, but a cheaper store selling a lot more (with an amazing ice cream counter) is just over the road (bright orange and green sign). This was very handy and open quite late too (to save money we bought wine from here to drink in the room!) They even sold fresh baguettes.
The pool area and restaurant were the best part of the hotel. The nice thing about it was there were trees all the way round so even though there are building around the hotel you couldn't see them so it felt quite scenic.
There was one night with a parrot show, but no other entertainment at all - we thought htis was odd as there was a big area near the bar perfect for it.

Food:
As we were half board we only ate in the restaurant about 5/6 evenings out of 10. This was enough for us and I'm sure I would have eaten out if I had been all inclusive. The meat being cooked on the grill at the end of the restaurant was good, and the 'big dish' they had (usually paella, strogonoff etc.) was different every day. There were a small selection of salads, a lasagne and some hot fried things (croquettes, chips, veg). Overall it was quite samey (and we didn't est there all the time!) The selections were limited but we enjoyed what we ate and nothing was horrible - just not very different or exciting. The puddings were ok, but again limited and the same every day. Often they weren't replenished so something I had seen when getting my main course would often not be there when it came to pudding. There were no drinks included at all for dinner time on half board which was disappointing.
A lot of the dinner tables were around the pool area, with a few on a little bridge over the pool which was nice.
Breakfast was almost the same every day, limited selection but it was nice with fruit, yoghurts, toast and hot frankfurtas, beans, eggs etc and croissants. The coffee from the machine was actually quite nice and there was lots of fresh juice which was a highlight.
Location:
The hotel was a short walk downhill to a nice beach. Quite a large one, with sunloungers you could rent. There was also a little cafe and restaurant there so you could get pre-packed icecreams and quite a decent sandwich/roll for just a couple of euros.
We preferred going a little further afield to Olhos d'Agua - highly recommended. It is a 5 euro taxi or a 15 minute walk (there is short cut when walking - you don't need to go all the way along the main road). There is a small pedestrian area surrounded by restaurants, bars and pubs right next to a beach. We enjoyed lunches in pizzeria fratelli and Bar Agua next door, followed by a nice afternoon on the beach a few times.
Generally you need to get taxis or buses into central Albufeira - you are looking at between 7-12 euros for taxis depending on which part of town (we preferred old town, new town looked a bit tacky) and what time of day. The buses were ok, but we usually got a bus in (if the time was right) and a taxi back.
If you are doing any tourist-trips they usually include a bus pick up from the main road outside the hotel so this was really handy.
I think I have covered everything, the hotel didn't blow me away but it didn't ruin my holiday in any way and the beaches in the locality really are nice and unspoilt (and there are lots of activities and things to do) so really was a good holiday.

Room Tip: Ask for room with a balcony - just from looking at them from the pool area they looked a lot nicer t...
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank abbi_reviews
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
33 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 October 2013

I've just returned from a 6 night all inclusive holiday here with my mum.
We chose the hotel mainly due to the tripadvisor reviews, and I'm happy to say we weren't disappointed.
The hotel is small and friendly. The service we received at check in was similar to what you'd receive at a 5* hotel in the UK.
The room was small but had a large balcony and bathroom with a bath and a shower. The room was spotless, and serviced every day.
Food - meals were buffet style. Breakfast was the usual continental and full cooked options, and for lunch and dinner there was a wide selection of salads, boiled potatoes, rice and chips, and pasta options, along with a meat and fish dish.
There were bar snacks from 3pm-6pm which consisted of salad rolls, hotdogs, burgers etc.
The only complaint I had re the food was that they had no facility to heat plates so your food got cold quickly. A hot plate or bain marie for plates would be an improvement.
Drink - alcoholic drinks on all inclusive was from 1pm-11pm, local and international drinks, beer wine etc. Was fine. There was also waiter service for drinks at meal times which was nice, I wasn't expecting that on an all inclusive basis.
The hotel is closing for the season on Thursday and due to that the hotel was very very quiet. But that is what we were looking for, so we had an excellent time.
It's a 5-10 min walk to the beach (which is gorgeous) and about an hours walk into Albufeira.
Transfer to the airport was about 35 minutes, and we booked through alpharooms.
The only negative point I'd say is, we were advised that the hotel ran a shuttle bus for all inclusive guests to 3 different parts of town every night. When we went to book we were told they had cancelled this service as it was the end of the season and the hotel was too quiet. They really should've known how busy the hotel was going to be, and shouldn't have mentioned it at all. As they did, it would've been nice if they had offered us some form of alternative.
However, we had a fantastic relaxing trip and would definitely recommend it.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank L_hendo26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cheshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 October 2013

I went this hotel for 3 nights with my wife for my 40th birthday in October. The hotel was very clean and the food was fantastic. The staff were really friendly and would come and serve you drinks at your table. The pool was very nice but a bit cold, we spent most of our time relaxing next to it. The only fault I can think of is there was no entertainment at night, so if you was there for a week you would have to leave the hotel and the all inclusive.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank John D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cheltenham
Level Contributor
15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 October 2013

Recently returned from an 8-day All Inclusive stay at the Balaia Mar with my partner, and find it hard to find any major faults. The staff, without exception, were extremely pleasant, and the restaurant/bar staff deserve special praise for prompt and pleasant service. -We have never before been offered drinks at the table when on an All Inclusive package and food in the restaurant was very good with plenty of variety during our stay. There was no pressure at all to rush to finish meals just because the official meal time had ended, and this added to the relaxed feel of the hotel.
Although the hotel is quite a distance from the centre of Albufeira it is still walk-able in about an hour.There is also bus stop right outside the hotel.
All in all, our holiday was great value and most satisfactory, but it was the good attitude of the staff that made it !


Dai & Jo
CHELTENHAM

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank horace555
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 October 2013

I went to this hotel for one week the end of September with my partner. The hotel is really nice, rooms aren't that spacious but very clean. Horrible 1st nights sleep due to noisey bed but when we looked in the morning there is a protective cover on the mattress, Take it off!! you get a better sleep. The food albeit was very nice but very repetitive. Disappointed that you couldn't get alcohol on all inclusive until 1pm. The sports bar didn't open until 9.30pm which very often opened late and again all inclusive only til 11pm. Staff work very hard and are polite. Its a small hotel but looked after. Its not a hotel to take kids so im glad I didn't. Overall tho a good holiday. One thing that we didn't like both being non smokers was that you had to walk through a smoking area of the restaurant where food was being cooked to get to where the food bar was. There is a non smoking room but there are open doors which means the smoke comes in anyway. Not much in the area which was a disappointment too. Weather was rubbish but I guess that's pot luck!!!

Room Tip: ask for a pool view
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank joanne H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Balaia Mar Hotel

Property: Balaia Mar Hotel
Address: Beco Maria Luisa, Albufeira 8200-635, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Albufeira
#19 On the Beach Hotel in Albufeira
#23 Romantic Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Balaia Mar Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 32
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Balaia Mar Hotel Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal

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