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“Do not waste your time here”

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Pinhal do Sol Hotel
Ranked #28 of 48 Hotels in Quarteira
Reviewed 9 July 2014

My wife and I (mid 30’s) made the wrong choice and booked a week at Pinhal Do Sol last summer, it might be a bit late now for a review but we don’t think things have changed since then so here’s our thoughts:
First of all, we chose to book this hotel as it didn’t seem too bad, some reviews were not very convincing but we know some people are very picky about everything so we took it with a pinch of salt, the rates were also below average and our budget wasn’t very high so we went for it.
The hotel complex as a whole is very decent and has potential, but the cons outweigh the pros.

First of all, location is a major issue, you can really realize about this only once you get here, it is quite far from the coast (about 2 miles / 3 km) and fair enough they provide these free shuttle buses back and forth but it’s still a drag to depend on them, there are two scheduled in the morning, one in the early afternoon and the last at 17:30, it takes you down to Quarteira and Vilamoura and comes straight back (for those who were already there), after this time you need to rely on cabs.

The first day we actually walked all the way to Quarteira as we were curious about how long it would take and well...it took us about 40/45 minutes, clearly not something that can be done on a daily basis, part of the road is also lacking a pavement therefore dangerous as well, we were very quickly wondering why on earth a hotel was built in this location, it is on a main road but there is absolutely nothing once you go out, just a built-up area inhabited by local people.

Although our stay was between July and August, there were not that many guests, the two areas of concentration are the two swimming pools, one at the front, one smaller at the back, we used them on a couple of occasions but there were very few people (most of the hotel guests were probably down in Quarteira or Vilamoura) and we had a feeling of being in an isolated place, there was no buzz, no music, no entertainment of any kind, there weren’t even any children screaming.

We stayed on half-board basis, breakfast was not great, the coffee / cappuccino, etc, were dispensed by a machine and tasted foul, the food on display was of mediocre quality, plenty of biscuits (easy / lazy option), some squash (tasted cheap and chemical and again, lazy option), the usual toasts, bread, jams, etc plus some cold meats and cheese, as a whole when you wake up in the morning and you think about breakfast it should be a joyful moment, well it wasn’t enjoyable at all. As some other reviewers have pointed out, there’s a Lidl at short distance going towards the coast, it’s likely that most of the food comes from there.
Dinner was organized a bit better and we don’t have too many complaints about it, you can eat indoors or outdoors by the pool and the food was of quite good quality.

What happens after dinner is the big issue: nothing! There’s a bar serving drinks of mediocre quality but there’s no music, no entertainment...and no people, you have a feeling that you don’t really know what to do, other than going down to Quarteira or Vilamoura, so a taxi back and forth is about €15 (but some evenings a cab to come back may be hard to find or, especially from Vilamoura, you might have to queue up and wait for your turn).

Accommodation: depending on where your bedroom is, this might be another issue, the hotel has very long corridors of bedrooms and if you are given one at the end of the corridor you find yourself walking and walking and walking for so long that it becomes boring.
In our case, unfortunately, something very bad happened, something that totally spoiled our holiday: 3 days after we were there, we had left early in the morning for an excursion near Faro, upon our return in the evening we were asked by the receptionist what our room number was and once we told him, he replied with something that made our heart sunk, our bedroom (+ other two) had been broken in and burgled, what we felt in that moment is really hard to describe, we rushed to our bedroom but couldn’t get in as the door handle had been forced opened and then forced closed in whichever way I’m not even sure about; with the help of the receptionist in the end we managed to get in, the room was in a bit of a mess, some of our possessions had been stolen but I’m not going into more details about this; the police was then called for a report etc etc.
What I would like to highlight is the lack of security in this hotel, the burglary apparently happened in the early morning (nobody called us from the hotel, they had our numbers!) as by the time the cleaners got to our room it had already been burgled, there are no cctv cameras anywhere, especially in the corridors, so nothing could be done to find out who the burglars were, the hotel management showed some compassion and offered their help but we were not feeling really helped, there was a sense of carelessness about what happened to us.
As we didn’t feel safe any longer in staying there, we were then transferred upon agreement to another hotel in Quarteira town, the new hotel was better but our holiday was completely ruined, we wanted to go home, we had to go on a daily basis to the local police station asking for news about our case and deal with not very helpful policemen + we had to go to the tribunal in another town inland to finalize our case, as a whole an experience to forget.

In our opinion, in case of doubt whether you want to book your stay at this hotel or not, please don’t, unless you don’t mind being isolated, far from the coast and unless you have a car, so that you can go anywhere as you please.
You might as well stay at a hotel on the coast, where there’s plenty of choice, better still stay in Vilamoura and avoid Quarteira altogether; if you listen to our advice, once you are there and you visit both towns you’ll understand why, and you’ll thank us for this tip.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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6  Thank JamR0LL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 6 July 2014

