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“Better than we thought it would be!”

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Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments
Certificate of Excellence
London
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Better than we thought it would be!”
Reviewed March 9, 2008

We stayed at Cerro Mar in the first week of March 2008. Managed to check-in several hours early without any problems and was pleased to be given a room in the new block (room number 107). First impressions of the apartment were above average - the kitchenette is very well-equipped with more utensils than you would really require on a holiday. There is also an oven, full-sized fridge, washing machine and diswasher. The entire apartment appears to be newly-built and all the furnishings are contemporary in style. The bathroom is massive and decorated in a classy manner. However, it must be said that you should bring your own toiletries as the hotel only provides shower gel and toilet roll (but no toilet roll or bath towel holder). Apart from this, we were also slightly disappointed that despite asking for a double bed or larger, we were given 2 single beds which were pushed together. Also, although there is a safe in the bedroom, you are expected to rent the lock for it at 9 euros a week (with a 15 euro deposit). Most mornings, we were also awoken by the sounds of construction work above us so we assume parts of the hotel are still being finished off. As long as you don't intend to still be in bed past 10am, you should be alright.

The hotel itself has all of the basic facilites you would expect - indoor and outdoor pools, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi, gym, massage services, restaurants, bars and a tennis court. There are lounge chairs and parasols around the outdoor pool but you will have to rent towels at 2.50 euros each or use the ones in your hotel room. The outdoor pool is not heated so no one actually used it whilst we were there. However, the indoor pool is heated but you will have to buy a swimming cap at 2.50 euro to use it or bring your own.

The distance to the nearest beach from the hotel is approximately 10-15 minutes by foot through the centre of town. There are exactly 98 steps leading to the centre and it is advisable to wear comfortable, padded shoes as the pavements are cobbled. The beach is fairly clean although not exactly pure white sand and the water can be cold even in the midday sun. There are no mats, towels or umbrellas to rent anywhere nearby so you will have to bring your own. Despite reading on the web that there are activities like jetskiing or parasailing which one can do, we found no sign of any of this (unless they were referring to other beaches).

All the eateries can be found in the town centre or along the little streets near it. Price-wise, you can get meals from as little as 5 euros per person but these will be in little snack bars or cafes. As personal preference, we ate out in fairly decent restaurants for dinner. Starters, drinks, main course and dessert for two would usually came up to about 50 euros altogether (including tipping). Although Albufeira seems to be proud of their seafood offering, we weren't exactly blown away by the quality and freshness of it all (some things like prawns tasted like they were cooked from frozen and shellfish like clams and mussels often tasted very strong of seawater). Two Portuguese dishes probably worth trying at least once would be the cataplana and piri piri chicken. We personally enjoyed the food, service and atmosphere of Cabana Fresco (on the beachfront) and also a Thai restaurant a little bit further from the centre called Royal Orchid (nice romantic atmosphere and good food).

We chose to cook our own meals for lunch on most days and easily bought ingredients from the nearest supermarket (LIDL) for this. If you must have fresh mik however, bring it with you as we only ever found UHT milk in all the supermarkets we saw. It is also difficult to find English tea (the hotel does not provide any) so bring your own as well if you are particular.

A taxi from Faro Airport to Cerro Mar is 65 euros and easily available as soon as you exit the airport. For our return trip however, we booked a shuttle bus with a travel company located in the town centre and this cost only 20 euros (and they picked us up from the Cerro Mar reception building). You could also book the shuttle bus to the hotel from the airport but you will have to do this in advance prior to leaving your country.

The weather at this time of year is fairly sunny throughout the day but can get quite chilly due to the wind. It is necessary to have at least one cardigan/jumper on hand when hitting the town in the evening. However, we did manage to get several days of decent sunbathing.

On the whole, we could see that both Cerro Mar and Albufeira seemed to appeal mostly to older tourists (whether this is true all-year we don't know). The whole area is quite laidback and touristy although there are a few livelier bars and pubs around.

