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“Probably the best hotel i ever had the pleasure of staying in!”
Review of The Vine Hotel

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The Vine Hotel
Ranked #18 of 86 Hotels in Funchal
Certificate of Excellence
Bordeaux, France
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Probably the best hotel i ever had the pleasure of staying in!”
Reviewed 29 November 2010

Uau!! is probably the best expression to describe this hotel, i was trully astonished with this not very know diamond in the center of funchal city. I heard about it from a friend that advised to try it because of the wine theme and the location and surroundings. I, being from Bordeuax am a very big wine lover and have a special passion about the madeira wine found my perfect retreat in this great hotel and great island. i have travelled to many places and always look for a trendy and modern hotel to stay in and this one corresponded to perfection to my requirements in terms of the confort, design & decoration and quality of the materials of the rooms (great beds and linen and great shower), at least comparing with the best ones i have stayed ( unique in Sao Paolo and the gansevoort in new York). i read the review posted before me and don't understand it, was this sir not in the same hotel as i was 2 months ago or maybe he just isnt the type of customer for this kind of hotel, i agree with it being a bit darker than it should but the rest is just being plain mischievous. I went with my fionce for 5 days and it seemed so little time. the spa treatment for couples with the wine products was amazing and the pool area is great with nice view of the city and really pretty pool, besides the fact that we were sun bathing in the middle of ocober. Also, not vey far away is the madeira wine company shop where you can go to some wine tastings and buy good reserve bottles for good prices. I cant forget to mention the rooftop restaurant of the hotel, inbcredible food and good wine list with good advices about the portuguese wines, the waiter was very helpfull in helping us choosing and pairing with the food and get to know more about the country local wines - the french are better but it is also good to try new things once in a while :) . to finish, i would strongly recommend this piece of paradise to anyome looking for a confortable stay, and if food and wine influences your travel decision this is the perfect place for you, specially if your travelling with the wife or girlfriend, which can turn to be very romantic.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Antoine_Saint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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London
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 November 2010

This calls itself a “design” hotel. Surely the idea of good design is that it’s beautiful, stylish and practical. This place is drab, dismal and highly impractical. I found it the most unpleasant, depressing claustrophobic place ever, and ended up having to cut my stay in Madeira short, as I just couldn’t bear to spend any more time in this horrible environment. Everything is decorated in dark brown, dirty purples and grey. Why would you want to come to a beautiful sunny island and stay in a dark hole of a place with little natural light?

I thought the room was very small and cramped for a 5 star luxury hotel – there was no sitting area – just a bed, desk, and wardrobe.

The “design” elements are on the whole just annoying and unhelpful:

- Everything in the room is electronic including the curtains, blinds and lighting. It is very complicated and even for someone like me who is quite fast with technology it took me 10 minutes on the first night to work out how to switch out all the lights. Whether staying on holiday or on business, you just don’t need this stress – you just want to arrive and be able to switch lights on and off with ease and relax and open and close curtains as you wish.

- On my arrival the electronic blackout blind failed to function and after spending 30 minutes with 2 people banging around in my room, when I had just arrived and wanted to relax, I then had to move to another room. Why wasn’t this checked before I arrived?

- The blackout blinds are rather pointless when all the silly electric switches everywhere have quite bright pilot lights that stay on even when the lights are switched off

- As well as the drab depressing décor the lighting is very poor in the room – and it was almost impossible to get enough light to shave.

- The handles on the wardrobe doors are so small and badly placed it is incredibly hard to open the doors.

- The fitted furniture is generally mdf/melamine – looks cheap and is already badly stained.

- The air conditioning was noisy and very unreliable – however much you adjusted the settings it either blew freezing cold or boiling hot. You couldn’t open the windows during the day as the hotel is on such a noisy street.

