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“Wonderful place”

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Hotel The Cliff Bay
Ranked #4 of 86 Hotels in Funchal
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Wonderful place”
Reviewed 6 June 2012

We had a lovely 8 night stay here. They upgraded us to a side sea view room (we had booked garden view) for free. The rooms are very spacious, with luxury amenities. Hotel grounds are lovely, breakfast in the rose garden overlooking the sea, very wide selection and fresh foods. Great salt water pool at sea level and spa facilities. The hotel is about 15 min to downtown Funchal. We'd definitely love to come back!

Room Tip: Definitely choose a side sea view or sea view room, it's spectacular!
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank ArinaSH3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your kind feedback and pictures about our hotel. I am pleased to hear that we managed to give you an enjoyable holiday in Madeira.
The hotel offers a wide range of facilities that it looks like you enjoyed during your stay.
I hope to see you soon again,
With kindest regards,

Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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Greenock, Scotland
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 June 2012

This is a magnificent hotel. We stayed in a superior room and although initially on B&B we opted for a good value dinner and wine package. Food excellent and restaurant service impeccable and friendly.
Outstanding room and service. I have never seen such beautiful floral displays which are changed regularly.
All areas of the hotel are welcoming, especially the lounges and indoor-outdoor pool areas.
One very minor niggle- the courtesy bus had to be booked the previous day so no spur of the moment use. However, local bus service is nearby and good value.
If we are coming to Madeira again, this will definitely be our choice!

Room Tip: Some superior rooms do not get any direct sun
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank mortondoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your feedback. I am delighted to hear that you enjoyed your recent stay with us and that you enjoyed our food service and offering.
The hotel offer a variety of services and have plentiful social and leisure areas.

Hoping to welcome you back in a near future.
With kindest regards,

Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 June 2012

Excellent food, very clean, helpful friendly staff and lovely rooms. The only slight downer is we would have prefered a double bed rather than the twin queen sized in our room. Would definately use this hotel again if we returned to Madiera

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Beard26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your feedback. I am pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay and our food offering. We are pleased to receive requests for room types and room configurations as the the hotel offer a variety of characteristics. As our hotel is running with high occupancy it is “important to be out early with any request”.
I hope to see you soon again,
With kindest regards,

Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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scotland
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 June 2012

We have stayed here 7 times in 8 years and can commend well appointed rooms and bathrooms, excellent breakfast and friendly swift service throughout the hotel. The view over the sea to Funchal is the best view to seek out. Reception staff will also handle efficiently, in advance of arrival , requests to book golf and other outings. We shall certainly return soon.

Room Tip: Even the standard rooms are excellent especially if you can book a room with view over the ocean to...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank lawmanglasgow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for being such a loyal guest to our hotel. I am pleased that we get your confidence to host your holidays. I hope to welcome you back in a near future.
With kindest regards,

Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 June 2012

I have been visiting The Cliff Bay Hotel each year since 1999 and in all that time I have never been disappointed in either the Hotel , the food, or most important the staff who are both efficient and friendly. A perfect retreat!!!!

Room Tip: High Floor with sea view
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
5 Thank Donald_K115
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your confidence and loyalty since 1999. I hope to welcome you back many more times in a near future.
With kindest regards,

Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scotland
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 June 2012

A quiet week with no stress was what was needed and the Cliff Bay delivered across the board. The facilities and rooms really did live up to the 5 star rating, the staff were absolutely delightful and the food - particularly breakfast - was superb. I would avoid Half Board though - we ate every night in the bar which cost us less than half the HB charge and we could have eaten a lot cheaper anywhere outside. We were on the second floor overlooking the bar and were not bothered by noise at all.
Magic place and we would definately go again

Room Tip: Pick a side sea view and get the best of both views plus a nice breeze.
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Cannie11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your feedback here at Tripadvisor. I am pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay and the service offered by our staff. Half board is a very popular option as it includes our buffets in the rose garden restaurant and give an option for other meal alternatives in the hotel. Naturally light meals in the bar or room service is more economical but the product is different. The same is valid when deciding to eat out of the hotel.
Hoping to see you soon again in Madeira. The beautiful island have something to offer during all seasons.
With kindest regards,
Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Thetford, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 May 2012

We expected what we got, excellence!

