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“Simple, comfortable, affordable mountain retreat”
Review of Hotel Encumeada

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Hotel Encumeada
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Ribeira Brava
Reviewed 13 March 2014

Shame on the visitors who have criticised this tranquil mountain retreat.
This is simple but well appointed base for walking and touring - you do need walking boots, and a car if you are to venture beyond the Encumeada pass. Simple, spotlessly clean rooms; lovely views; simple but satisfying breakfasts and evening meals; quietly professional and helpful staff, and the peace and quiet that comes from being miles (by fair roads) from town. Exceptionally good value for money.
We had a happy time here escaping the worst of the British winter weather, and will most certainly return.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Didact
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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49 - 55 of 181 reviews

Reviewed 30 December 2013

It was cold- the heating was hardly ever on.

The place is run down- old, stained carpets and furniture. Mold in the bathrooms.

Guests are treated as a burden- During our one week stay there was a wedding, a baptism, a birthday party and many Christmas bookings- the 'lounge'/ lobby was cleared of sofas and the tables set for the guests to dine so the restaurant could be used for functions. Basically eating we were eating in the reception area.

The food was variable. The breakfasts were the most disappointing- Egg shells in the scrambled eggs. Water not hot enough to make a cup of tea. Disgusting coffee. One type of cereal. Fake orange juice. No music or ambiance- silent, awkward and inhospitable.

The slow Wifi was only available within 6 feet of reception.

The location is picturesque. Good for hiking.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Simone S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2013 via mobile

This hotel location is great if you want to feel the real Madeira essence close to you. High up on the mountains stands this small hotel. I can't comment on the rooms as me and my family only use their restaurant facilities on Christmas and Easter. And theh are great! The food is amazing, from crab to shrimp to a variety of meats, plus polite service, always ver professional. I would highly recommend them.

  • Stayed: December 2013
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Thank 2DD2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 October 2013

we stayed here recently on bed and breakfast basis and upon arrival were pleasantly surprised by the dining area and reception/bar, the rooms however are not upto the same standard with ill-fitting carpets and a rock hard bed, but for the price you can't complain too much, it was clean and the views from the balcony are worth it! There was a wedding on the saturday night, but the only noise we heard was when we got woke up once about 1:30 by guests going noisily to their rooms, we just went back to sleep, not a big problem!
The food we found very good, we mainly ate a la carte which was very good value and always delicious, we did have the buffet one night but the food was all a bit soggy and we weren't keen on the deserts (just personal taste) so decided not to bother again. Breakfast we thought was actually very good, fresh bread, bacon or sausage, egg and the usual meat and cheese, plenty for anyone to choose from!
We soon realised that the staff were not infact rude (as can easily be assumed) but actually they are just not very outgoing, if you talk to them they are always polite and friendly and if you ask for any help (which we did several times) they will always do anything they can to help, especially Clive who went above and beyond for several guests.
The location really is quite remote, but if you're here for walking it's perfect, a 20min walk up the hill will get you to Encumeada Pass with a bar and also a souvenir shop that does drinks and snacks, there are 4 walks that start from right here and we did 2 of these (walking back the same way right to the hotel). There is a bus that stops literally outside the hotel door to take you to Sao Vicente or Porto Moniz, however be careful as some buses come back through the tunnel and not past the hotel, again reception staff will be most helpful in planning your journeys, on occasion we got the bus back to Ribeira Brava, had dinner there in the evening then got a taxi up the hill to the hotel.
Overall I would definitely recommend this hotel if you want something different, want to explore and do some walking, not if you want to sit in the sun or by a pool.

Room Tip: Our room was to the left of reception up the stairs, away from the dining rooms and we heard little...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank 00pooter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 October 2013

I stayed at Hotel Encumeada for 2 nights.
My single room was very spacious, very clean and had a large balcony with breath taking mountain views; comfy bed and adequate bathroom.
The restaurant and bar prices are quite reasonable; the food was excellent. First night I ate "a la carte" second night it was a "buffet" with a good choice of fish and meat dishes and a limited vegetarian choice. Plus some delicious deserts!! The wine was also reasonably priced.
Breakfast was ok, but nothing special.
You cannot get a better mountain location if you go to Madeira with the intention of doing some mountain walks. A car is essential though.
I felt that the hotel staff just needed a bit of motivation; once you start a conversation they are actually extremely friendly and very knowledgeable.
I have not hesitation in returning to this property.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank Seawave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2013

Firstly the good points. The hotel is up in the mountains amongst stunning mountainous scenery. As long as you have a hire car it is an excellent base to explore all of Madeira, far better than being based in Funchal. It is primarily aimed at the hiking fraternity. The rooms are basic but clean. Beware that the hotel do not provide the usual shampoo etc, just basic liquid soap for the shower and hand basin.

