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“Enotel Santo reality check”

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Enotel Golf Santo da Serra
Certificate of Excellence
Tours, France
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Enotel Santo reality check”
Reviewed August 9, 2012

My wife and I spent a week at Enotel Santo da Serra late July 2012. The location is great if you're looking for a quiet getaway. Also the charming town of Machico and its beach are a 10 mn drive. The golf nearby offers stunning views, we enjoyed our expressos at the golf overlooking the rugged coastline of the east end.
Some travelers complain about a variety of issues, here's what we found.
Dank rooms? Yes and no. The first room we got was small, dark and a little damp (room 212), it definitely needs revamping. After we complained we were offered a great room on the ground floor (108) with a private space onto the garden. We recommend the rooms on the ground floor and looking onto the garden or patio, not the street.
Poor quality food? Yes, the buffet may "look" right (various courses to choose from) but the fare is mostly based on international, tasteless meals, frozen food (bread) and left-overs. Maybe because we're French we soon grew tired of it. We do not recommend the all-inclusive package.
Nice pool? Yes.
Too far from Funchal and teh coastline? No, provided you have a car (which we did). Again the location is great, quite a few wonderful hikes nearby, and all the sites are within driving distance anyway.
No entertainment? True, which is also the reason why we picked the hotel.
Unfriendly staff? Yes and no, the staff in the restaurant were fine but the check in was not exactly helpful or welcoming. That said, we didn't really have to complain once we got our new room.
No internet access in the rooms? Right, which is a bit of a drag. There's only once PC available in the lobby, often used by kids playing online. Otherwise they charge you €10 for using your laptop in the lobby.
Conclusion? Not a 4 star hotel, but we would go back if we were to return to Madeira and recommend the hotel to our friends for a one week vacation. You don't have to take all your meals in the hotel, the park across the street is really beautiful and makes for romantic walks after dinner.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
6 Thank Herve C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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340 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
  • Czech first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Detroit, Michigan
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 8, 2012

Authentic design, very quiet location, close to the airport.
wonderful pool area, with sauna and hot whirpool.
Funchal is just 15 minutes driving.
The hotel staff speak good English.
Breakfast is basic but good.
This hotel is great for families, and also for honeymooners. It is very quiet.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mateo G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
yorkshire
Level Contributor
31 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed May 5, 2012

We spent a week at this hotel in march on an all inclusive holiday
very relaxjng but a good few degrees cooler than in Funchal. The
room was quite basic but spotlessly clean. We were on the second
floor looking out on to the terrace not one of the better views.The
meals were buffet style evening & breakfast mediocre but plentiful
and all the restaurant staff were excellent .If you want to get around
the island you do really need to hire a car but there are 2 buses that do
go to Funchal no.22 which takes nearly 2 hours it is a bit like being on a
rollercoaster worth a trip for the experience the other is no.77 bus which takes you to the bus station in Funchal next to the cable car
this one takes up to 1 hour.There is also a market on a sunday in Santo de Serra which attracts a lot of locals selling there produce.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank YorkshireScotsman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2012

My husband and I spent a week here mid March on an all inclusive basis. We had a very good deal and thought it was great value for money. We paid for an upgrade when booking our holiday and had a bright, spacious, comfortable room with a terrace overlooking the gardens and plenty of storage for our needs. The bathroom was very nice with a good shower. The hotel was nicely furnished and cozy, especially the bar/lounge area. The staff do appear to be multi-functional but it didn't cause us any problems, didn't have to wait long at the bar for a drink etc and they are very hard working and we thought, very friendly and helpful. The hotel is isolated but I would imagine (after travelling around Madeira) most hotels are unless you are in Funchal but that is why you should do your research before booking. We wanted peace and quiet and we love walking and did a Lavada walk from the hotel but I would suggest hiring a car if you want to see the rest of the island as travelling by bus does take a long time due to the mountainous roads, as we found out when catching a bus to Funchal! We hired a car for a couple of days after that and it was quite an experience on the roads but it is a beautiful island, they build houses in places I wouldn't have thought possible!! It is a peaceful and relaxing hotel and there wasn't any entertainment whilst we were there but we didn't mind at all, if you are looking for somewhere more lively then I suggest staying in Funchal. The food was lovely and well cooked, the soups and bread rolls were tasty and the salads nice and fresh and there was always something we liked, but I can imagine some people would have been unhappy with the lack of choice of main meals and especially the desserts which were pretty much the same every night, that is the only criticism I have of the hotel as we really enjoyed our stay and came home feeling very refreshed after a wonderful holiday.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
4 Thank MaureenShropshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chesterfiled
Level Contributor
36 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed March 22, 2012

Just spent a week here earlier this March 2012.
We were promised a free courtesy bus which never happend,talking to other guests they were promised the same.
This hotel would only suit walkers,golfers or anyone wanting isolation.
Local bus ride to Funchal takes 1 hour and cost approx £10 per couple per day.
If all the food is not eaten it is recycled the next day.
Some on Reception went to the Eva Braun school of charm.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ChesterfiledTony
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed March 19, 2012

Just back from a week's all inclusive stay, with mixed feelings.

