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“5 Star?” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Pestana Carlton Madeira

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Pestana Carlton Madeira
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Largo Antonio Nobre, Funchal, Madeira 9004-531 , Portugal   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #22 of 91 hotels in Funchal
Telford, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“5 Star?”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2013

The star ratings of hotels varies greatly in different countries. We enjoyed our stay here but for us its quality match's nothing better than a good 4 star. I will explain, first night we came back from our evening meal (before 10pm) walked into reception and you could hear a pin drop, great if you want to be in bed by 10 but no entertainment from what we could see. Two senior citizens were nodding off in the same area, but as we had been travelling all day didn’t mind too much as an early night suited us. We are both in our late 40’s but we felt a little out of place here, when we did hear some entertainment a few nights later it was clearly aimed at the over 65’s. I felt quite sorry for some of the younger people I saw here during our week. The hotel caters for the majority, and because of this left out anyone not falling into that category.
Our room was nice, we were on the 1st floor so had direct access to the pool but no view, but we were happy with that. Prices from the bar by the pool were 5 star, over 5 euros for 2 small ice creams. During our time by the pool no one came around asking if we wanted drinks etc., this is a basic service I would have expected if you are going to pay a premium for drinks.
The gym was poor due to a lot of the equipment not being maintained, weights machines incorrectly set up with no way of adjusting them without a socket set! Steam room was good, as was the indoor pool, but the sauna was out of order. The staff in there could have made a better effort to help people get the most from the area, but you were just handed a towel and allowed to get on with it.
We stayed on a bed and breakfast deal, so can only comment on the breakfast which we both enjoyed. The major let down was the Eastern Europeans who have just found out about international travel (at least it seems that way) they had to make sure they were the first to get served, and were extremely rude and thoughtless towards other guests in all parts of the hotel.
The cleanliness of the place couldn’t be faulted and we left a tip for the maids who worked really hard.
In conclusion if you are after a relaxing break in a 4 star hotel, then this is the place – no way does it deserve five stars.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 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 (278)
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English first
Milton Keynes, UK
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

To be clear, there are a variety of different types of accommodation in the main building. We booked a 'studio' for 2 people, via RCI. We saw other rooms that were far more spacious and fitted out very differently, but suspect these are for Pestana owners. Our 'studio' was smaller than I expected - just a hotel room with a pleasant new kitchenette added to the entrance area. We only bother with the occasional breakfast, but it was well equipped and very clean. With only two of us, the room was quite large enough, with a good amount of storage and 2 comfortable armchairs. The bed was OK. We had a large window with glass across the entire wall leading on to a narrow balcony. We were on the 8th floor and had a pool/sea view, which was the best thing by far about the room. Half the rooms look back over the front of the hotel over the entrance, roads and to the hills beyond, so we were very pleased to be on the 'right' side (I gather RCI guests sometimes get the poorer situated rooms).

At first glance, this hotel is steeped in it's 1970's former glory - it must have been quite something in it's day. As a consequence, there are plenty of areas that look very old fashioned and places where there's obvious signs of the hotel's age. My first impression wasn't great. However, there's no denying it is in a fabulous location and stuck between Reid's and the Savoy, couldn't better.

The lower pool area by the sea was having running repairs done to the tiled areas, which had seen better days. But then there are surprising new features. The lift down to the lower pool is clearly new, although the lift tower itself is in need of a serious coat of paint. There's a stunning new indoor pool, not to be missed, that is really 5*. Next to it is the diving school which is decidedly tatty. But all in all, you see past these shortcomings after a while and enjoy the facilities and general pleasant ambiance within the hotel. The main pool area is very pretty in amongst the pots and plants and kept in good order. Both outdoor pools are very clean. I really loved the access to the sea - not for the faint hearted at high tide, but very refreshing and good fun. There are plenty of sun beds. We paid 2 euros per day for the umbrella (I gather not everyone pays) but only ended up actually getting charged 8 euros for the week, so not an issue. I was particularly impressed with reception staff and concierge. This isn't something I usually comment on, but any time I approached them, either to check in, buy the breakfast package, get help with wifi or check out, I was offered extra help, small discounts etc. Maybe this is a Madeira thing, as people do seem to be very friendly and keen to help, but certainly the hotel staff are very pleasant. Getting a taxi outside the hotel is very easy.

One general note - we'd been to Madeira previously a couple of times about 10 years ago and it wasn't cheap then, but we were rather taken aback by the restaurant prices. We opt for the higher end restaurants, only being there for a week, so our budget isn't tight, but we spent around 100+ euros on several occasions for fairly average fayre. But of note, I would highlight Tokos (walk 5 mins beyond Reid's hotel) - our 3rd visit (last one was 10 years ago, and the main man there is still as barmy) - very good food and a very individual place but quite expensive. We also discovered The Fort at the end of the Old Town (the mustard coloured old building in the other direction) - try the 39 euro package for very good value and lots of pose. Somewhere to get dressed up for and surprisingly good food.

All in all, the Carlton really grew on me, and we would certainly return.

