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Vila Branca
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Reviews (107)
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All reviewscasa mitchellquiet streetsmall fridge in the roomold townlocation is greatrooms were cleanedbudget hotelhotel is locateda great staynight staycontinental breakfastmain townair conbooked this hotelfaro airportsteep hillmin walk
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52 - 57 of 107 reviews
Reviewed September 15, 2011

Recently got back from a 8 nights stay in Vila Branca appartments with my sister. We couldnt fault it. We wanted a cheap getaway and this was ideal and got us away. Appartments are very basic but very clean and tidy which was the main thing, the bedding was clean aswell as the bathroom which was spotless.Maid cleaned the room every day exept 1 which was a Sunday. Mini fridge in room, wasnt very big but fitted a few little bottles of water in. Staff are very friendly and when we asked any questions wether it be about albuferia or about the appartments they were always happy to help and answer us. When we asked about are transfer for coming home the man sorted it for us straight away which we thought was very kind. Not a massif selection of food for breakfast but was enough and was always very fresh. No longer than a 10 min walk to the beach or the central old town with all the shops which was great. Had a great time and would definately go back to albufeira maybe a plush hotel next time but for what we paid couldnt fault.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank rachael h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 11, 2011

My Hubby and I have just returned from a 9 night stay at Vila Branca and as the Hotel doesn't seem to have been reviewed in a year we thought we would give you an update.
We arrived at around 8.30pm and were greated by a very nice elderly lady who spoke very good English. As she was waiting on another 2 guests, we got to choose between the 2 available rooms, which was an unexpected touch. We chose Room 12 on the first floor. (Looking at the picture on here, the dark area is the main entrance door, the windows to the right of there is the dining room and our balcony is the 1 above the first window) This is relevant as some people have commented on sleep quality but being above the dining room, overlooking the street and as close to reception we can honestly say that this did not disturb our sleep at all.
The room was not big but we had twin beds (other room choice was a small double), bedside cabinets with a drawer, wardrobe space with drawers, dressing table/shelf area with mirrors and light. There was a small fridge built into the wall and it did have an ice cube tray and a small freezer shelf, although the fridge had to be on MAX and took a day to make ice! lol
En suite consisted of a small shower, loo and wash hand basin but was adequate. The maid made sure your towels were changed each day, although there is no maid service on a Sunday or public holidays and we had to ask at reception for a loo roll on the Sunday but it wasn't a problem ;0)
There is a safe located within the wardrobe which we hired for a week on the second day at a cost of 25Euro and got 15Euro back on the return of the key at the end of the week.
The rooms & public indoor areas are all non smoking but there was a small table with 2 chairs and an ashtray on the balcony so there was no need to stand on the street outside.
Breakfast was served 8.00 - 10.00 am and, on arrival, it was confirmed that this was not "English breakfast", which we already knew. Unfortunately, what we expected as a continental breakfast feel a bit flat and this is my only "downside" comment on our stay. we went for breakfast, only on alternative days, but it never seemed to change and here is the full menu:
Orange or grapefruit juice (also water dispenser but this was not chilled)
Bread rolls or bread (toaster available) with butter,preserves,cheese/ham and salami type sausage
Yogurts
Tea/coffee machine
Cornflake & Choco Cornflake type cereal (no museli type)
Maybe some fruit would have been nice as an option?..A change of fillings/toppings?
As stated in other reviews, the pool across the street at Casa Mitchell (only bookable through Thomas Cook & Self catering Appts) was available to use (I use the word street rather than road as it basically was 1 car wide!) On your way out the front door all you had to ask was for reception to open the door and by the time you crossed the street the door was open....Easy! Casa Mitchell provided pool side umberellas just as you entered the pool area and it's up to you if you use them or not....Pool area is lovely and so relaxed!It's like sitting in someones back garden! No kids and most people just lounging around reading....Bliss! There was a tiled area around the pool where the Sun Gods/Godesses could worship or there was a grassed area surrounded by a large wall and trailling plants where those of us who needed a bit more shade could get it. The largest number of people I ever saw around the pool area was 15 and although the pool area states it's open from 9am til 6pm, we asked and it seems that no one actually will ask you to leave at 6pm. Again, being smokers, I feel the need to mention that there were ashtrays for you to use and a bin to empty them ;0)
There are no toilet facilities poolside so it's back to your own room for that, which takes less than a minute to get there. There is a little Supermercado just 30 seconds walk from Casa Mitchell front door for cold drinks or ice cream if you needed them too, although when we were there, this closed from 1-3pm most days and closed for the day on Sunday at 1pm.
From Vila Blanca to the Square was no more than a 5-10 minute walk and all downhill. If you loaded up on tourist shopping, a taxi cost around 4Euro from the Square right to the Hotel door. We didn't visit the Strip but were told that from Vila Branca it would be around a 30 minute walk, not sure about taxi costs though.
We would also like to mention The Blue Bell Inn which is run by a South African guy called Jason and an English girl who's name escapes now....Sorry! It was situated just in the right place on your way back to Vila Brana from the Old Town and a "large beer" was a pint and a "vodka & cola lite " was Smirnoff & Diet coke, costing 5.50Euro which was about the same as you were paying in the Old Town for local brands. Even after one visit we were called by our first names ever time we went back and witnessed people returning for another year and even on their first day, they were remembered by name.....Sign of a good bar management team!
We did a couple of trips out and it was worth shopping around for prices as the shark fishing trip cost half price, including travel to Vilamora, than it did from Albufeira harbour and Fiesa sand sculptures (which change year to year) are also worth the 20mins bus ride for just over an hour to see....( visit www.fiesa.org to have a quick look)
If there is anything you want to ask that you think we might have missed, please feel free to ask. Thanks for looking and hope you find this helpful.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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12  Thank Scotscouple-2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2010

