Just returned from the Hotel Buganvilia in the Dorisol hotels group.
What we loved most about the hotel was that it was situated together with to other hotels in the Dorisol group in which we could freely choose between all the facilities. In that way, we both got to exercise in the fitness room, which is ok. Some of the machines are a bit worn, but do work fine.
We also used both the outdoor pools and the indoor pool, where you will also find a jacuzzi. Together with the indoor pool is a massage room, where we both got 30 minutes of quite relaxing massage. You can choose between having a massage indoor or at the pool.
The hotel have good rooms, but the pictures on the homepage might cheat a bit. The one we stayed in was in reasonable shape. It had everything we needed, a good bathroom - and a balchony with a view to kill for, when paying that kind of money for a room. The only thing it lacked was air conditioning.
The area is a typical hotel / tourist area with loads of restaurants in all different kind of quality.
The staff in the restaurants are quite overwelcoming. You quickly learn to say "Não, obrigago!" and put on a smile. The best restaurants in the area are, in my opinion, L'Osteria and Lareira. The last one serves fine parrot fish and very large and good portions of salmon fillets. Sit by the water tank filled with lobsters, crabs and langusters to have some entertainment while eating.
That said, the other restaurants in the area serves more or less the same kind of food, and the difference between them is really not that big. Usually friendly staff on all - and often a free glass of Madeira wine.
If you really want to dine good, go to Armazem do Sal in Funchal city. Also, go to FX Club / Geovannis to have a lunch or dinner. Fine quality and friendly staff.
If you like clubs and parties, check out Molhe, which is situated in the big ugly black lump of rock on the peer with umbrellas. We went there a Wednesday, and before we knew it, large amounts of cheerful youngsters crowded the place. Remember to check out any themes it might have on the night of your visit. I missed the green theme, so I didn't have any free drinks as I wore a red shirt. :-/
AND! Do not cheat yourself of the wonderful experience of swimming with dolphins. Madeira has a lot of sea animals - and a lot of companies sailing out to find them. We went with Rota dos Cetaceos to have a swim. Good times!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.