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“Good hotel but definitely not 4 star”
Review of Solaqua Apartments

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Solaqua Apartments
Certificate of Excellence
Derby, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Good hotel but definitely not 4 star”
Reviewed September 15, 2011

Just got back from staying in the Solaqua hotel. We stayed in a self catering studio. The hotel has its good points but also some not so good.. The reception staff were excellent and extremely helpful. They gave us good directions to different places and also advise about buses, markets and good retaurants. We had a problem with our toilet and we reported it and within an hour a chap came and sorted it. Unfortunately the problem continued after a couple of days and in all we reported it 4 times. They were very concerned and tried to sort it out but I really think it needed a plumber. The studio was ill equipped for self catering compared to other 4 star hotels we have stayed in in the Algarve. The bathroom was very big and the shower good. The maids changed the towels every day and the bed linen once during a two week stay. Yes there is a lack of umbrellas and the childrens pool is extremely tiny. Also very little in the way of equipment for small kids. There did not appear to be any evening entertainment or kids clubs. We asked for a quiet room but we got put in a room next to the kitchen and right next to the snack bar. Very noisy at times especially at washing up times (9pm) and music from speakers outside snack bar which often went on till 11pm. If they put you in room 010 please ask to be moved. On the plus side, there is a huge supermarket very near the hotel. You can use the air conditioning as much as you like. The beaches are within 15mins and the tourist train will take you to Fishermans beach and the strip. Don't be put off by some of the reviews but do not expect 4 star accomodation. We spoke to quite a few guests who agreed with our views.

Room Tip: You take pot luck
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mary M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (288)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Northumberland, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed September 5, 2011

spent 1 week at the solaqua in august with another 2 families and we all really enjoyed the stay.the apartments were very clean as was the pool area, plenty of sunbeds for everyone but not anywhere near enough parasols most fo the parasols that were laying about were bought at the supermarket across the road and left by the other hoiliday makers,nice pool bar for a cool drink or snack.

all the staff were friendly and helpful, the room were attended to daily

the strip and the old town were only a 15-20 min walk with large amount of bars and restaraunts to choose from plenty of taxis if they were required.

we enjoyed the stay so much that we would definatly be go back to the solaqua

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank ian w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hampshire England
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 31, 2011

Location excellent, able to shop at the mall (has everything and cheap). All areas of the hotel were clean, the accommodation was good and overlooking the pool, could not fault at all.
The only thing we could not fully understand was we paid for all inclusive, yet between 10am -2pm anything we wished to eat or drink had to be paid for. That is my only complaint. If we return we would just go self catering - as the shops are so near and caters for everything.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Donna F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 31, 2011

I booked to stay at this hotel 5 whole months in advance through Hotels 4 U. I am due to arrive on 5th September 2011 but was informed less than a week before travelling that the hotel was overbooked and that I was being moved to the Varandas de Albufeira- which is across the road and apparently of the same star rating. Having read reviews and looked at pictures it is clear that they are not of the same standard but Hotels 4 U were quite adamant that they were, and kept insisting there was nothing they could do. Considering that I booked so far in advance I am not sure why the booking was not confirmed with the hotel and why I was being made to move- the hotel clearly could not have been over booked in April when i booked. I was told I could book another hotel up to the same price I paid, or pay the difference of any hotel which is more expensive! The whole point of booking in advance was to get a cheaper deal. I asked for the number of the Solaqua Apartments and was given a fax number by one of the managers at Hotels 4 U, which was probably done on purpose. When I finally got through to the hotel, they repeated the same thing over and over and had no explanation as to why they were over booked in the first place. There is definitely a scam going on in order to bring custom to the Varandas de Albufeira having reviews of similar things happening to other customers. I would avoid booking to stay at either hotel or booking through Hotels 4 U. I have been forced to ask for a refund to avoid allowing them to get away with their scam or paying them for another hotel, and will not get something of the same standard for the price I originally paid at such short notice. Livid!

Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
7 Thank Monica279
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
donegal
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed August 20, 2011

These apartments are in a quiet side street just 200 metres from the continente modelo shopping centre and a 15 minute walk from old town. We had a one bed and was more than adequate for family of four(two kids 4and6). If your looking for a lively bar scene and kids club then this isn't your place. It's quiet easy going ,very clean with a lot of families. The location is the big plus ,we could walk to and from old town and the massive cheap supermarket is literally 2 minutes away.contrary to previous posts we found the pool area to be clean ,not enough parasols yes and all sun beds had towels on them by nine,but we loved it .

