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“historical hilltop experience” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pousada de Setubal Historic Hotel

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Pousada de Setubal Historic Hotel
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Setubal
Halifax, Canada
Level Contributor
51 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 158 helpful votes
“historical hilltop experience”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 6, 2014

My wife and I arrived in Lisbon after dark and upon renting our car and driving 45 minutes south to Setubal getting turned around more than once, finally were able to locate this pousada ...giving much heartfelt thanks to a gentleman at a local garage who although very limited in speaking english (and my poor attempt at Portuguese) was kind enough to draw me a rough map of where we needed to go! I must say the approach to this pousada is somewhat unnerving in that the immediate area below seems rather poor with graffitii and ill kept housing and it was dark. Other reviews have correctly pointed out that the walk up to the facility from the parking lot is extremely steep on uneven stone and brick steps and flooring with limited lighting. I was exhausted by the time I lugged up several suitcases I can assure you. Our corner room was actually more of a suite, (simply furnished) was located on the first floor comprising of a living room, bathroom and large bedroom and offered a narrow balcony overlooking the glittering city lights and harbour below. Cats walked about freely and pigions cooed..The bed felt hard but after a long day travelling was still a welcome relief as was the deep tub filled with steaming waters..ahh!! The next morning we walked about the complex and agree that the area seems somewhat overgrown and not well kept but given the location atop the hill it allowed for some pretty nice photographs. There is no doubt about this place that it reeks of history causing you to definately feel you are stepping way back into another time. I can only imagine the darkened rooms and what they might hold below the main buildings. Staff are very friendly and accomodating. I went to the restuarant and brought back coffee and muffins for the balcony and again enjoyed the views before heading out 3.5 hrs farther south to the Algarve. I would have to say that staying in these pousadas are definately the way to go and given the opportunity to return one day we will no doubt try others. For this one its worth the visit but only if there are no mobility issues.

Tramper

Room Tip: consider the corner room just above which offered a french balcony as an alternative..but in our sui...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Tramper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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100 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Newport, Mayo
Level Contributor
27 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 22, 2014

This pousada was the fourth we had visited in our recetn tour of Portugal. It showed the same very high standards as the others in this group: attractive and imaginatively-decorated rooms with wonderful view over the bay, good food, and friendly and helpful staff. All accommodated in a beautiful building.It's true that the steps are steep but the view makes up for it.But they do need to weed the area around the carpark and down the drive - it's a mess and spoils the impression when you arrive.They could tidy up the fort itself at the same time - too many weeds and too big an area not accessible to visitors..

Room Tip: Make sure you ask for a room on the front, overlooking the sea
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank tibor2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southampton, New York
Level Contributor
45 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 8, 2013

I had read that the steps were terrible and that you had to haul your own luggage so our travel agent (there were 13 of us and none below 62) pre-arranged for our luggage to be brought up. The rooms were fine and the view stupendous. However the location of the hotel in an industrial town doesn't allow for sightseeing or hiking which was the main purpose of our trip. And being that we were there on a Monday every restaurant and tourist site in town was closed. So we all had to eat dinner at the hotel and therein lies a story.

The dining room wasn't crowded at all but we were 13 people and that may have put a strain on the kitchen. BUT the service was incredibly slow. 4 people ordered fish, 3 pasta, 3 lamb and 3 something else. Well, out came 4 fish and we all waited a bit and then told the people to eat. They were finished before out came 3 pasta. Same drill -- each group of food came out separately. And the waiters didn't even come over to explain. AT first we were annoyed but then it became funny. The food was fine but at that point nobody cared.

We learned in the morning that there was one chef in the kitchen. We suggested that if that were the case they should not have a full menu but offer 3 or 4 items. Anyway it was a shame that this is our main memory of the pousada. We met Portuguese who wondered why we were going to Setubal and we wondered too. It was a long drive and we would have had much more to do and see by staying 2 nights in Evora or Sintra.

The swimming pool looked glorious -- but the weather didn't permit use.

Room Tip: Make sure you have a view.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank hamptonite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Worcester UK
Level Contributor
95 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2013

The Pousada in the Forte de Sao Filipe is part of the tradition of converting castles and other sites into great - but quirky - hotels. This one is no exception. The moment you realise that you're parking at the foot of the towering walls, and then have to walk through the long sloping ramp makes even the start of your stay memorable. Big plus points - the terrace over Troia, Setubal, and the Atlantic; Reception - some of the most helpful we've met, always welcoming; the Room - we had the Suite with its own little balcony, a vaulted Lounge connected to vaulted Bedroom - exquisite! Breakfast was fine, and Dinner - on the set menu - but one loss of a point for the mixed quality of the A La Carte Menu, and also that the Wine List - which lists some great local wines - seemed out of many of them. However, the setting of the restaurant is very pleasant, again overlooking the Bay. There's a great little exploration of the castle and chapel available as well. Nearly a perfect stay for us.