  • Liked — The newness of the apartment and its contents
  • Disliked — A tie between the single beds and the construction noise in the mornings
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jackish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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toronto
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed February 25, 2008

this is the newest of this chain. we were upgraded to it from the cerro mar colina. apparently they are going to renovate the other cerro mar hotels. they are still completing a new one across the street. the gardens is still a work in progress. the restaurant was not open and the staff had no idea when it would open.(this was february). the bar would serve breakfast upon arrangement. since this is an apartment hotel not a problem.
some work is still being done on the hotel.
there is a small minimart across the street (owner is very nice) and the LIDL market(an uphill walk away) or if you took the hotel van to old town an ALISSUPER market where the city buses stop.

the location is spectacular, overlooks old town and fishermans beach but you can not get there directly by car. you can walk down the 100 steps to the town square. all rooms have a south view but get one on the higher floors since the reception area has a high dome that obstructs the view.

i would not advise older persons without a car to stay at this hotel
because of the steep walks. there is public buses(gyro) but you have to walk to the stops. the local restaurant is the montahna and is quite good. there are two bakeries in the same area.

  • Stayed February 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank arnieToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
26 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed December 20, 2007

We stayed at the Cerro Marr early November 2007, myself, husband and 2 year old.
We booked our trip through Expedia and got a very good deal, but were not in the new block and were put in Block B. To be honest, the apartment we had was fairly good for what we paid, a 1 bed, we had a washing machine and all the kitchen necessities. One piece of warning, if you are staying here, make sure you take everything except toilet role with you. We had to make a trip to the Lidl straight away, as we weren't even give hand soap or a welcome pack with the immediate arrival.

All in all we had a pleasant stay, although as we went off peak, the hotel did feel like a ghost town, not that many people staying there. The walk from the new building to block B is not an easy one, especially with a push chair as the hill is fairly steep. We paid extra with expedia for breakfast, but to be honest, I wouldn't advise you pre book breakfast, all we got was Bread, cheese, Jam/butter and a plate of fruit with tea and coffee, being vege we asked to have our breakfast without ham, so that was a waste. I would recommend ordering of the menu and paying once you're there as the price was cheaper there and we paid more on expedia.

Restaurants, we didn't think much of the restaurants, but would recommend in the Old Town - Bank had a good menu with a mixture of cuisines (service wasn't too great though) and the best restaurant we found was Za Za at the Old Town, very good Thai/Japanese Noodle Bar, we ate there a few night and my little one loved their noodles, On the Strip Liza Pizza & Pasta was good.

Food Shopping - would recommend you go to Modelo, as it's bigger and has a lot more variety than Lidl.
All in all we thought the Cerro Marr was an okay hotel

  • Liked — Apartment Size - Huge!
  • Disliked — Lack of people at the hotel in November - Ghost Town!
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank SunMan74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shoebury, essex
Level Contributor
50 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed December 1, 2007

I can honestly say that I was so pleasantly surprised by this property that I cannot beleive that it is only a 3 star.

Reading some of the other reviews I think it can be that you are either lucky or unlucky. We stayed in one of the newest blocks & after chatting during the week to the staff we stayed in the block that is not sold off as Holiday lets.

The apartment was spacious & modern, the kitchen was fully fitted & although on Holiday I did most of the washing before I came home, lovely not to have to rush tomorrow & do it.

We were one of the very few people there so it felt like we had a private pool, bar etc.

Ok the bars kept shutting early, in the Hotel, but we spent a lot of the day & evenings in the old town, the walk down was a bit much but in the end we just resorted to Taxis & at 4.05 Euro a time I thought it was very reasonable, I was in Benalmadema in October & the same distance was normally 9 euros, so we thought it was very cheap , especially after a couple of free glasses of wine & port. The great thing about going in the winter is that the restaurants & bars want your custom & will offer lots of discounts & freebies.

The downside of the winter is that it does get chilly at night, I mean end of November & I need a Jacket or Cardigan at night!

As well as air conditioning the apartment has heating in the lounge/kitchen & bedroom so you could not get cold, unless you did not use it.

My experience was so great that I am alreaddy calculating when I can next get leave to go again. One of the best times I have had & the accomodation was BRILLIANT.