A beautiful, elegant hotel staffed with friendly, efficient, helpful and totally professional staff at every level: customer service at its best!

We booked for 10 nights half-board in a superior room overlooking the sea/harbour (as recommended by Trip Advisor reviewers) and enjoyed every day. The superior room was very spacious, two double beds together made up the ‘double room’. At first we were too hot caused by the 'memory-foam' over-mattress and waterproof retaining cover affair… having removed these we were quite comfortable on the firm beds. The allocation to a superior room gave us some other advantages:- free soft drinks from the mini-bar; the option to enjoy breakfast in the Il Gallo d'Oro restaurant: surprisingly, a slightly more limited range immediately available, but rather quieter than the busy Rose Garden buffet. Both restaurants offered internal or external seating and parasols were offered immediately when the sun became too intense. In the evenings we had the option to eat in the Il Gallo d'Oro Restaurant… with a €30 per person credit against our bill. (In the event we didn’t, preferring the wonderful spread of starters and desserts offered in the Rose Garden buffet. Main courses were usually excellent.) It might have been our superior room, the standing of the Cliff Bay Hotel, or merely our good fortune, but on two of the four trips we took my wife and I were allocated the choice of front seats in the mini-bus…

Special events we enjoyed at the hotel were afternoon tea in the Rose Garden on Thursday with a wandering violinist playing softly on the lawns; an opportunity to watch the assembly of the stunning flower arrangement which graces the reception; a trip to Funchal market on Friday with Chef Benoît Sinthon who imparted his selection criteria for fresh produce for the hotel - he guided us through the fish market and the many, many very different fruits available at the market, the most colourful and rich in variety I have ever seen. The Spa and services offered at the lower floors are fantastic: a massage at the spa may seem expensive, but at my request, it was deep and very powerful! Aqua Aerobics twice a week was fun too, although a little exhausting with the enthusiastic coach who didn't miss a trick! The freshwater pool accessed from the Spa is both indoor and extends outside to the sun-deck… a bit windy at the front but to the side, surprisingly still.

A lift or, if you prefer, well maintained garden steps, take you to the blue lagoon, a salt-water pool and sun-deck adjacent to a jetty from which you can access the sea down a ladder (steps if calm). When you arrive in the area, the staff make themselves available to help with sun-bed, parasols, then they vanish - until you need them again. They are suprisingly vigilant, keeping an unobtrusive eye on any guests swimming in the sea.

Independent travel outside the hotel is easy… Yes, there are taxis, but those drivers we came across were frighteningly expensive and extremely pushy to say the least! There is an efficient courtesy bus which you have to book outward journeys in advance at reception. Also, a number of ‘yellow’ busses pass every 15 minutes to ’Centro’. The single journey paid for on the bus costs about €2 each… keep your ticket and charge it at the 'Centro' ticket office on the front (adjacent to the marina): for €7.50 we charged 3 additional journeys each (€1.25/journey) The busses proved reliable.

We visited Funchal on a number of occasions. The ‘arty’ doors in the old town are really worth a visit - and lots of photographs. The cable car to Monte is wonderful, and the kiosk cashier was so helpful telling us not only of her service and deals, but also of the bus routes and other options. Monte Palace gardens took us five hours to explore and we accessed them with the cable car return ‘deal’ available from the kiosk. The café at Monte Palace was ‘scruffy’ and the chairs were likely to collapse were anyone to lean back on their bent back legs!

The Botanical Gardens were a good half-day out. The plants were many and varied, organised, as one would expect, into areas of interest. We were a little sad to see the beautiful birds in such basic conditions. As with Monte Palace Gardens, make sure you have good footwear. These gardens are certainly worth a visit, we arrived by service bus and took the second cable car from there to Monte...

