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All reviews thomas cook reps self catering hotel paraiso old town off licence kids club games room crazy golf can't comment on the food entertainment team bit dated outdoor pool great holiday family holiday large hotel all inclusive food one bedroom apartment
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Reviewed October 13, 2012

We stayed here for 2 weeks Sep 22nd - Oct 6th, 6 adults, 1 teenager. I read the reviews and noted a lot of negative comments before we came. I have to say that all the negative stuff is mostly accurate. Poor food quality, always cold, unfriendly staff apart from Paola the barman, 1 young girl at snackbar / restaurant and the young lad at pool hut who wears a Brazil shirt. Mostly the rest were going through the motions and couldn't care less. You will not eat a hot meal for your entire holiday here if you are All Inclusive nor will you be allowed more than 2 drinks when you go to the bar, no matter how many people are in your party. They constantly run out of one thing or another, be it beer, wine, pepsi, vanilla ice cream or whatever.
At the pool which is on Level 1, don't expect to get towels when you hand over your tokens, most days they have none and the arrogant guy who sits about eyeing the young girls tells you to come back at 12, 1 or whenever. Later when you hand them back he never has tokens and you then have to go to reception, if he can be bothered he will take your used towels but some days he makes you take them back to reception which is on Level 3. And they only give them to adults, children have to pay a deposit even when booked A/I. Once the last person is out of the pool you will see dozens of seagulls in the water bathing, thankfully it does get cleaned at night. ALL the parasols are broken, so if you need some shade you need to go indoors
Pool bar closed for the season a week after we arrived despite hotel being busy and temp around 28c and the jaccuzzi was also out of commission. To be honest this hotel needs a bit of work done and a lot of new and friendlier staff in place. It may be more suited for self catering but only if you eat out for every meal and buy drinks for pooltime from the supermarket as even a snack and soft drink will set you back 10 euros at pool. A bottle of bud in the late bar is 5 euros or 4.50 euros for local drinks. Apart from the late bar, expect to queue at least 20 mins for drinks ( would you accept that in your local? i think not.) I expect it gets worse in high season.
Okay, now the best bits. Location is fine unless you have mobility problems, its a 15 min walk to The Strip or the Old Town, 30 mins walk to the beach ( Oura Playa ) which is lovely, but a bit rocky, again not suitable for those with walking difficulties. The Thomas Cook Entertainment team, David, Malky, Jason, Gemma and Kelly get a special mention, these guys work tirelessly and go out of their way to make sure everyone young and old is enjoying their holiday. The other hotel staff could learn about people skills from them. I hope someone from Thomas Cook reads this as they deserve a big bonus and a medal. If you are self catering there's plenty of good places for eating out close by, the Big Shanghai 2 mins away, go right when you go out hotel a must, packed out every night, ( mostly Paraiso guests ) says it all really.
All in all we did have a good holiday despite the various things which let us down, even 4 days of poor weather at the start wasnt enough to stop our enjoyment but mainly it was down to the people in our party and the good laughs we had. I note the hotel managers reply to comments on here, however, since nothing has improved one bit despite the many justified criticisms in previous reviews it is abundantly clear that he, like most of his staff, has a couldn't care less attitude. Would I go back to the Algarve? Yes. Would I stay at Paraiso? Absolutely not. One more thing, Thomas Cook nb, this is not a 4**** more a 2**+

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Gerry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neale F, General Manager at Hotel Paraiso de Albufeira, responded to this reviewResponded October 15, 2012

Dear Sir

Thank you for your contribution to TripAdvisor. Your insight and comments are extremely valuable to us and motivate us to continue striving to improve our services.

We regret that on this occasion our services did not live up to your expectations, and we will take a good look as to how we can improve on the specifics that you have kindly brought to our attention.

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Paraiso in the near future.

Kind Regards
N. French
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 12, 2012

I would not recommend any board at this hotel. The food was the worst ive seen, they clean the rooms when and if they please, Getting served drinks for 3 people every night then they change the rules " only two drinks per person go away and come back " . Yuck .

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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Thank 6wayne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neale F, General Manager at Hotel Paraiso de Albufeira, responded to this reviewResponded October 15, 2012

Dear Sir

Thank you for your contribution to TripAdvisor. Your insight and comments are extremely valuable to us and motivate us to continue striving to improve our services.

We regret that on this occasion our services did not live up to your expectations, and we will take a good look as to how we can improve on the specifics that you have kindly brought to our attention.

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Paraiso in the near future.

Kind Regards
N. French
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 12, 2012