Just returned from a week in Albufeira and a stay in Vila Branca, and couldnt say it was bad but equally couldnt say it was great either. If you are after a cheap week in a good location this is the place, these apartments are family run and owned which is linked to the Casa Mitchell complex on the other side of the street. Residents of Vila Branca can use the pool at Casa Mitchell which is really chilled and a great little spot to catch a few rays and have a dip in the pool. There are no facilities at the pool ie bar for food and drinks etc however we just had a little cool bag for cold drinks which was great and saved money. If you are staying in Vila Branca you have to ask the reception guys to buzz you in and out of Casa Mitchell to access the pool which can get a bit tedious if you are going for snacks & drinks. There is also no toilet facilities poolside so we had to go back & forth to use the toilet in our apartment. On the plus side the pool is very quiet no kids splashing around and this was a bonus in itself. The Casa Mitchell complex can only be booked through Thomson Holidays from what we gathered and these apartments had nice big balconies and the guys staying here could simply walk in and out to use their toliet or grab a cold on from the fridge!!
The accomodation in Vila Branca has a small mini bar style fridge which never gets that cold and the air con system is basically a wall mounted fan which didnt make the room any cooler at night to sleep in.
Location wise these apts are in a great spot five mins walk to the square where all the action happens and no taxis are needed if you are fit for a few hills.
To sum up Vila Branca is a get what you pay for type of place, I would recommend it to those on a budget but a week would be the maximum amount of time you could stay here. I would definitely return to Albufeira and the old town it has something for all but the next time I would like a bit more luxury which you simply wont get at Vila Branca.
The hotel rocamar is one street away and looks much nicer I will hopefully stay there when I return to Albufeira.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank scouseboy69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 1, 2010

These are apts not a hotel we stayed in Marina club in 2008 and it was a different type of facility altogether was plush ,Vila Branca was as nice in a simpler way,
Well located at the top of town near porto do mos area gorgeous beach there.. There was a shuttle bus to take us to Porto do mos although it was walkable ,the bus also took us into Lagos which was a distance if walking but again do able.
It was a family run complex and immaculate , well equipt spacey apts ,
2 pool areas ,bar and restaurant. Pirata restaurant was our local did a very good breakfast and evening meals were gret value and varied we went there on the nights we didn't go into town..
We would like to compliment Carlos on his lovely accomodation and the friendly welcome he gave us on arrival..
We flew Monarch and we used our regular transfer company booklagostransfers.com .
We really like the drivers we have had David twice his English is better than mine.
A English girl too who was extremly friendly and chatty can't remember the name.Always on time on arrival and for pick up .Give us a bottle of wine too..
Visiting Lagos again this year we just love it.........

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank margietuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2010

Writing a hotel review is difficult because you can't compare the Vila Branca with the MGM Grand like you can't compare a Smart Car to a Hummer. That said, the hotel was a perfect New Years Eve weekend stay for my wife and me. The room which we stayed had 2 beds pushed together, a 13" TV, a mirror, and a small balcony. The location was perfect; about 5-10 minute walk to the main center of town. The front desk was helpful giving directions/reccommendations around town. It's as quiet as you can reasonably expect in a town, having heard only occasional obnoxious motorists revving up their engines nearby. It's not the honeymoon suite; it's not a hotel you would bring people up to party in; the humidity in the room gave a slight moldy odor; there is no view of the ocean; there's no room service; and the shower is tiny - but if you are looking for an inexpensive place (we paid 30 Euros a night) to just sleep and don't mind walking 5-10 minutes to get in the thick of it, this is a great hotel to stay in.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank dannyzorro2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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