The main bad point is the breakfast which was basic and uninspiring. Cornflakes, yoghourt, processed cheese slices, processed ham slices, dodgy scrambled eggs, and plasticky fried eggs and bacon. Not forgetting the powdered orange "juice". Fortunately I like yoghourt.....

For those who "need" to stay in touch with the outside world the WiFi signal is only available at the reception area.

All in all a good hotel which could be very good with a little effort.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Ian M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2013

Recently returned from 7 days half board with my wife on a last minute deal with Broadway Travel. Great Price! It is my opinion that you MUST have a car as this hotel is way up in the mountains at 1900 meters altitude in the middle of nowhere!
Its very seclusion is its attraction for us at least...
Scenery is stunning! Wake up to nothing but a distant bird singing and looking down! at the clouds in the valley below you as you are in sunshine..!
There is very little light pollution and both of us were on our balcony looking up at the myriad of stars forming the milky way above us.
Ok back to earth..this is a three star hotel and the hotel staff really do try hard. It looks very smart on the outside but is dated when you get inside. All the areas of the hotel are clean and tidy..not spotless but for the grade fine. During weekdays the hotel runs on few staff but on weekends this increases as every weekend a wedding party takes over the hotel! A comment from a staff member,"You would think that there is nowhere else for people to have a wedding reception but here,its crazy!" Its Location Location Location! I think this is where the hotel makes its money. This and Christenings during the week which also are very plush and well attended. When functions go on at the hotel you as a guest get the impression that you are tolerated, dont get me wrong we were well treated as usual but for example we had our dinner location changed three times in as many days to fit in with the above parties which had booked the main rooms of the hotel for their functions. We also experienced the two types of food layout. If more guests were booked in then it was buffet style but if few guests then "a la carte" from a set menu was offered. Personally we preferred the buffet style because it did give you more choice as my wife is a vegetarian. A genuine criticism I feel here is that the food on the buffet layout is all prepared and put out for dinner 30 minutes before the start and kept hot underneath by candlepower. Dinner is available for several hours but it is the same food that you would eat regardless if you went down at the start or 2 hours later.
Go early for a resemblance of freshness although it has been out even then for at least 30 minutes.
This said the food never gave us any stomach problems.
Perhaps halving the amounts out at the start and cooking the remainder later for replenishing the buffet might be better,but I suspect that this is not available through lack of staff.
The hotel layout is not for anyone with real mobility problems as there are three floors and no lifts. You are expected to carry your own cases as the hotel is only 3 star. Our room(on the second floor) was clean,tidy and for the price and grade of the hotel good. Not large but perhaps on par or slightly smaller than the size of a travelodge twin room. Maid service was good and the room was cleaned and made up daily. If placed on the floor the towels were changed as often as you need. The bedding however was not changed throughout the 7 days. we were there. It may just have been our fortune but I can say that the twin beds we had were in good condition but had quite simply the hardest mattresses that I have ever slept on! You can get used to them but it was bliss when we got home!
On the electrical side the TV in the room although digital,only had BBC and Sky news channels for UK holidaymakers. If you like the news fine... but that is it! for those interested the old computer in reception available for guests worked fine for me and there IS free wifi available but only in the vicinity of reception..even the above computer had a wifi dongle attached. So take your smartphone/laptop it will work within about 15yds of the managers office opposite reception. My phone had a massive signal(orange) and I later spotted the masts on the mountaintop just above our hotel.
Sorry it is a long report but overall this was an enjoyable break away from everything. A stunning location very quiet, polite staff who work very hard to keep the place running. This is not for young people who want to enjoy the nightlife..the only nightlife around here are the owls and wild animals in the woods right up to the hotel! Yes it could do with a makeover inside but everything worked in the room and we came back refreshed(with a bit of backache) We both would go again next week if given the money!

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from the dining rooms where the wedding receptions take place! The top floor app...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank KenUsher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Encumeada

Address: Feiteiras, Serra d' Agua, Ribeira Brava, Madeira 9350-000, Portugal (Formerly Estalagem Encumeada)
Region: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Ribeira Brava
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Ribeira Brava
Price Range: £23 - £42 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Encumeada 3*
Number of rooms: 49
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Also Known As:
Estalagem Encumeada Hotel Ribeira Brava
Residencial Encumeada Ribeira Brava
Hotel Encumeada Madeira/Ribeira Brava

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