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“Great views for the Douro River landscape”

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Rio Douro Hotel & Spa
Certificate of Excellence
Vila Real, Portugal
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Great views for the Douro River landscape”
Reviewed April 8, 2013

This Hotel is perfectly integrated in the wonderful landscape of douro River. Waking up in the morning and see that view is magnificent. The pool is very nice, but could be a little bigger. The Spa offered two hand massages to me and my wife, wich was very kind. Great value for the money.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MarcioCordeiro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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529 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
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English first
Riverview, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
493 reviews
84 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 166 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2013

Booked for 2 nights on our Month in Portugal, great choice, offered Port at checkin. This is a very modern hotel spa, our room was on the river with spectular views, slightly more than other rooms, but super price. Outdoor infinity pool was not open but the similar indoor Spa pool was perfect. Workout in workout room facing river, move to two saunas, try the hot tub (not hot this day) then enjoy the pool (no one in pool). The restaurant was great and service good. Breakfast was included and had a very good offering. My wife had some Spa services at good prices for the type of service, book ahead so they can setup for you or some may not be available. Boating, outdoor events were not opened yet in early April. Free parking and Wi Fi which is often hard to find in Portugal. English is not always available in this area, but who cares, just muddle through. Loved this Place !!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Robert B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lisbon, Portugal
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013

We stayed in Eurostars for 3 nights this easter and overhall it was a great get away.

Altough the weather was awful, it is very nice to just sit in your room and see the marvellous view from your room. We only paid 4 euros more for the full river view than we would have for the partial view so I fully recommend the full view.

Arrival to the hotel - It is not extremely easy, specially if you don't have a GPS. Only very close to the hotel you start seeing some directions. The parking is very big but indeed it is not very comfortable since it is a bit far from the recepcion, with uneven ground and carry your luggage on the rain in this paviment can be unpleasant even for young and fit guests.

One thing I did not like was to see guests parking in places that were forbidden, right at the entrance ruining the view at the arrival and difficulting the entrance. The hotel management should be more severe in this and put some kind of barrier to prevent it.

Hotel layout - although it is partially on construcion on the above floors, the construction was stoped during our stay and visually it doesn't afect much the hotel. I found the way to the rooms a bit cold, but the rooms themselves are very nice. Large and altgough minimalist they are comfortable and modern. The bathroom is huge but a bit cold, specially when you get out of the shower, since the air contidioned doesn't get there. And, again, the view from the big window is great

Spa - The spa has only 2 hours in which kids can use it which is great because in this 2 hours it gets crowded and noisy. If you want to relax, avoid 10am-11am and 3pm-4pm hours otherwise you'll just feel you're ina public pool. I din0t find the pool water cold, since it is for swiming. The hot tub was a diferente story. Since it is meant to relax and enjoy the lovcely view, yes it is cold. We did a massage. The spa personnel is very nice and polite. The massage was OK, not the best one I ever had but it was enjoyable

Restaurant - The breakfast is very good. The fruit and the pastries amazing. However, we didn't have lunch or dinner in it since it is very expensive, specially for the North of Portugal. Just the main course is around 16. If you go to Castelo de Paiva, a town just 15 minutes drive away, you can eat at Café da Villa, which is excellent. We paid 11 euros each for a full dinner, including dessert.

In general, it is a very nice hotel.The staff is friendly and helpful. The rooms are nice and the view is amazing. For the kind of hotel, I think it would gain being just for adults.

I advise you to book directly in the hotel site and not trhough booking. It was 37 euros cheaper for 3 nigths and we got a 10 minutes hand massage for free

Room Tip: The rooms with full river view are the best
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank joanaffbarros
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jersey
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed February 17, 2013 via mobile

This hotel is located right on the river douro. We went with no expectations as we got a very cheap deal and thought as ling as we get a bed we'll be happy. But i can honestly say this is up there in my top five best hotel stays!!! The view from our room was just unbelievably stunning and the room was massive. The bathroom was bigger than our lounge at home!
The staff were great, especially the two guys at reception and all restaurant staff.

The restaurant was nice and very fairly priced, although the selection was a bit poor so couldn't eat in there every night.

Only used the gym in the spa section which was small but enough for me. The pool was popular so must have been good.

