Just returned home from a thoroughly enjoyable one week family holiday (via Thomson) at the Eden Mar / Porto Mare in Funchal, Madeira. The hotel, the room, the facilities, all round cleanliness, the food were all excellent and the staff and service received throughout the week were exceptional. I simply can't state highly enough the service we received from every member of staff we encountered at the hotel throughout the whole week. All were extremely helpful, courteous, professional and sincere. This was by far the best service we have received at any holiday resort / hotel and it played a huge part in the enjoyment of the overall holiday experience.
We had a Junior Suite room which was exceptionally clean and very spacious and well situated on the 4th Floor therefore enjoying excellent sea and pool views. We dined on a Half board basis and ate for two nights at the Antlantida restaurant, which despite being a buffet style arrangement was superb. The choice and quality of the food offered was excellent and far exceeded our expectations, and was by far the very best 'buffet style' food I have experienced on a package holiday. We also dined here each day for the buffet breakfasts which were truly exceptional. The breakfast choice was enormous and catered for pretty much every possible requirement. The outside tables here were particularly nice as they overlooked the main resort swimming pool. We dined for the remaining five nights at the on-site a la carte 'Med Restaurant' where both the food and service were truly sensational, and I would highly recommend. (see my separate restaurant review).
The prices of food and drinks throughout were extremely reasonable considering the rating / quality of the hotel and there was also a daily 'happy hour' (5-6:30 PM) where all drinks and selected cocktails were half price.
As well as the 2 main outdoor pools (both of which were excellent), the hotel complex also had an excellent indoor Spa area with 2 indoor pools, various jacuzzi's, Gym etc as well as a further external pool linking to the main indoor pool. The outdoor areas had plenty of sun beds however there was the usual early morning scrum to reserve those in the best locations. This often led to many beds being reserved but unused for several hours and I even witnessed some 'serial offenders' (UK guests!!) whereby they reserved beds in both sun and shade positions and swapped beds throughout the day as the sun moved around the pool!! The irony of this is that the Hotel's policy actually forbids the reserving of sun beds, however they clearly do not police this. As I said earlier, there are plenty of beds and so I wouldn't let this put you off, however it is a slight annoyance and I thought it was worthy of mention in this review. All pool towels were provided by the hotel so no need to take any with you as part of your luggage etc.
Worthy of mention also was the gardens, which the hotel complex was set within. Quite simply a magnificent array of plant species etc, throughout and all kept exceptionally tidy and perfectly manicured. Even if you were not at all interested in gardens or plants etc, you could not fail to be impressed by the standard to which all were kept within the setting of the hotel grounds.
Evening entertainment was low key but tasteful and was always concluded by midnight, whereby the various bars closed also. The demographic of the hotel was definitely towards more mature people, although there were a fair amount of families and couples also. The hotel was also geared up mainly for British guests, however there were lots of other European guests also which was great. The atmosphere at the hotel was always calm, quiet and relaxed and there was never even a hint of excessive noise / rowdy behaviour. And for those from the UK reading this review you can relax as you will be pleased to know there wasn't even the tiniest hint of there being any chav or Union Jack short wearing type guests around!!
We embarked on a couple of day excursions (under our own steam and not with Thomson) and there is lots to see and do in and around Funchal if chilling by the pool is not your only holiday requirement. One such trip was to the Funchal Cable Car / Monte (see my separate review) which was excellent value for money and well worth experiencing. We also took one of the many open top bus excursions to see the main sights of Funchal. The Hotel also provided free daily courtesy buses to and from Funchal, which was an excellent touch.
In terms of other on-site activities, within the hotel complex and aside from the main pool / Spa facilities, there was also mini-golf, golf practice facilities, tennis, table tennis, pool table, scuba diving facilities amongst other things available if required (although I was far too busy relaxing to try any of these personally!!) Wi-fi / Internet was also available in the main reception areas of the hotel but not in the rooms. Some work was ongoing throughout our stay to install wi-fi within the rooms although I'm not sure when this will eventually be available
All in all, this was a near perfect holiday, with the facilities / arrangements at the hotel covering just about anything you would need to enjoy a relaxing holiday, and in particular both the food and the staff being exceptional. I would therefore highly recommend this hotel / holiday to anyone. We are already making plans to return.
We had a Junior Suite on 4th Floor (Room 1409) with superb sea and pool views and late afternoon / e...
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Thank you so much for your recent stay at Eden Mar and for the comprehensive review about it and shared on tripadvisor.
About the sunbeds we are looking for a more effective solution to control it.
We will be most pleased to see you around soon,
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.