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“Honeymoon” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Vila Joya

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Vila Joya
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Praia da Gale, Albufeira 8201-902, Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #14 of 162 Hotels in Albufeira
London
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Honeymoon”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2012

We were very well welcomed.
Not only very well welcomed, but as well very happy with the excellent display of food for breakfast, views, diner and room service.

They are one off.
The staff was very polite and me and my wife enjoyed it very much.

Room Tip: If you go there and you want to feel completely free is better to have your own car. The room with...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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101 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
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English first
Sitges, Spain
Top Contributor
263 reviews 263 reviews
67 hotel reviews
Reviews in 93 cities Reviews in 93 cities
170 helpful votes 170 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2012

We took a half board package with dinner. We had a wonderful welcome and a fabulous room with a view over the sea leading out onto the terrace and gardens. The room was average, but the bathroom is in serious need of updating. Shower curtains (that don't fit) in 5 star hotels in Europe is an absolute no no. The staff were lovely, very welcoming and hard working but there one or two minor let downs. Missing our breakfast order on the bedroom door is a big error for a hotel of this standard. When we went to pay, the lack of prices for alcohol both with lunch and dinner revealed the gotchas. 29€ for a glass of red wine with lunch and 183€ for the pairing of wines with dinner made this overnight stay nearly 1000€.
I have to say it was a very lovely break for my wife and, very relaxing but it comes at a cost. If you're not short of money you will probably enjoy staying here. Looking at some of the indications of average prices, you might find a better web site deal than what we paid on the hotel site. However beware the hidden cost, particularly wines which are exorbitant for this part of the Euro zone. Wines and taxes do not cost that much here.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2012

They get an "A" for effort, but you'll fall in love with what Vila Joya could be, not what it is. Bottom line:

1) The room decor is out of date and feels cheap. The bathrooms are especially inconvenient with outdated plumbing.

2) The staff is top-notch. SUPER nice and accommodating. Food is excellent.

3) It feels like they're going for a "homey" hotel, but they miss the mark because they try to mix way too many different styles in one small place and end up with a confusing ambiance.

4) The town surrounding the Vila feels like a poor Latin town from the 1980's, which is reflective of the poor economic times they are having. There's not a lot to do and we found ourselves a little uncomfortable in the area.

5) The rooms are not quiet at ALL. If the people downstairs are having any kind of celebration or talking loudly, you'll hear it all. If the staff walks the corridors or does anything, you hear it.

6) The wi-fi was pretty slow, but that may be indicative of the region.

Overall, they are making a good attempt at having a resort, but they need to invest in new decor, sound-proofing the rooms, bring some more light into the the whole hotel and offering other things to do in the area around the hotel so you're not bored.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Preston, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2012

Having travelled extensively throughout Europe, and notching up an incredible 21 stars last year, my palette for good food is demanding to say the vary least.

I eat at Vila Joya last week with my partner, whist we were staying nearby on business.

I am unable to comment on the bedrooms, but if the food is anything to go by then you're in for a real treat.

I have to stay, for me, this was by far the best restaurant I have ever eaten in. The service was impeccable, the setting was ' paradise' as was the food.

A trip to the wine seller, was sublime, nothing was too much trouble. During our experience, the clientele was all German, which for me demonstrates quality. If its good enough for them.....!

I will certainly return, but next time, I will book a room.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
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Derby, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2012

Having holiday'd in Barbados for over 30 visits we wanted to find somewhere nearer to the UK and get rid of the long haul flight.
We went to VilaJoya for Sunday lunch whilst staying last year (2010) at the Villa Vermont, Quinta da Lago and Vila Joya enticed us back for a short 'taster' stay in November 2011 during which we suprisingly even managed a couple of days on the sundbed.
The staff, the food, the service, the setting,cleanliness and ambience were second to none!!
We are returning again in May 2012 and will try to ensure we manage to have at least 2 stays a year.
It is SO relaxing. If you are looking for somewhere to relax and be looked after then look no further.
Top Class!!

