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“If you want 5* luxery then pay the appropriate price”

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Agua Hotels Riverside
Ranked #4 of 5 Hotels in Lagoa
Chester, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“If you want 5* luxery then pay the appropriate price”
Reviewed October 12, 2012

We stayed here from 9th september until the 23rd...
First impression
We arrived at midnight to be greeted by a friendly male receptionist who quickly and efficiently checked us in, we found our room quickly but had slight trouble getting in to the room as all rooms are on a key less entry system which i think may still be having teathing problems as we had a few problems while we were there. On getting there we were over the moon with the beautiful room and hotel although slightly dissapointed with the balcony overlooking the car park but within a couple of days we realised this side had the sun all day and was still blazing at 8pm and was peaceful and private unlike the rooms overlooking the bar/restaurant.

We went on a bed and breakfast basis and the breakfast was of a good standard and plentiful, i personaly feel that if you couldnt find something to eat then theres something wrong with you!

The pools
There was one small childrens pool and one gorgeous infinity pool that was the cleanest pool i think ive ever come accross and yes it wasnt the biggest pool ive ever seen and yes it was cold but the hotel was at full capacity and i never once saw it looking overcrowded and its not heated but it was 36 degrees so who cares and i was gratfull of the cooling off.

Bar/restaraunt
If not on a all inclusive basis the drinks were a little over priced and we tended to only buy them at happy hour but local wines from the supermarket are just over 1 euro a bottle but i have to say i really enjoyed having a glass of wine over looking the river or at the end of the jetty.

The hotel is in Parchal which is not in the tourist area at all but is not run down or rough its just how old portugal is, i have been to portugal many times and if your looking for blackpool abroad then this is not for you as its up to a 40 min walk to portimao or ferragudo, the latter of which is a beautiful portugese fishing village practically unspoilt by tourism and is well worth a visit with its handful of lovely restaurants.
I would advise you hire a car as there is nothing around this hotel and its a lovely way to see the algarve, i would reccomend a trip to alvor which is about 10 mins away and a 10 euro taxi fare but it is totally worth it which its stunning beach and harbour and lots and lots of fabulous traditional portugese restaurants.
There is a supermarket (mini precco) just to the left of the hotel wich stocks all your essentials and a river boat that takes you to the beach daily which was geat and my nine year old loved.

This hotel is for relaxation and there isnt a great deal for children but that didnt stop my daughter having a great time.
Now for the people on a all inclusive basis, from what i heard the food wasnt the best but i cant comment on that as i never tried it.

The staff
I found the reception staff to be very helpfull but the bar staff were not and to be honest it was quite an effort for them to just serve you but in there defence they had to put up with the moaning and complaints of us fellow brits for 18 hours a day and i witnessed a few times some rude behaviour towards the bar staff.

Overall i really enjoyed my two weeks here and for me it was exeptional value for money at under £12 a night each, i consider my self quite well travelled and have stayed in some of the best hotels in the world and have paid the appropriate price.... so in my opinion if you want the hilton then dont pay for the travelodge and then complain that it doesnt have the luxers that one would expect in the hilton and lets face it your hoiday is what you make it and some people will moan and complain about anything especially the british and it certainly hasnt put me off as im coming back to the riverside next month.

Thanks Agua Riversise

Room Tip: Would advise a room on the outside of the hotel and if your budget allows a suite or if not a junior...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
19 Thank Sophiedavies2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Bradford
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed October 12, 2012

Stayed at Riverside for 11 nights all inclusive, I had read the reviews before we went and was a little confused, but having been there I now understand some of the comments. My view is it depends what you want from a holiday, different strokes etc.
Rooms - Excellent ours was a junior suite with large living room, 42" TV with English channels. Fully fitted kitchen Large fridge freezer, oven, hob, microwave and dishwasher. 2 bathrooms with showers and one bath, his and her sinks in one. Good size bedroom with TV and plenty of wardrobe space and free safe.
Food - buffet style always found something to tempt us, wine etc as much as you like.
Location - Yes you do need a car as the hotel is out of the way. Nice and quiet but again that depends on what you want, if you want clubs etc it may not be the right choice for you. Hotel situated next to river, hence name, the infinity pool looks out over the river. The smell can be bad from the river but it comes from further up on mudflats by the N125 bridge, it is nothing to do with the hotel.
Staff - friendly, efficient and helpful waht more do you need.
Gym - enjoyed the sauna and steam room also had a back massage it was great.
Negatives - somewhere to sit after dinner as mentioned by others, we went back to room with bottle of wine. Entertainment, not really bothered ourselves but only once per week and a duo, guitar and organ.
All in all a great hotel for us.

