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“Lovely Hotel”

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Sao Rafael Atlantico
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Sesmarias
Certificate of Excellence
Rayleigh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Lovely Hotel”
Reviewed 5 September 2012

Great hotel to really chill. Located in a lovely residential area. The Marina and Albufeira is walkable. Huge guest rooms, really clean and modern. Evening entertainment is very low key as previous reviewers have mentioned. Pool area exceptionally quiet during the day. Did not have any problem getting sunbeds. Was disappointed with the Spa. Had booked spa circuit and found a few things not working and was made to wear swimming hat at a cost of 5 Euros even in the jacuzzi !! There was no water dispensers in the spa area which I found surprising as there was a sauna and steam room to use which usually recommend to keep yourself hydrated. The brochure describes that there is an al la carte beach restaurant, although the restaurant has nothing to do with the hotel and I am at a loss to know why this is described as being part of the hotel. Overall we had a great holiday. The staff are very friendly and efficient and I can honestly say that we only encounted one person in the buffet restaurant who was a bit grumpy on a Sunday morning!!

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank sue D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for sharing your review regarding your recent stay at the CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel.
I was glad to read that you enjoyed our Hotel standards and facilities. I was happy to read that you felt comfortable with our Hotel rooms, they are designed with modern equipment just to provide you a relaxing stay. I do regret to read that you felt disappointed with the SPA Thermal Circuit and I will take on board your issues in order to improve the quality of this facility and to avoid that situation from happen again. The use of swimming cap is mandatory due hygiene and health reasons. We sell the swimming caps at the SPA but if you wish you can bring your own.
Thank you very much for your kind words about the Hotel Team, they were very thankful to know that their efforts were worth it.

I do hope to have the pleasure of welcome you back in a near future,

Kind Regards,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Glossop High Peak
Level Contributor
58 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 September 2012

We have just returned from an excellent holiday and must refute the ridicoulas adverse reviews on this hotel. "Not 5 star food" is s stupid comment as the star rating relates to the hotels facilities and has no bearing on the food quality. This is largely determined by price and as such the buffet represnted good value for money. The Al - Fresco resturant offered excellent quality, choice and service at no additional cost, and the Mediterrean resturant delivered fine dining for only an additional cost of 20 euros per head - fantastic! The breakfast buffet was extensive with excellent quality produce again served by attentive staff.
The rooms were were modern, spacious, with excellent facilities all kept immaculate by attentive maids. The adverse comments on Trip Advisor were often the subject of discussion with our fellow guests all of whom could not understand why. The rest of the hotels facilities were first class and the peaceful ambience created by the attentive staff and the absence of children was most refreshing. The entertainment is low key to appeal to a discerning clientel provided by an excellent event cordinator in Gemma supported by the Willimin the resident duo. We have stayed at some of the best hotels in the world at corperate expense. But when it comes to moderately priced package holidays paid for with our own money, this was simply the best

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Stirky3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Valued Guest,

On behalf of CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel thank you for sharing your positive feedback regarding your recent stay with us.
I was delighted to read that you rate your holiday with us as “simple the best”. It is a great honor to know that we were up to your expectations.
Thank very much for your compliments about the food, our Executive Chef was very thankful for your comments. It is true the Al Fresco a la carte Restaurant is very much appreciated by our guests not only because its delicious meals but also for the amazing sea view. The Mediterranean Restaurant is also very popular, and I am glad to read that you really enjoyed the “Gourmet Dinner & Wine Presentation” (which had the cost you mentioned of the 20€ per person). I am thankful that you appreciated our Hotel rooms, they are very comfy with nice furniture just to make you feel at home.
Our Hotel Team was very glad for your mention. We are truly lucky to work with such dedicated staff who always have a friendly smile to shine your day.