All in all it was just fantastic. And make sure you schedule in a trip to vila nova de gaia and all the port cellars!!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SussieSussie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sofia, Bulgaria
Level 6 Contributor
25 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed February 5, 2013

This is absolutely one of the most exquisite places I have ever been. On every level. Wonderful hotel with top notch attention to all details. Wonderfully friendly and attentive staff who nearly jump at the opportunity to help in any way. Delicious fresh made/cooked breakfast every morning.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank VladSofia_Bulgaria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portugal - Norte
Level 5 Contributor
67 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
Reviewed November 8, 2012

Most positive:

-The wonderful river view from your bed/sofa...
-Fabulous design: hotel, rooms, bathroom, common areas (dinning/breakfast room, library), in and outdoor swimming-pools
-Very, very nice staff in all sectors
-The great bossa nova/Brazilian music duo that played in the bar on that Saturday night

This is a 5 star class hotel in many aspects, specially in the design and comfort

Less positive:

-The indoor pool water must be at an higher temperature than it was (it was about 25 degrees Celsius)
-The breakfast although with good quality, could have more diversity
-The dinner menu could also have more options

Room Tip: River room view is mandatory...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Biajante
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canton of Geneva, Switzerland
Level 6 Contributor
141 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
Reviewed October 31, 2012

I spent six nights here in August of 2012. We paid for a river view room and were not disappointed on that front. The room was a good size, with very high quality fittings and furnishings. The decor was subdued and contemporary and the view was wonderful. In short, everything we had hoped for. The exterior and common areas of the hotel were also fantastic. The pool area is a bit small for all the guests, undoubtedly, but we were able to find space most days. In summary the best parts of this place are- the rooms, location and design of the hotel in general. The bar staff were also generally competent and friendly, going out of their way to be helpful and professional. We also rented kayaks one day and another day had a (private!) boat tour which was worth every Euro and greatly exceeded our expectations. The breakfast buffet was also very good quality.

Where this hotel fails to live up to expectations, in my opinion, is related to the restaurant. Given the location it is likely most guests will eat dinner and/or lunch at least once in the hotel restaurant. Personally we had dinner twice and lunch twice. I have spent several years in Portugal and am very familiar with the food in this region in particular and have to say that unfortunately the food here was very, very disappointing. To put it succinctly- there was a great deal of fuss and very little substance. The service is overly formal and fussy and falls to pieces when it is busy. The food is bland, overly complex, poncy and overpriced.

The waiters on the whole seemed very inexperienced. On one particular occasion, despite ordering a bottle of wine several times from several different waiters we waited until we had eaten both our starters and desserts before eventually receiving something resembling our order (although still not the right bottle!). We were first brought two glasses of wine (when we had ordered a bottle) and twice brought the wrong bottle. Plus we were charged full price for everything despite complaining several times. I would advise the hotel management to get rid of the current chefs, bring in a local, traditional and more reasonably priced dinner menu and to train your staff properly. There should also be a varied (cheaper) lunch menu which differs from the dinner menu (as is standard practice in Portugal). We ate out several times in Castelo de Paiva (travelling back and forth by taxi) and had excellent meals in the village. Do this rather than waste your time and money in the hotel restaurant.

One more negative - we repeatedly witnessed the (general?) manager being rude and abusive towards the (excellent) bar staff. Please remedy this. Bad management and a bad attitude create an unpleasant atmosphere for staff and guests.

To conclude- if the hotel sorted out the restaurant I would happily return and would give it five stars. It is a beautiful hotel in a wonderful tranquil setting with some great staff. If only they could remedy the issues they have it could be an utterly outstanding + fantastic value hotel.

Room Tip: River view!
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Christopher F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rio Douro Hotel & Spa

Property: Rio Douro Hotel & Spa
Address: EN 222 KM 41 | Vista Alegre, Castelo de Paiva 4550-631, Portugal (Formerly Eurostars Rio Douro)
Location: Portugal > Northern Portugal > Aveiro District > Castelo de Paiva
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Castelo de Paiva
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Rio Douro Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A unique place to live the best of the Douro. The Rio Douro Hotel & Spa is a contemporary hotel in harmony with the amazing natural surroundings. Inspired by the Douro Wine Region, it recreates the terraces that characterize and mold the slopes of the region for centuries and uses traditional schistand glass transparencies over the unique landscape in the organization of different interior areas. With 37 rooms and 5 suites, all with lots of natural light and magnificent views, the hotel has an original design in a minimalist and tasteful style. The close connection to the Douro river with a fluvina and capacity for 26 boats, the panoramic restaurant with regional gastronomy, a spa with hydrotherapy circuit, the panoramic outdoor swimming pool, a gymnasium, together with the 3 bars and 2 meeting and events rooms, make the Rio Douro Hotel & Spa a unique place to stay and enjoy the best of this region. LOCATION Halfway between Oporto and the Douro Wine Region, the hotel is located at Vista Alegre (Castelo de Paiva), at km 41 of the National Road 222, on the left bank of the Douro and perfectly integrated into the surroundings. 10 km from Castelo de Paiva, 40 km from Oporto, 55 km from Oporto Airport and 160 km from the border with Spain (Tui). ... more   less 
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