Room Tip: Ours was room 309A we looked at another overlookin the river but this was much nicer.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Ray B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 11, 2012

We arrived on 23.9.12 for 10 days all inclusive with friends. We did pay for a private transfer from the airport which took us door to door in an hour, so certainly worth the extra money. We were very pleased with our junior suites and the cleaners came in everyday and made up the beds and changed the towels. The hotel is not in the town and is about a 30 minute walk or €5 in a taxi to portimao. I had read all the comments on trip adviser before we booked so we were fully aware of the location before we arrived. We also hired a car for 3 days through the hotel which was very reasonably priced. The reception staff were very helpful especially Denise. The meals at the hotel were nice, although a tad cold sometimes, but always plenty to choose from, it was typical Buffett style, eat as much as you like - would have been great to have had some authentic Portuguese food though... We couldn't fault the restaurant staff especially when we first arrived for that week, but at the end of the week the management had decided to reduce the number of staff on duty which made it extremely stressful for the existing staff and they couldn't offer the same service, as they were Constantly rushing and covering several peoples jobs at once!!! You can take food from the restaurant to your rooms and also bottles of water and alcohol, we took cake everyday to have in the afternoon !! It's a great shame there is no separate bar area to sit in and they could do with some entertainment each evening. Disappointed the boat from hotel to beach wasn't running either - in for a service apparently?? All inclusive closed between 10.30 - 12noon??? We were told for cleaning too, you couldn't even get a coffee or a cold drink....Pool very cold not heated at all, ok when you're in on a hot day!! Great having spa towels for the pool area, no problem changing them, you could swap them everyday if you wished. In 10 days only smelt the river twice and that was when the tide was out.. Had a great holiday with friends, and we would definitely use this hotel again, especially for the price we paid!!

Room Tip: From a security point of view, we preferred a second floor room, overlooking the river. Beware thoug...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Shona J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Plymouth, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 11, 2012

just come back form 2 weeks in this hotel. we were a party of 6. we arrived late, but got our rooms sorted nice and quickly. we found out that the restaurant was closed and no food had been arranged for us. we was starving so we went into town and got food. we could get wine at the hotel that night however.
room was lovely, we had an apartment which was lovely. breakfast was scrabbled eggs, bacon and beans....everyday!... sometimes there was spicy sausage.... which was cold.
lunch was some form of meat, chips, pasta and some form of fish...which was cold.
evening meal was the same as what you would get at lunch. salads and soups was also on offer, but again mostly cold.
there was no snacks at all. so if you had missed breakfast you'd had to wait til lunch. and if you missed lunch you'd had to wait til evening meal (7.30pm).
most days you couldn't get a coffee or tea during the day as they closed the machines...which kept running out anyway. they ran out of rose wine, vodka, tonic water and coke while we were there. which wasn't fun!
we had entertainment once a week, which was good but short lasting. the terrace area had no cover if it rained. and they didn't like you going back to the restaurant, where the bar was, as they had already set it up for breakfast.
some of my party had a meeting with the manager, he did try his best and opened the tea and coffee machines. he did come and check the food, but the next day it was again cold.
the toasters in the restaurant was very poor, the manager did get a rotisserie one which was better but kept breaking down, over heating.
the view was lovely but the area was lacking. the staff were lovely but very over worked.
george the bar man was lovely and did everything he could to make us happy.
the icying of the cake was at night times when the tide went out, you could smell the sewer! and it stank right through the hotel.
i wont be going back.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
2 Thank teresa h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Plymouth, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed October 11, 2012

we recently stayed at this hotel rooms were clean the food was cheap and always cold , staffing levels were poor restricted meal times nothing to eat between meals everything stops at midnight the bar which is situated in the canteen close's then no entertainment accept saturday night;s a guitar duo play for a couple of hrs the smell every evening before dinner is terrible as there is nowhere to sit but outside if it rains you have to go back to your room! you have to wait a long time for a drink as the same staff are clearing tables which you have to queue up for ; !the staff are all stressed because of all the complaint;s

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank margaret h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2012

I've read countless reviews on Trip Advisor about this hotel from both ends of the traveller spectrum so I thought I would give an indiscriminate review for all types of guests thinking of staying based on my own views and that of some of the fellow guests that stayed there that week.