Room Tip: If you have young kids get a room at front not pool view as music from bar is loud until 12 or so
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank donegallucky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 20, 2011

My party of 4 stayed at this hotel between 10th-17th Aug,2011 on an all inclusive basis, on arrival we were met by a very rude male at reception, he kept constantly tutting...didnt even bother to explain the facilities etc to us, our room 233 smelt of sewerage, one of the beds had a rough wooden plank under the seating, wiring was uncovered, glass table was broken, the floor was unswept, draws in the 1 bed apartment kitchen were broken, the maids did not clean every day. the bar staff were VERY rude unless you were a cash paying customer! They talk about in your face in their own language!! The pool area was very dirty: plastic cups, wrappers strewn all over the place. The food was appauling, same salad stuff with not much variety, very limited selecton available, general upkeep of dining area unclean and very small. All staff were very rude and unhelpful (All need to go on a customer service course!) NOT 4* HOTEL BY ANY STANDARD!!!!! YET THEY HAD THE CHEEK TO LEAVE TIP BOXES EVERYWHERE. I WOULDN'T STAY THERE AGAIN EVEN IF I WAS PAID TOO!!!! (HOLS BOOKED THROUGH HOTELS4U, DETAILS ADVERTISIED DID NOT MATCH SOLAQUA!!)
We left most upset, tried to get another hotel but Hotels4U could't find anything else due to peak season... *****DONT WASTE YOUR MONEY BOOKING SOLAQUA!!!!*****

Room Tip: Unclean, avoid booking any rooms at Solaqua!!
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Perttola P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Derbyshire
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 16, 2011

We've just returned from a week's stay at the Sol Aqua apartments.We'd managed to get an excellent deal at our travel agents, paying half of the usual price so we were already in a positive mood even before we'd arrived. Our first impressions were very good. We arrived at around 11am and were told that we couldn't have access to our room until 1pm which was fair enough as this is standard check in. The staff helpfully showed us to the luggage room where we could store our suitcases until we could go up to the room. I was a little put off that literally anyone could walk in and take your suitcase as there was no lock on the door but then again it would definitely be impractical to have to lock and unlock each time new guests arrive, plus it didn't feel like an unsafe hotel.

There were four of us in the party so were given an apartment with sofa beds in the lounge and twin beds in the bedroom. We were very impressed with the size and cleanliness of the apartment. The maids were very friendly and provided clean towels upon request (we basically just put ours in the bath as that's what we do in other hotels). Like some other reviewers have mentioned, you don't get a vast amount of cutlery but this wasn't really a problem for us as we only ate breakfast in the apartment. Granted we didn't get a pool view but perhaps that would have been noisier.

On to facilities... There are three swimming pools, an indoor pool and jacuzzi, a kids outdoor and the main outdoor swimming pool. It is true what reviewers have wrote about the sunbed problem. Our holiday rep requested we not reserve sunbeds in the hope that this good will gesture would eventually encourage everyone else to abide by the same fair use policy. It didn't. To get a sunbed, we went down to the pool at 9am. There also are limited parasols which can be problem in the summer heat. Thankfully you can purchase these at the local supermarket for the bargain price of €2 which is fantastic as you can also take these to the beach! We didn't use the indoor pool as upon inspection we read that you need to wear a swimming hat and pool slippers, neither of which we had packed.

Now it's the hotels location which really sold Sol Aqua to us. Being set back off the main road means you get a peaceful night's sleep yet you are central to all the amenities. There is a vast shopping centre which has a food court (Pizza Hut etc.), ample clothes shops and a large supermarket which stacks almost everything you could imagine. We used this supermarket a lot thanks to its fantastic prices - 30cents for a litre bottle of water which we stocked up on to keep us hydrated in the heat.

We didn't once use a taxi during the course of our stay as we found everything within easy walking distance - about 15 minutes to the Old Town and 20-25 minutes to the New Town. If however you don't feel like walking this everyday, there is a very handy road-train which runs every 20 minutes or so and runs a clockwise lap between both the towns. It costs €4 and that includes unlimited use until midnight that same day. It is very popular so make sure you queue correctly at the bus stop to ensure you get on! Before we went, I was warned about the safety of the area but I personally never felt unsafe, even when walking home at 1am.

We actually preferred the Old Town to the New Town for its character and charm. Here you have the beautiful Fisherman's beach, an array of restaurants and souvenir shops - you won't be short of choice! The New Town is where you'll find more of the bars and clubs - try to hit happy hour if you want cheap drinks. My favourite bar was Wild & Co's as they have live bands which are a great atmosphere and gets everyone dancing.


Overall, we couldn't fault the hotel. The man upon check-out was very friendly and fast. For self-catering and the deal we got, it was well worth the money and would definitely go back to Portgual.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Stacey F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Solaqua Apartments

Property: Solaqua Apartments
Address: Rua do Mediterraneo, Albufeira 8200-156, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 130 Specialty Lodging in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Solaqua Apartments 4*
Number of rooms: 5
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Solaqua Apartments Hotel Albufeira
Solaqua Apartments Albufeira, Portugal - Algarve

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