- The taps and controls for the bath are so far away that you really have to step into the bath to turn them on and off and adjust the bath/shower settings

- The bathrooms and much of the common parts of the hotel have unpleasant black cobbles on the floor – which are not nice to walk on with bare feet in the bathroom, and in the shower room leads to ponding with stagnant water sitting there between the cobbles and not draining away properly

- The bathrooms are open plan – with the bath in the bedroom and the shower/toilet in cubicles with doors that don’t close properly and see through walls. Who wants to see or hear their partner using the toilet????

- Neither of the Jacuzzis by the rooftop pool, or in the health spa was working.

- The TV had a very poor choice of channels and most of the time a good proportion of them weren’t available. The previous week I stayed in a very good 4 star hotel in Madeira which had full satellite TV with all the mainstream UK TV channels available – yet this supposedly luxury five star hotel only had BBC World.

- There were no tea/coffee making facilities in the room. This is standard in a bed and breakfast nowadays – surely a 5 star hotel should provide it as a matter of course?

The housekeeping was very poor:

- On the 2nd day I was out all morning and left the “please make up the room” sign outside my door. When I came back 4 hours later the room hadn’t been made up. In the afternoon I needed to work in my room, but the chambermaid interrupted. The room ended up being cleaned after 6pm which wasn’t acceptable.

- I told the reception I was leaving early, but the next day when I popped out for a coffee I came back to find the chambermaid cleaning the room, and making the bed even though I was leaving soon.

- The glasses in the mini bar were dirty and one had a huge lipstick mark on it.

- Updating and replacing toiletries was poor and when I arrived one of the body lotions was half used by someone else. One day the separate shower gel and shampoo bottles in the shower had been replaced by two shampoos and no shower gel.

The breakfast was ok – but inconsistent. The service was annoyingly attentive – with staff constantly hovering around and re-arranging things on the table. The waitress poured my tea immediately, even though the teabag tag coming out of the teapot said “brew for 4-5 minutes” – which meant I was served a cup of dishwater. The breads are all tough artisan loaves that you have to slice yourself – a few softer bread rolls would be nice. Only white toast was available – no brown. Hot (and greasy) scrambled egg was served with cold lettuce with a balsamic dressing – disgusting!

I had totally had enough of this place and informed reception that I would be leaving the next day. However the next morning when I confirmed my checkout time to the receptionist she had no record that I was leaving.

The only good things about this hotel:
- The beds and bedding are very good
- The concierge is very friendly and helpful
- The bar/pool on the roof is spectacular but small
- Fast & free internet access

Otherwise it’s a nightmare – stay away. The hotel seemed deserted – I only saw 3 other guest in total – and with good reason – it’s a truly unpleasant place to stay. A hugely disappointing experience.

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
24 Thank RichardBLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Braunfels, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 November 2010

This is, hands down the best hotel I have ever had the pleasure of staying in.The service, the staff, the modern design, level of comfort all are truly exceptional.
We stayed for 3 nights, and got lucky in finding this place as we had decided to travel without making any prior reservations. I would have preferred the hotel be nearer the water, but being on top of a shopping center does have it's advantages. Several times we went downstairs during the middle of the night to acquire some small but necessary item from the shops. It was nice to be able to go from the mall to your room without leaving the building.
When visiting Madeira, treat yourself to a stay at The Vine.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Farmboy70x7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed 25 October 2010

The hotel is stunning, the roof top bar is excellent, with service and views to match. If you are looking for bustling nightlife Funchal would not be ideal, but if you want a very relaxing holiday, with great service, in a luxury hotel then we would recommend The Vine to anyone. It would be particularly good for a long weekend break (if you're from Europe).

The food at the restaurants, in the town, is aimed at the older crowd (70+) and nearly all restaurants have the same menu. However, we ordered lunch at the poolside of the hotel nearly every day, and it was always excellent. We also ate at the hotel restaurant which we can highly recommend. The hotel spa is also amazing - we did the couples option which was just what we needed.

We can not understand why people would write a negative review about this hotel. We had a brilliant time and would return tomorrow if we had the chance, and there weren't 1,000 other places on our list that we still need to visit!