Room Tip: If you can, choose the Suite de Sao Filipe or at least a sea-facing room - and look on line for redu...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank ja5al1n
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solihull, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2013

I stayed here whilst on business with a colleague. When the taxi driver pulled into the carpark we could not really tell where the hotel entrance was!! So there we were dragging our cases round trying to find the entrance!! When we found the entrance it was a large archway followed by a fairly steep set of wide steps, so definatly not suitable for those with any walking difficulties or the unfit!!

This place is a converted prison with many of its orginal characteristics and it really is an experience to stay here. The rooms are clean and tidy if somewhat creepy as they are the old cells and you can tell! The only window in the room was as big as a postage stamp (i think it was the old food hatch) the ceilings are arched and most of the rooms are split level with a bed and bathroom on the lower floor and a small area upstairs with a sofa wardrobe and tv. I must admit having looked at the upstairs of my room once i never ventured up there again as it really was creepy.
After 3 nights my colleague was so tired from being unable to sleep because of all the wierd noises she was hearing at night we moved to a suite which we shared for the last night and that really did make a difference, the room was bigger, brighter and had a lovely balcony and when standing on the balcony you could be on the set of Mamma Mia! The view over the Sea was amazing which is one of the best things about this hotel.

It's location (on top of a hill) means you must have transport or use a taxi as there is nothing within a reasonable walking distance.

Breakfast was good and everything was fresh, service seemed to warm up as our stay went on. I think they are missing an amazing opportunity at this hotel, as the rooms are basic and it would be an amazing location to have dinner outside over looking the sea with beautiful views but it seemed a little drab and empty. There is no pool or any other amenities other than the rooms and a small bar area.

If you want a real hisoric experience then this is the place, so long as you are fit enough to get to the hotel in the first place.

Overall i enjoyed my stay and found it to be something very different to normal standard chain hotels so it was a pleasant change and gave me something to talk about after.

Room Tip: Although a bit pricey i'd go for a suite with sea view
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LadyDiSolihull
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cascais, Portugal
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2013

The place is just wonderful. The views are breathtaking, the historical significance of the fortress is very meaningful in European history. Staff friendly and helpful. But...rooms ungently needing refurbishment so that the price/quality ratio can mount up to what's expected of a Portuguese Pousada.

Room Tip: Room with a view over the city or the sea.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank gcfeio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guernsey, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
38 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 15, 2013

When we arrived at the Pousada I must admit we wondered on the winding journey up the rather unkempt path, if we had made a mistake!
On arrival though we were greeted by very friendly staff who quickly helped us with our bags up the long stone stairs and up to our room.
We had a lovely view of the town and our second floor room was cool and clean.

We had just started to unpack when the reception manager arrived with a bottle of chilled Champagne, what a lovely way to start our holiday in Portugal.
We found all the staff very helpful and the food although a little basic was well cooked and tasty.
Setubal itself is very industrial, but as the Pousada is only half an hour from Lisbon, it would be a relaxing place to stop whilst visiting the city

Room Tip: A sea view is a must.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Tortoisetheterrible
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pousada de Setubal Historic Hotel

Property: Pousada de Setubal Historic Hotel
Address: Estrada do Castelo de Sao Filipe, Setubal 2900-300, Portugal
Location: Portugal > Alentejo > Setubal District > Setubal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Setubal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Pousada de Setubal is situated in the nearby historical city of Setubal, offering stunning views of the River Sado, the Troia peninsula and all of the surrounding Natural Park of Arrabida. In this old fort of seventeenth century architecture, named Sao Filipe, you can feel the traces of the past, having more than four centuries of history. Just a breath of imagination could give live to the thick walls and gravestones of this historical Pousada, rising out of the cold slabs, a lively picture of live in the court during the reign of the Spanish monarch Filipe II. For those who enjoy golf, you will find near the Pousada de Setubal, Sao Filipe, the magnificent golf courses of Troia and Montado. Within the Setubal region you can also go on cruises on the River Sado to do some dolphin watching, visit the beaches in Arrabida and eat traditional fried cuttlefish. ... more   less 

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