stayed here from 2nd October, when the pool bar was closed because it is the end of the season, this despite the hotel being full over the weekend.
The hotel is large, and over 1/2 the guests at least are self catering, which results in those who are all inclusive suffer from lack of choice and poorly cooked and presented food. Also all inclusive ceases to exist after 11pm, which means an enormous queue in the lounge bar by 10.45
The rooms are adequate, ours was the studio, which was roomy , twin beds, small kitchen area, fridge microwave, hob and cooker. This was lovely as it meant a morning cup of tea before venturing downstairs for food. Housekeeping is excellent. The information booklets says towels are changed twice a week, but ours were changed daily, and twice on one day when we took 2 showers.
There is a 14" television, which gets english news etc, but 25 euros deposit for the controls is charged. The room safe, like all other hotels is also chargeable with a large deposit. Amazingly a very complicated air conditioning remote control is given free with the keys, ( I would have thought that merited more of a deposit than cheap television controls).. Irons, boards etc are all chargeable.
Breakfast and lunch are served in a sort of canteen, adjoining the pool. It is lukewarm, poorly presented with little or no choice.
Dinner is served in the downstairs (3 floors down) dining room, which looks attractive enough, but again, little choice, poorly cooked food. It is on the other side of the disco, and took us over 1/2 hour to find it. The noise from the childrens disco is intrusive, which children running around the dining room as an overspill from the disco.
The all inclusive food comes also from a pool snack bar (I use the term loosely). There you can get rubber french fries, generally lukewarm, tastless hotdogs, (no fried onions) dreadful hamburgers (again no fried onions) and long rolls called baguettes which are made from rubber bread. The chicken and mayonnaise (no salad) was chicken paste, ham is just that. There is a small salad bar (again term used loosely) with sliced tomato and onion and lettuce. We asked for a plate to put some salad on and was told there were none.
The drinks here are limited ( pool bar closed!) and served in plastic cups.
Staff in this hotel are excellent, the reception staff really go the extra mile, with excellent `English (far better than my Portuguese) apart from the slim blond lady in the pool snack bar, who really should work in some other industry.
The pool is large with entertainment activities if that is your thing, It is overlooked by a large balcony bar, which gets the full sun, so spectating is a pleasant option.
There is a gym and sauna with 3 days FOC to all inclusive clients, but mini golf was charged at a large deposit and 5 euros per person.
Hairdryers were available with 25 euros deposit ( the first hotel I have ever stayed in without a hairdryer - and the last) .
Then hotel is situated on a busy dual carriage, with little noise from this in the rooms. It is about 10 minute walk to the "strip" where the night life is and also about 15 minutes the other way to the square, with lots of bars, nightlife and restaurants also.
Taxis are plentiful and reasonable.
The best part of Albufeira?.. the wonderful beaches, prices are much cheaper than Spain, the Portuguese are among the nicest people I have ever met, (with the exception of the aforesaid slim blond lady serving in the pool snack bar!).
The worst part?... I have never walked up and down so many hills on holiday before (not Albufeira"s fault!) and the pavement, while attractive are made with small blocks, which resulting in wearing flat heels every day ( it was that or broken ankles in stilettoes).
Would I go back? without a doubt but not to this hotel.
My advice to the hotel? ditch the all inclusive, it does you no favours.

Room Tip: The fron of the hotel overlooks the aforementioned dual carriage and gets no sun, There is little road noise. The pool views get constant sun, and aprt from daytime entertainment, the pool area ia quiet in the evenings.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank des
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neale F, General Manager at Hotel Paraiso de Albufeira, responded to this reviewResponded October 15, 2012

Dear Madam

Thank you for your contribution to TripAdvisor. Your insight and comments are extremely valuable to us and motivate us to continue striving to improve our services.

We regret that on this occasion our services did not live up to your expectations, and we will take a good look as to how we can improve on the specifics that you have kindly brought to our attention.

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Paraiso in the near future.

Kind Regards
N. French
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2012

Myselg and my husband stayed all inclusive for a week. We found the hotel clean but dated . The staff generally responded to a smile and all worked hard. Hotel very central although the surrounding area very hilly and the pavements could be slippery and certainly not wheelchair friendly. The food was nice but not hot. Also the evening meal was in the room next to the kids club where the music and screaming was very loud!! Shame they didn't close the doors!! Lots of choices for all meals but if you were vegetarian you may struggle. We were disappointed that we couldn't book into the al a carte Portuguese corner as the low season started halfway through our stay and also the outside pool bar closed halfway through our stay due to low season. However there were lots of choices of alcohol and it was generous measures!! Plenty of storage in the rooms. Our view was over the main road an some people have moaned about this but to be honest it wasn't bad. Good value for money overall I think

  • Stayed: October 2012
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Thank Lollipop1972
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neale F, General Manager at Hotel Paraiso de Albufeira, responded to this reviewResponded October 11, 2012

Dear Lollipop

Thank you for your contribution to TripAdvisor. Your insight and comments are extremely valuable to us and motivate us to continue striving to improve our services.

We are very happy to learn that we were able to meet your expectations and provide you with an enjoyable stay with us. Your comments have been passed on to the service personnel involved in making your visit a memorable one.

We closed the (overflow) pool bar at the end of September as we do normally given the number of guests in-house did not warrant us keeping it open. However, the pool snack-bar was open daily and will only close at the end of this month (October).

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Paraiso in the near future.

Kind Regards
N. French
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 9, 2012

We stayed for a week from 27 sept to 4 October. We were a bit concerned after reading some of the reviews but we could not fault the hotel at all. The location was great, in between the old & new towns both within walking distance. We did go self catering so can't comment on the food but the menus did look appealing! Entertainment was great, kids got to go make cookies & stuff & the evening entertainment was good. Although the resort seemed to be winding down for the end of the season there was still plenty to do. Everyone we encountered was very friendly & helpful ;-) we will def look to going back next week for longer! The rooms were clean & comfortable, the shop in the hotel was handy & not too expensive & there was also an office to book trips if u wanted too. A very enjoyable relaxing holiday!

  • Stayed: October 2012
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1  Thank Dhamilton78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neale F, General Manager at Hotel Paraiso de Albufeira, responded to this reviewResponded October 10, 2012

Dear Sir or Madam

Thank you for your contribution to TripAdvisor. Your insight and comments are extremely valuable to us and motivate us to continue striving to improve our services.

We are very happy to learn that we were able to meet your expectations and provide you with an enjoyable stay with us. Your comments have been passed on to the service personnel involved in making your visit a memorable one.

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Paraiso in the near future.

Kind Regards
N. French
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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