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank VandTNorth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 19 October 2010

Due to my job I am obliged to travel all around the world and spend about half of the year living in hotels.I came to stay at The Vine Hotel in September since a friend recomended it to me for a relaxing Holliday. I came with my boyfriend and we absolutely loved it!
we found the welcoming and the treatment over the days extremely nice and very attentive!
the room was beautifully romantic and very quiet which was perfect since we needed to sleep and rest.it also helped a lot the amazing treatments the Spa offers!
since we love to eat and drink and try different gastronomic food we found the restaurant Uva on the last floor extremely good, worth of its star michelin and not expensive for the well we ate!!!!!!on top with tha amazing view of Funchal!!!!!!
talking about food, the breakfast buffet was delicious, we could find absolutely everything that a breakfast should have and more....all very fresh specially the bread and the fruits and very tasty. Again the good treatment made us feel like stars!!!!!!!
we also wanted to get a bit of sun tan, so the swimming pool which we found very fashionable since its wine colour, and the confortable beds on the last floor made it even better!!!!!!!!
basicly it was hard to leave the hotel, we were just perfect!!!!!!!
i recomend it to anyone!!!!!!you will love it!!!!!!!!!!

Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank froguita
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Naples, Florida
2 reviews
Reviewed 17 October 2010

I spent a few days in the beautiful island of Madeira with my partner last month and we found exactly what we were looking for, a quiet romantic destination. We had seen all the positive reviews the hotel had collected but all of our expectations were surpassed. This hotel is located right in the heart of Funchal, the island's only city which is a beautiful natural amphitheater. We were able to walk everywhere and I believe most of the other nice hotels are situated to the west of the city and you will need a taxi to visit the Funchal. The Vine has a very friendly staff who are not only super professional but also always looking forward to help their guests. The spa was incredibly relaxing and enjoyable with great products to offer. The pool is absolutely stunning with a gorgeous view over the city of Funchal, and the rooms are spacious with great taste and also very quiet. The whole hotel is designed to the maximum detail and decorated in great style. We were a bit concern if the island would be able to provide us with a great quality restaurant and we found that right at The Vine. The restaurant "Uva" was the highlight of our trip where we ate on our very first night only due to a tiring long trip but ended up having most of our meals at Uva where once again the service was flawless and the meals absolutely spot on. We are both quite particular when it comes to restaurants and I have to say that Uva is definitely deserving of at least one Michelin Star. From the bread to the main courses and stunning desserts it does not give you the feeling of a restaurant but rather an experience, and an experience to be repeated. I would recommend The Vine to everyone but especially if you are looking for a quiet relaxing time. I have stayed in many other great hotels but never this affordable for such great quality. It's a must see!

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank traveller0654
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 October 2010

