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“Just what the Doctor ordered!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Cliff Bay (Porto Bay)

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The Cliff Bay (Porto Bay)
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Estrada Monumental, 147, Funchal, Madeira 9004-532, Portugal   |  
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5% discount
Ranked #4 of 89 Hotels in Funchal
Essex
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Just what the Doctor ordered!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2008

Booked through Thomson as a pure relaxation and chill holiday as we both work full time and don't get to spend much time on our own without the dreaded teenage kids!
The hotel:
Good Points:
1. The food is the best I have ever tasted abroad; so much variety that even the most fussy could find something. Always hot, displayed well and tasted amazing most of the time.
2. Cleanliness; rooms and public areas faultless
3. Rooms - superb. We paid extra for a sea view and were glad we did. Large balcony and very large room
4. Service - very good, although a few waiters a little ott!
5. Wine waiters knew their stuff and were able to select suitable wines
6. Evening entertainment - In the bar there were usually chilled singers or small bands with excellent music and talent.
7. A really good atmosphere/ambience throughout

Bad Points:
1. A good half hour walk into Funchal, and not suitable for the unfit or elderly as it is a steep hill back. There is a courtesy bus but we did not use it at it did not run as frequent as it could have done
2. After about 3-4 days we had covered most of Funchal, so although the hotel was superb, I think you would need to be prepared to bus or taxi elsewhere to avoid getting bored
3. The GERMANS! No problem with Germans BUT, why oh why did the pool attendents not remove all the towels on the deckchairs!!!! They were put on them in the early morning, then the culprits would turn up after their day trips late afternoon and use them. Ridiculous! On busy days it was difficult to find a deckchair and hubby refused the 'if you can't beat um join em' attitude of some, so we had to take a risk and hope we could find two deckchairs free.
4. The Spa is extremely expensive. I had two identical Face, Head and Back Massage treatments at 105 euros( Yes, Iknow, but I do work hard!), and whilst one was amazing, (ask for Susanna), the other, done by another lady, was really not that good at all.
5. The drinks and snacks were expensive both in the hotel and Funchal.
6. Petrol was the same price as here!!!!

  • Liked — The food!
  • Disliked — Too far from Funchal
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,619 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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Cheshire
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
77 hotel reviews
Reviews in 76 cities Reviews in 76 cities
64 helpful votes 64 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2008

We agree with the other reviewers and simply say the hotel is excellent. We stayed in an upper floor room and this gave us access to the better restaurant for breakfast. This was a very pleasant start to the day.
Had a great evening at the small local restaurant. Turn left as you leave the hotel and it is on the roadside on the left.

  • Liked — Overall excellent quality
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2008

Have stayed many times at the Cliff Bay and am never disappointed. The hotel is in a great location with views over Funchal and out to see. Rooms are exceptionally large and beautifully decorated. Public areas too, are lovely and spacious. The staff are attentive and friendly.

Food at Cliff Bay is a high point - the breakfast buffet cannot be faulted with its amazing selection of hot and cold food, fruits, breads etc. In the evening the Rose Garden restaurant provides an amazing selection via it's (eat as much as you like) buffet - the food is of the highest quality. For more formal dining - the Gallo D'Oro is excellent food - and not over expensive.

Pool areas are good and never too crowded (though a bit busier on Sundays), and sea access is a bonus.

We've stayed at the Madiera Carlton, and also at Reids, but rate Cliff Bay highest - now wouldn't stay anywhere else on the island.

Oh - and when you are return guests - they give you lots of freebies (including meals and wine)...

And you don't have to hire a car to get into Funchal - there's a bus stop outside with frequent services to and from the town. Can't praise this hotel enough.

