If like my family you will be reading these reviews prior to setting off, or booking this holiday.
I can tell you that firstly the Monte Santo resort is clean tidy and indeed very pleasing overall.
Our room was number 33, which at first was a little disappointing as it was the furthest apartment away from the pool. It was however only a 3 minute walk to poolside which is something i could live with. You could see the ocean from our balcony, however it would be a stretch of the imagination to say it had a sea view. The furnishing and finishing was top class within the apartment.WARNING be careful with the hot water as it is extremely hot and will scald you if your not careful.
The maid service was daily as promised, however it was this service that raised my only major problem with our stay.
The cleaners worked their socks off all day, mainly getting rooms ready for visitors who turned up early like my party did. we got to the hotel at mid day, announced our arrival a they got the room ready in a jiffy. We should not have got their until 4pm according to the literature. I was very grateful of this which is why i did not make a complaint about the room service we got.
My problem was that our room was cleaned on about 10 of the days we were there, last. Some times after 6pm but usually between 4.30pm and 6pm. This is the time that you generally head back to your room after a day poolside or even down on the beach. You want to have a shower and kick back for a hour or so. We were unable to do this as the cleaners would inevitably be knocking on the door before the shower had time to steam up the mirror. In my opinion they should make the cleaners vary the times that they service each apartment, this would ensure that one property would not always get the rough end of the stick.
The poolside bar is a little pricey............no i lied, its very expensive. While we stayed, we would only frequent the bar during happy hour, 5.30pm to 6.30pm when we arrived on the 16th June, later changed to 5pm to 6pm and again at 10pm until 11pm (this was done without letting the patrons know). The head bar man is good at his job, the rest of the bar staff are very amateur. If he is not pouring your pint, you will be short measured and/or get the wrong change. He informed me that they were trying to encourage more use of the bar, hence the sudden change in happy hour. I can tell you how to get more people to the bar, lower the prices, its simples. The cocktails were about 6.5 euros each, and to be honest....they weren't that special. The beer was 4.5 euro for a large local larger and usually came with an inch and half of head on it.
The bar and surrounding area where wi fi hotspots, any where else around the pool was hit and miss. It was clean tidy and pleasing to the eye.
enough said about the bar.
We had read the reviews about restaurants in the vicinity of the Hotel. one which was recommended was Villa Nova, this was about a 15 minute walk from room 33. (out small gate by town houses, turn left and first left) It is essentially a poolside bar which has quite a reputation. We booked a table for 4, had a main meal and 2 sweets. We had a bottle of rose' and also a bottle of water. The final bill was 92 euro, for all four. I wouldn't say it was fantastic, but it was ok.
There is however a restaurant out of the main gate, turn left, turn right at island and 200 meters down the road. It is called Franco, or Frango, can't remember exactly. The service was great and the food was just as good. it was a 10 minute walk from room 33.
You will need to travel into town for any other restaurants, 30 minute walk downhill. We tryed the Californian Italian restaurant which was not more than a 6 out of 10, and the Indian restaurant which was no more than a 5 out of 10.
if you want to take a drink and watch some TV sports, imprevesto is a good choice, as is Hemmingway which is next door. Rascals is ok but you would have to be inside to watch the tv.
The beach is small, but satisfies the needs of the tourists.
Carvoeiro is a small fishing village turned into a concrete jungle and nothing more.
Silves is a major local attraction which does not live up to its reputation. Its a place that you feel going through your pockets before you get there. Every bit of information in the fort is in Portuguese, 99% of the tourists are not Portuguese. The only way to read up on what you are looking at is to pay 10 euro for a pamphlet! Also the attitude of the cashiers at these place is not good, a smile don't cost a lot does it? Silves would be a nice 2 hour visit if you knew what everything was there for.
There are a few Roman attractions in the Algarve which are cheap to enter (less than 2 euro).
They are well maintained and well presented with translations on descriptions. Again the attendants and cashiers paid little attention to their customers and were impolite.
Lagos was full of beggars shacking cans and asking for "monies.....monies....monies". Not a great day out for us to be honest.
Villamoura was a nice visit and a pleasant half day spent. Lovely Marina café's and restaurants.
Portimaou was a pleasant enough trip for us, with only 1 beggar seen all day.
Beach hopping along the coast is worth a day as you can stumble on some real stunning locations.
All in all we had a great time at Monte Santo resort; however Portugal tourist board need to pull their socks up a bit.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Monte Santo Resort in Carvoeiro, offers a range of modern and luxurious Suites, apartments and townhouses. Just 45 minutes from Faro airport, Monte Santo is situated on the hilltops over Carvoeiro, a historic fishing town.Whether you are looking for a relaxing Algarve holiday, a fun-filled family holiday, or a spa or golf weekend, Monte Santo will cater to your every need with 5 star luxury. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Monte Santo Hotel Carvoeiro
- Monte Santo Resort Carvoeiro, Portugal - Algarve