Room Tip: If you have a choice, the sea view is obviously the one to go for. The higher, the better.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
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Porto, Portugal
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2013

Hotel is very well located, and is a true 5*. Nice swimming pools, acces to sea, excellent common areas, big rooms. More than everything, fantastic people at the checkin, lobby, restaurant, breakfast, whatever.
Still a must-be in Madeira...

Room Tip: Sea view and/or swimming pool view
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northampton, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2013

Stayed here in June, Lovely big room , really clean we had a mountain view OH complained it was a bit noisy at night but I didn't hear a thing .
The staff are lovely at this hotel nothing is to much trouble. The pool was really nice we only went down in the afternoon but we always managed to find a bed .

The only niggle I had was I would have liked some more hangers for my clothes and a iron , suppose if I asked I could have got one from somewhere .
I would stay here again on B&B as there were some lovely places to eat near the hotel or in the town. The location is excellent in between the Lido and the town.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
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Northampton, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

The hotel is very well located for the town centre with a 5 minute stroll downhill, and a slow climb back up! It's not that steep just long. Reception staff friendly and helpful. Bedroom very spacious and well appointed with two large single beds bathrobes and slippers. Flat screen TV and small fridge and safe. Large modern marble bathroom. Everything was very clean and kept that way with bedding and towels changed daily. Couldn't fault it. We had a large balcony with side sea view which meant a good view of the sea and the harbour which was great to watch the fireworks during the Atlantic festival. There were plenty of sunbeds and a choice of pools as well as the sea to swim in. The areas round the pools were well presented and there were quiet areas away from the pool to sit. Buffet breakfast had a large range of cold items and bread with some hot choices including freshly made omelettes. At peak times around 9am it can get a bit frantic! Sometimes slow to replenish items and reset tables which meant some guests wandering around trying to find a table. There are some very good restaurants close by and would recommend pub number 2 across the street for a drink and sandwich. Try there omelette sandwich, very good, as is their dark beer.
This is a very good hotel worth its rating but could improve the breakfast experience. Would highly recommend it.

  • Stayed June 2013, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oakham, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2013

We stayed at the Pestana Carlton, Madeira Beach Club Apartments as part of a time share exchange.

Having previously had some slight dubious exchanges we were a little apprehensive when we arrived - but we shouldn't have been.

The apartment was amazing! It definitely had the WOW! factor. It was a 2 bedroom apartment, large, comfortable and spotlessly clean. It had it's own veranda complete with sun loungers, table and chairs and was just so peaceful. The master bedroom had an en-suite bathroom, there was a family bathroom, a small kitchen and a large dining/lounge area.

We bought the breakfast and dinner package - best advice is to buy in blocks of 3 or 6 as it's cheaper.

The food was lovely and fresh - and a good variety to suit all tastes. Best of all - it was self service.

The staff were all so friendly and helpful - they really offered a good customer service experience.

We were so impressed by the whole place. The pools were clean and there were plenty of sun loungers and umbrellas to go round.

I would have given it 5 stars apart from the price of the drinks in the hotel - they charged us 1.85 Euros for a dash of lime. But.... there were plenty of bars around and it is only a 10 minute walk down into the town.

I would recommend this hotel/apartments for families and couples - although not such a lot to do for teenagers/young adults.

Madeira itself is lovely, so pretty, we will be back!

Wendy

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eastbourne, England, United Kingdom
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013

Really lovely hotel with excellent facilities and location to visit Madeira. Staff couldn't be more helpful, spotlessly clean with plenty of choice of sun bathing locations, fantastic breakfasts and old fashioned service in abundance.

Room Tip: In summer choose mountain view rooms as they are cooler to sleep at night.
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  • Stayed June 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Pestana Carlton Madeira

Address: Largo Antonio Nobre, Funchal, Madeira 9004-531 , Portugal
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Funchal
#11 Business Hotel in Funchal
#13 Family Hotel in Funchal
#15 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#21 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
#21 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Pestana Carlton Madeira 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Pestana Carlton Madeira, one of the most lively hotels in Madeira, enjoys a privileged setting in Funchal, at the top of a slope on the island of Madeira, providing fantastic views over the bay of Funchal and the sea. This luxurious and charismatic hotel in Madeira is a reference point for any visitor to Madeira, due to the excellent conjugation of a family atmosphere with the sophistication of its excellent installations. Once you are in the hotel, you will find at your disposal a wide range of services you can enjoy, including 3 leisure areas. In the Garden Pool, you will find a heated saltwater outdoor pool and a swimming pool for children. In the Atlantic Pool, there is a salt water outdoor pool with access to the sea and an indoor pool with Jacuzzi, relaxation rooms and bar. The Magic Spa offers an indoor heated swimming pool with sauna, Turkish bath, Jacuzzi, gym and treatment rooms. To promote the cultural gastronomic diversity of Funchal, this 5 star hotel in Madeira has 3 restaurants and 3 bars, with excellent views of the Atlantic Ocean, with a variety of flavours that will satisfy the most demanding tastes. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pestana Carlton Madeira Funchal
Carlton Hotel Madeira

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