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Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa
Ranked #2 of 26 Hotels in Evora
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 6, 2013

How can any hotel owners have possession of such a splendid convent with all the potential and forget to train the staff. Fortunately there are a few good restaurants in the area so we did not need to eat in the hotel. At breakfast,the first morning the service was lamentable, the tablecloth filthy and the food scrappy. The staff did not seem to know the first thing about service. At this point we decided NOT to eat in the hotel.
Just to add; the rooms were large and airy but the soundproofing left a lot to be desired.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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3  Thank Patricia R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 14, 2013

Dear Guest,
Thank you for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa and for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
I am sorry however that your food & beverage experience was not up to your expectations and I may assure you that I have personally adressed the points you mentioned with our Restaurant Supervisor so as to avoid similar unacceptable situations in the future.
Thank you again for your feedback and if I may be of any further assistance in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Best regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 4, 2013

This hotel have all the potential to be a perfect romantic spot. Spacious and comfortable rooms, nice weather around the year, beautiful "Disney style castle" experience, the most amazing church inside, the most friendly staff....

It is very disappointing to see some "amateur" faults to destroy all that potential... Some of those, not even acceptable on a 3 star hotel...

1) no TV signal on the room
We stayed on the "new" building of the hotel. When zapping the TV Channels we could not found one with good image... It seams a detail but it ruins part of the experience. You don't want to spend all the time in the room, but "no TV" room is like a 2 star hotel.

2) No receptionist on the Spa
Seams like the hotel doesn't have enough money to keep a receptionist on the SPA. There is no support at all if you want to use that infra-structure... Not even on the weekend, with a lot of guests... Unacceptable.
There is a policy that no children allowed after 3pm... At 6pm the place was full of children screaming around, opening the sauna doors, etc... If you make a rule, you better keep it... But there's no one to avoid rules to be broken... Not even a receptionist!
Overall the Spa is weak, not deserving the "& Spa" in the name... Unless there are hidden infrastructures and services... But again, no receptionist to explain...

3) where is breakfast?
This hotel is a labyrinth... That is part of it's magic... But there should be signs to the most basic places. The restaurant is not in a obvious place and there is no directions...

4) Am I a Starwood preferred Guest?
Sending an email message right after your stay seams a good idea.... Unless you mess up with the customer's name. This is he perfect case where doing nothing is better than doing it wrong!

In short,
on the pros: big 'enough' comfortable rooms, nice staff, nice historic building, breakfast product quality...

On the cons: no TV signal on the rooms, poor Spa, very expensive restaurant (not justified by the quality provided), small breakfast area and options (but good quality).

It would be a "perfect" for a 3 star, a "very good" for a 4 star and a "regular" for a 5 star... But it is a "poor" taking in consideration the expectations raised for a 5 star with "luxury collection" brand...

Hope this helps them to improve and correct the issues that ruined our expectations...

Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
1  Thank Pedro C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 6, 2013

Dear Guest,
Firstly, we would like to thank you for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa and also for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
Regarding the TV signal, we are sincerely sorry for the inconvenience caused. We have recently been receiving new TVs for the rooms in our older wing, and unfortunately, the set up of these new equipments has caused an interference in the signal of all the TVs in the hotel, which only this week we were able to solve.
Your feedback regarding the spa experience is of utmost importance as this is definitely not the type of experience we want to offer our guests. Thank you for the detailed facts and please be assured that I have personally addressed this situation with our Spa Supervisor in order to avoid similar events in the future.
On a positive note, I was happy to read that you found our staff friendly , and I believe that apart from this magnificent historic building, they our definitely our most valuable asset, extremely committed to their work and to improving the quality of the service, with the help of the priceless input from our guests.
We hope that we may have the pleasure of welcoming you back in the future, and if I may be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Best regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2013

The hotel is really a unique experience as the convent is just gorgeous and you can sense the history. There is a tour of the old part of the building daily that was interesting. We stayed in the new wing and our room was spacious enough with a nice balcony. The furniture fit in well but there were scuffs all over the floors.

One of our minor complaints was that the hotel overall was a bit dark. In the hallways we understood this as it went with the motif, but the room could have a bit better lighting and the gym was way too dark. Part of the problem is the sun did not come up in our four days there so we were not getting any additional light. The one minor complaint was when the AC went on the noise was incredibly loud. To be fair it got better in 5 minutes though after we thought it was broken. The staff were great and got us a dvd player (it did say they were in the room but apparently they only have them in suites) and gave us insights such as where to park in Evora (no small feat). We are starwood gold and this is the only hotel where there wasn't complimentary water in the rooms or turndown service. The other reviews are correct, and the towels are clearly quite old and could be refreshed.

The restaurant is pricey and we opted for eating at the bar instead. The food was good and it was a nice option when it was raining a lot. They have a wine tasting each night which is a nice gesture although it was nothing that special.

We would recommend the hotel as it's a beautiful property, but could do a few minor things to be consistent with the standards of the Luxury Collection.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Thank rogi8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 6, 2013

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa and for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
We are sorry however that your experience was not totally up to your expectations, especially regarding the lack of light in some areas. In truth, as of the last weekend in October when the hour changed, unfortunately we had not yet adjusted the lights in all the areas of the hotel and this was only worsened by the fact that, as you say, the sun was not out.
I have personally looked into the fact that turndown serice was not provided, nor complimentary water, as is our standard, and I take the opportunity to apologize for these shortfalls, but also to thank you for your valuable input which will clearly hekp us to improve our performance.
I was happy to read however that you enjoyed some of the services provided by our young team, and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back to Évora in the near future.
Kind regards,

Report response as inappropriate
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Reviewed October 18, 2013

Stayed here for two nights in October and could not have been happier.

