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“Good hotel, but only if you're All Inclusive”

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Pinhal do Sol Hotel
Ranked #26 of 48 Hotels in Quarteira
Chorley, Lancashire
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Good hotel, but only if you're All Inclusive”
Reviewed 23 May 2014

Hi guys 'n' gals, thanks for reading my review.

My wife, my 3 year old daughter (her first holiday abroad) and I recently came back from a week in Quarteira, and at at the Pinhal do Sol hotel.

We arrived at midnight and was efficiently checked in and given clear instructions to our room. The only qualm I had on the first night was that we was placed at the far end of the hotel and with two large suitcases, and a big holdall bag, pram and 3 year old whingy tired daughter, it was a bit of a struggle to get there, especially with all the corridors. A porterage service would've been gratefully welcomed at this point, but that wasn't available.

The room was more than above average though. Big and spacious it was enough to accomodate 8 people in the big beds, we decided to push the beds in our daughter's "room" (an annex seperated by a curtain) together to create one big bed. The master bed was already together to create one big queen size-esque bed. I had originally requested a ground floor room too because we was worried our daughter would climb up on the seats on the balcony, but that never happened (our daughter listens well) but there's thick glass to prevent going through the railings. One problem though, in her "room", the window could be opened fully and we was on the 2nd floor so heaven forbid anything happens to anybody staying there. I know in the UK, the opening of said window would be restricted.

The first morning and breakfast was average. Catered for both British and continental guests. The toast machine was a bit hit and miss, but on the 3rd day, what they called bacon was absolutely disgusting. (If you're British, you'll know what I mean with what I'm about to say) It was like the pre-packed processed ham you get in supermarkets, flash-fried for a few seconds. It was inedible. But this "bacon" only surfaced a couple of occaisions more. A nice touch though was the Spumante they served properly chilled in an ice-bucket. My wife did spend a couple of days though finding the way to make a perfect cup of tea though (two red label tea-bags to brew for 6 minutes then add milk ;) )

Afterwards, my daughter wanted to try out the play-area. But on surveying it, I could only let her play on there supervised and not for very long. Two miniature plastic slides about 3 feet in height set around broken and uneven safety flags and a wooden border didn't leave me with the best feeling my daughter would be safe. Pinhal do sol, if you're reading this, please fix.

On to the location. Whilst Quarteira is a lovely place, the hotel is a bit out the way being 3 miles out of it on the outskirts. That said, the hotel puts a free bus on 3 times a day to Quarteira and Vilamoura, and a taxi from the hotel to town is about €7. We had to use this regularly as we had only booked B&B, hence the title of this review. The hotel is great if you book A.I. as most of the other guests at the time had done. The hotel do offer evening meal, but this comes at €10.50 each and we didn't fancy doing this for the three of us each night. Even though you get a discount of €1 pp if you book a meal for 3 nights. So going here Full Board or all inclusive if you don't want to fork out for transport to or from the town is fine.

The staff were very helpful, as we flew Ryanair, we had to print our boarding passes before we left, so they did this for us. They rang for taxi's when requested and they sorted out a power cut at our end of the hotel within an hour of reporting it. Safe's are available for hire at €10.50 for the week.

It was heartening to see the pool being cleaned (for the first few days at least), but by the last day it was full of leaves and petals on top. It could've done with someone cleaning it regularly during the day.

One plus point, was the fact that you could sit in reception, or the bar, or the pool and tag into their free unrestricted wifi. That killed an hour most nights.

Beer (which is what I'm most interested in ;) ) was €2.90 for 400ml, which equates to about £3 a pint. Not too bad. Noticed if you're AI you get a slim glass (possibly about 200ml) for your beer and other drinks. Don't bother with cocktails/milkshakes, you get them in a slim glass despite the picture on the menu being in a big tall glass. Bit disappointing looking back as they were €3.20.

The AquaShow waterpark at the top of the road is good, book in advance to get a discount.

All in all, the hotel was average to good. But it's down to you and what you want from your holiday. We made the best of what we had and in the end, enjoyed ourselves.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
5 Thank cyclops365
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 May 2014 via mobile

Firstly we would like to say that the Hotel itself greeted us extremely well. We forwarded on to them that it was our honeymoon stay in the booking details. The staff had kindly laid out rose petals in a shape of a heart on the bed and also scattered petals on the bedside tables, they also had a bottle of sparkling wine in a cool bucket ready for us at the foot of the bed. As late comers we were given dinner and drinks all with out feeling like a problem.
We stayed for two weeks. In all we would say the hotel is more suited for a short break. The site is laid out on the ground like a ruler? It's long and very narrow. The pool, restaurant, reception area are near to the road entrance and the rooms in a long line away from this area.
All in all I we can't say that anything about the hotel really disappoints?
Yes it's remote, a good three miles from the coast with nothing really of interest in between, and yes as the title suggests, the food can get a bit repetitive.
The staff are great considering they do get a bit stretched between the restaurant and bar at peak times when the restaurants open. There may be the odd moment when it may feel Iike your drink request at the bar wasn't wanted, but if you take the moment with open eyes it's plain to see the staff are just busy.
The food is probably the biggest disappointment in all. It's remoteness is over come by the free shuttle buses and a taxi is only 6 euros from the beach if required.
If you adore rice and chips for lunch and dinner then this place will never disappoint you.
Yes as others have wrote earlier on here, there is always a good range of things to choose from meal wise. There's a range of breakfast items to choose from. The same at lunch and dinner. Always a cold salad section.
BUT! There is definitely an element of the food being recycled into other meals and the staple diet here is rice orientated. It's a shame,the chef here is a great character and Cristine the head waitress too. The lads who work the bar, they all work here hard and long hours. I think the management of the hotel are the problem to what could be a better experience here.
Louise my partner had a chat about what rating we would give the place?
In all we agreed we were probably 70% happy with the restaurant experience considering we were here two weeks solid. Either of us came away probably twice each on separate meal occasions feeling unhappy with in all can't be bad?
Yes the remoteness from the town sometimes left us bored as no entertainment here either.....but then we were on our honeymoon so we often just wanted to amuse each other ;)
We won't come back if we visit the Algarve again. But I wouldn't write this hotel off completely. It depends what you want? The pool is great, the staff are great, it's quiet! But we did have a few days here when we were thinking that the place was bursting at the seams, the bar, pool, restaurant I think are too small if all 54 rooms are occupied so that would make it even more un enjoyable if constant.
There is an element of Penny pinching with food and drinks, like in said before, the management could make this a better experience for the visitor and staff in my opinion if they chose to.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank GaryAABaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
192 reviews
109 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 May 2014

