We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lovely Break at The Orca Praia”
Review of Orca Praia Hotel

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 10 more sites!
Orca Praia Hotel
Ranked #38 of 88 Hotels in Funchal
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 28 May 2008

My partner & I stayed at the Orca Praia for a week on a half board basis in February 2007. The weather in Feb wasnt hot but was pleasantly warm and Im sure no-one would be unhappy with the weather during the high season. It was our first holiday together and we chose this hotel because it was a little out of the way and we wanted some quality time to ourselves. We had hoped for a sea view room and were not disappointed....all rooms face the sea and have a balcony due to the location of the hotel and all rooms are huge with a good bathroom. The hotel is only a 3 star and yes it could do with a little updating but we had absolutely no complaints. Its not a very large hotel and we were there out of season so it was quite peaceful. Meals were normal hotel quality and variety so there was plenty to chose from but my favourite was breakfast.....they had some fantastic breads to chose from which I have not been able to find anywhere else. Staff were hard working, polite and friendly. Not much to do in the evenings at the hotel although there is a nice little lounge bar and they tried their best with the entertainment! The bar man there soon remembered your drink preference and was very attentive but without expecting tips, although we did tip him generously on our last night. The hotel wouldnt be really suitable for people with mobility problems as it is set in a cliff and there is a long walk up a steep path to the hotel from the beach & pool area, and also there is only the one bar, one main restaurant and one pool bar so might be a bit disappointing for those who like alot of choice, however we picked this hotel because it was secluded and quiet so it wasnt an issue for us. We wanted time to relax and recharge our batteries whilst also being able to see a bit of the area and enjoy the culture, food etc. We went to Funchal a couple of nights for dinner and tried 2 different restaurants, one by the Marina and one in the Old Town. The food was great, the service excellent and a meal for 2 only cost about 40 Euros including wine. We also had a couple of days out in Funchal. On one day we rode up in the cable car and then came back down from Monte in a straw toboggan......
scary but great fun! Another day we just wandered around the old town at our leisure and enjoyed the cafe culture. The Museum there is also well worth a visit, explaining the history of the island. We tried the bus into Funchal once and werent impressed as by the time we arrived in town the bus was packed liked a sardine tin and we didnt think it met health & safety standards so we stuck to taxis after that. I cant remember exactly how much we paid and it could vary from driver to driver but it wasnt very expensive. One of the drivers (Daniel) recommended a trip to The Nuns Valley and offered his services for half a day at a cheaper rate than the organised tour from the holiday rep. We took him up on this offer and didnt regret it as he was an excellent guide and gave us information that we probably wouldnt have learned on the organised tour. He stopped off at various points along the way and gave us plenty of time to look around without rushing us. When we arrived at the Nuns Valley he took us to a bar where we receieved complimentary glasses of every type of the local liqueur they make there! On the way back he gave us a nice tour of our part of the Island, again with lots of added information.......and all this for 50 Euros for the two of us, in our own private taxi....well worth it.

All in all we thoroughly enjoyed our holiday at the Orca Praia. We are getting married next year and have decided to return to Madeira on our first anniversary as it holds such special memories for us. We will probably chose a hotel nearer to town next time but that is no way detrimental to the Orca Praia as we have nothing bad to say about the hotel, its just that we would like to spend more time in town during the evenings next time and would be easier staying nearer.

  • Stayed: February 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank pippa_60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review
Reviews (394)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

126 - 132 of 395 reviews

Reviewed 21 March 2008

My partner and I stayed at this hotel earlier this month and really enjoyed the experience.Our room was huge with a very nice private balcony,the food was plentiful and varied ,the staff were friendly and helpful.The hotel mini bus is great ,you just have to book the day before ,local buses are easy to use and stop almost opposite the hotel.It was fabulous to sit on our balcony and watch the most incredible sunsets.This is not the place for you if you want nearby bars and lots of night life.We just wanted to spend all day exploring this lovely Island and relax listening to the sound of the lapping waves in the evening.I feel I must mention the housekeeping staff who kept the room very clean and changed towels daily.The hotel is not perfect there are the odd cracked tiles and the bathroom could be a bit whiffy on occasion but these minor faults could not detract from the overall ambience of this hotel.

  • Stayed: March 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank scroop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2008

My wife and I stayed at the Orca Praia Hotel in February 2008 and have to say that the sea view was the best we have ever had, although I think less able people would struggle to walk up to the hotel from the pool area as it was quite steep. The restaurant service was good and well presented. All the hotel staff were helpful.
The location was a little out of Funchal, but I would suggest that you buy a 'Giro Card' to use on the local bus service. These can be bought from the hotel reception. They can be used to travel to a many places in the vacinity.
We enjoyed our stay at this hotel.