Generally good value for money, with meals from the self service buffet being tasty and generous - nothing to stop you going back for seconds, or even thirds! Food not always as hot as it should be though and the "hot" water (from self service machine) for tea/coffee making was positively tepid, but never mind, as the fresh bread rolls, fabulous cooked breakfasts and interesting and tasty salads made up for it.

Staff are mostly rather surly and other guests we spoke to agreed.

The communal areas are impressive - bright, spacious, well furnished with interesting pieces and loads of places to sit and relax with a drink and a book.

The gardens and grounds are lovely too - lush and well maintained.

The communal areas and grounds are probably what earn the four star rating, because it certainly isn't the bedrooms! Or at least not ours, or those of the three other couples we spoke with. Our room was a bit dark and dingy and the bed (two single 3ft beds pushed together) was extremely uncomfortable, with useless pillows. The bathroom was very shabby and in urgent need of an update/overhaul - cracked tiles, worn bath enamel, temperamental shower (almost had time to go and have breakfast whilst waiting for it to heat up in the morning and it fluctuated constantly!).

What really bugged us too, was the lack of storage. The wardrobe was ok, though not enough hangers of course (never are - I take my own!), but there were only two small, shallow drawers for underwear etc and hubby actually ended up storing his t-shirts and shorts in his suitcase, for the first time ever, on any holiday. No coats hooks anywhere and no full length mirror, even though there was plenty of space for both.

The swimming pool, whilst not very big and a bit on the cold side, is attractive and perfectly adequate for some daily exercise.

Carpets everywhere need replacing, even in the otherwise lovely communal areas, and especially in the bedrooms, as they're old, shabby, wrinkled/creased and a bit depressing.

Location is rather remote, which may not be a bad thing in itself, if you like to hike. It's about 750 metres above sea level, stuck in the mountains and a lot cooler than down at the coast. Santo da Serra is one of those "blink and you miss it" kind of villages, with very little to do, no shops as such, although the park is quite nice - though probably better later in the season, when all the flowers are out. Much is made of the hotel's proximity to a smart golf course, but we couldn't care less about that! Taxis down to Funchal can cost between €30 - €50 (!), so we caught the local bus for €2.65 per person each way, It takes nearly an hour though and gets very crowded, as they only run every three hours or so and the local people obviously rely on them for shopping, commuting, school etc. The winding mountain roads, with sheer drops over the side are quite an experience! The drivers all seem very competent though.

So, a bit of a mixed bag really. Last time we visited Madeira, we stayed in Funchal itself and had a lovely time in what was supposed to be a three star hotel, but felt a lot better than that (also reviewed on here). If we ever go again, we'll make sure we stay in Funchal, or very close to it, as it can actually get a bit boring up in the wilds!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank CrystalTips17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Hague, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
104 reviews
95 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 319 helpful votes
Reviewed March 17, 2012

I had chosen this hotel because of it's location, allowing me to make long walks.
It is not bad but the for me much too hard bed made it a bad experience and they had nothing better. When I complained I was not even taken seriously. Hotels often think there must be something wrong with me if others don't complain but another couple told me they had had back pain.
I had no meals included and took one dinner which was 15 Euro for a buffet dinner of nothing special dishes. I could barely find something delicious..The lighting is bad in the restaurant and it has no atmosphere whatsoever. Nevertheless they were fully booked, they said.
Swimming pool open but nobody in there. Jacuzzi hardly worked (just one of the many jetstream openings)..
At this time of year not a very great place to stay..
Bus connection to Funchal but takes over an hour and bus was quite full from Funchal.
There's a little supermarket quite near the hotel. Great for drinks etc..
A hotel owner I coincidentally knew picked me up and brought me to his Funchal hotel with great beds (Monte Verde) and decent price (30 Euro)..

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank dutchguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Enotel Golf Santo da Serra

Property: Enotel Golf Santo da Serra
Address: Sitio Dos Casais Proximos, Santo Antonio da Serra Machico, Madeira 9200-160, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Santo Antonio da Serra Machico
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Santo Antonio da Serra Machico
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Enotel Golf Santo da Serra 4*
Number of rooms: 68
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Also Known As:
Do Santo Hotel
Enotel Golf Santo Da Serra Madeira, Portugal

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