  • Liked — everything
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank sallysos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cumbria
Level Contributor
32 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed November 10, 2007

my boyfriend and I stayed here for a long stay for aproximately 3 months in 2003. We spent Christmas and New year here. We stayed in the old block on the ground floor. It was equiped really well in the kitchen, but we didnt like the decor in the living room much. Looking at those blue tiles for three months was a bit much. We were suprised that it had a seperate bedroom with it being described as a studio. There werent many other people staying cos of the time of year. There was nothing going on entertainment wise, just the bar with a pool table. We found the staff ok but just a little too laid back as though they couldnt be bothered if we stayed there or not. The reception was left unmanned quite a lot and we helped ourselves to our keys many times which is quite worrying cos anyone could have done the same and gained access to the appartment. The maid came 6 times a week which was anoying cos we like to be left in peace. She did a good job but she huffed and puffed while doing it as though she was anoyed at having to tidy up after us, even though we always tidied up before she came. The steps leading to the old town are quite exausting, there was a mini bus service from the town back to the hotel which we used sometimes (if they decided to turn up, which sometimes it didnt.) On the whole we enjoyed our stay, but wouldnt stay for that long again. Oh and we found out there was a lovely roof garden on our last week of staying. Would like to see the place in full swing to get a better aptmosphere.

Stayed November 2003
Helpful?
1 Thank tubbytown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 25, 2007

Me and my partner stayed at the Cerro Mar Apartments in September this year and we were really pleased with everything. The room size was good, the beds were comfortable and the view was great. We thought the hotel was in a great location as well, because it only took about 5-10 minutes to walk down the steps into the Old Town. The Old Town is lovely and don't let the title 'Old' put you off, as there is plenty to do, with loads of great restaurants and bars, that are also open until late. The Apartments were cleaned regularly and so was the pool. We found the apartment very well sized and that it had everything and more than what we needed. However, we did stay in the new block and must admit if we had been placed in the old block we may not have been so pleased! Overall, the Cerro Mar is perfect for couples, groups of friends and familys. However, if you do have difficulty walking be aware that it is quite an uphill trek back to your room. Finally just some recommendations...Bank is a lovely restaurant and you would be silly not to go there! The Beach is beautiful with plenty of water sports to keep you occupied, the bars are lovely and relaxing for both the daytime and the evening, but be warned it can be chilly in the evening...so don't forget you cardigans! Overall, i would recommend Albufiera to anyone as it was one of the bext holidays i have ever had and i will without any doubt go back!!..the New Town is good especially if you fancy a late night out..however, i think i prefered staying nearer to the old town and travelling into the 'The Strip' on the tourist train. The tourist train is something that i would recommend to everyone as it will show you all the three main areas!! Please feel free to ask me any questions!

We went to both AquaShow and Slide and Show waterparks. They were both a great day out, however i would say slide and show has more to keep you occupied all day and AquaShow has some more white knuckle rides!!

  • Liked — The Size of the Apartment and the Location.
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank ZoJo24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aberdeen
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 24, 2007

we booked with Venere.com and took all the reviews from tripadvsor under consideration and hoped we wouldnt end up in the block everyone seemed to have problems with but we were given room 504 in block 2 Collinas. We booked a 1 bed apartment but 504 is a 2 bedroom sleeping 6 so it was very spacious and clean. excellent facilties - no hassle with keys or cleaners or changes in linen so maybe we were lucky with time of year. The bar in the main block 1 closed on Sunday 21st October and the only reception was in block 3 but all was well signposted and advice given prior to this happening. Some of the apartments are privately owned so I guess it depends on what website you book with perhaps as they all seem to advertise seperately.
Looks like a fourth block is close to finish for next year too.

The journey back from town to Cerro Mar is a bit of climb and on a full tummy is to be taken slowly or taxied and not the best of routes if infirm or with buggies.

The beach is lovely and clean and worth a day out but sunbed hire is expensive so take a towel and umbrella to save yourself the EURO17.50 per day !

Weather was ace too at 25C daily and nights getting chilly !
We stayed Oct 16 - 22 Inclusive

I cannot really fault anything for this accommodation except 1 teeny thing- it would have been nicer if we had extra pilows available but hey - I didnt ask so not complaining !

Feel free if anyone would like more info to contact me?

  • Liked — modern and clean
  • Disliked — journey back from town was a bit of a climb
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank Lynnieb4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments

Property: Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments
Address: Cerro do Malpique, Albufeira 8200, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 127 Specialty Lodging in Albufeira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments 4*
Number of rooms: 154
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Also Known As:
Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments Hotel Albufeira
Cerro Mar Albufeira
Cerro Mar Algarve
Cerro Mar Apartments Albufeira
Cerro Mar Hotel Albufeira
Cerro Mar Atlantico Touristic Apartments Albufeira, Portugal - Algarve

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