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“This hotel ruined our wedding night”

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Pousada Palacio Estoi
Ranked #2 of 28 Hotels in Faro
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 3, 2013

To say I am disappointed in Estoi Palace would be a complete understatement. My husband & I have been visiting Portugal for many years now and we decided to get married in Santa Barbara De Nexe last week. As we are staying in a villa, we decided to book the suite at Estoi for our wedding night. I made my booking and paid my deposit back in November 2012 and on the notes of the booking I confirmed that this booking was for our wedding night and that we will be arriving after midnight. I then emailed them in February to ask if possible if our suite could not be situated next to one of our guests rooms who also booked a suite and I received a reply advising that reception had actioned my request. We also travelled to Portugal and visited Estoi Palace in March to see what we and our guests booked, the staff were happy to show us around and we told them we had over ½ our wedding guests booked in as I had recommended this lovely looking hotel and they were very grateful.

We then had an amazing wedding day on Tuesday 25th and at around 1:30-2:00am, we arrived at Estoi with a couple of our guests and went to our room to continue the drinking. When we arrived in our room we quickly realised they had given us a standard room and not a suite which we had booked. The champagne they had given us when googled cost 4euro’s, we asked for this to be upgraded (at our own cost) but all the lady did was change the ice! After we realised they had done that too my husband went down to reception to advise about our room and they apologised and said a photographer is now in our suite because they have loads of equipment! Why he couldn’t fit his equipment into the double I don’t know, they were hoping to give us the double room and for us not to notice! They then give us a spa booklet as a good will gesture, however when I looked at the treatments they had highlighted only 2 facials that we could choose from, from the whole book and if any we would have much rather a back massage – also another frustration with this is there is no actually cost to them still. My partner was obviously furious by now and they couldn’t do anything for us apart from apologise for their mistake. I was calmly saying to the lady after a fabulous day they have completely ruined our wedding night and was making clear we will never have a wedding night again! My partner was asking for the presidential suite (again we would have happily upgraded at our own cost, just to get the better room for our special night) but they said this wasn’t available.

As there was nothing more the hotel was offering, we got all our overnight bags and left to walk the empty streets of Estoi at a ridicules time in the morning. I was just thankful I wasn’t wearing my wedding dress at this point.

My husband was trying to flag down cars to offer someone money for a lift back to our villa because the cab companies we had called wouldn’t come and get us. Eventually he flagged down a lovely young couple and paid him 100euros to take us 15minutes down the road.
Also, little to my knowledge at the time my guests who had also booked the suite, asked at reception on Sunday to upgrade our room to the best possible room available and they would have paid for the upgrade but the reception staff told them we already had the best of everything. I have no idea what had changed from Sunday 23rd to our wedding day on Tuesday 25th, all I can think of is that this photographer gave one of the members of staff a backhanded cash payment, why else could he have taken our suite?

Another disappointing point is that I earnt Estoi Palace thousands of pounds (around £5,000) from my other gusts bookings, they were eating lunch and meals in their restaurant, buying drinks and ice-creams which were expensive.

Once again, another inconvenience was that it was my bridesmaids birthday the following day Wednesday 26th and as we no longer stayed at Estoi for the above reasons, we could not spend the day with the birthday girl but also all our other guests that had booked in there.
To rub salt in the wound, my friend has videoed this photographer as well his 2 little models flattering about the following day.

I honestly feel I have never been treated so badly from a hotel and for them to do this to us on our wedding night and knowing full well it was our wedding night is absolutely disgusting!

Room Tip: Get what you booked!
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
    • Service
32  Thank xxxxxxxLauraxxxxxx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 24, 2013

We stayed here one night before our return home from Faro airport. Very modern room on lower floor,windows opening onto garden and very well soundproofed. Food in restaurant very good but service, due to a wedding party being there at the same time, was a bit lacking to say the least, after our main course we waited half an hour for dessert menu then another twenty minutes for it to arrive! (But it was well worth the wait)

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank John e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2013

We (25years old couple) went for 1 week in June 2013 - we didn't want to leave! I would recommend this hotel to anyone wanting a luxury but not stuffy restful holiday.
The hotel its self is not in Faro which needs to be made clearer when booking it is very easy to get to Faro by car or by the bus which is regular (hourly when we went) and cheap 3.25 euro each way. Also its a nice air conditioned coach. But we didn't feel the need to leave Estoi more than once , the hotel and small village were perfect for the type of holiday we wanted. A taxi from the airport took 20 minutes and was about 20 euros.

There is a wonderful restaurant in the hotel which is the luxury option, there is also a small restaurant next door to the hotel (more on this further down the review) and a small snack bar in the main square next to the church 2 minutes walk from the hotel, this is cheap cheerful and chilled out.

