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“Fine for what we needed!” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Monica Isabel Beach Club

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Monica Isabel Beach Club
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Forte Sao Joao | Areias de Sao Joao, Albufeira 8200-325, Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #122 of 163 Hotels in Albufeira
Halifax, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Fine for what we needed!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

We stayed here in November (14th - 21st). It was booked last minute and super cheap! We had read the reviews before setting out, so had an idea of what to expect. First of all, I have to comment on the location of this hotel - it is perfect for both the old town and the strip! We were also lucky enough to pick a week of perfect weather, and the first 3 days were spent sunbathing on the beach!

We were originally placed outside of the main hotel, but requested a room change on our second day due to a broken air con vent that was letting in cockroaches! Our new room was in the main building, very spacious and much nicer, although the 'double bed' was 2 singles pushed together. The balcony was a real sun trap, and the kitchen was fine for basic meals and storing the Kopparberg!

We chose self catering, but mostly ate in the old town, or on the strip. In our experience the staff were neither rude, not abrupt, which is what a few reviewers have commented on. They were, however, very slow at tending to the lines of customers at reception. For what we paid though, I really cannot complain.

Monica Isabel offers free WiFi - this does not extend to most areas of the hotel, so please be aware! The entertainment tent outside has the strongest signal, and was often filled with people on their phones/tablets, confirming their return transport, or looking for the best local cuisine!

We never ate in the panoramic restaurant, but we did go up to explore and the views are absolutely amazing. I would recommend a visit just for the scenery!

If you are looking for a place to put your head after a day at the beach, or a night out drinking, then this hotel is for you. If you are looking to spend the whole week around the pool and enjoying evening entertainment and fancy hotel facilities, I would recommend you look elsewhere.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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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1,569 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (533)
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harrogate
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2014 via mobile

Well,where do you start writing a review about this place,firstly to the person who left a review a few columns down, a lot mustt of changed since you were here last year.
We have a one . bedroom apartment in m2 block..its pretty large a. spacious,no mould that I've seen ,,nice large balcony.
Also no bathroom door for first 5days and the maids walk in when fish fingers so songeel like with out knocking. ANNOYING
By the way I'm writing this while I'm here now


When booking the holiday I was aware that the kids club was closed,no probs don't,t have kids.

Wasn't aware that nearly everywhere was,no entertainment during day at all
Someone singing in even,thats it also a parrot show
Location is good if you want beach,on the door step and a great beach at that,
15-20 minutes either directon to the strip or albuifera old town,quickest way to old town is along the beach.
There is a free shuttle from hotel to old town several times aday
Hotel...overall old,out dated,mouldy and smelly
Indoor pool didnt venture because smelt excessively of chlorine.
Staff in general seem ok,restaurant manager,is miserable and just stands about watching people eat and come in and out ,very much like an eagle.
Food,,,pretty terrible,bland boring and not much choice,,,vegetable soup pretty much every meal every day,odd bits of pork,chicken lamb,never well cooked,if you like chips,you will love this place,,pizza..stodgy,fishfingers ,basic salad ,the burgers they do,I wouldn't feed them to my dog,vile.
Breakfast very basic,but there's something to eat,as there is with each meal...just
Overall I'd recommend a one bed apartment in m2 block self catering,don't waste your money on the rubbish they serve here,same goes with the drinks,god awful


Yet at the back of m2 block there is a 3* hotel called the auramar beach resort. A lot better quality for similar price.
Taxis are relatively cheap about 5euro will get you all over the town.
Ciggies are pretty much the same price everywhere
Between 38-45 euro depending on what you smoke
Golden virginia 75 euro
Overall i would not recommend this hotel to my worst enemy

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2014 via mobile

Stayed here the end of February with my husband thankfully it was just a week, we stayed in the main building in the basement just a view of a hedge,the room spacious with kitchen area, 2 single beds pushed together and very uncomfortable, maid service well let's slop a bit of water on the bathroom floor that should do it,we went all inclusive that was a joke thank god they had a microwave because the food was always warm, if u like hotdog sausage ham and cheese 4 breakfast your ok lunch and dinner where no better, the only bar open in the evening was like a canteen and the smell was so bad when u first walk in and still in the evening u have to drink out of plastic cups, overall could be a fantastic hotel needs a complete facelift, would I go back to Portugal def not this hotel and don't think I will return to Portugal in the near future.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Liverpool, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014

Have just arrived home from the worst Holiday I have ever had. Accommodation: There was mould on every wall in the apartment (which was supposed to be 3*) Even though when booking with Easyjet, we had booked a 4* Holiday (I don't think they know what 4* is). I had to get up at 7am every morning to get the first shower as the we had to wait 40minutes for the water to be hot enough again for the next shower, when questioned the staff were unhelpful stating there is a limit on the hot water! Resort: This resort is supposed to be open all year and yet we were constantly told that it was 'Out of Season'. The food is very poor, we paid for 'All Inclusive' but all the 'Bars' ie beach bars etc were closed, so we were unable to get any refreshments apart from meal times or in the evening Bar (dingy basement) which was also covered in mould. The dining room had spiders webs everywhere, we had to 'eat out' every day as it looked like the same food was being 'put out' day in day out. This was a tester for a Summer holiday to Portugal, thanks to this place I will never set foot in the place again, they should travel to Greece for lessons on how to provide a 3-4* holiday.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yeovil, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014

Me and a good friend booked a last minute deal to Portugal, we are in our early twenties.
Knowing it was the end of February we weren't expecting it to be overly busy, which it wasn't. That didn't bother us.

