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“Pros and Cons of Orca Praia” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Orca Praia Hotel

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Orca Praia Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Estrada Monumental 335 | Prainha do Arieiro, Funchal, Madeira 9000-236, Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #31 of 90 Hotels in Funchal
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Plymouth, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
“Pros and Cons of Orca Praia”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

Location
Pro - fantastic location set in the cliffs above Praia Formosa beach - the views of the ocean are amazing and we left our room doors open all night and fell asleep listening to the ocean.
Con - the hotel is very isolated - it is 3 miles to the nearest supermarket and when the courtesy bus is not running - i.e holidays, Saturday and Sunday - it is very difficult to get out and about. The lifeline is the Funchal yellow buses - you need to buy 2 Giro cards from reception (one each) and get a timetable
Rooms
Pro - the rooms are very large and comfortable with massive balconies - big enough to take a table, 2 chairs and 2 sunbeds
Con - there is very little storage - we ended up leaving our clothes in a suitcase all the time
Food
Pro - breakfast was great - lots of fresh fruit and fresh bread, cereals,cheese and ham and hot English breakfast
Con - the main course was limited in choice for English palates. We never went hungry though - filled up on lovely home made soups but we weren't sorry when we started to eat out in the 3rd week
It is possible to swap dinner for 3 course lunch round the pool - a much better option
Entertainment
Pro - a brilliant trio called 3D played twice a week - we would have paid to listen to them - they were class musicians with a brilliant sense of fun - got everyone dancing.
Con - the magician did the same show 3 times - very boring
Staff
Pro - this is a family run hotel - the staff are amazing! They cannot do enough for you - always cheerful and friendly - must mention Angelo - a great character in the evening bar and Sandra - the head of the restaurant
Con - there is no con to the staff but the hotel does charge a lot for extras - sunbeds on the balcony, safe, wi-fi, fridge, pool/snooker.
Warning
Other people have mentioned the steep climb from the pool to the hotel. We are fairly fit nearly 70 year olds - still playing golf and tennis - but the hill was a killer - we had to rest to get our breath 4 times coming up. In another couple of years, we couldn't go there.

We only paid £700 for 3 weeks at this hotel with Mercury Direct but we still can't make our mind up about this hotel - would we go there again - don't know!!

Room Tip: Floors 1/2/3/4 at the top of the hotel are the best - ask for a room with a big balcony - a couple o...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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198 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Pilsen, Czech Republic
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2012

We stayed there only one week but it was wonderful week! Hotel Orca Praia was the best choice for us. Thanks to other reviews here. We are young couple but we don´t like to lay all days on the beach or go to to disco at night. We prefer calm places and harmony of nature. Only noise you can hear at Orca Praia Hotel is sound of Atlantic ocean, but when you close large windows you can´t hear nothing. We enjoyed sitting on balcony and watching ocean. And we enjoyed breakfasts and dinners also. The meal was very good and waitress and service was excellent. The room service and service on reception was great. Really very kind people work there! So there´s nothing we can complain of. Maybe for people who have some mobility difficulties could be problem to walk down to the beach and pool. The pool was fantastic. There´s nice promenade between Funchal and Camara de Lobos. Camara de Lobos is nice place to visit for dinner or glas of wine. It´s a small romantic village. Walk to Funchal takes us about 1 hour I think. Better is to take a bus. Bus stop is straigt above hotel entrance. You can buy ticket for public transport in Funchal. We bought it for one week and we really enjoy yellow buses :-) For 7 days and 2 persons it costs 43 euros. Madeira is wonderful and this hotel provides you calm and friendly background for your island explore.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lancashire
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
125 helpful votes 125 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2012

