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“enjoyable but quiet”

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Turim Estrela do Vau Hotel
Ranked #31 of 76 Hotels in Portimao
Reviewed September 28, 2012

I came here as i new it was in a quiet area, as my friend was turning 70 & hadn't been abroad befor, but my partner wanted to tag along..big misstake! The room was great, new fridge freezer, well equiped, great view from balcony, better than some,on top floor. Pools beautifull, sun lounges needed some replacements. Drinks expensive, happy hour was just 30% off when they could remember, taxi fairs were never 5 euros, but always varied. Staff at desk helpfull. Get your fresh baked bread bang on 9am at there little expencive shop or forget it. Get your self to Aqa at portimao, asap on landing big cheap supermarket, like tesco etc. cost 6-7euros to get there, but buy for your stay, esp water.
you will never need to go there again, nothing there to see it is the locals residents zone, they shut sat 1pm till monday morning..truely!! Avau, great food at harbour ,usuall irish bars and lots of tourist shops, 3-4 euros taxi, or 15 min walk.
Nothing goes on at hotel!!!!! sad singers, and no one stayed but went into Avau instead, that's were the night life is. My partner was bored out of his scull. The noise was bad even though 10.30pm was suposed to be enforced noise limit, but local owned apartments had there own rules, barking dogs, dubious night visits to one ladies room, severel anight!!!! etc, never told to keep noise down. We booked with "on the Beech" never again, they had no record of our booking and we didn't get into our room till 7pm after lots of discussion, keep hold of all paper work it saved our neck! Had same trouble at airport with "on the beach's" transfer company, who the portugese had never heard of, "cab finder", but a very nice man rang one of the numbers and found out were we were meant to go as there was no signs being shown anywhere, they hadn't got our total booking either, 2 people not 3,but took us to the hotel, which took over two hours, not 30 mins as advertised. The Beach is awsum, truely must not be missed, and managable going down the sandy road to it from the round about on main road from hotel, but climbing back up, harder for my elderly friend and my bad knee. But worth it! 20 mins walk from hotel, 30 - 40 mins walk back lol. I would come back here again, for quiet holiday! i loved it. A day out at the "zoo marine" is a must we bought tickets on the flight as cheaper, and booked a pick up on there own bus at the desk of the hotel, which was exceptionally cheap. tip - do all the exerbitions before going on the rides as the pick up is 4 pm and you could miss them!

Room Tip: Facing golf course great views, top floor, no noise above your head, sunny mornings, shady afternoon...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank lesley c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 26, 2012

2012 just arrived back from the estrela do vau portimao,on arrival the hotel staff were helpful our room was tidy and clean the pool was ok and the weather for the time of year middle september was warm,having said that there was nothing to do its miles from anywhere and a taxi will cost you min 7euros to alvor or aqua center which is a shopping centre,a 15min walk will get you to the beach which is lovely but be warned the walk is not suitable for elderly,disabled or anyone with walking problems.the way in which the hotel is built means you hear every door shut and people in the reception area,chatting,the bar area was a waste of time,the entertainment was thin on the ground and most nights there was just the 3 of us,we stayed in room 402,we arrived on a wed we had a 1 bed appt and a single camp bed in the lounge,i stayed on the camp bed which was uncomfortable but i knew it would be nothing special,when iturned in for bed i was woken up about 1am by screaming,shouting etc bearing in mind hotel rules no noise after 10.30

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank steve j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2012

Reception staff very helpful & knowledgeable regarding the surrounding area. Apartment spacious-2 bedroom apartment had bathroom and shower-room. Cleaning of apartment bit hit and miss. Only cleaned approximately every other day and maids turned up at odd times-e.g. around 6pm when trying to shower. Although 'animacion' advertised this was only for young children. Our teenagers were disappointed there wasn't anything organised for their age group, e.g water polo. Pool area is nice. 2 pools (apart from children's pool), one of which is shallow throughout (around 4ft) with swim up bar. Some broken sunbeds though. Entertainment at night wasn't great. All in all a nice hotel which is reasonably priced. Bit tired in places though. I think they are slowly refurbishing it There are some nice bars and restuarants at the nearby beach (15 minute walk).
Alvor & Praia Da Rocha both 5 minutes in taxi (5 euros). We preferred Alvor which has much more character and lots of good restuarants and bars with live music. Paesanos restuarant was particularly good. Boralai bar have good live musicians and great cocktails. Both in Alvor. Golf at Alto Golf 2 minute walk from hotel.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank mksa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 20, 2012