We stayed here for Easter while we traveled the Algarve by car. Good thing we had a navigation system because otherwise we would have never found this hotel. We did need to ask someone, too, though. It's quite far out of the way but as we had a car and only needed it to sleep it wasn't a problem. For the price we paid it was perfect.
In general the hotel is ok. There seems to be a main building a smaller one int he back, where we stayed. I think they might close it during the winter and not air it out because there was a very musty smell in the room. I know this from humid countries but this was really bad and I asked for an air freshener because I didn't want the smell to go into all my clothes.
The rooms are simple and not cosy enough to hang out in. So I wouldn't come here for a hotel holiday. For just spending the night it's fine. Everything was clean. There was a pool and lounge chairs outside on a grass area that was nice.
To use the internet one has to go almost directly next to the router otherwise there is no signal. So no signal in the room.
The breakfast was great though, fresh warm rolls, great coffee, and in general a really good selection of breakfast things, sweet as well as savory.
Would I stay here again? For the price yes.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Travelcrazy013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 May 2014

Just got back from a really good weeks stay at this hotel. We took a chance on this place and just wanted a cheap week away all inclusive and to be honest were not expecting much at all for what we paid , the score of this review takes into account the low price against the quality of what we received.
Checkin was quick and easy , rooms were adequate but spotless . The whole complex is spotlessly clean with ongoing maintenance. Food is buffet style with drinks / wine service at your table for lunch and dinner. There was always a fish or meat option available as well as soups , fresh breads , desserts and salads , we were always able to find something we liked but dont expect restaurant quality.
The pool and sunbed area was really good , quiet without any of the usual idiots to spoil your holiday , perhaps this is because it is a little out of the way , most guests appeared to be middle aged or young families. There was a shuttle bus several times daily to the beach and vilamoura which is stylish , no need to book , if the bus is full they come back for you within 10 mins so no great issue.
Overall the place is perfect for a bargain getaway , service for us (2 x couples) was brillaint , drinks/food always available throughout the day and we found the staff to be pretty friendly overall and had a good laugh with the bar staff.
I would go back at the drop of a hat , I really have not had a holiday of such good value .
I suppose its all down to expectations , its a 3 star ( which is trying very hard to be a 4 star) but this place really does exceed expectations. If you want a relaxing break then go on , take the chance and book it , you wont regret it.

Room Tip: The corridors are all tiled and echoe'd quite a bit , we were on floor 1 but would not like to...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank salvadali
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mansfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
32 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 May 2014

We were four sisters having our first holiday altogether ....well the first since we were children ! The weather was pretty grim plenty of rain when we were there in April. We found the hotel clean and comfortable, we had to change rooms after unpacking and having lunch as we had paid for a superior room and they had given us a standard room. We only found out by accident so I asked at reception and they gladly rectified their mistake.
Staff very good especially Christina in the restaurant ,she made our holiday hehe. Food was good always found something to eat and I am fussy. Drinks good especially the jugs of sangria. Bingo night a hoot, and we all enjoyed karaoke . Met some lovely people.

Warning!
One thing that we were annoyed about though after breakfast the receptionist told us that our all inclusive had finished even though we were not getting picked up till late afternoon for our flight. I have never come across this before , so be aware.

Room Tip: If you haven't got an iron and ironing board in your room then you will be in a standard room.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Irene T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Blackpool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 May 2014

we have just arrived back from this hotel at teatime. a nice quiet place,friendly,not too big. my hubby and i needed the break,after a few stressful months and chose here as we visited with family 2 yrs ago. no it's not full of youngsters,not full of drunks,and noisy music. but the food is good,and rooms are spotless for 3 star. we would go again anytime . Thank you to all the staff .

Room Tip: ask for rooms near reception if you have trouble walking .
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank dartsnan1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2014

We have just arrived back after a 4 day break..we had room 224 its a huge 1st floor room double bed and 2 single beds behind the curtains.. all mod cons were provided just take tea coffee and sugar. . This room was a five minute walk from Reception and if u want closer ask for rooms 201 ish..food was average for all inclusive but a top tip is order from bar menu at lunch time at no extra cost. Eg omelettes spaghetti bol pizza ..staff seemed bit grumpy but its just the way they are.. neatest shop is lidl but its about 15 min walk.. all in all good holiday if I had to give it a bad point id say they don't give you a courtesy room to shower if u have an evening flight

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank alexfifield
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pinhal do Sol Hotel

Property: Pinhal do Sol Hotel
Address: Sitio de Semino, Quarteira 8125-303, Portugal
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Quarteira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Quarteira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Pinhal do Sol Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 56
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Also Known As:
Sol Hotel Pinhal Do
Hotel Pinhal Sol
Quarteira Sol Hotel
Sol Hotel Quarteira
Pinhal Do Sol Hotel Quarteira, Algarve, Portugal

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