We have just returned from a week here, this was enjoyed by the whole party of ten. As a M.S. sufferer I was very nervous as this was my first holiday out with the UK since needing a wheelchair. We arrived on Sunday lunchtime after a very early flight from Manchester. Luckily we had asked Simon and Leslie to put on a lunch for arrival; this was all wolfed down while Simon spoke to us about the Villa etc.
We were all keen to get in the pool and cool off after lunch, Simon asked us to contact him if we needed to use the hoist. I decided to try without first with two people walking me in. This was reasonably easy and there is a 10cm long wall bar in the shallow end which makes it feel more secure. I could stand and exercise at this bar and other people could go on swimming without worrying about me. The hot tub was also accessible on foot but there was the option of hoist again. It is lovely sitting in the hot tub looking over Silves.
On the first night we hadn’t been shopping so we went to the restaurant at the bottom of the road. It was pretty basic food but they also had live music which we all liked. There was also a disabled toilet which makes life easier for me. We ate in most nights but Simon also recommended Colins Verde for a meal for my Aunty’s birthday we were celebrating. As we wanted to hire a taxi for ten people Simon organised a mini bus for eight of us and he chauffeured the other two members. A great night was had by all and we all left very happy as well as full.
Mostly I would say fantastic holiday, there were wee things that I did miss which is fine for a week. The thing I found difficult was the toilets were a bit too high for my vertically challenged legs. I felt like only my tip toes touched the ground, making me feel less stable. Saying that there were people in the party who loved the higher toilets but I always felt slightly precarious.
We hope to return at some point to enjoy the Villa and the weather, even more so after returning to a cold Scotland.
I arranged to have a wheelchair exercise bike to be delivered on the Monday when we’d arrived. We left on the following Sunday and the bike man wanted to collect on Monday, so Simon said he could collect from him. Simon went out of his way to make the week easier for all of us, thank you.
We just returned from a holiday at Spokes. Our party included my father, who is a 72 year old paraplegic, his carer, myself, my wife and our 8 year old son.
Over the years we have been on many holidays to places designed for the disabled, as my father has been using a wheelchair for the entire 41 years of my life. There is usually something that doesn't work for my dad, whether it be a handle on the wrong side of the toilet or not enough room to manoeuvre. Spokes did very well on all these counts and we found the bed and the toilets to be very manageable (only the inclusion of a monkey bar on the bed would have made it perfect).
The place itself is a spacious, 6 bedroom villa that has been designed to be fully accessible for wheelchairs and the various needs of its disabled clientele. It's in a lovely, quiet spot, 12 minutes drive from the nearest beach. A fig tree and beautiful flowers and plants surround the villa, more signs of the owners' (Simon and Lesley) care and attention to details.
Simon and Lesley themselves were charming hosts. Nothing was too much trouble and the food and general service was excellent. Only one other party was staying at the hotel during our week here, a mother and daughter from England who were lovely. This is something to consider though: unless you hire the entire 6 bedroom villa you will be sharing with other parties in quite an intimate setting. This could be problematic depending on how well you get on with the other guests. Of course it could be a great bonus, meeting some new friends but it could go the other way too.
All in all an excellent week in the sun was had by all. Highly recommended to all with special needs, we will doubtless return for more in the future :)
We stayed August 22nd - 31st, 2013.
Over the years i have searched all over the web for good accessible holiday accommodation only to find the same culprits popping up all the time. When "Spokes" appeared on my screen I was genuinely surprised, where had this been hiding all these years? It looked and sounded so good it was really hard to believe. I emailed immediately without much hope at short notice but Simon called straight back and told me he could fit us in. The whole family were elated when I showed them the website, particularly our disabled daughter, Ellie who couldn't wait to get there!
However, as veterans of the accessible holiday villa there was still a certain amount of trepidation. They don't always live up to their billing.
As soon as we arrived we knew we had struck gold. The place is amazing and ticked all the boxes necessary for Ellie's needs. The owners, Simon and Lesley are wonderful hosts who went out of their way to ensure we were comfortable at all times. They have a wealth of local knowledge and are happy to impart information on the best bars and restaurants. Try the "O Feedback" bar at the bottom of the hill, it doesn't look like much on the outside but opens up to a lovely courtyard on the inside. Simple but tasty menu and within easy stumbling distance of the villa.
I ummed and ahhed a lot about reviewing Spokes as selfishly, I don't want people to know about it. However, guilt got the better of me because I know how hard it is to find good accessible villa accommodation and this is without doubt, the best around !!
Thank you Simon and Lesley, Ellie had the best holiday ever! But then, so did we all.
Just had a fabulous stay , loads of room for the three families with the children .
Nothing was too much trouble for the owners .
Excellent position with a train station near by , saved ££s by not renting a car !
Can't think of a negative about our stay .
I found Spokes by sheer fluke on the net looking for disabled accessible holidays.- believe me as a manager of care homes ive done a few in my 23 year history.
From the time we had looked , emailed, the spokes team had responded, we were hooked. The pictures looked fab- but in the back of your mind you think nah it cant be that good!!
i spoke to Simon as he had called me himself from Portugal and we discussed what my service users needs were, what he had at the villa and what we could hire as other special equipment.
We arrived in Portugal and it was about 35-40 mins drive to the villa.
We met Simon at the main road near Spokes to take us to the five min drive to the villa. WOW was what we thought a lovely, clean, fresh, open villa was the first thought and then as we were shown around it was just as the pictures showed - nothing different or made up just the villa in it real natural beauty.WOW.
Our stay was brilliant, the clients had time in the pool which was something they had never done before.
Simon and Lesley were lovely very friendly and even bought us milk, water etc as we had gone self catering.
As a professional looking after clients with learning disabilities i would recommend this place to anyone - you wont regret it
good sound advice
thanks Simon & Lesley
molly & Team
Spokes is absolutely perfect,we were 7 people,it was very spacious,I can't find anything to critisize.I liked the sail over part of the pool,nice to sit in the pool without the sun.The bathrooms were a dream.The owners,Simon and Lesley were so helpful,it was so nIce getting to know them.Would love to come back one day.Forgot to mention that we didn't need the airconditioning as there was a breeze,being on top of a hill,and there were no mosquitoes.
We have rented villas in the Algarve for the past fifteen years or so - they have all had their strengths and weaknesses, but I think this was the best villa we've tried. We were a party of seven: two couples and four singles, so the villa was a perfect size. It is new and well decorated; every bedroom has its own large wet-room bathroom, and the downstairs bedrooms have aircon. It was only when we arrived that we realised that it was also totally wheelchair friendly, and you can read more about that in other reviews.
The kitchen has everything you need in terms of appliances. A nice touch was that everything the previous guests had left was there for our use, such as dry goods and condiments. Invariably you buy too much stuff at the supermarket, and very often the owners or managers of these villas just clear everything out at changeover. Here the store cupboard had loads of basics, which was really useful.
There was a large living room with comfy sofas, where you could sit and watch the flat-screen TV or use the WiFi.
The pool is lovely - a perfect size and temperature, and there are pool toys available for kids. There were plenty of comfortable sun loungers, and at night the whole area is beautifully illuminated and looks magical.
I think our favourite place was the pool bar where we would sit for morning coffee and evening 'happy hour', before eating at the outdoor dining area. You can hook up your MP3 player and argue with the rest of the family about whose choice of music will reverberate around the pool area.
All in all - I wish I was back there and I really envy the lucky people who are there now.