I do hope to welcome you back in a near future,

Sunny Regards from Algarve

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wales, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2012

I have been meaning to write this review since we returned on the 7th August. We stayed at the CS Sao Rafael Atlantic Hotel during the first week of August. The hotel itself is very contemporary and stylish and the maids do a fantastic job of keeping it clean. The rooms are very large and the wet room is fantastic. The staff are very friendly and welcoming and always keen to help.
Gemma and Wiljamin provide good, low key entertainment. We were happy with this as we just wanted to relax. The hotel is in an isolated area, but is still only a ten minute taxi ride from Albuferia [costing approximately 7euros].
The food in the main buffet restaurant, as stated by other reviewers, is of average quality and not that of a 5 star hotel. The 2 À la carte restaurants are of a much higher quality; they book up very quickly so make your reservations early on.
We never had a problem getting a sun bed and found the garden very relaxing. The plants in the garden are still immature and the appearance will certainly improve with time. The beach is beautiful but packed; all beaches are public and not owned by the hotels.
The spa is excellent and my husband was very impressed with the gym facilities.
All in all, a relaxing and enjoyable holiday, although I would have found two weeks too long.

Room Tip: Our room was on the third floor which was great.
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  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank BML389
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking your time to share your review about your recent experience at CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel.
I was glad to read that you had a “relaxing and enjoyable holiday” at our/yours Hotel. Thank you very much for your comments about the Housekeeping Team, they were glad to know that you rate their service as “fantastic”. The Hotel Team was also happy for your kind words, they were proud to know that they made you feel very welcome. It is true, our Atlantic SPA with 1800sqms is very much appreciated by our guests as well as the Gym which is equipped with a modern and variety of equipment. I am glad to read that in general you were pleased with our Hotel standards and facilities.

Once again thank you very much for your review.

I do hope to have opportunity of welcome you back in a near future,

Kind Regards,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Devon, England
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2012

We've just come back frrom a week at the CS. We wanted a relaxing break in a nice hotel and have read the reviews on tripadvisor this hotel sounded ideal, although I was a little worried at the negative comments particularly on the food.

Accommodation - As all the other reviews say the rooms are very modern and a good size with an excellent powerful shower.we paid a little extra to have a garden vew room, which over looked a lawned area with a water feature and fountains. it was very peaceful. I think this was a good decision from reading other reviews regarding partial sea views and walls, plus if there was entertainment on in the pool bar or chill out bar we couldn't hear it sat on the balcony. the hotel is based in a quiet residential area.

Food - I'm on a gluten free diet and it can always be a bit hit and miss going to new places, there was however plenty for me to choose from. Breakfast buffet was excellent with lots of choice and lovely fresh fruit. The staff were attentive without feeling hassled or rushed, and you could always go and get your own coffee or tea yourself if you want. I noticed other reviewers complaining about the coffee service?? There was also champagne if you wanted a bucks fizz. The pool bar lunch menu was a fair selection and what I'd expect for hotel prices. It wasn't the fastest service but heck, we were on holiday and in no rush, and it was nice to spend a little time in the shade. We had the BBQ and Portugese special at lunch and both were good. The evening buffet was ok. it did feel a little repetitive with the salads, veg etc but there was loads of choice so you could have something different each time. We booked the Mediterrean restaurant which you get a €15 credit for. We wished we hadn't bothered. There were only 2 other couples in, the room lacked any atmosphere - it was like a conference room in a business hotel, and I see enough of those normally. The food wasn't anything special, in fact my starter I notice appeared on the buffet for more than one night. The waitress was very attentive but she must have been bored with only 3 couples in all night. I noticed it was the same other nights too. The alfresco restaurant was much better, lovely atmosphere, lovely view with the full moon over the sea, great staff and lovely food. We also took up Lorraine's suggestion of swapping our half board to lunch for a couple of nights and tried 2 local restaurants. Both were very good.
Facilities - nice gardens, which were maintained on a regular basis, but could possibly do with a bit of rubbish clearing at the end of a day. The beach was close by and a nice short stroll down the boardwalk. I can't how anyone can complain it was too far - properties in the Algarve are very rarely right on the beach as its main feature is the cliffs and bays with great little beaches. The gym was large but was limited in cardio equipment, plenty of weights though. I had a massage in the spa which I thought was expensive compared to others I've had in 4 and 5 star hotels around the world, but very relaxing.