The property is a restored monastery and every aspect of the property reflects the owners commitment to preservation while maintaining high standards.
Although there was a large tour group and several functions (including a wedding) the staff seemed to handle the stress flawlessly.
The restaurant is excellent and the wine list extensive and fairly priced----great wine guy.
One of the highlights was the property tour. We were expecting a brief overview but it turned out to be a 45 min in depth of the history of the monastery and how it was eventually restored to it current outstanding state.
Very well run property and we would highly recommend.

Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Tom G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 23, 2013

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for your preference for Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa and for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
It makes us very happy to see that you enjoyed your stay and also the guided tour of our convent, which we are indeed so proud of.
Thank you again for your kind feedback and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back in the future.
Best regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 17, 2013

Back on my old hobby horse again. Just because you can tick the boxes that say you've got a Spa a health and fitness club, an outdoor pool, tennis facilities and x number of suites does NOT entitle you to claim 5 Stars.
Not when you arrive in one of the suites as we did to find no complimentary water - a phone call to reception soon had it delivered - the glasses that we used for the water were taken away but not replaced and the towels which have obviously been around since the hotel opened in 2005 were hard and one bathtowel even had a hole in one corner where some previous guest had forced it over a hook. So certainly no 5 or even 3 stars to housekeeping.
What should have been the piece de resistance of the hotel and could with the right designer be amazing - I refer to the inner courtyard - was a disappointing hotch potch of white gravel surrounding what looked like a cycle path with odd bits of unkempt grass and some very uninspiring tables and chairs - it really gives the appearance of work in progress - where somebody got fed up half way through and went on to something else. Tiled over with marble with perhaps a couple of small fountains and some elegant furniture the effect could be stunning.
Perhaps the previous reviewer's words had been taken on board by the management because we could not fault the reception staff who went out of their way to be extremely helpfull and gave us very useful advice on trips that we planned to places like Marvao (not to be missed).
We only ate breakfast in the restaurant where a very cheery chef produced tasty omlettes but the waiters found clearing away used fruit/cereal dishes too much of a chore so they just piled up on the table.
Our overall impression was disappointment that the undoubted potential of this extraordinary venue was not being fully realised - like the courtyard, it was work in progress.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank FlyingScotsman92
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 22, 2013

Dear guest,
Thank you for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa. and also for sharing your comments through Trip Advisor.
We apologize for the shortfalls that you encountered during your stay; regarding the complimentary water, this is in fact one of our standards and I regret that it was not placed in your room, as well as the fact that one of your towels was not in good condition. Please be assured that I have met with the respective heads of department so that such situations are avoided in the future.
Thank you also for your feedback regarding the inner courtyard, however, the fact that this convent is classified as a national monument limits us greatly in terms of changes/additions to the various areas of the convent.
On a positive note, I am happy that the service provided by our Front office team was to your satisfaction and we hope that we might have the pleasure of welcoming you back to our region in the near future.
Kind regards,

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 17, 2013 via mobile

Six of us named this stop as part of our 65 birthday trip. The spa was poorly managed. My massage appt was removed from the calendar to accommodate another customer; we had to ask to have the sauna turned on because it was off to save on power; we asked to have the spa hot tub turned on and we were told it is out of service. The swimming pools both indoors and outdoors are clean and lovely.

Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
Thank Meg B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 23, 2013

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa and for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
We are sincerely sorry for the shortfalls regarding the services in our Spa, and the fact that they may have contributed to a less pleasant stay. I may assure you that I have personally looked into the situation with our spa team in order to avoid further unsatisfactory situations in the future.
On a postivie note, we are very happy to see that you enjoyed both our indoor and outdoor pools and we hope that we may have the pleasure of welcoming you again in the future.
Kind regards

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2013

Most of the staff are really, really good. The main building is beautiful with lots of interesting historical features.

We stayed in the Art Wing, large spacious room with some quirky modern art. Loved the Japanese toilet with the bottom washer and hot air!

We were lucky to be invited to a super informative Alentejo wine tasting event in the Pulpito bar.

The Cons about the hotel:- The WiFi is very poor in the rooms at the end of the Art wing and in some public areas. The breakfast buffet was below par for a hotel of this standard. In the evening we ordered mixed tapas from the menu and were served left-overs from the breakfast buffet - at over 17 Euros for a plate it is very poor value (we complained to the barman but he didn't seem to really care).

The hotel is good but it could be so much better.

Room Tip: Remote rooms have no WIFI
  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank lbiscaia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dinipir, General Manager at Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 21, 2013

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for having chosen Convento do Espinheiro and for taking the time to share your opinion through Trip Advisor.
We are very sorry for all the points which were not up to your expectations, especially your breakfast and dinner, and regarding the lack of response from one of our associates, I have met and discussed this with our F&B Supervisor so as to assure that similar unacceptable situations as this, are not repeated in the future. We apologise also for the poor wifi connection in your room; we are in fact currently discussing this with our supplier, in the hope that connection can be improved as soon as possible.
On the other hand, it is a pleasure to learn that most of the service provided by our staff was to your satisfaction, as well as "our" historic builing, and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back in the near future.
Best regards,

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa

Address: Canaviais, Evora 7005-839, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Alentejo > Evora District > Evora
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Evora
#1 Spa Hotel in Evora
#2 Luxury Hotel in Evora
#2 Family Hotel in Evora
#3 Romantic Hotel in Evora
Price Range: $182 - $267 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Convento do Espinheiro, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 92
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Also Known As:
Convento Do Espinheiro, a Luxury Collection Hotel And Spa
Convento Do Espinheiro Heritage Hotel

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