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“WARNING: Sewer smell, unprofessional service”

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Fortaleza do Guincho
Ranked #6 of 39 Hotels in Cascais
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 28 August 2014

We were shocked at the poor service and how the hotel could sell rooms with a horrible sewer smell to then play dumb. The hotel seemed to be cutting corners to save costs on a summer Sunday with only one person at check in. We were not given a single piece of information about the hotel - we were rushed to our room, didnt even know there were bikes to rent, were not informed about a huge concert in town that would disrupt traffic. The cab drives were a hundred times more friendly and helpful!
When we returned from dinner at 11pm there was this horrible sewer smell which the hotel had been trying to mask by spraying and using a cheap electric scented plug. I was so upset that it was the same person at check in to then play dumb - 'how could you give me a room with a sewer smell' - he played dumb and I said im not paying and going to leave - he then said let me call my manager. As i was about to book another hotel, he managed to find another room after having commented the hotel was sold out and credited the night.
I am sorry but there is clearly an issue here if they were so fast to credit. I think Relais Chateau should do an unannounced visit (on a Sunday non wedding event) as I do not believe this hotel adheres to their strict operational code. How can a hotel stay open with such a sewer smell. Hotel management should be ashamed of themselves. They must hire in outside help for weddings and those giving complements must have paid a reduced rate (or free) because what we experienced was a 2 star service at best. We stay at RC's up to 3 times a month and agreed this was our worst experience - not even a free night made it feel any better.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank jmittle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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147 - 153 of 547 reviews

Reviewed 28 August 2014

In a brief word, this is the most over-priced, and over-hyped hotel I have stayed at in 25 years of travelling. If you are to believe their prices and self-promotion, you will be expecting to roll around in luxury. NOT! You will not be greeted by any friendly or helpful staff. They are brusque, argumentative, and look down on you with a snobbish air. There is an all-pervasive stiffness about the hotel. The room was cramped as it was stuffed with huge pieces of heavy furniture which made it difficult to move around. There were holes in the sheets and everything smacked of, perhaps, former “better days”. Wi-fi in the rooms is basically non-existent – the signal was too weak to be of any use. The much-touted “sweeping Atlantic Ocean views” from your bedroom will have to be enjoyed through a tiny sliver of a window. As to location, there is nothing to recommend it. It is far out and far away from anything remotely interesting. This bit of coast is hit by gale-force winds year round, the beaches are deserted, and the water is freezing. Breakfast was disappointing. You may not help yourself to coffee but have to wait to be served. This may take a while as staff would rather stand chatting in the kitchen. There was a very meagre selection, the bacon was burnt for two consecutive days, the fried eggs were rock-hard, there was a toaster but it was not even switched on for use. The cutlery was badly scratched. The same goes for meals ordered through room service. Mediocre at best. I failed to discern anything coming close to food from an “award-winning gourmet restaurant” or a “Michelin-starred restaurant”. This is very deceitful advertising. On the plus side, the bathroom was very plush if small. The bed was comfortable. The closet is spacious. There is a tiny wall-safe. The air-con is strong. Overall, never again.

Room Tip: Get one with a decent view if you want to see the sea.
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Kasparus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 10 September 2014

Good afternoon from Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho,

Although you did not have a nice time in our Hotel, I would like to let you know that we took very seriously your comments and will try to improve some of the points you have mentioned.

Still I have to say, that I am surprised when you mentioned that there is nothing to do arround.
As a matter of fact we are a small property built in an Historical building from the XVII century and therefore we do have some limitations compared to new building. Still and in order to provide as much facilities as we can we have made special agreement with a local SPA, golf courses and any other service you may whish to enjoy.

May be you did not have the time to visit arround but there are quite a lot of place of interest to visit arround, such as :
Sintra - 20 minutes away by car.
Lisbon - 30 minutes away by car.
Cascais - 5 minutes away by car.
Cabo da Roca ( the most western point in Europe ) - 15 minutes away
Estoril - 10 minutes away by car, where you can find the biggest casino in Europe.

The Hotel is located in a natural park and in front the Atlantic ocean, therefore you can easely enjoy the sea or simply go out for a walk.

Best regards from Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho
Mariana Franco

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Reviewed 22 August 2014

We have already written letters of thanks to the head office at Relais and Chateaux and of course the hotel but i just wanted to write a quick review on here about how amazing this hotel and its staff is.
From the very start of planning our wedding here the staff have been on hand to help with anything we might need. We planned a lot of it from overseas and it was so enjoyable and stress-free. We are so glad we chose the Fortaleza as our venue. We booked out the whole venue for the wedding and our guests to stay the night which was fantastic and we stayed an extra night after the wedding and continued to be treated like royalty. Obviously the hotel know us quite well by now but from staying there a few times prior to the wedding we know they are not being biased towards us-the service is always second to none!
The whole experience was fantastic...i could go on for hours but i've saved that for the more formal letters so as not to bore everyone!
If we could do the wedding all over again we would but now we'll just have to look forward to our annual visits celebrating our wedding anniversary!

Room Tip: ask for a room with a view and preferably with an open balcony-they're expensive but worth it...
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Wetravel01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 26 August 2014

Dear Rebecca,

Thank your very much for your nice words about Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho.
We are really proud that you gave us the honor to organize your wedding.