Just returned from a weeks stay at the Orca Praia & as in previous reviews the access back up from the pool bar & "promenade" is REALLY steep,we did it in stages & the steep climb from the front of the hotel to the main road.Having said that the hotel is in a lovely setting very peaceful & great sea views.Our room was excellent,clean comfy beds,large with armchairs to watch a plasma screen tv if you wished & a huge balcony with rattan chairs & good sized table to match.It was possible to hire sunbeds & an umbrella for the week but we like the sun so din`t bother.The bathroom had a sink each with good shower & towels were changed every day.There was no air conditioning but it was very nice to have both patio doors open at night & listen to the sound of the sea.We only had breakfast which was adequate so can`t comment on dinner.Hotel staff pleasant & reception very helpfull.Good bus service into Funchal from the stop close to the hotel on the main road.Only 2 restaurants in the vicinity & we mainly ate in the Piano Bar which was a left turn from the top of the drive but be warned HUGE portions!From the pool a right turn was a nice walk into Camara de Lobos \which was one of our favourite places to sit at one of the bars & watch the fishermen.To the left a path led along the beach to a couple of local bars/cafes where we ate a couple of times at reasonable prices & watched the Portugal football game with the locals,amazing atmosphere!But how people say you can walk into Funchal from there is a mystery,we tried & failed coming to a full stop up against a brick wall.The only downside (if you can call it that)is that until our last morning we thought we were the only English people at the hotel,when at breakfast we met two other couples who thought the same & they were due to leave the day after us!All in all had an excellent holiday,this was our 7th visit to Madeira so caught local buses to our favourite places but if you have not been before do "get out there" & see amazing scenery.

Room Tip: Superior room 9th floor
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Salisbury, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2012

I stayed her with my adult daughter for two weeks, we had a wonderful holiday, our room was huge with a fantastic private balcony on the 10th floor. The food was varied and attentive staff. This hotel is not suitable for people with mobility difficulties due to the steep access. It's a delightful walk into Funchal along the beach, stopping for a swim or refreshments on route. Would recommend this lovely hotel and hope to go back again.

  • Stayed August 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Eastbourne, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2012

Just returned from 2 weeks half board at this hotel which was very enjoyable. The rooms and patio where absolutely amazing, spotlessly clean and modern, bathroom was superb spacious and well kept. Our room was located on the end of floor -9. The only noise you need to get used to at night are the ocean waves. Not sure why there is no air conditioning in the rooms, maybe this is why it is only has a 3* rating? We could not fault any of the staff all of them very polite and friendly. Most of the guest at the time we stayed were from Germany and France which meant conversation with other guests was difficult. It would appear that a couple of large German / French package operators had taken most of rooms. Both breakfast and evening meal are both buffet service, food is plentiful but a little 'plain and ordinary' You need to be fairly active to make the most of the hotel as there is a steep pathway and steps leading down to the swimming pool and cafe. The coastal pathway in each direction accessed from the swimming pool gate is a hive of activity during the evenings with lots of 'locals' jogging and walking along the pathway. The beach in front of the hotel has some dark stand which again seems popular with the local families at the weekends. The bus service from the road level outside hotel is very regular into the city and return until after midnight. We enjoyed the levada walk from opposite the hotel but again you need to be fairly fit and agile.

Room Tip: Remember to take a travel kettle if you want tea or coffee in your room. The hotel charges for '...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2012

The Orca Pria is situated a 20 minute bus ride from the centre of Funchal.Hence the price is less than those in the centre.Also the local bus stops outside the hotel and runs until late.(There is alkso a free limited hotel shuttle bus)
The hotel is built into the cliffs with reception at road level and the rooms below.The rooms are some of the largest we have stayed in with balcony to match.There are uninterupted sea views - only noise being the waves.
We had Bed and Breakfast - this was good with plenty of choice,local breads etc
The hotel pool is at beach level - a steep walk back !
The pool also leads ot onto a beachfront path which goes many miles in each direction - the Lido one way and Camara de Lobos the other - if you like some exercise this is the place.

The staff are very good and helpfull,rooms refurbished and clean - shower only - again large.

Good for an independent stay.

Room Tip: All have superb views - avoid locations near lifts.
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  • Stayed January 2012, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Wakefield
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2012

Just arrived back after a week in Funchal. The food at the hotel was excellent, varied and a huge choice at every meal. The staff were very friendly and helpful, particularly the head waiter in the restaurant and Andrew in the Bar. Hotel rooms and general areas were very clean and comfortable. The beds were also very comfortable. All the rooms have brilliant views out to sea. The only downside was the trek down to the pool and pool bar. This was very, very steep and not recommended for anyone with walking difficulties.

  • Stayed May 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Orca Praia Hotel

Address: Estrada Monumental 335 | Prainha do Arieiro, Funchal, Madeira 9000-236, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#20 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#29 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Orca Praia Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 128
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hotel Orca Praia
Orca Praia Funchal
Orca Praia Hotel Madeira/Funchal

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