The restaurant next door to the hotel- best part of the holiday , very easy to find , come out of reception and turn right you cant miss it. Amazing prices (we had 3 courses bottle of wine and it was less than 40 euros!) the portions of seafood are massive, fresh and seasoned perfectly, the staff speak great english and its nicely decorated inside.

The hotel breakfast is great, fresh , wide variety : fruit cereal hams cheeses pastries , unlimited coffee tea, yogurts even sausage egg and bacon but dont expect a full english. The best part is that you have the option of breakfast on the terrace... made the holiday that extra bit special.

I also visited the spa in the hotel which i would highly recommend. i had the best facial ive ever had, more aromatherapy than skin treatment. I enjoyed that so much that i went back for a leg massage! around 40 euro a treatment, for a full hour of total relaxation id say it was worth it.

There were 2 children while we were there, the hotel is not un-child friendly but id say kids would be bored here. For couples, older children and even older groups of friends the combination of modern luxury and 18th century elegance made this an unforgettable experience made even better by wonderful service and fantastic food.

Room Tip: We had 110 which had the biggest balcony and got the sun longer than all other rooms!
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Ruthydee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 20, 2013

We stayed here for the last night of our holiday, due to its relative convenience to Faro airport (15 mins by car).
The hotel has a lovely setting on the edge of the small village of Estoi and has stunning views of the countryside with Faro and the sea in the far distance.
The foyer, sitting rooms, restaurant and swimming pool area are in the older Palace section of the hotel and the balcony views from the sumptuous characterful sitting rooms over the parterre and gardens are enchanting.
Our bedroom, in a modern extension was huge and modern with the biggest bed I have ever slept in!
We decided to eat in the hotels restaurant -19.95 euro for 3 courses and a glass of wine. The food was very good, but the service was very slow and we gave up waiting for the dessert. This was the only disappointment in an otherwise fantastic stay at the Pousada.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Woolif
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 8, 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights and were very happy to have done so. This is one of the newest Pousadas Portugal and a bit off the beaten track. They have done a wonderful job of restoration in the main "Palace " building and the grounds are delightful.The rooms are new and extend out from the main building and are not any part of the original building.The patios and pool are enjoyable spots to spend time and the staff are uniformally courteous and helpful. We found the main dining room in the main building to be a bit of a disappointment as the furnishings and seating dont seem to us to blend well with the building ,being too modern and more in keeping with a coffee shop.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank maurice1939
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 8, 2013

This hotel is an old country house partly restored. The old building is owned by the state and the hotel, new concrete block, is run by a hotel group. Not a marriage made in heaven. Food is not good, new modern furniture is ugly, the modern bar in the lovely old building is horrendous! The rooms are very modern and surrounded by beautiful gardens of the old country house. I personally did not like the mix but it is really up to personal taste! Sevice is ok . It takes about 20 mins to Faro (this hotel is in Estoy) where you can find restaurants and shops. The beach is at Faro, too. Good for a quiet getaway if you dont mind mix of old and new.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank anna mari h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 29, 2013

This review is not comprehensive due to the brevity of our stay. All staff were professional, friendly and very competent. The setting was absolutely lovely. Rooms modern and really comfortable. The public areas were beautiful but not intimidating. It is a little expensive but worth it. The comments in previous posts are accurate.

Room Tip: A room on the 2 nd floor may be a good choice for a view over the landscape.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank SeeWhatDSees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pousada Palacio Estoi

Address: Rua Sao Jose, Faro 8005-465, Portugal (Formerly Pousada de Faro - Estoi Palace Hotel)
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Faro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Faro
#1 Family Hotel in Faro
#2 Luxury Hotel in Faro
Price Range: $96 - $249 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Pousada Palacio Estoi 4*
Number of rooms: 63
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The luxurious Pousada de Estoi, the Estoi Palace, born out of the recovery of an old eighteenth century palace, is located in the village of Estoi only 10 km from Faro. This palace once belonged to Jose Francisco da Silva, Viscount of Estoi, and was opened in 1909. In 1987, it was purchased by the Town Hall of Faro, and in 1977, it was considered a property of Public Interest. A project by architect Goncalo Byrne, this hotel in Faro has a Health Club where you can enjoy a Turkish bath, sauna, tropical showers and heated indoor pool with a whirlpool. In a region with great gastronomic traditions you can find the Visconde restaurant, one of the Algarvian establishments which include fish and fresh seafood. The whole menu is inspired by Portuguese cuisine and exhibits a genuine form of art for good eating. Don't miss out on the deserts from Algarve made with figs and almonds grown locally. Experiencing the Pousada de Estoi is a pleasant journey with a combination of the classical, Baroque and contemporary elements that will definitely be a memorable experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pousada Palacio Estoi Faro, Portugal - Algarve

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