Lets start with the hotel itself. On arrival we checked in without any problem at all, the reception was clean tidy with a nice view of the courtyard at the centre of the hotel. Getting to each room is easy enough with the farthest being less than two minutes walk.

Our room was spotless and the room facilities were perfect, just make sure you get a room with a kitchen if you are not going all inclusive as it helps on the nights when you just want to chill. The beds are comfy and linen is freshly pressed. The TV has a lot of English channels for you X Factor fans out there and the minimalist furniture adds to the clean feel of the place. If you are lucky enough to get a river view (ask for this when booking) you'll have a large sunny balcony all day long. The infinity pool is just a treat, a dip now and again cools the skin ready for your next bout of toasting.

We didn't go all inclusive and the view of other guests that we met was that the food was sub standard. I'd like to quantify this a little. All inclusive is around an extra €45/£35 per person per night and includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and as much local alcohol as you can shake a stick at. We ate at the hotel one evening and the food wasn't 5 Star standard but was absolutely fine when you think how little you have paid for it. Basically you are paying £11.50 for each meal with free drinks all day long. I don't know of anywhere in England where you can pay this so really don't understand why people would moan about it. If you don't go all inclusive then make sure you stock up on local wines, beers or spirits from the local supermarket (5 mins away) as a beer or wine at the bar will cost around £4 with albeit large spirits from £6 upwards. I laughed about some of the reviews about "Toastergate" but this was fixed halfway through our stay with the arrival of a much admired rotating toaster. This broke down halfway through the morning but I am sure it will be running again soon.

The staffs friendliness was fine once you make the effort to converse with them and take the time to create a rapport. George the barman was a parody of every foreign barman I have ever met but was delightfully chipper despite being rushed off his feet in even this low season.

Okay, the location. If you are a party goer or if you like perusing shops that are close by then don't bother coming here. I would suggest Lagos, Alvor or Praia La Rocha in Portimão. The latter is more suited to the younger party goer with bars and clubs both in the town and beach. If you just want an ultimate relaxing holiday by the pool with everything done for you then an all inclusive week here is just for you. If you are somewhere inbetween then you'll need a car (or take taxis) to get to the places stated above and more. There is little else to do on the complex apart from a pool table so bring your book, Kindle or Nintendo DS. Kids would get a little bord so you'll have to work at keeping them occupied unless you take trips out and about.

The only collective gripe from all the guests I spoke to was the food but c'mon, it's all inclusive at less than the price of a two course meal at home. You save enough on the price of a room (around £45 - £80 depending on season and even cheaper if a few of you share a suite) to make it an all round cheap holiday location.

I'd go again, sweet, quiet and lazy.

p.s. Make sure you have a bite to eat at the end of the pier with wine and a bit of Nina Simone. (o:

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank jamesslittle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed October 7, 2012

I can say almoste good things about this hotel, and I have only two remarks: some service and the outside pool. The service I think could be better, for some little things, like the toals for the pool (we had to wait everytime we went to pick or left the toals). The water in the outside pool was ver cool :-(

Beside that, everything was very good, the sight was amazing, the hotel was very clean, the jacuzzi and sauna was very nice also. Very quiet at night. A nice place to be a couple of days. I recommend.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank rjmfaustino
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Agua Hotels Riverside

Property: Agua Hotels Riverside
Address: Quinta do Parchal, Lagoa 8400, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Lagoa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 5 Hotels in Lagoa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Agua Hotels Riverside 4*
Number of rooms: 134
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Also Known As:
Agua Hotels Riverside Hotel Lagoa
Agua Hotels Riverside Portugal/Lagoa, Algarve

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