Stayed: February 2008
7  Thank PabloFiascoWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 February 2008

Just spent a week at the orca praia (28/1 - 4/2). Was a little concerned after reading the last review but was pleasantly surprised, it is a great hotel, and I have stayed in a lot of hotels all over the world from 1* to 5*. My room was clean and spacious. I had a great view from the balcony. The esplanade walkway was closed but that is no fault of the hotel, it is a rockfall that has caused the closure.
I found the the staff to be friendly and helpful or at least they were in my case ( I find it helps to have a go at a few local phrases).
The food was plentiful, varied and beautifully presented.
It is a little out of Funchal but the bus is only 2 euro's.
I had a brilliant time and aim to go back one day.

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
11  Thank jennyklw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2008

I'm absolutely flabbergasted at some of the other reviewers giving this place four and five stars. The only possible explanation I can come up with is that, with the greatest respect, they can't have much experience of hotels. The only way the Orca Praia could warrant anything other than one star, two at most, would be in direct comparison with a homeless shelter. Harsh words, you may think. If so, go ahead and book, and see for yourself. Please don't think I'm one of these mad, vexacious reviewers who finds fault with everyone and everything - I really am trying to be fair here.

We arrived in early December '07 on an 'allocated on arrival' last minute offer. Despite the hotel being less than a third full, we, and everyone arriving with us, had to wait over half an hour in reception whilst 'the maid makes your room ready'. Not a good start. What kind of hotel keeps guests waiting like that when they knew days in advance of the arrivals ?

Eventually we were handed a key-card and told where our room was. Decending in the lift with our bags, the doors opened on a very dark corridor and we were hit by a stale, musty smell. When we entered our room, that was instantly replaced by the smell of sewage. The carpet was so old and worn, it had stretched and formed little ridges across the floor, and had worn completely through around the bed legs, exposing the floor underneath. The ceiling consisted of lapped uPVC planks that only added to the horror. The two small single beds were very uncomfortable and were draped in the cheapest thin blankets you could ever get. One of the bedside lamps had the earth wire frayed away (on a metal lamp !). The bathroom was just about adequate, if you ignored the smell, the mould around the bath seal and the cracked tiles.

The only good thing I could find about the whole room was the balcony and the view. The balcony was a decent size and the view directly over the ocean, was very pretty. ....as long as you didn't look down at the concrete and black sand 'beach' or at the ship jetty to the right that looked like something you would normally see in a commercial docks or an oil refinery.

Dinner was like nothing I've experienced. Apart from the salad and the dessert, which were not bad to be fair, the rest was pretty inedible. Really cheap cuts of fatty meat in nondescript sauces, with no labels or means to identify anything. I tried what looked like a chicken casserole dish with some side veg. After trying in vain to find any meat on the fat, I just picked at my tasteless, boiled to death, veg, and went hungry. Breakfast was thankfully a bit better, but we'd had enough and decided we really couldn't waste another night of our holiday in this place. I ended up paying extra and moving to the Porto Mare, which was absolute luxury and in the end we had a fantastic time.

My opinion of the Orca Praia is that it is well past it's prime and really looks as though it's bordering on being boarded up. Musty smells, inedible food, dark corridors, thin worn-out carpet everywhere. A holiday should be an enjoyable experience - only the truly masochistic could gain any pleasure from staying here.

  • Stayed: December 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank PC_MWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 November 2007