have just returned from a 12 night stay at this hotel on arrival the staff greeted you with a warm and friendly welcome and very helpful at all times we arrived late at night so when we got to our apartment we was really wanting a cuppa would be nice for late arrivals to have a a small welcome pack to enable a hot drink late at night . the apartment it self was lovely and clean yes the beds are a little hard but not that uncomfortable you cant get a good night sleep . they have 3 swimming pools one of which is the baby pool all nice and clean and is salt water has plenty of sun beds so never a problem getting one has a pool side cafe nice food prices were ok also has a bar right next to the pool which you can sit in the pool at the bar there is a nice little shop on site to get milk , bread, water etc and a on site restaurant which was rather over priced . the hotel is in between Praia Da Rocha and alvor which by taxi is 5 euros each way you can walk to praia da rocha which is a lovely walk along the beach and plenty of cafe`s and restaurants along the way and plenty to see and do when you get there the other way is the beautiful place alvor which is a beautiful little fishing village with lots of old character old men hand fishing no rod n reel which i really enjoyed watching. people very friendly and helpful all fish freshly caught that day and cooked in the open where you can see it being cooked. on the harbour is a cafe called bote went there for meals n more so coffee and tea young man very cheerful and helpful well recommended also the steak house both places food was great spent alot of days in alvor as so much to see and do and definately going back great holiday for all ages

Room Tip: had room 243 and didnt really get the full on sun but had a beautiful view morning and night when al...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank lisa d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 19, 2012

It was me and my wifes fist time to portugal . The reception and surrounding area looked realy nice all light up at nightand in the day its still impressive. The receptionist was very helpfull (this is a free wi-fi area) .Had are apartment key sorrted out in no time.The apartment we found to be more than adequate for are need all though a complementary tea bag and bit off coffee+milk for late arrivals would off been nice or (bring ure own) . All the rooms where a nice size and clean. The beds where ok to (we slept well )pools there are 3.A baby pool the middle pool wich is a constant 1meter deep then there is ure normal type pool shallow at 1 end getting deeper as u go up to 2m all salt water i think as dident go in baby pool All well kept and nice and clean .There are plenty off sun loungers round the pools and we met some nice people all thought some where a little strange .The frist day we went to the pool at the hotel, a couple sat nexst to us.The man i have to say looked a bit like trigger off fool and horses but with a bandana and fake aokleys and flipflops .But they seemed ok .(we where on holliday).we shared a few drinks and swoped email address ect.( dident like triggers white speedos ethier, but that just me ) The pool side cafe is very good bye the way great food and drinks cheeper than the hotel restaurant prices .Then it got a bit weired . Trigger or mr pottson.Think that is what he siad his name was seen my camra sticking out off my wifes beach bag and asked me if i would mind taking some picture of him and his wife as he had left his camra at his dads in spain and had no picture off there trip.So feeling a bit sorry for them i reluctantly said ok but I can only do 5 picture as not much memmory left so took 2 pics of them together .Then bandana man asked if i would take the others of his wife on her own by the pool and email them to them .so this i did .At this point me and my wife made are excuses and made a quick exite to the apartmen. when we were out off sight of are new found friends my wife just bust out into uncontrollable laughter and said she thought trigger was getting of on me taking pics of his wife as his budgie in his budgie smugglers had grown lol. Then went of to alvor in taxi be carefull the price is never the same.I talk to the lady at reception and it seem ok after that.alvor is a lovely place lot of fish bars and restaurants to suit all tastes at night it comes aliveThe marena at night is truely stunning .u can walk it but its a bit to far for me and the wife so we got taxi.we seen trigger the nexst day as they sat by us for a bit . He asked if i would take some more shots of his wife on ther balconey.but left in a bit of a mood when i told him my camra batters where flat . (must ay his wife loks a lot younger than him) and no had charger last seen heading for guy with iphone taking picture of his family by the other pool. but hay they where ok if nothing els it was funny but to some it up this place was great loved it

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank steve d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 10, 2012

I will try my best and give a correct review on the place and distinguish it from the overdeveloped, characterless area surrounding it.

First of all you need to know that this place is partly owned and managed by a hotel and there are also privately managed apartments in it. We stayed in one of the private ones, nr.204.

The positives: was easy to find the place and got very quick response from the owner when made the booking. We also received a very warm welcome from Isabel. There was also plenty of parking space around the hotel.

