We are just back from a 10 day stay in Sol Flor da Rocha in a 1 bedroom apartment. The apartment itself was very spacious. It had a good sized hallway for storing the cases in. The bathroom was large with a great shower. The bedroom had twin beds and a couple of sets of drawers and also had a small balcony. The living area was large enough for a pull-out sofa bed, dining table with 6 chairs, TV and the open-plan kitchen. The kitchen itself was well stocked and had plenty of cutlery, plates, utensils etc. There was a large fridge with a box freezer, microwave, toaster, kettle and 2 ring hob. The balcony from the living area was large enough for 2 chairs and a table.
I thought the location of the hotel was great as you were a 5 minute walk to the beach. The beaches here are amazing and very clean. It is around a 20 minute walk to get to the large supermarket. I would suggest this if you are going to be there for any more than a week. You're better to get down there and stock up and just get a taxi back rather than going to the smaller more expensive supermarkets near the hotel. I think we about 5 euros for a taxi back. To walk to the supermarket, come out of the entrance to Sol Flor Da Rocha and turn right then take a left. Walk up the road past the club praia mar hotel and you'll end up at a dual carriageway. Turn right there and walk along and go straight through the big roundabout you come to. Keep walking down and you'll eventually end up at a bit that has a McDonald's, Lidl and the main shopping centre which has the Continente supermarket as well as a sports shop, pharmacy, cinema and a washing/ironing service.
The maids were in our room every day to clean (including the Sunday we were there) and I think the hotel policy is to change towels twice a week and bed linen once a week. The rooms and the public areas in the hotel were always well cleaned. The pool area is a good size and I think the drinks were only about 1.50 for a coke or 2 euros for a pint.
The one thing to keep in mind is that this hotel doesn't have air con. It gets VERY hot in Praia da Rocha at night and even having the patio door wide open at night doesn't really help. The best bet you can have is to keep the sun shutters completely closed during the day then only open them when the sun is going down. Having a cold shower just before bed helped me out too. If you think it would be a problem, the Continente supermarket might sell fans. Next time, I'll probably just go somewhere with air con.
Our room was on the West side of the hotel on the 5th floor above the entrance. This meant we got the sun in the evening which was nice when you were getting ready but also meant the entire place got warmed up by the sun and left it roasting trying to go to bed. If you're going to be sleeping with the patio door open, keep in mind that there are a LOT of seagulls flying about all hours of the night which are quite loud. You will also have random drunk people walking to various hotels making noise and the sound of mopeds. I brought some disposable earplugs I bought off ebay which meant this didn't bother me - i still didn't get a great sleep any of the nights though due to the heat so keep in mind that no aircon means you'll have warm, loud nights - you have been warned.
Praia da Rocha itself has amazing beaches which are huge - you will have to go down quite a lot of steps to get to them from the strip as the strip sits atop a cliff next to the beach. 2 sun beds with a parasol and tables were 10 euros for the day which I thought was worth it as you get table service. We used the one just to the east of the looking point with the white beds/parasol and green mats. The guy Michael was always around and you could just shout him to go up and get you food/drink from one of the beach cafes.
For anyone who is unsure of prices around here, I'll rhyme off some that I remember from various places.
9" pizza, 2 cokes, 2 large beers - 12 euros
Soup - 2-4 euros
Pasta dish - 6-8 euros
Steak - 12-17 euros
Soft drink - 2-3 euros
Large beer - 3-3.50 euros
A lot of them run happy hours (check signs outside) where you'll get a large beer for a euro. I found the Super Bock to be nicer than Sagres. Outside of happy hour, you'll be paying 2-3 euros a pint but mostly 3 euros in the nicer bars. A vodka/coke is probably about 3 euros as well but with a huge measure.
Local small supermarket:
5L water - 80c
500ml can super bock - 1.10 euros
food is generally quite expensive
24x330ml cans super bock - 6.49 euros
significantly cheaper for food
The Lidl carries the same stock as the UK at similar prices (i.e. cheap).
The restaurants we found good were (in order of preference):
Casa da Rocha (when walking to the beach from the hotel, turn right after the crazy orange stand - you'll know the stand I mean. Walk along a bit and Casa da Rocha is on the left by the stalls). They had great soup, bolognese and steak. The peppercorn sauce on the steak was amazing. The piri piri chicken is nice too. Keep in mind that for parties larger than 2, you will probably need to book a table in advance as this place is always busy. Probably some of the best views from a restaurant in praia as well as great food.
Cafe del Mar - Go left after the orange stand, walk along the main strip and this is on your right. The speciality here is seafood but we kept eating the flamed pepper steak. The guy brings this out to you and finishes off your steak next to your table and prepares the pepper sauce.
Titanic - Best to google this one to find where it is but I think you turn left at the orange stand, walk along the main strip then turn left at the Irish bar. Titanic looks a bit weird from the outside (it seems to sit on the bottom level of a block of apartments) but don't let that put you off. The food was good and service was first class.
The burger ranch place is decent if you're looking for a quick snack as was the "fresh & light" crepe/slushy place.
The places we ate that weren't so good are the Italian next to Casa da Rocha and also the place that sits behind the Italian (there is a PR guy for it who will usually try and grab you before you can get to Casa da Rocha or the italian). Vinhos Comidas was also a disappointment. The bolognese from there was like the Heinz stuff from the tin.
One thing I would bring plenty of is sun lotion and medication. Sun lotion was really expensive (around 12-18 euros for a small bottle of decent branded lotion). The only place I encountered that had anything cheaper was Lidl but that was all high factors (30 and 50) and they were 5 euros per bottle but they didn't have much stock so I wouldn't rely on that. I ended up buying a bottle of factor 15 malibu for 12 euros. Just before leaving for Portugal, it was in superdrug in a 3 for £10 promotion so just make sure you're well stocked up. Shampoo, deoderant etc. is cheap in the big supermarket so if you're worried about baggage allowance, I'd leave that stuff at home and just buy it on your first day.
We were there from mid-late June 2011 and you will not need jackets or jumpers. If you're taking trousers, make sure they're light. It is always warm here so it's a complete waste taking anything like that. All the male customers in restaurants are wearing shorts/flip-flops so casual is definitely ok here.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located 600 metres from the Praia da Rocha beach, the Flor da Rocha offers spacious apartments with kitchens and balconies.The Flor Da Rocha Apartments are situated 3 km from Portimão’s city centre. There are many restaurants, minimarkets and shops within a 5-minute walk from the property.Located 600 metres from the Praia da Rocha beach, the Flor da Rocha offers spacious apartments with kitchens and balconies.The Flor Da Rocha Apartments are situated 3 km from Portimão’s city centre. There are many restaurants, minimarkets and shops within a 5-minute walk from the property.The apartments have private bathrooms, satellite TVs and safes. There is a 24-hour reception.Guests can enjoy the outdoor swimming pool or play a game of tennis on the tennis courts. Children will enjoy the children’s pool and the ice creams aLocated 600 metres from the Praia da Rocha beach, the Flor da Rocha offers spacious apartments with kitchens and balconies. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Hotels.com, LoveHolidays, Travel Republic (UK), Priceline, TravelUp, Odigeo, Traveltool, S.L.U. and HotelQuickly so you can book your Flor da Rocha reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Sol Flor Da Rocha
- Flor Da Rocha Praia Da Rocha, Portugal - Algarve