We really hope to welcome you again next year to celebrate your wedding anniversary, I am sure Marta will be more than happy to assist you.

We remain at your entire disposal for any further information.
Best regards.
Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho
Mariana Franco

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Reviewed 19 August 2014

We stayed here before, during and after our daughter's wedding ceremony which she had in the hotel. The staff were exceptional throughout our time here and in the wedding planning, all 14 months of it! We ate in the restaurant a couple of times and the food was wonderful. Also the food served in the bar area as bar snacks was wonderful too. We cannot thank everyone enough for the kindness shown to us on our daughter's special day.

If you are thinking of planning your wedding abroad, please think of this magical place.

Room Tip: We stayed in Room 210 - the largest room, and then moved to Room 209. We actually preferred Room 20...
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank DevonSurfer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 22 August 2014

Greating from Hotel Fortalez do Guincho,

Thank you very much for sharing your experience with the TripAdivor community.

It was a pleasure to assist you, but I have to say that all your request were quite easy to please.

I really hope to have the pleasure to welcome all of you next year.

See you in August 2015 !!!

I remain at your entire disposal for any further information.
Best regards.
Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho
Mariana Franco

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Reviewed 8 August 2014 via mobile

My partner and I came here for a three day stay ahead of our friends wedding, also at the hotel. Everything was wonderful and the views / weather could not be beaten. The staff was kind and friendly. The food was quite good. The wine was excellent, as is the location for anything in and around Sintra.

My only complaint: one day there were some issues with our shower and some discolouration in the water. While we tried to mention this to the staff in a non-complaining way, I'm not sure the issue was addressed expediently as it occurred again the next morning. However, other than that everyone was fantastic and responsive. Would definitely recommend it again.

Stayed: August 2014
Thank ahorstm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 14 August 2014

Good afternoon from Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho,

First of all we would like to thank you very much for your comment about our Hotel and for sharing your experience with the TripAdvisor community.

We are sorry that we were not able to solve the problem you had with the shower; I do know that we tried to solve it but it looks like we were not able. Unfortunately and since you didn't complain any longuer we though that was fixed. Once again we apologige for the inconvenience.

We really hope to have the pleasure to welcome you again.
Best regards.
Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho

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Reviewed 4 August 2014

The air is fresh, the view is amazing from the hotel terrace and restaurant. Breakfast was good. The best orange juice we have had on this vacation. Room was cosy. Loved the bathroom. Had a partial sea view from our room. Did not try the formal restaurant but had a great meal in the terrace area.

Room Tip: If you wish for a full frontal sea view get a junior suite.
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Christina H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2014

Good afternoon from Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho,

Thank you very much for your nice words about our property, and for sharing your experience with the TripAdvisor community.

We are really happy to learn that you have enjoyed your time in our Hotel and really hope to have the pleasure to welcome you again.

You may have time during your next visit to Portugal to enjoy our restaurant awarded with one star Michelin an a panoramic view overlooking the ocean.

With our best regards.
Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho Relais & Chateaux

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Reviewed 19 July 2014

The hotel is an old fort which makes it very unique. It is located right on the water so you have some really nice views. The restaurant is really the selling point to this place. It is a Michelin star restaurant and it definitely lived up to that status. We were definitely blown away by all of the foods we were able to try. Even if you do not stay at the hotel, it would recommend stopping by to try out the amazing food.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank ShannonS1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guincho0, Diretor de vendas at Fortaleza do Guincho, responded to this reviewResponded 22 July 2014

Good afternoon from Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho,

What a pleasure to acknowledge that you have spend a nice time in our Hotel; it is always a matter of joy for us.

One last word to thank you for sharing with the TripAdvisor community your experience in our Hotel. We really hope to welcome you again.

We remain at your entire disposal for any further information.
Best regards.
Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fortaleza do Guincho

Address: Estrada do Guincho, Cascais 2750-642, Portugal
Phone Number:
Region: Portugal > Central Portugal > Lisbon District > Cascais
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Cascais
#6 Luxury Hotel in Cascais
#6 Family Hotel in Cascais
#7 Romantic Hotel in Cascais
#7 Business Hotel in Cascais
Price Range: £119 - £356 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Fortaleza do Guincho 5*
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Leaning over the Atlantic Ocean, the Fortaleza do Guincho welcomes a charming five star boutique hotel - integrated into in the prestigious Relais & Chateaux association - with a range of services that focus on the well being and peacefulness of the customers. The Hotel's restaurant, awarded with a Michelin Star, offers an unforgettable dining experience of Portuguese cuisine, made from the finest national products. The Hotel Fortaleza do Guincho has a warm and personalized service, making it the ideal place for a family holiday, board meetings or the perfect refuge for a romantic getaway. It has the perfect conditions for company meetings, special parties and events or banquets. Located just seven kilometers from the town of Cascais and 30 kilometers from Lisbon and the International Airport, the cultural and leisure offer in the region is rich and full of varieties. Along the cost line you will find Sintra and its magnificent monuments and natural landscape, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For sea lovers abound beaches along the coast and all kinds of water sports and outdoor activities . The Hotel is surrounded by the best golf courses, while the Estoril Casino, the largest in Europe, is just a few minutes away. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fortaleza Do Guincho Cascais
Fortaleza Do Guincho Hotel Cascais

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