The negatives: you definitely need a car to get around. It's not very close to the beach. The apartment seemed to be clean and tidy at first glance, but then after walking a few steps around barefoot we realized it was far from clean. We had to sweep the floors and wash-up before we could feel comfortable. The apartment was privately owned, so was not serviced or cleaned during our one week visit which is fine if you have the equipment to do some clean up, but there wasn't even a bucket with a mop to wipe if you spilt something.

Some parts of the apartment need serious attention: we had one single blanket and a single duvet only for the two of us. Please buy one more blanket and one more duvet. Also the mattresses on the beds were awful. I love firm beds, but not the springs among my bones!
Many of the light bulbs were burnt out. The lightning in the apartment was terrible anyway. There was no proper lamp by which you could read or even pack your luggage.The couch in the living room was horrible. Simply couldn't sit on it. We had to fix the toilet ourselves 2x during a week. The kitchen equipment was dated, too. No proper pan to use. Cups and glasses dirty.

The whole building complex was dated, dirty and smelly. The pools were smelling strong of chlorine and the sunbeds around them were somewhat dirty. It was very noisy both day (eg. loud music at the pool, echoing building etc.) and night (noisy guests and super thin walls). Apparently the staff was not interested in keeping the noise level down. There was a back door open all night, but if someone entered there an alarm went off for at least 2 minutes. I couldn't understand why they left it open or why the alarm was not switched off.

The cleaning staff also left the garbage out in big bags around the elevators smelling for hours even after complaining about it. They didn't even tie them close.

Somebody else mentioned the mini golf and the gym's dilapidated condition. It's all true. The mini golf was a wreck. The gym is a tiny hole with no lights in it.

I do not recommend this place to anyone and honestly don't understand how they received so many good reviews. Generally I am not critical and would even sleep in a tent happily, but this was a rip off.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank dublinka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 24, 2012

Not a 4*, 3 at best, but you get what you pay for. Very basic facilities, and even at the so called peak period, the hotel did not provide shuttle bus to anywhere, as some reviews suggested before we went. If you are a golfer, the course is just next door. The beach however is a bit of a convoluted 15 mins walk. But once there the beach is very nice and very popular with very nice coffee shops and restaurants nearby. If you are thinking of spending time at the beach or going to any of the water parks you will need to invest in a brolly and maybe some mats. Take towels with you, as the hotel does not provide them at the pool and you will need them if you go somewhere else. when you are the beach or a water park, it will cost you 5 Euros for bed and another 5 for the brolly, each time you go. We spent 7 Euros on a brolly and a couple of mats for 2.5 Euros each, and they paid for themselves from just a couple of uses, we needed up passing them on to another family when we left. Not worth bringing home unless you invest in a decent one.
The hotel has far too many rooms for the number of beds by the pool. So only the early risers got decent location and good beds that are not broken.
The mini golf is very small, old and run down. It looks like it has been neglected for a long time. and the tennis, as far as I was concerned, was a rip off. 7.5 Euros per hour, so unless you are keen, or rich, it is not worth it.
The hotel is located bang in between Praia Da Rocha to the East and Alvor to the West. 5 Euros by taxi to either each way. Both are nice and worth a visit, in fact that's where we spent all our evenings. If you are familiar with Albufiera, Alvor is like the "Old Town" and Rocha is like the "Strip". If you like seafood, Alvor fishing village is where you want to go, you can also find there Italian, Chinese, Indian and Portuguese food. We went to the Big Red Steak restaurant, on the way to Alvor, and strongly recommend it if you like steak.
If you hire a car then we recommend you take a trip to Moncheque and Foia peak. not more than 40 minutes drive north, about 902 meters above sea level (3000 feet) and you can drive all the way up there. The roads are good and there are parking and a wee restaurant up there. The view is just something else if you go on a good day. There are viewing points on the way up, and a couple of natural mountain water. We filled our bottles from it, it was beautiful and ice cold. I thought we were just going to drive up and down, but ended up staying for a couple of hours, the kids loved it.
We are going back next summer, but will stay in Alvor.

Hope you find some of our experiences helpful / useful.

Room Tip: If you want a sunny balcony, make sure you specify it during booking and book as early as possible...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank BuShayma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Turim Estrela do Vau Hotel

Address: Praia do Vau | Sítio das Delgadas, Portimao 8500-820, Portugal (Formerly Apartamentos Estrela do Vau)
Location: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Portimao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#9 Spa Hotel in Portimao
#10 Romantic Hotel in Portimao
Price Range: $42 - $233 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Turim Estrela do Vau Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 174
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Also Known As:
Apartamentos Estrela Do Vau Portimão
Turim Estrela Do Vau Hotel Portimao, Algarve, Portugal

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