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“An excellent hotel” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay)

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Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay)
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Rua Simplicio Passos Gouveia, 21, Funchal, Madeira 9004-532, Portugal   |  
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Ranked #11 of 91 hotels in Funchal
Cranbrook, United Kingdom
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“An excellent hotel”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

A lovely hotel with excellent service and facilities. We had half board but ate in the hotel one night and the meal was lovely.
Good restaurants nearby and a courtesy bus into funchal although you could walk in - took about 20 - 30 minutes.
Trips varied in price but we went with a Blandys one that was more expensive but very good - in a minibus rather than a coach and the guide was excellent.

  • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 22, 2013
Dear Guest,

Just a short note to thank you for you positive feedback and for let us know that you have enjoyed your stay at Porto Mare hotel.


Sincerely hope to welcome you back in a near future,

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado

. ..

ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (264)
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Widnes Cheshire England
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2013

Went as a family of 6 and requested 3 twin rooms alongside each other which we were given. We had 4th floor superior rooms and they are really lovely. They are a good size with amazing views of the gardens and the sea beyond. Beds are comfy, some English channels on tv, hair dryer in bathroom and tea and coffee making facilities. And the maids restocked the tea/coffee/milk each day. A safe is 10 euros with 20 deposit. Pool towels in room and gowns in superior rooms. Breakfast very varied and pleasant even at busy times, loads to choose from. Didn't eat here rest of day except for bar snacks which were very nice but not much choice. Cocktails divine, with a bit of entertainment on offer (very low key and bland) but fine for an hour or so. Spa, pool area, gardens -all clean and meticulously kept. Hotel is about 30 mins from centre with lovely Italian restaurant a few mins away, as is Chalet Vincenti which is a lovely place to eat and Hole in One pub next door a good place to stop for drinks. The marina is in a bit of a mess with building work ongoing but has to be done sometime I suppose. Airport at madeira very busy with queues taking forever to get through security. All in all, loved madeira and loved the hotel - would definitely return to both.

Room Tip: High floor and go for superior room with a view!
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 22, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your “perfect” review about your stay at Porto Mare hotel.
It is rewarding to know that overall you had such a positive holiday experience.

Sincerely hope to welcome you back in a near future,

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado

. ..

ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
58 hotel reviews
Reviews in 56 cities Reviews in 56 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2013

We booked the Porto Mare because it looked like it would provide a stress-free, relaxing break where our two-year-old would have plenty to do. And so it proved.

The biggest plus point was the service and friendliness of the staff. In particular, the waitresses and waiters in the Atlantida restaurant (where breakfast and the evening buffet dinner option are served) were very warm and accommodating for our little one. More than that, they often went out of their way to entertain and interact with him. Special praise is due to waitress Nicola Mendonça who made every mealtime a pleasure.

On the day we arrived there was a bottle of sparkling wine and a pair of flute glasses in our room. Then at dinner that evening, the waiters and waitresses brought out a birthday cake and sang Happy Birthday in Portuguese for our son (whose second birthday it was, which we had mentioned when checking in).

The hotel provided a proper cot-bed (I will attach a photo) as opposed to the more usual flimsy fold-up travel cot you tend to get in hotels. We stayed in a large end-of-corridor corner suite which meant we could watch DVDs in our lounge room once we'd put our son to bed at night. This had a kitchen area with sink, hob, fridge, kettle and microwave which meant we could easily prepare sterilised bottles and boiled water for our son.

We found the best swimming pool for family swims was the Eden Mar's indoor pool, as this was less deep and had wide steps descending progressively into the water at one end. This meant it was easier for our son to step in by himself, and for us to hold him once he was in the water. By contrast the indoor/outdoor pool in the Porto Mare was a little too deep, and the large outdoor pool in the Porto Mare was unheated and so too cold in late February.

We also once took him in the small, circular children's outdoor paddling pool which was good too, albeit it soon gets crowded if a few children get in.

The free shuttle bus into Funchal was convenient and the driver simply popped our Maclaren buggy into a storage area under the bus without our even needing to collapse it.

The gardens in the hotel grounds are really nice. There are all kinds of plants and trees, many of which are labelled, including cacti and orchids. There is even a small aviary with brightly coloured tropical birds that provide a pleasant tweeting background soundtrack.

There is a (unmanned) kindergarten/creche with lots of toys, ride-on toy motorbikes, a Wendy house, etc., plus an outdoor play area with a climbing frame, spring-mounted car and horse, etc. But our son was probably more entertained by the crazy golf course, which he liked to climb on and over (without actually needing to rent the putter and ball to enjoy himself).

The physical structure and design of the hotel are excellent. Although it's a big complex, especially if you include the Eden Mar and Residence (which occupy the east and west sides), you never really get the sense of being in a massive monolith of a place. The space is cleverly broken up, both indoors and out.

