Just come back from a half term trip to Martinhal. This is our third trip and on this visit we stayed in one of the Pinewood villas. They are fantastic and come with their own small pool which is great for the children. The main room is massive and 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms all a great size. There is a wrap around balcony on the first floor but because the weather wasn't brilliant we didn't use it. There is also a terrace and outside seating so we did eat outside a few times which was lovely.
The Pinewood villas are a slightly farther walk from the hotel pool and beach but closer to the main square and the all important blue room.
This time we went with friends and 2 children (aged 11 & 7) and although it rained several times there was still plenty to keep the children occupied. We only resorted to a pay for view movie once!
The drive from Faro airport is very straightforward and takes about 1 hour 20 minutes if you drive at a leisurely pace.
Check in was seamless and the children loved going on the golf buggies from the hotel check in to the villa. The receptionist showed us all around and made sure we knew how everything worked and also sorted the pool, which looked very inviting. I think the pool heating maybe turned on when you arrive as it was a bit chilly to start and was definitely warmer by the end of the week although that could be all in my mind.
The main asset of this resort is the staff team. Without fail all the staff were charming and friendly. They were always keen to help and were great with the children.
However there are a few snags I'd like to mention for management to take note of....
1) No milk:
We had our children booked into tennis academy for three mornings (recommended) and the 'Mums' wandered into the club house cafe at Club 98 to have a coffee. We were told that they couldn't make any coffee as there was no milk. Strange as there was a shop and restaurant within a few hundered yards but okay.The second morning we once again went into the cafe to have some coffee. We were once again told that there was no milk. When I asked could they not get some..I was told that the resort was closing shortly so all supplies were being wound down. Odd business as for the sake of a pint of milk they lost out on the sale of eight coffees. We didn't ask on day three!!!
2) SPA lunch closure:
We booked some treatments in the SPA and although the system is computerised within 5 minutes of returning to our villa after making the bookings in person, we were told there was a problem and we'd have to change them. I had a 30 minute massage booked at 12.30pm which was lovely and very relaxing and afterwards I was shown to a recliner and given some tea. I lay and chatted with a friend for a few moments savouring our respective treatments and enjoying the peace and quiet. Then the receptionist approached us to apologise but the SPA closed for lunch between 1pm and 2pm so we'd have to leave.
I have no problem if the SPA closes but I do not think they should have taken my booking at 12.30pm without informing me that I'd be asked to leave almost immediately. It certainly was not the relaxing experience I was anticipating.
Also although we wanted to book more treatments we were told that they only had two therapists as everyone had gone on holiday so they couldn't fit us in. Once again a bit odd as this was during half term so relatively busy.
3) As Dunas-given wong dish
We ate in As Dunas a few times and always thoroughly enjoyed the food. On our last night we decided to go again and I opted for the Monk Fish with rice as one of the dishes. A very large dish arrived but was full of rice, prawns, crab claws, clams etc, no monkfish obvious to me. When I queried this with the waiter I was told that this was to give the monk fish extra flavour and the monk fish would be at the bottom. I started to eat the meal but after a bit more digging about in the pot and not finding any monkfish I called over another waiter and asked him where was the monkfish as I couldn't find any in the pot? He looked puzzled and said I was eating the shell fish rice stew! I said his colleague had told me it was the monkfish stew, but he just looked very embarrassed. He said he would replace it but it would take about 30 minutes to get me the monkfish stew. As everyone else had virtually finished their main courses I said I would stick with the fish stew. The chef came out and apologised but what was annoying was I wasn't even offered a glass of wine or other recompense even though I had queried the dish when it first arrived. The fish stew was fine but not what I ordered and it wasn't cheap.
These are a few examples of systems not quite working. Also the resort was obviously winding down, which gave a bit of a weird feeling and became annoying when you couldn't even get a coffee.
We will come again as the resort and staff are fantastic but I would not come again during October half term as the level of service was definitely in 'end of season mode' with supplies running out, restaurants closed and limited SPA provision.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel is the finest luxury family resort in Europe. Positioned within a protected natural park near the historic fishing port of Sagres, on Portugal’s unspoiled western Algarve coast, Martinhal is where luxury meets Nature. Martinhal welcomes families and couples, and the greeting is warm, open and generous. Guests feel at home. And it’s memorable. This is where life-long friendships will blossom, and where lasting impressions will be made. Stylish, contemporary architecture complements the organic personality of the resort, which has been shaped to blend effortlessly into the indigenous landscape. This is function and form at its best. This is sustainability. And Martinhal is more. For conferences, weddings and celebrations, Europe’s finest luxury resort sets the scene. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Martinhal Beach Resort And Hotel
- Martinhal Beach Hotel Sagres