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“Top quality - bargain value”

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Sensimar Savoy Gardens
Certificate of Excellence
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
39 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Top quality - bargain value”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2010

A guide book described the Savoy Gardens (Vila Ramos, as was) as "having all the style/quality of the Royal Savoy, at a bargain price". How right it was. This is an excellent hotel and any faults reported are either personal niggles, or downright picky!
We lucked upon a closeout deal that we couldn't believe and you know what they say about some things being too good to be true!
The service was impeccable - especially Sylvestre on Reception - with the hotel copy of Diario for me. Breakfast was excellent - coffee crap. Dinner on the whole was good, especially the salads. It's a crying shame that they to pander to British tastes with a roast on sunday and suchlike, with crummy boiled carrots just like my mother-in-law used to serve up - cooked to death! (the treat then was the cold rare beef on the cold buffet also the roast sweet potato). This is the downside of it being a Thomson Gold property, just like Blackpool - but with sun (and hills!).
The room was small, perfectly formed and fully functional with a birds-eye view to the west for some sea, a bit of a sunset and some interest from a gang construcing the tropical garden on the plot alogside with huge palm trees and others recovered from the Savoy Resort that is being redeveloped. Dogs were heard but you have to be pretty anal to regard that as a downside.
It's easy enough to keep a check on the bill with the guest services function on the TV. Depends whether your'e a bit of a lush as far as the bar is concerned and have a lot to check on!
A niggle was the charge to replenish the tea/coffee (€8 for the week) - it's always the little things. Another was the charge to upgrade to a Jr Suite - €40, which we considered to be close to extortion and were surprised at the reluctance to do a deal.
As for the bus, if you walk around to the Quinta Magnolia, the 8 & also takes you into town.
To walk off a good dinner and that bottle of wine, nip down the passage opposite and turn right. A few yards along is a snack-bar that serves up a decent coffee - as is usual. For a reasonably priced drink, there is a bar at the roundabout just above the Quinta Magnolia.
For a change, take the bus in the opposite direction and a short walk from the last stop will take you into Camara do Lobos.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bluebottle47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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uk
Level Contributor
25 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 February 2010

Stayed for 2 nights on floor 5 with mountain views. No noise from dogs although did experience some noise from air conditioning which was rectified. Room relatively small but comfortable and very clean. Breakfast very good with varied selection especially made to order omeletes. Hot spa on roof terrace with lovely views of funchal. Pool areas very well maintained and comfortable. Staff very helpful and friendly, drinks reasonable. car parking available. Would return - with a map next time.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank josh213
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Romford Essex
Level Contributor
187 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 January 2010

This was our first stay in Madeira and having stayed at the Savoy Gardens over Christmas and New Year we will be coming back again.
We were lucky enough to have a room on the 5th Floor with a sea view and a view of the harbour. We didn't hear any barking dogs in our room but fellow guests did mention the problem. We also expeienced problems with our drinks bills. On one occassion we were charged for a bottle of wine that we didn't have but the bar staff quickly rectified the mistake. The best advise is to pay cash as you go or check the bill before you sign it.
But this didn't really spoil the holiday as the Bar and Restaurant staff were very friendly and we tended to feel that any errors were innocent mistakes rather than a deliberate ploy.
The food was excellent although the lunchtime snack portions were rather large. So the tip here is for 2 people to share 1 meal which the staff were happy to provide a spare plate for. Food selection at the evening buffet style dinner had a good vairiety although the food could have been served hotter. The trick here is to get a hot plate from the live cooking station which helps to heat the food up!
On the Gala evenings on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve we sat on tables for 6 which was good because we got to know people we may never have spoken to. Also the free wine with the gala meals was a nice touch.
Craig, Michael, Sharlie & Sammi put some fantastic shows on in the evening and although we never used it there was plenty of day time activities available. The resident duo however were not really that good and Ants Disco was a lot more enjoyable.
The Thomson reps John and Jane were very helpful and always available and although there was the short walk to the coach when we went on trips they always made sure they escorted us safely across the busy road.
The hotel location is on a steep hill but if guests are made aware of this before they book it really isn't a cause for complaint. There is a bus stop outside the hotel and with a pre paid ticket available from reception it was a cheaper option than a taxi for the less mobile. For the fitter ones the walk into Funchal is pleasant. Time share touts do exist but a firm NO and carry on walking is the best reponse to their "Holiday survey" ploy.
Marina in the Spa was very professional and is worth a visit.
Overall an enjoyable stay and one which we will repeat next year.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank holidayfan55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Yorkshire
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 December 2009

Having stayed in a number of Gold hotels we found this one to be up there amongst the best. Very clean and comfortable and the food on the whole suited our tastes. We were blessed with good weather during our 2 weeks and never had a problem getting a sunbed. Staff were friendly and courteous, but like others we did find an overcharge on our drink bill - after that we paid cash.
As there is no coach access you are dropped off and picked up about 75yards away across a rather busy road, which was no problem to us but some with walking difficulties would find it a problem especially if the weather was not so good.
We prefer the Gold format of tables for two, buffet meals with choices and dining usually from 6.30 to around 9.30pm. That was the case here except one night a week which was billed as "Gala" night. All the tables were grouped into 4's or 6's, there was a single sitting at 6.30pm, a waiter served set menu with no choice and the food was not very good. The soup was cold, the main course was a dry chicken portion on a bed of veg and a spoon of rice mitxure (again only warm), the starter was OK smoked salmon accompanied by an onion mixture - no good if you don't like onion, the sweet was also OK but unlike other nights no choice. On our second week along with others we met we chose to eat out on Gala night.
Apart from that we would recommend the place and return again.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank kalpat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wales
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 December 2009

We had a fabulous week at this hotel and could not fault it except that it is situated up a rather steep hill but after a few days we were quite used to it [ and fitter]. It is a very pleasant walk into the town but the time share touts can be a real nuisance. Travel by bus is the cheapest option to get about and the bus stop is close to the hotel.
We were situated at the back of the hotel so did not get to see the sunrise over the ocean but you do get the views of the mountains.
All being well we shall go back again next year.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank DroversWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leiceter
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2009

This was our third visit to Madeira but our first at the Savoy Gardens and at a Thomson Gold hotel. We couldn't fault the hotel at all and the staff were very friendly and incredibly helpful. The rooms were beautiful and very well kept and we had a fantastic view from our balcony looking straight out to sea. The rest of the hotel was just as clean and well maintained and you got the feeling that the staff were very proud of their hotel.
The Thomson reps, John, Jane, Anita and Emma were really great and nothing was ever too much trouble for them. They really looked after us and were always around - we wondered if they ever slept. The entertainment was thoroughly enjoyable and Craig and his team worked day and night to keep us entertained.
The hotel is situated on a hill top and there is a steep hill to climb from the main road but there is also a local bus right in front of the hotel to go into the town centre. We were confused that so many people complained about the location when our travel agent had warned us when we booked our holiday that it isn't suitable for those with walking difficulties but we had no real problems.
We booked our trips with the Thomson reps - yes they are a bit more expensive but we've had bad experiences before with the cheap shops which tend to be linked to timeshare companies and Strawberry World which seem to be run by a bunch of money hungry cowboys in our opinion. We would recommend the Thomson excursions as being great value for money with very informative guides, especially Darleen.
Overall, a wonderful holiday and we can't wait to book again for next year.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank funinthesun1950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cumbria
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2009

The Hotel food, rooms, cleanliness and facilities were excellent. The hill up to the hotel was steep but not too long and the 24 bus stops outside although it doesn't run at night.
There was some dog barking but only in the early evening and it wasn't too intrusive.
There were always plenty of sunbeds around the pool and towels available for pool provided in rooms.
There is a nice Levada walk just up the road from the hotel but you need a good head for heights in places!
The entertainment was good (although not really to my taste) and the Thompson reps were excellent.
My only complaint was the method of paying for drinks in the bar and restaurant. You have to sign for drinks and it is charged to your room. and no receipts were given.We ordered a bottle of water with one meal...cost 3.5 euros, we were charged 13.5 Euros for a bottle of wine. We found the receptionist at the hotel uncooperative when we raised this over charge with her and eventually we asked the Thompson rep for help and she cleared it up straight away. However there was no apology or explanation from the hotel.
It did spoil my enjoyment of my holiday and I felt I couldn't have a drink in the hotel with my meal for fear of being ripped off!
The bill charged to rooms was available on the tv in the rooms...we discovered this by accident...and needs to be kept a careful eye on! I couldn't help but wonder how many other guests were over charged without their knowledge.
So I would recommend the hotel but be astute or insist on paying cash as you go!

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Venny_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sensimar Savoy Gardens

Property: Sensimar Savoy Gardens
Address: Azinhaga Casa Branca 7, Funchal, Madeira 9004-543, Portugal (Formerly Savoy Gardens)
Region: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 39 Speciality Lodging in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Sensimar Savoy Gardens 4*
Number of rooms: 119
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cradled against an oceanfront hillside and located in a quiet and sunny suburb of Funchal, within approx 2km from the city centre, the renovated Hotel Savoy Gardens (ex-Vila Ramos), renowned for the provision of friendly and personalised service, offers amazing mountain and sea views across lush verdant plantations. The Savoy Gardens is a friendly boutique-style hotel that provides its guests a modern feel and a traditional quality. All 119 completely renovated rooms include 9 suites. All have their own furnished balcony and are equipped with air-conditioning, direct dial telephone, flat screen TV set with interactive TV, FREE internet wireless system, tea and coffee making facilities, safety box and mini-bar, plus a fully equipped bathroom with bathtub, shower and hairdryer.The elegant and new interiors are all designed in soft colours with excellent materials to create a relaxing atmosphere throughout the hotel. The Savoy Gardens Hotel features the Restaurant Laurissilva, serving a daily buffet breakfast and themed Buffet dinners with cooking station. In a reserved cosy area, this restaurant also features a elegant a la carte dinner service. The Cica cocktail bar serving evening cocktails and the Palmeira bar serving snacks, hot and fresh drinks throughout the day as well as a daily suggestion of healthy and delicious light dishes for lunch. One outdoor freshwater heated swimming pool, a panoramic rooftop 360º view terrace with sun-lounges, jacuzzi, shower and self-service bar - the ideal location to spot the daily arrivals and departures of cruise liners in Funchal's harbour. Some of the facilities are also located in the lower-ground floor, such as the Spa with themed and seasonal promotions and special spa packages, the hairdresser, a games and TV room with internet desk and the Night Club Magnolia with nightly live music and entertainment. The Savoy Gardens Hotel is a new concept in Adults Only accommodation. Conceived as a place for rest and fun specially dedicated for those seeking a relaxing although extravagant vacation: unique experiences, amazing entertainment programmes, personalised service and attention to detail and all the commodities and services of a hotel for guests over 16 years of age. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Savoy Gardens
Savoy Gardens Funchal
Sensimar Savoy Gardens Madeira/Funchal

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