As for criticisms, it's surprising that the hotel charges 10 Euros per week to use the in-room safe. I've never known any hotel do this. While the service in the Atlantida restaurant was excellent, it did seem a little slower and less sparkling at the Veranda outdoor poolside bar/cafe. Although our room was on the 5th floor, every night we could still hear muffled music coming (presumably) from the ground floor bar when we went to bed at 11pm. And (this is a small point!) the bedside clock radio had a habit of setting off its alarm at seemingly random times, meaning that we eventually unplugged it.

Before we booked the Porto Mare we had also considered taking a suite in the Eden Mar, which would have been larger and a bit more expensive. But we were glad to have chosen the Porto Mare because not only was the suite perfectly large enough but the physical appearance and ambience of the Porto Mare seem slightly nicer and a little more special.

Room Tip: The end-of-corridor suites are very spacious. 5244 is a great room.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 22, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your feedback about your recent stay at Porto Mare hotel and I am happy to know that overall you have enjoyed it.
Thank you as well for the praise of Nicole. I am sure she will be delighted to receive your thoughts.

It will be a pleasure to welcome you back in a near future,

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado

. ..

ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Just returned for a week in the hotel for half term.
Overall - all the critics about it are right and justified: nice hotel, excellent pools, spacious and clean rooms and service is great.
The garden is lovely too.

So overall cannot fault anything - however there are a couple of minor points which leave some rooms for improvements (but not a big deal):
1. Breakfast in the Atlantida does get qute busy from 8.30 onward and fel quite crowdy. The selection for breakfast is nice but the fresh fruits were not great. All the juices are from a machine so you need to pay for a fresh juice, which was a bit of shame

2. We tried dinner in the Alfama & med restuarants to change from the buffet in Atlandida. Alfama was less crowdy and service was nice. The food (took fish there) was lovely. We went to Med only once for what was advertised throughout the hotel as the "meat lover" night. it was so busy (we did book in advance) and the service was so long... We were with a 5 years old and the staff (nice and friendly people) kept apologising for the wait. It took us 45 minutes to get the meal. Although it was very tasty, the wait did spoil the all experience

3. Only one of the indoor pool was in operation - it is a lovely one but the water was colder than anticipated

4. We used room service one evening. It was very good and came promptly. The only let down was that we were told to leave the table outside the room and no need to call them - they would come and pick up the food. Well it did not happen and it was still there the next day - quite smelly after the whole night. Not very pleasant

There is a kid club with barely no activity but nice setting. We did not mind this as was not planning to use it but if you come with some children- you may want to check before.

So overall a good 4* - and would recommend it but some small areas which could be looked at

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your feedback about your recent visit to Porto Mare.
Thank you also not only for the positive things but as well as for the “minor points” raised, that we promise to give proper attention so we can do better for the future.

Sincerely hope you give us another opportunity and stay in one of our properties. I would be most pleased to assist you on anything you might need.

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado


. ..

ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stratford upon Avon
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

A wonderful hotel. Having now stayed at this hotel 4 times, would not think of going to another on Madeira after sampling 3 others. Accommodation, Food, Situation, Staff and Facilities could not be bettered. Would recommend without hesitation. Wide selection of good restaurants on the door step, easy access to coastal path, regular courtesy coach service into Funchal and frequent bus service at all times.

Room Tip: Every room we have occupied in 4 visits has been quiet. All rooms have excellent views but those wit...
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  • Stayed February 2013, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Dear Guest,

Just a short note to say thank you for your opinion on tripadvisor about Porto Mare hotel and mainly for your support by staying with us once again.

Please do not hesitate to contact me in case I can be any help for future visits. I would be most pleased to assist you.

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado


. ..
ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

This was our first visit to Madeira - chasing winter sun. We were not disappointed as temperatures were in the high teens, warm enough to lounge by the pool and read a book.
Hotel has had lots of positive reviews and they are justified.
The hotel is spotless, and staff are friendly, helpful and 'genuine'
Almost hotel 5* quality, however positives are it's relaxing and casual.
Good indoor/outdoor pools - also gardens are well laid out and stunning for a large hotel complex.
We used the courtesy bus into Funchal, note you have to book, and it is popular.
Superior rooms are well furnished and spacious (quiet too)
It was my wife's birthday during out stay and we received a complimentary bottle of bubbly, a nice touch indeed!
I'm sure there are other nice hotels in Funchal but Porto Mar complex ticked all the boxes for us for a relaxing winter break.
We travelled on a Thomson holiday and were well looked after.