  • Liked — Like it all!
  • Disliked — I have nothing bad to say about this hotel.
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2008

My husband and I spent two weeks with his family at this hotel in September 2007 and loved every minute of it. Madeira has a long-standing reputation for quality hotels (e.g. Reid's Palace) so we had high expectations. The Cliff Bay certainly lived up to those expectations and deserves its 5* rating. The rooms and public areas are stylish but comfortable and the staff were very professional. Breakfast was something to look forward to every morning, with a huge selection of quality fresh food. The hotel's cliff-top position makes for beautiful views over Funcal and the Atlantic with lovely sunsets. The gardens are full of exotic flowers and we enjoyed the choice of pool areas, particularly the indoor/outdoor pool which was a great option during the occasional tropical rain shower. The spa was a real highlight and one of the best I have ever been to. In summary, this hotel had all the extra touches you would expect from a 5*. The best example of this was that reception noticed from my passport that it was my birthday during our holiday and I came back to our room that day to find a beautifully decorated chocolate cake and card compliments of the Management - a very nice touch!

  • Liked — The beautiful location on the cliff and stunning gardens
  • Disliked — Leaving!
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
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London
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2008

This was our first trip to Madeira and we could not have wished for a better hotel, the staff were very freindly and more than helpfull, the facilities and food were second to none and we cannot wait to return.

  • Liked — Location and views
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2008

We stayed at the Cliff Bay during the last week of June, and would have loved to stay longer. The staff, hotel, pool and spa faccilities were impeccable, yes it is mostly for the over 50's but even though we are over 50, we don't feel it and certainly didn't at the Cliff Bay. The breakfast is amazing and you can have champers every morning if you wish. We only had one meal at the Rose Garden restaurant, it was OK for an international buffett, but not really worth the quite high cost, when there are such lovely restaurants in the old town. We dined at the Casa Portuguesa (old town) one night and it was really good, very authentic. Another night at the Lido we dined at Moby Dick's, even though it sounds like a chippy on Blackpool beach it was excelent for seafood. We had a boat trip with a company called 'Gallauoe' (sp) which was brilliant - we saw at least 30 dolphins. We also had a night at the Casino, which is dinner and show. The dinner was OK, not great, but the show was very good. The hotel put on a dinner dance which was situated at the Blue Lagoon restaurant. It's a 4 course meal with wine and very enjoyable, the hotels musical duo play all the old favourites and we were all up dancing, a good night out and you only had to wander upstairs to bed! All in all the Cliff Bay is an excelent choice of hotel, (if you can book a junior suite its worth it) and we are thinking about going back soon. There are loads of steps which provide great views but there is a lift for those who, like me, preferred to keep their breath! Only one critisism, the bar on the terrace was lovely for a drink after returning from a late dinner, but we noticed the staff were a little slower in serving than any other time of the day, still only a small thing!

Stayed June 2008
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
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Chester
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2008

We have stayed in well over 1,000 hotels worldwide and this was up there with the best of them for over 50's. It has great rooms, great views, superb outdoor breakfasts and a perfect location. We walked along the coast towards the west and looked at other hotels and we though this was one of the best. The harbour has some excellent restaurants and the town is delightful to stroll around, with the bonus of a superb mountain scenery setting and a great day out up the cable car. No party scene and most tourists are "more mature", so there are no worries about safety.
An excellent hotel in a great location in a superb destination.

  • Liked — Quiet, peaceful, luxurious
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Cliff Bay (Porto Bay)

Address: Estrada Monumental, 147, Funchal, Madeira 9004-532, Portugal
Phone Number:
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#3 Family Hotel in Funchal
#4 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
#4 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
#8 Business Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Cliff Bay (Porto Bay) 5*
Number of rooms: 200
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Atlantic Ocean stretches as far as the eye can see at the foot of The Cliff Bay which is perched on the top of a natural promontory. The hotel is surrounded by gardens with innumerable secluded corners and centenary palm trees extending to the very edge of the cliff face. The panorama is completed by a magnificent view over the bay of Funchal to the left of the hotel.The most influential restaurant guide in the world, the Michelin Guide, has awarded a star to Il Gallo d'Oro, The Cliff Bay's gourmet restaurant run by Chef Benoît Sinthon. This is Madeira's first and only star ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Cliff Bay - Porto Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Porto Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Madeira
The Cliff Bay (Porto Bay) Madeira/Funchal

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