After reading the negative reviews on here, me and my boyfriend were quite apprehensive about the hotel, but we thought that the price was cheap enough that we could eat out regularly if we needed to get away from the hotel. I'm pleased to say we didn't need to at all, and the food served in the hotel was lovely. There was a change in menu daily, and all of the food was replenished often so it was lovely and fresh. There was a salad bar, hot food counter, starter section with soups and bread and dessert station. Breakfast had a variety of hot breakfast, cereals, fresh fruits and yoghurts. There was cheese and salami too.
In the evenings they served bottles of their own wine for their hotel, and it was very nice.
The pool area was clean and always well-kept. Sun loungers could be a problem during high season as there wasn't enough sometimes, though the lovely gardens next to the pool and bar area was nice enough to sit on with just a towel.
The room was HUGE, with a balcony and fridge, tv, hairdryer, ect. No complaints here other than when i arrived the toilet was not as clean as I would have liked (but i am quite particular!) and the pillows were a bit rubbish. I mentioned this to reception and within the hour the bathroom was cleaned again and new pillows were provided. The staff at this hotel work absolutely hard, they can't do enough for you. The two younger guys were very efficient and friendly, one was Manuel, but i forget the others name!
The hotel is about 10 mins walk to a local Lidl which is great for stocking up the little fridge with water and wine for when sat out on the balcony :) It's so easy to get into town too, we got the shuttle in after breakfast and got a taxi back in the evening if we stayed out all day. It would be better if the shuttles ran a little later though.

All in all, an amazing stay, and i would recommend! Oh, and the Sangria is excellent :p

Room Tip: Request one near to reception if you have mobility issues, we were in room 226 which was on the othe...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Rachie133
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 July 2014

Recently stayed here for a week it Was beautiful spotless the hotel Was 10 out of 10 staff so friendly so relaxing if your Looking for peace and quiet this is the place to be set in the countryside Free shuttle bus takes you in to town everyday no taxi fare needed Exellent service the food lovely cocktails to die for the the only problem i Had Was i should of booked for 10 days instead of the week going back next year and i never return to the same place twice.

  • Stayed: June 2014
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4  Thank coachbug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 July 2014

Stayed at this hotel for 5 days on all inclusive, we had room 218 which was large,clean with sofa, fridge and telly ( Only get 2 English news channels) this is classed as a superior room and had a iron and ironing board as extra, had a separate area with 2 twin beds in that could be curtained off for privacy. ( twin beds in main area also )
Food isn't the best but is edible, repetitive each day, there were 2 vegetarians in our family and there was never a veggie option on menu, always had to request something and then wait for this to be made, either a pizza or omelette.
Hired the electric bikes on 2 separate days and had a great laugh really enjoyed them.
Villamoura is a beautiful town, the hotel runs a free mini bus service to and from Quarteria and Villamoura throughout the day.
Entertainment not good, but we met nice people and made the best of the nights outside the bar drinking Red Sangria, (the best person to make this is Manuel!!)
All in all not an awful place, great budget break ,staff can be a bit off sometimes but all the lads in bar are always smiling and chatty,
Free WIFI in reception and bar always get good connection.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank Diane R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2014

This was our 5th stay at this hotel. We have only ever been on a B&B basis as we always have a car and prefer to go out and about.
We were in a room at the bottom of the drive where a villa has been converted and it was BEAUTIFUL. The rooms we have had previously have been `fine`,basic but adequate. I read so many negative reviews on here I often wonder if it`s the same hotel. Having said that we only have breakfast and aren`t all inclusive which seems to be the main gripe. The breakfast is lovely,cereals,fruit,pastries etc etc and of course hot food. People expect a `full English` but its not quite the same in Portugal.
Our room was a new build or refurb and was fresh and clean. The maids came every day and were very helpful. We asked for extra hangers and a tea tray and it was provided straight away.
It is a perfect hotel for us,we know the area very well,have a car and want a quiet hotel with a pool. There were days when we were the only people at the small pool as the guests that are all inclusive prefer to be by the main pool with access to the bar and restaurant etc.
I`m a great believer in `you get what you pay for` and this is a very reasonable no frills hotel that has all you need.

Room Tip: If you don`t like walking don't choose a room down the drive at the converted villa.If you like...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Joanne G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2014

Fail to understand the negative reviews of this hotel. We went on a 4 night budget break, and went not expecting the Ritz (or we would have gone 5*).

Rooms were perfectly clean, maid service every day.

Restaurant food was perfectly cooked, with something for everyone's choice. Food was continuously being brought out so nothing stayed in hot dishes for too long. We had fresh strawberries, cherries, grapes, melon etc everyday, as well as choices for fish and meat, rice chips and salads, and the usual various bread, dessert biscuits etc. Staff served drinks throughout dinner and couldn't do enough for us.

We walked into town each day - 30 minute walk to the beautiful beach - a nice stroll especially after eating too much!

The bar staff were friendly and polite and there were no restrictions on the amount of drinks/snacks you were allowed. We tended to stick to jugs of sangria - lovely. Stay clear of the cocktails though - they really shouldn't be on the menu -- disasterous!

We always managed to get a sunbed although I expect in high season this could be a problem as there weren't that many but the pool was cleaned every morning and the area was lovely to chill out.

All in all, a super little hotel, good food, clean and friendly. For a short break we couldn't ask for more and the money it cost - excellent value. Definitely would recommend it and fail to understand where the negatives are coming from

Room Tip: We had a superior room (we were upgraded as it was our wedding anniversary - lovely surprise). Room...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Suzi C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2014

Staff we're rude apart from the young boys run out of beer wouldn't let us have more than one drink each the bar stopped at 10 and they didn't let you stock up food was boring nothing around your in the middle of no where only god thing was air con
We upgrade which wasn't much better got a bigger TV and a fridge

Jason the bosses son was rude and they could run a bath let alone a hotel ,

Room Tip: Don't stay here
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank Dan D
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

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:
#2 Best Value Hotel in Quarteira
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Quarteira
Price Range: £20 - £90 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Pinhal do Sol Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 56
Reservation Options:
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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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