Room Tip: We stayed in room number 7 and have requested that room again. It is placed on the west and is in a...
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Porto, Portugal
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2012

This is for sure one of the most special places in Portugal. Not only is still a different piece of Algarve, it has one of the best restaurants. We usually go for dinner on 29th August for my wedding anniversary and the endless number of courses in a delight for senses. The place with its priviledged location in the top of a cliff, is romantric, exclusive , peaceful. The service is extraordinary although we miss the previous butler which would greet us with: Welcome to paradise! The beach is wonderful and quite enough. This is a place forgotten from the rest of the tipycal busy Algarve.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Los Angeles, CA
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2012

Many pluses here, a few minuses.... Let's get the minuses out of the way quickly:

This is a very romantic place, though while we were on our honeymoon, I will admit that we felt 'underage' ... and we are not even the "go out and drink" type of young couple... we are much more low-key. So in some ways, this was the perfect setting (quiet, no clubs around, just great food and wine and the sound of crashing waves), even though during dinners we felt inexplicable out of place due solely to the other clientele staying there at the time (quite a bit older (and wealthier!) than we were). For this reason, I feel as though this may not be the best place to bring your kids. If you feel like having a romantic one-on-one getaway at a unique place with a KILLER restaurant, then this is the perfect place.

The rooms were FINE, though nothing particularly special (aside from their view). Our queen size bed was two smaller beds pushed together. Size was quite small, and not too many bells and whistles when it comes to amenities and luxuries.

But enough of the negatives... here are the positives...

Their restaurant is to die for. In fact, it was one of our best meals (if not THE best) of our 30 day, around-the-world honeymoon which included Fiji, New Zealand, Sydney, Hong Kong, London, Cairo, Madrid, and Lisbon.

ALSO, the location to the water and the access to the beach, etc are wonderful.

And MOST IMPORTANTLY, the entire staff is courteous, go out of their way to be helpful, and really make your stay pleasant and wonderful. A waiter recommended a glass of wine with dinner... and after I had returned to the USA, I still remembered that wine. I called the property months later and asked to see if they could locate that wine, and they did. Amazing, especially considering I had checked out months before.

THESE AFOREMENTIONED POSITIVES more than make up for the 4 stars, and definitely do not make me hesitate to rate this FIVE STARS....

Strictly from a property and amenities standpoint, I'm not sure about the value here... and even the food and drink on the property are fairly overpriced. They seem to price themselves closer to Paris or London standards (who knows, many of their clientele may come from there) and not so much Portugal standards. This place was one of the most expensive places we stayed during our entire honeymoon (including more than the Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong or the Four Seasons in Sydney), so it's not for those looking to stay on budget.

If you can afford it, go for a bigger room. Ours was pretty small (one of the cheaper rooms). This property is rather a spare-no-expense type of price range, so if you CAN spare-no-expense, then this is a great and memorable option.

If you are counting your pennies, and are on a trip where you'd prefer to pick and choose your battles regarding when-to-splurge and when to save, I'd say this: stay somewhere else, but SPLURGE IN THE RESTAURANT.

The restaurant really was awesome. Two Michelin Stars.

Staff was superb.

Room Tip: If you can afford it, do not get their cheapest rooms, as they are quite small and have a small balc...
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  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vila Joya

Address: Praia da Gale, Albufeira 8201-902, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Albufeira
#8 Spa Hotel in Albufeira
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Albufeira
#10 Luxury Hotel in Albufeira
#22 Romantic Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Vila Joya 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
One of the top 5 star hotels in Algarve, Vila Joya resembles a small oriental palazzo and is nestled in a breathtaking garden setting on a cliff with stunning views facing the sea. Winner of the 2009 World’s Leading Boutique Resort Award, this Albufeira beach resort also boasts one of the top Michelin Restaurants in Portugal and features luxurious spa resort accommodations, exclusive golf packages, and rejuvenating body treatments. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vila Joya Albufeira, Portugal - Algarve
Vila Joya Hotel Albufeira

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