Overall if you want a peaceful relaxing holiday with like minded adults this is the place for you. I came away feeling very refreshed.

Room Tip: The 260's odd number rooms were over looking the gardens and the even numbers were over looking...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ..
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your comments regarding your recent stay at the CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel.
I was pleased to read that you appreciated our Hotel services and standards. It is a great honor to know that we made you feel “very refreshed” after your stay with us.
Our Executive Chef was very thankful for your feedback about our food options. He was glad to know that we meet your needs regarding you gluten free diet. I am happy to read that you enjoyed our Hotel rooms, the shower is very much a appreciated by our valued guests. Our SPA Team was delighted to know that you enjoyed the massage and that you felt very relaxing.
I do highly value your opinion, it helps to achieve our daily Goal: our guests satisfaction.

I do hope to have the pleasure of welcome you again and provide you another peaceful and relaxing break.

Best Regards,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saddleworth Oldham
Level Contributor
50 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2012

We have just returned from our second visit to this lovely hotel and no doubt will book again. it does exactly what it says on the tin - a relaxing and peaceful (adults only) break in a lovely quiet spot just far away from albufeira town and the typical tourist bars and shops and yet only 2 euros 20 on the local bus to get there - if thats the kind of thing you want. The rooms are spacious and spotlessly clean - with the mini bar and toiletries restocked daily.Last year I commented that the hotel really needed more seating and loungers around the pool and gardens - this year they were plentiful and we never struggled to find somewhere pleasant to realx.
The hotel is quiet - thats why we booked it -to relax, chill, read and have a drink round the pool. There are some day time activities but they are not intrusive and you are not harassed into joining in activities as you are at some hotels. This year there was more evening entertainment than last year and Gemma works reall hard to make sure you can be as involved as you want to be.
The spa is lovely and I enjoyed a very relaxing aromatherapy treatment before sauntering back to the pool - and yes the pools are cold buts that just what you need to cool off in the August sunshine. We only went to the beach once this time because it was too busy and noisy for us with it being peak holiday season. We preferred it when it was less busy and you could stroll along it in may / june.
The only thing that I would agree with some of the more negative reviewers on is the seven seas buffet food but only because there are limited vegetarain options - some nights I struggled with all the meat options so perhaps that could do with improving? Most days we walked the 5 - 10 minute walk to the City bar round the corner for lunch which was easier for a veggie. However the service and friendliness of the staff in the seven seas was brilliant - thanks so much.
So overall really enjoyed our stay at this hotel and will be booking again - thanks a million,

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Fahy_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for sharing such wonderful review regarding your recent stay at the CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel.
I was delighted to know that your last stay with us had inspired you a second one. I was very happy to read that for the second time you had a lovely holiday at our/yours Hotel.
I was glad to know that you enjoyed the Aromatherapy Treatment, I already pass your feedback to our SPA Team, and they were happy to know that you enjoyed it.
I do regret to read that you felt disappointed with the theme buffets at evening, I already pass your comments to our Executive Chef who always do all the necessary efforts in order to pleased every single guest. I do value your opinion and I really appreciate it a lot, it helps to improve the quality of our Hotel services and standards.

Knowing that you which to return is without a doubt our best Award.

I do hope to have the pleasure of welcome you back in a near future,

Kind Regards,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldham
Level Contributor
20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2012

Just returned from this hotel - having been really worried about negative reviews. No need to worry, we had a lovely week of relaxation and excellent service. Yes, the hotel is in a quiet area but a bit of research before booking would alert you to its 'out-of-town' location - so those who choose not to be around clubs and bars can get away from it all. The fact that the hotel is adults only made it quiet round the pool, which again made for a relaxing stay. The breakfast buffet had a wide choice of both cooked and continental options, plus loads of fresh fruit. The dinner buffet wasn't amazing cuisine but a buffet can't be that. The special Gormet dinner in the Mediterranean restaurant (once a week, book ahead) was a real highlight - delicious. We swapped half board to use at lunch time (really good selection) and went out to dinner locally. Rooms were really quiet (sound proofed?) so there was every opportunity to relax - and the spa was lovely too! Above all, it was the fact that all the staff worked so hard to provide an efficient and friendly service that made it a great place to stay. I will be going back when I can.