Only negative about Madeira is checking through security in Funchal airport on the way home, 45 minutes is too long.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Dear Guest,

Happy to know that you had a first positive holiday experience in Madeira an therefore I hope it is not the last

Thank you for sharing on tripadvisor your opinion about Porto Mare hotel and sincerely hope to welcome you in a near future,

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado


. ..
ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PERTH, SCOTLAND
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

We have recently returned from a week's winter break at this hotel. We had originally booked through Thomson an hotel due to open in December 2012 but got a call 3 days before departure to advise us it was not ready. We were given a choice of 3 alternatives and chose this hotel. I can see why people rave about it and return again and again. The hotel is part of a group of 3 this being the middle building with Residence (timeshare/apartments) and Eden Mar (suites) on either side with with a maze of corridors taking you to each section.

We upgraded to a superior and it was lovely and spacious with all amenities. There was a room safe and you paid 10 euros a week at reception (and 20 euros deposit) and got a little 'key' to insert in the inside top of the door and then you can enter your security code. We also had a mini bar which was empty so we stocked up from the supermarket underneath the Eden Mar. TV, DVD player, radio alarm with iPod docking and the time display so bright it was like a nightlight. Your green beach towels were in your room and we had bath robes which lots of people used to wander about to and from the pool. Our only quibble was the balcony. Rooms 2211-2213 because they were at a corner of the building had bizarre small balconies which looked onto the giant terraces of rooms 2214-2216 or 7 at right angles so if you like to sit out and want privacy avoid these rooms. Hotels around the world warn you to make sure your windows are securely locked when it would have taken Spiderman to assail the walls to gain access - this is one hotel you need to take heed as it would just take a hop and skip to get into our room from at least 7 neighbouring rooms.

Breakfast in Atlantida was buffet and and there was ample choice. Couldn't fault it but it could get busy from about 8.30ish. We were early birds so not affected.

We were on half board and you could have dinner at Altantida which was buffet - I am sure if you like buffets you will be fine but I have an aversion to buffets no matter how expensive the hotel and we only had it on the first night. You could also have the set menu at Alfama in Eden Mar and we had it on 3 occasions. The food was better and service great. You get a credit of 17 euros per person if you go for a la carte and on one occasion we had a course from a la carte plus set menu starter and no dessert and this cost no more than set menu so we only paid for coffee 2.90 euros and wine - a bottle was around 13-16 euros (or more if you wanted). You also got 17 euros credit to eat at the Italian Il Basilico which is just round from Residence reception. Good food, large portions and good service. Same credit at Med restaurant in our hotel and we went there for the Valentine's meal but not enough staff so only time the service was less than expected.

The pool area was lovely and at this time of year not busy. We were out sightseeing most days but did have 2 relaxing days here and lunch at Veranda. Not the cheapest (2 large beers and 2 salads around 27 euros) but nice for a couple of times.

We did a tour to see some of the island and spent time in Funchal. Tested my vertigo by going up the cable car (10 euros per person one way) and then came down on the toboggans (30 euros for two people and 10 euros for the photo at the end which you did not have to take) which were not at all scary.

The staff at the hotel were lovely and friendly and helpful on the whole and would return but the size of the hotel complex combined mean at the height of the season it will be too big and busy for us but off season a distinct possibility. However we would go bed and breakfast because there are loads of eating places within walking distance as well as the ones in the hotel itself.

We were not sure about the weather at this time of the year and did not know what to take with us and were mindful of the 15k only on Thomson flights but we took a mixture of swimsuits, shorts, jeans, teeshirts, fleece, etc. I reckon it must have been high teens and we did manage out to lie at the pool on one day. There was only rain on one morning so mostly we were able to wander about in jeans and teeshirt though on the tour to the north of the island we did need a fleece. The dress code at the hotels was more casual than I had expected but all in all we had the correct clothing.

The airport experience on the return was not the most pleasant with the queue for security about 40-45 minutes and there were absolutely no spare seats in the departure lounge and flights were delayed mainly due to strong winds diverting some planes to Porto Santo. We were delayed about 90 mins and glad to eventually get away.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
antoniopais, General Manager at Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay), responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Dear Guest,


Thank you for such a comprehensive feedback about your recent visit to Porto Mare hotel. I am happy to know that overall you had a positive holiday experience and it will be a great pleasure to welcome you back in the future,

Warm regards,

Muito obrigado


. ..
ANTONIO PAIS
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay)

Address: Rua Simplicio Passos Gouveia, 21, 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 Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Business Hotel in Funchal
#8 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#9 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
#9 Family Hotel in Funchal
#10 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay) 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Porto Mare hotel occupies the central wing of the Vila Porto Mare resort and benefits from the use of all its facilities. There are many different corners and atmospheres here ... something new to discover every day. The rooms combine views over the ocean with tropical gardens. Four restaurants, six bars, an ice-cream parlour, five pools, SPA, sports and children's facilities... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Porto Mare Funchal
Porto Mare Hotel Madeira
Porto Mare Madeira
Porto Mare Hotel (Porto Bay) Madeira/Funchal

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