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“Newly renovated, lovely location, but isolated” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel

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Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Praia Formosa, Funchal, Madeira 9000-247, Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #38 of 88 Hotels in Funchal
Vienna, Austria
Level Contributor
100 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“Newly renovated, lovely location, but isolated”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

I read many Trip Advisor reviews of this hotel before I went there, and I think many of the comments are either positive or negative depending on what the traveller is looking for. So I will try to be objectve so others can decide if it's right for them.

This hotel is not "family friendly," in that there's not much for young children to do (other than swim in the pool). Therefore, most of the guests or older or retired. This suited me and my partner very well, since we wanted peace and quiet, and no "programs" for children as we had experienced in other resort hotels. Each evening at 8:00 pm there is a music program in the reception/bar area, but otherwise there is no piped-in music or entertainment programs.

The location is right on the ocean, but just outside Funchal. So the view and sound of ocean are wonderful from the dining terrace, the pool and the rooms (all rooms and balconys face the ocean). But it's too far from the city to walk, and there isn't anything in the neighborhood.

However, there is a hotel bus that leaves for the center of Funchal every 45 minutes, starting at 9:00 am. If you want to get to the public bus system for hiking (as we did), this is rather inconvenient, because you won't catch a bus earlier than 9:30 or 10:00. But if you plan to spend time in Funchal, or will go on organized trips and excursions, then this is not a problem.

This hotel is also served directly by the AeroBus - the public bus to and from the airport. As of March 2013, the cost was 5 euros one-way and 9 euros round-trip.

The hotel was renovated recently, and re-opened at the beginning of March 2013, so it's very clean and in good shape. We found all of the personnel helpful and friendly, especially the people at reception. They seem to go out of their way to arrange excursions, rental cars and find information for you.

Each meal is a buffet. I usually don't like buffets because I find the food is average and not typical of the country. My partner was disappointed with the selection (he thought there should have been more choices), but I found that most of the dishes were prepared well. Although there weren't typical examples of Madeira cuisine (the range of seafood, for example), each meal had a choice of at least 2 meats and 1 fish. This would probably not be very good for vegetarians, however. The coffee was not typical of Portugal; it was from a coffee machine dispenser, and tasted somewhat burnt. The wines available for free (one white, one red) were good, but the same selection every day got boring. There is a selection of wines and other alcoholic drinks that can be bought from the bar, but we didn't want to do this at an "all-inclusive" resort.

Finally, overall both my partner and I enjoyed our stay at this hotel. Lovely location and quiet, with good food and comfortable rooms.

Room Tip: All the rooms face the ocean, and there's no music from the bar or the restaurant terrace. In wa...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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703 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (249)
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

Great hotel with very comfortable views. Very helpful and extremely friendly staff. The free bus service to Funchal also is very reliable. We are vegetarians and they made us what we asked for. Mr Leonel Goncalves- the head waiter for fantastic and so were the chefs. Highly recommended hotel

Room Tip: We had a room on the 7 th floor. Great views
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 19, 2013

My husband and I have been coming to this hotel for 6 years, usually January/February, but were unable to do this as it closed from November to March for refurbishing. We stayed elsewhere, but were delighted to find that it re-opened before we were due to return to the UK and were able to spend our last two nights in this welcoming hotel. The staff are of the highest quality and anxious to make guests feel happy and well looked after. Returning guests are recognised and greeted with affection, and it was a pleasure to find almost all the staff had returned after the closure. There were no major changes, but everything was freshly painted and there were several attractive additions (lighting, goldfish, striking murals on outside walls etc). Although this hotel is 10 to 15 minutes drive from the centre of Funchal, it has an excellent frequent shuttle service. It is situated adjacent to Formosa beach (pebbles) and sea bathing is possible in certain conditions. There are plenty of sunbeds surrounded by the gardens, and also an outdoor pool, heated in winter. Also available is a small gym, spa and beauty salon.
Food is buffet service, with a wide choice. Rooms are comfortable, all with balconies facing the sea and all areas are clean and well kept. There is live entertainment most evenings.
Many of the guests have visited the hotel before - a recommendation in itself. We are already looking forward to our next visit!