The Hotel setting is superb,Each room has a balcony which catches the sun almost as soon as it rises, The rooms are very clean, maid service is teriffic.
We went there on a half board basis and thought it was excellent value for money. I'd challenge anyone to find a better breakfast choice,it really is wide ranging from your bacon and egg to your Musli and glass of orange. Dinner also was wide ranging and changed every night. The waiting staff really are good,nothing is too much trouble. There were of course the occasional guests who seemed to want Five star plus treatment,these people.awkward to a degree ,were handled brilliantly being put in their place and not once repeating the appalling behaviour. In my opinion the reception staff let the place down,they certainly did what was asked of them but it all seemed to be done under sufference somehow.
In the Orca Praia publicity they say there is a walkway along the beachfront, ,which is true,what they fail to say is that large sections of it are closed off. The open part is the immediate beach frontage of the hotel,it is closed either end.. You can certainly go down on to the pebble beach,quite an awkward stroll really to the left of the hotel . until you reach an open part of the walkway again. Prams and or wheelchairs,forget it. Down side to the hotel is they would or could have a facility for making tea/coffee in the rooms,pretty much the only "complaint" I heard from other guests,
Free mini bus service into Funchal is really good BUT it must be booked the day before you want to go. Pay close attention to the place you are dropped off in Funchal,that is where you will be picked up again,if the pickup time is say 4 ;50PM Do NOT appear at 4;51 the bus will not be there,for sure,
Taxi pricefrom the Hotel to Funchal can be as low as E6;90 or as high as E13, It seemed to me that there is a50% chance of being ripped off. Always ask the price,then there can be no "mistake"
The distance from the hotel to the town,depending on who you ask varies from 4'5 kilometers to 6 kilometers ! We walked along the beachfront from the Hotel to the Marina close to the town centre,it took two hours.
The organised trips we went on were superb,the guides were incredible in their knowledge of the island and made the whole thing very enjoyable. The highlight of our two week stay was a visit to the Casino through our rep.I think it was E45 per person,tremendous value. A four course meal with red or white wine in unlimited quantities too ! After the meal you buy your own drink BUT on Madeira the policy is you pay the same price for a drink in a small bar as you do in the swankiest hotel,its the law. The floorshow after the meal was for sure very high class really a fun fun night with lots of laughs..................Do not miss that one.We arranged our holiday through First Choice,apt name.

  • Stayed: November 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank blairgowrie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 November 2007

Took my 23yr old daughter with me on this holiday as a last minute booking. Did a bit of research on hotel locations, especially on 'Trip Advisor', as there were a couple available. Glad I chose this one in the end. I did not find it a problem at all that the hotel is 'a bit out of Funchal'. The views from balcony, sound and smell of sea air more than satisfied, going to sleep with the sound of the tide, rather than noisy traffic.
All trips booked picked-up and dropped at hotel, there was a courtesy bus if you booked the night before, or public transport stop just up above hotel in road.
The room was spacious,clean, and well serviced.
The breakfasts were delicious, and catered for everyone's taste,- you could certainly fill yourself up for a day's sightseeing.
The pool bar and area is kept exceptionally clean, and is lovely for having some time-out, or swimming.
Evening meals were good, with a selection that certainly enabled my picky daughter to not go hungry. There were lovely salad selections, and she loved the sweet choices!
We were lucky with the weather, and have gone home with some lovely memories of Madeira, our hotel, the well organised trips through First Choice, and the over-all friendliness and flavour of the Island. We packed a lot into our week, and feel I can well and truely 'tick' Madeira off now. If I was pushed to pick one thing that seems a pity, it would be that the promenade walk would be lovely if it was re-built, and extended properly into the next bay and the cave walkway. I understand rock-fall has caused a problem here.
I can definately recommend this hotel to others as a destination if, like me, you prefer the peace and quiet rather than 'town-life', and an early night due to being exhausted and ready for trips the next day!

  • Stayed: November 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Berrowlass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Funchal hotels
0.9 mi away
Golden Residence
Golden Residence
#24 of 88 in Funchal
1,002 reviews
1.2 mi away
Baia Azul Hotel
Baia Azul Hotel
#19 of 88 in Funchal
270 reviews
1.6 mi away
Madeira Panoramico Hotel
Madeira Panoramico Hotel
#26 of 88 in Funchal
587 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
5.1 mi away
Ocean Gardens
Ocean Gardens
#28 of 88 in Funchal
400 reviews
1.1 mi away
Pestana Grand Premium Ocean Resort
0.4 mi away
Pestana Ocean Bay
Pestana Ocean Bay
#36 of 88 in Funchal
1,891 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Orca Praia Hotel? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Orca Praia Hotel

Address: Estrada Monumental 335 | Prainha do Arieiro, Funchal, Madeira 9000-236, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Green Hotel in Funchal
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Funchal
#28 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#38 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
Price Range: £47 - £148 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Orca Praia Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 124
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Jet2Holidays , Booking.com, LoveHolidays, Travel Republic (UK), Expedia, TripOnline SA, Hotels.com, Ebookers, Cancelon, HotelsClick, Evoline ltd, HotelQuickly and 5viajes2012 S.L. so you can book your Orca Praia Hotel reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hotel Orca Praia
Orca Praia Funchal
Orca Praia Hotel Madeira/Funchal

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing