Went to Madeira as a spur of the moment choice for the Easter break, not able to find anything suitable in Turkey, but having been to Madeira the previous year, was happy to go back so soon.
First time using Thomson as a package deal, but a very wise move in hindsight.
Hotel very nice – excellent staff – would have to say this was “possibly the best hotel in the world in its class” due to the staff alone (and I’ve stayed in 80+ Hotels in 30+ Countries around the world).
The bed was fantastically comfortable.
Trouble is the premises are quite far up the hill. It’s true you are 800m from the Lido, but that also involves a 400 feet vertical climb on paths often 1 in 3 gradient. Not good if you’re not fit or mobile. There is a bus right outside the hotel into Funchal, but it only runs once per hour, and the timetable supplied by Thomson was out of date, so we once waited for 40 minutes for the next bus mid afternoon. You can walk down to the main road to get more frequent buses every 10 minutes or so, but if you relied on them to come back the climb up the hill would kill you. I’ll stay further down the hill next time (we had overlooked the Lido before).
They advise that a Taxi from town is 7-8 Euros, but the day we did it was only 5 Euros, so don’t be put off unless you’re on a tight budget.
Thomson organise lsland tours, but they are usually only available 1-2 specific days in the week. If you go to the tour organisers in town they of course run them every day, to suit your schedule and the weather, and are 25% cheaper, eg 33 Euros rather than Thomson 44 Euros.
You have to pay extra for coffee & tea in the room; but we realised the trick was to take the tea bags from breakfast – not a solution for coffee drinkers however.
The food was excellent and a wide range of choice, and it wasn’t all ‘English’.
Postscript : we were due to leave just as UK Airspace was closed because of the Iceland volcano. We stayed at the Hotel for a further 3 days on full board (3 meals a day) for no extra charge (except wine). The hotel began to fill up as Thomson used it as a holding area for other tourists, but it was bearable, and the staff (Hotel & Thomson) were excellent! They even arranged for a local doctor (who had trained in London and spoke excellent English) to come in and arrange prescriptions for guests who were running out of medication due to their enforced stay, and arranged for drugs to be collected and delivered to reception, for only 15 Euros per person (normal callout 200 Euros).
Then Thomson put most of us on a Cruise Ship which took 4 days to get home to Falmouth – again full board at no cost (except for wine). So we got an enforced 14-days holiday for a 7-day price! If we hadn’t gone with Thomson and had been independent, we’d have had to pay hundreds of pounds just for the extra accommodation, waiting to get a flight home.
So hats off to Thomson.
- 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
- TUI SENSIMAR Savoy Gardens Madeira/Funchal