We were all inclusive and the food was nice, although the fruit selection consisted of only Apples & Pears which looked as though they had had better days.

The entertainment was laughable but the free Wifi was the best thing about the "Club 3000 Bar"

The hallways were dark and dingey, The room was bright although the door to the balcony was a bit of a pain as we had to fight to get it to lock.

As an all inclusive guest we expected tea/coffee making facilities in the room. This was not the case we had a full kitchen area, but nothing in it! Not even water.

The Pool was dirty as were the surrounding areas to it.

We had to ask for more toilet roll as our room wasn't seen to in the 4 days we stayed there.

The staff were miserable, I don't think I saw one of them smile.

There are some rather vocal chickens and dogs right next to the hotel, which had us awake at 4.30am every morning, and also when we were lounging on the beach.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

Me and my partner stayed in these apartments for a week in June 2013. I came to read through the reviews and I felt like I had to comment. The people who are leaving these comments must have stayed in an entirely different hotel. I was a bit worried after I read the reviews but I was very pleasantly surprised.

FOOD: The food here was pretty standard for an A/I resort. We always found something nice to eat at each meal and certainly didn't get any food poisoning. We did eat out a night but that was due to it being my birthday and we wanted something special. People who are commenting on the sausages, remember, you are not in the UK anymore. Don't expect UK food - I tried them and they were fine. The options available at the snack bar were good too. Kept going if you couldn't have been bother to go up to the restaurant.

ROOMS: We had booked a studio apartment and we were pleasantly surprised to be given a MASSIVE one bedroom apartment. It had everything that we needed - a fridge, separate kitchen area, nice comfy beds, aircon and a HUGE balcony. The balcony is almost double the size that I'm used to in other hotels. Some of the paint was a little bit flaky on the balcony, but when you pay a cheap price, don't expect a 5* hotel. This is the same for other resorts I have stayed in.

STAFF: The staff were wonderful. A special thanks to Fabio and Pedro who made our holiday special. I see that people had complained about some of the staff but we were polite, said please and thanks and made and effort to speak to them and we found they were very nice. Other people were quite rude to them, tutting and sighing even though the bar was packed and they were clearly rushed off their feet. They do a good job.

LOCATION: The hotel is a little bit away from the nightlife, but there is a bus into the strip and a taxi back was only afford 5 Euro. We made a few friends so it was only about a euro each home. Hotel is right on the beach which gave lovely views but as we don't really like the beach we were at the pool most times. I must admit that the large pool was very busy so we preferred to stay at the smaller pool beside Block M, and just walking down for food and snacks.

There was a large majority of French at this hotel which I didn't mind, we managed to have a few conversations and broken French and English and we met a few nice people. Do not believe the bad reviews about this hotel. If you place cheap prices do not expect a 5* hotel.

I would return to this hotel but I like to go to different places all the times but if I'm ever going back to Albufeira this is where I would return.

Thanks to all for a lovely trip!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MonicaIsabel, Front Office Manager at Monica Isabel Beach Club, responded to this review, March 6, 2014
Dear Guest,

It was a pleasure to meet you and thank you for taking your time to write your review.

Thank you for your kind words. We look forward to your spending time at Monica Isabel again in the future.

Sincerely,

Front Office
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2014

Words can not explain how bad this place is. Everything was dreadful. Bed smelt of someone's sweat. Room was covered in mould. We could not believe the disgusting food that was on offer, we ate out every day. Staff were hopeless and not interested in anything but perhaps because working in a place like that would pull anyone down. Shuttle bus held up to seven so always waiting for up to an hour. There is nothing good to say about this place. We had to queue for forty minutes to check in and then we were told rooms were not ready until three o'clock. 20 euros to hire a kettle to use on one hotplate and if you lose the receipt you don't get the money back even though you return the kettle. Bathroom disgusting, covered in mould, toilet seat chipped, sink broken, towels always felt damp and the water was always running cold.
This place should be closed down.

Room Tip: Just do not go to this place
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Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MonicaIsabel, Front Office Manager at Monica Isabel Beach Club, responded to this review, March 4, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking your time to write your review and please accept our sincerest apologies that we were unable to satisfy your needs during your stay.

Sincerely,

Front Office
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Monica Isabel Beach Club

Address: Forte Sao Joao | Areias de Sao Joao, Albufeira 8200-325, 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 High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#41 On the Beach Hotel in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Monica Isabel Beach Club 3*
Number of rooms: 61
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel includes Monica Isabel Beach Club 4 Stars (Aparthotel) and Monica Isabel Beach Club 3 Stars ( Tourist Apartments). It has a privileged location in Albufeira, on Albufeira beach and only 500 meters from “Avenida Sá Carneiro “a popular avenue (better known as The Strip to foreign visitors) which is filled with cafes, bars, restaurants and a wide variety of shops. The Albufeira Resort is central to traditional shopping areas, restaurants and bars from throughout the region and only 1.5 km from the Historic and Cultural Centre of Albufeira, the Mónica Isabel Beach Club offers a variety of services that allow your holiday or short week-end break to be unforgettable. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Monica Isabel Hotel Albufeira
Monica Isabel Aparthotel Albufeira
Monica Isabel Aparthotel Hotel Albufeira
Monica Isabel Beach Club Albufeira, Portugal - Algarve

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