Room Tip: All rooms face the Atlantic, and the higher floors (4-7) give best views.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seixal, Portugal
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

I've stayed in this hotel for my first vacation with my baby boy and it was splendid. They have a great pool, very nice staff, great room, nice shower, wonderful view. The food was amazing, great variety. The biggest advantage was free bus ride to Funchal. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
fo_bay, Gerente de recepção at Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel, responded to this review, February 21, 2014
Dear Guest,
we are very pleased that you have had memorable moments with us.
Looking forward to welcome you again,
kind regards,

Rosa Nepomuceno
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Redditch, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2012

Hotel is somewhat isolated but has an excellent, very regular and equally reliable bus service to the marina in Funchal (approximately every 45 minutes). From there you are just minutes away from the cable car and farmers market. Buffet meals with a varied and wide selection, all inclusive tariff so excellent value for money. Most staff very friendly and helpful (1 or 2 exceptions) Despite being 'out of the way' there are some bar/restaurants not too far away and also good walks in both directions.

The last time we stayed in a studio room elsewhere we had to convert the sofa into our bed each night but not here, it was more of a bedroom with a small kitchenette area, all rooms with a sea view and balcony.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2012

Enjoyed two very happy weeks at this excellent hotel. Our accommodation was spacious and as it is an apart-hotel it had a fully equipped kitchen area although as an all-inclusive hotel this provision was perhaps superfluous. We found the public areas comfortable with enough seating for all who wished to listen to the entertainment which was of a high standard and there was always space in the dining room perhaps because of the two sitting policy. We were there in September/October so perhaps this might not be true at the height of the season. There was always a good choice of food with each night having a separate theme and the addition of French style croissants and boiled eggs at breakfast would have made this meal ideal. The pool area was very attractive with plenty of loungers, a jacuzzi to relax in and a well-equipped Gym for the more active. The hotel is not too big and the staff seemed to get to know everyone very quickly and were most friendly. The courtesy bus running every 45 minutes to Funchal Centre was a welcome facility although for those who are reasonably fit the walk into town through the tunnel and along the promenade is worthwhile especially if you make a break at the MagicCafe where the purchase of a coffee allows you to explore one of the nicest gardens in Madeira. The all inclusive service lived up to its name with unlimited wine at mealtimes and good service throughout. I believe the hotel is closing for refurbishmnt and trust that any "improvements" made will not destroy the atmosphere that made it so special for us.

Room Tip: All rooms face the sea - which is very noisy at night - if you like a view go for the higher floors...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hertfordshire
Level Contributor
36 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

Just returned from a weeks holiday in Madeira at Pestana Bay Hotel,the weather was hot everyday and Madeira is so pretty.Cannot fault the hotel,we had a studio which had a small kitchen area,seating area and all have balconys overlooking the sea,he noise of the waves is lovely.It doesn't have airconditioning but does have a ceiling fan which did the job perfectly.The hotel is so friendly ,small enough that you get to know the other holidaymakers.Every night there was some music with a singer and dancing.The food was excellent always choices of meat and fish and even a diet corner.Because there a two sittings for meals there was never a queue,you could even get a table outside overlooking the sea which was lovely especially at night.The staff there were all so accomodating and helpful and the Hotel is always so clean.The hotel is on the outskirts of Funchal but it was a nice promenade walk into town or use the courtesy bus which goes every 45 mins and is very punctual.The cable car is a must and coming down in the toboggan good fun.We couldn't find fault with this hotel and cannon wait to return next year.Thanks to all the staff for making our holiday so great.

Room Tip: All have good views but the trees might stop your views slightly so go above the first floor,we had...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel

Address: Praia Formosa, Funchal, Madeira 9000-247, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Funchal
#20 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#29 Family Hotel in Funchal
#35 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
#36 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 217
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Also Known As:
Pestana Bay Ocean Aparthotel Hotel Funchal
Pestana Bay Ocean Aparthotel Funchal
Pestana Bay Hotel Madeira
Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel Madeira/Funchal

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