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bajankate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for sharing your valuable feedback about your recent stay at the CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel.
I was happy to read that you had a “lovely week” at our/yours Hotel. I was grateful to know that we were up to your expectations. Our Executive Chef was delighted to know that you enjoyed our food options. The “Gourmet Dinner & Wine Presentation” is very much appreciated by our guests and I am glad to read that you tried it and you were pleased with all this new experience. Our Hotel Team was also thankful to know that you appreciated their services.

It is a great honor to know that you are planning to return.

I do hope to have the pleasure of welcome you back in a near future.

Sunny Regards from Algarve,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2012

We stayed here in July and found the hotel to be an excellent choice for us. It was nice that it was an adult only hotel, which added to the relaxing stay. The rooms and bathroom facilities were excellent, very clean and modern, the cleaning staff did a great job in ensuring the rooms and public areas were spotless. The staff were friendly and obliging and nothing was too much trouble, especially the care taken in making the fantastic cocktails in the chill out bar, which was a perfect spot to end the day. It is a quiet hotel, with the entertainment pitched at exactly the right level. If you are looking for nightlife, go and stay in Albuferia and save on the cost of a taxi and the wait. It is exactly as described in the brochure and on trip adviser, perhaps people should take the time to research the hotel and area before travelling.

I think this hotel is perhaps for the more discerning holidaymaker that appreciates a good hotel in a fantastic location overlooking a beautiful beach.

Our experience of the food was mixed, the breakfast and the starters and deserts were very good, the main course could have been more varied, although I always managed to find something to eat and certainly didn't go hungry.

We did eat in the Al Fresco restaurant one night which was a lot more to our taste, it is a shame that this doesn't open at lunchtime as well so that more people could eat here, we could only book once as it was full the rest of our stay.

We had a perfect holiday in a relaxing hotel and would both recommend it and return.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Catri69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CSHOTELS, Manager at Sao Rafael Atlantico, responded to this review, 7 September 2012
Dear Guest,

On behalf of CS São Rafael Atlantic Hotel thank you so much for taking your time to post your review regarding your recent stay with us.
I was happy to read that our Hotel standards and facilities made your stay a “perfect holiday”. Our Hotel Team was glad to know that that you appreciated their services, we are truly lucky to work with such dedicated and enthusiastic members. It is true, the Chill Out Bar is without a doubt one of our best spots and it is an ideal place to drink a delicious cocktail while you enjoy the warm summer evenings. Thank you for your comments about the food options, I already pass your opinion to our Executive Chef who is always very proactive in finding solutions to improve the quality of our meals.

Thank you so much for recommend us!

I do hope to have the opportunity of welcome you again and provide you another pleasant stay.

Best Regards,

Álvaro Aragão
Hotel 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 Sao Rafael Atlantico

Property: Sao Rafael Atlantico
Address: Sesmarias, Albufeira 8200-613, Portugal (Formerly São Rafael Atlantic Hotel)
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira > Sesmarias
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Sesmarias
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Sao Rafael Atlantico 5*
Number of rooms: 149
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The hotel Sao Rafael Atlantico enjoy a spectacular location overlooking the Atlantic sea, direct access to Sao Rafael Beach and only at a short drive to Albufeira centre. The interiors have contemporary design features with space and light throughout. The rooms are modern and have large balconies with views over the sea and gardens. The extensive gardens offer a beautiful mediterranean landscape with olive and palm trees. There is also a state-of-the-art SPA featuring leading wellness therapies and treatments. ... more   less 
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