The trip down from Monte in the ‘sledge’ is a ‘must-do’ I was told… but the proximity of the start (Monte) to the local bars left me somewhat concerned. In fact, it was surprisingly tame thanks to the two gentlemen who ‘drove’ our sled. They were quite sober and very considerate to us – which may have been down to my wife who was ‘praying’ much of the way down whilst clamping off the blood to my lower left leg! Anyway… It is a must do, so do it, despite the €30/couple plus tips and other expenses: the gift shop and swarms of taxis waiting with open doors at the end of the ride and halfway down the hill… If you are able to shake off the taxi-drivers and set-off walking down the hill (which the taxi drivers call out after you is 6km!) you pass by some pretty gardens and to the right at the next junction after the bridge over the rapido (motorway) (on which another taxi stands with his door open) there is a bus stop to the left. I would add that despite the warnings given by the rejected taxi drivers, the pre-paid ticket for the bus was perfectly valid!)

Equipped in anticipation, with our walking boots (although stout shoes would do just as well) we did three half-day Levada walks, booked at the hotel through our travel company, run by a firm called Madeira Explorers… My favourite was the Serra D'Água Valley: my wife’s favourite was Referta/Castelejo. Both these walks were led by a friendly, funny, knowledgeable guide called Adriano. All of the walks ended in a different place to the start where the minibus was waiting. At the end of the walk Madiera Explorers recommended a café for a comfort break. All three cafés we experienced were very reasonably priced, clean and fresh.

Our travel company organised a coach trip to the west of the Island… a very interesting tour with a knowledgeable driver: fantastic views of a phenomenally rugged interior, so colourful… well worth the trip, however, the lunch included was dire at the restaurant at the west end of the northern volcanic rock pools at Porto Moniz! If you end up there, cut your losses and seek out an alternative lunch venue.

Madeira is a beautiful island, the people we met were, on the whole, friendly and approachable. Some were obviously very poor, but there were very few beggars. Most were working hard to make a meagre living from selling their wares, either grown or fabricated. Do them a favour and buy Madeira-made souvenirs when you can.

A little advice:-

We booked half-board. We were advised by other more savvy guests that instead of paying £36/night for half board with our holiday booking we could have availed ourselves of a deal at the hotel for €27/person/night (£22.50) locally. This may not always be available so it is well worth looking into before you book. The hotel receptionists are so helpful, nothing was too much trouble so a quick telephone call may prove very worthwhile.

Finally, don’t be persuaded by your travel agent’s rep that the market is as good on Saturday as on Friday (so she can book you on Friday’s ‘Tour of the East’). Although it is true that the market is open every day, Friday is undoubtedly the day to go to experience the real thing!

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
16 Thank Flombergasp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JanRingertz, General Manager at Hotel The Cliff Bay, responded to this review, 18 June 2012
Thank you for your complete feedback here at Tripadvisor. You gave many nice suggestions for the visiting traveler. I am pleased to hear that you had an enjoyable stay with us and would like to return again. On occasion The Cliff Bay offers special meal discounts however there is no guaranteed availability for such promotions. The same is valid for room upgrades in last minute.
Hoping to see you soon again in Madeira.
With kindest regards,
Jan E. Ringertz
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel The Cliff Bay

Property: Hotel The Cliff Bay
Address: Estrada Monumental, 147, Funchal, Madeira 9004-532, Portugal
Phone Number:
Region: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Funchal
#2 Family Hotel in Funchal
#2 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#3 Business Hotel in Funchal
#4 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
#4 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel The Cliff Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 200
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Atlantic Ocean stretches as far as the eye can see at the foot of The Cliff Bay which is perched on the top of a natural promontory. The hotel is surrounded by gardens with innumerable secluded corners and centenary palm trees extending to the very edge of the cliff face. The panorama is completed by a magnificent view over the bay of Funchal to the left of the hotel.The most influential restaurant guide in the world, the Michelin Guide, has awarded a star to Il Gallo d'Oro, The Cliff Bay's gourmet restaurant run by Chef Benoît Sinthon. This is Madeira's first and only star ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Cliff Bay - Porto Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Porto Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Madeira
Hotel The Cliff Bay Madeira/Funchal

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