The Vine is NOT a 5 star hotel. 4 stars possibly. It is a high-tech "trendy" hotel, but trendy usually means that there is a trendy crowd there. There is no crowd there. It is a very empty hotel. The rooftop bar that should be packed had 6 people there. The bar service was poor. The drink selection was poor. They couldnt even make a cosmopolitan. One night i went up to the roof around midnight and it was pitch black , all lights off and closed. It was kind of scary. The hallways are very very dark, the elevator is dimly lit; The rooms are very dark; The color of the rooms are trendy black and charcoal, I guess from an aesthetic point of view it had good design, but functionally it was terrible. they have windows in the room that you think is a mirror but its a window. you have to try to figure out how to open the closets , which there are two small closets and no dresser. draw space is minimal. Trying to figure out the hi-tek lites is a challenge, everytime is like trial and error. Very offen you open the window shades while attempting to trun certain lights on. The air conditioning didnt work well at all , it always said window open--which automatically shuts the system. There was no window open, the maintenance crew couldnt figure it out. the bathroom had no a/c vents so it was sweaty hot in there. In general the hotel was very hi-tek, dark and empty. The staff was minimal. Possibly a bellman at the entrance if you are lucky. The entrance is the mall entrance. As other reviewers have noted, taxis do not know where this hotel is, you have to say Dolce Vita Mall. The maid service was horrible. They do not clean. We lost a few items in the room and we eventually found one on the floor days later and one in the bed days later. a gum wrapper remained in the same place on the floor for days. They failed to give us shampoo after the first fill. The towels were inferior quality. The room service was not good. We ordered ice for champagne and they brought enough ice to have a glass of soda. Of course they came back with a big bucket after I complained. The room service dinner was the most expensive meal we had in Madeira. It was also the worst meal. One dish ordered was fish in a mushroom cream sauce, they brought a piece of steamed fish, no sauce no seasoning. HORRIBLE> when asked about the sauce as it stated on the menu , they said we dont have any today. Upon checking out I comented on the poor room clenaing and poor room service and malfunctioning airconditioning , they said sorry. No discount nothing.
The positives were , the bed was ocmfortable, they were very nice to send a bottle of champagne complimentary for my girlfriend's birthday and a little cake.I thank them for that. The staff was respectful and nice people . Their restaurant recommedations were good. As weird as it sounds , the location in a mall turned out to be convenient, as I needed to buy a few items and the mall is open late.
The bakery next door to the hotel called Opan is great, absolutely terrific. I had breakfast there every day, good cup of latte or as the Madeirans call it "Chinaisa"/ fresh pastries , sandwiches etc. I highly recommend the bakery . Also all the cabs are parked outside the bakery.
The hotel recommended a restaurant a 20 minute drive away , for Espitada bbq, it was excellent. I recommend taking a tour of the island by taxi and go at your own pace. The island is beautiful. Bring Euros with you , none of the banks in Madeira will change your nomey unless you have an account with them. The 5 star hotel doesnt change money, ive never stayed at a 5 star hotel that didnt cash money. The Vine is special that way. Oh yeah, they tell you when you book that you get a free massage, they do not remind you about that. So we never got the massage. The pictures of the rooftop are better than it is in reality.
Other recommendations are go to Monte and the tropical gardens there. Take a tobagan ride. Eat at O boqeuro for seafood, Eat at Londres, The food is inexpensive and excellent. Skip Uva, it's absurd to spend that amount of money in a restaurant with no customers , so the food probably is not fresh, when there are great places to eat in madeira at very very reasonable prices. Grilled sardines are a must. The open bus to the nearby fishing town where Churchill painted is a good day trip.
Locals say the Pestano hotel is good. The Reid's is nice and definitely 5 star, but very quiet , and the high tea can be better, the food quality is mediocre at best. The new Savoy will be amazing acoording to locals. Be wary of the deals at the market . buy your Madeira Wine at Blandy's its at least half the price of the Market. the cable car ride is fun.
To sum up, the Vine needs to step it up a notch. get the AC working , get more light in the rooms and in the halls. Check on the quality of the maid service. improve the furniture and by the way that bath tub with cover is ridiculous. And the shower door doesnt close so expect water on the floor. , The makeup mirror is not functi0nal in the dark, After leaving madeira we stayed at the Lapa Palace in Lisbon , that is a real 5 star first class hotel.

Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank lastresortname
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Vine Hotel

Property: The Vine Hotel
Address: Rua Aranhas 27 A, Funchal, Madeira 9000-044, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Funchal
#8 Family Hotel in Funchal
#15 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
#15 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#18 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Vine Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 79
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A hotel with soul, just like a good wine. The Vine is sophisticated and luxurious. With a touch of simplicity and discretion, just the way you like it. A dip in the panoramic pool, a vino-therapy session in the spa or a gourmet dinner with a view over the city: these are just a few of the pleasures awaiting you at The Vine. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Vine, a Divine Hotel Hotel Funchal
Vine a Divine Funchal
The Vine Hotel Madeira/Funchal

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