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“Fabulous Hotel But Not With Cosmos”

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Hotel The Cliff Bay
Ranked #3 of 87 Hotels in Funchal
Certificate of Excellence
Swansea, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Fabulous Hotel But Not With Cosmos”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 13, 2013

Hotel: When we arrived our room wasn’t ready as we had arrived before 1.00pm, which I thought it would be the case and didn’t mind has we hadn’t made any pre-arrangements. We were offered any choice of drinks complementary at the bar whilst we waited and were informed of the hotel services and locations.
Weather: Fabulous. During our 2 week stay in August we didn’t have any rain. It was mainly clear blue skies every day and about 30c. Only one afternoon it cloud over. In the evenings it was too warm for trousers, if you go out and about from the hotel.
Pool Areas: The hotel provides towels for the pool and loungers which can be collected from the Spa reception. The pool attendants will set up your parasol and lay you towel as soon as they see you arriving. There are various terraced areas down at sea level some by the pool and quieter areas. Access to the sea is available and watched over by a lifeguard. Snorkel and mask is worth packing.
Room: There is plenty of wardrobe space and hangers. We had a side sea view, which faced west. Our room over looked the rear garden of the hotel. The garden is well maintained and pleasing to look down to.
Because our balcony faced west it didn’t get the morning sun, but we got the evening sun until about 7.30pm which was nice sitting on balcony with a drink and listen to live music which was played in the garden most afternoons until dinner is served about 7.30pm. If you have a room facing Funchal (East) which is a full sea view you will get the first morning rays of sun but is in the shade by about 3.00pm.
The room has free tea and coffee making facilities, TV, DVD and safe. The TV had a number of British Channels, we also had ITV Wales somehow. There is also a turn down service.
Bathroom: Twin basins, separate bath and shower, hairdryer. Complementary Rituals Cosmetics products.
Food: We were on breakfast only. We were glad that we choose this option as there are plenty of very good restaurants near to the hotel. The food at breakfast was very nice and well replenished. There is varied selection of choice for all nationalities. We enjoyed trying all the various options during our 2 week stay. We eat at the hotel on a couple of occasion for lunch and dinner. The prices were a little higher than the UK but it was very good and large potions.
Drinks: The drinks were expensive for non alcoholic or alcoholic drinks in the hotel it was €5 for a beer and €5 for a milk shake, but most restaurants outside of the hotel charge about €2 for a beer or €3.50 for a glass of wine, and these were in very nice restaurants. 6 bottles of Coral 330ml for €5 at the local Spar and a 2Ltr bottle €2.50.
Enerianment: We enjoyed the entrainment that was provide and in a relaxed atmosphere. It was very suited to the hotel.
Cosmos: We booked with Cosmos, first and last time. We were met at the airport by the taxi driver, upon leaving in the taxi we were stopped by security and the police. The driver was questioned and asked to produce his documents. He wasn’t able or he didn’t have some documents so they were talking in raised voices. We were waiting in the taxi for about 30 minutes for it to be sorted out. He didn’t provide what they want but let us carry on. There was no rep visiting the hotel during our two stay, so we never seen anybody from Cosmos, unlike the other tour operators who we saw at the hotel regularly. We did try to make contact with Cosmos to arrange what time we were being picked up to the airport for your return, as it was 4.00pm and we were leaving at 9.00am the following morning. With much thanks to girls on reception at hotel they made contact with Cosmos and was told they would phone back but they didn’t, so the Hotel tried to contact Cosmos again eventually at 11.00pm we was told what time we was being picked up in the morning.


Hotel: When we arrived our room wasn't ready as we had arrived before 1.00pm, which I thought it would be the case and didn't mind has we hadn't made any pre-arrangements. We were offered any choice of drinks complementary at the bar whilst we waited and were informed of the hotel services and locations.

Weather: Fabulous. During our 2 week stay in August we didn't have any rain. It was mainly clear blue skies every day and about 30c. Only one afternoon it cloud over. In the evenings it was too warm for trousers, if you go out and about from the hotel.

Pool Areas: The hotel provides towels for the pool and loungers which can be collected from the Spa reception. The pool attendants will set up your parasol and lay you towel as soon as they see you arriving. There are various terraced areas down at sea level some by the pool and quieter areas. Access to the sea is available and watched over by a lifeguard. Snorkel and mask is worth packing.

Room: There is plenty of wardrobe space and hangers. We had a side sea view, which faced west. Our room over looked the rear garden of the hotel. The garden is well maintained and pleasing to look down to.
Because our balcony faced west it didn't get the morning sun, but we got the evening sun until about 7.30pm which was nice sitting on balcony with a drink and listen to live music which was played in the garden most afternoons until dinner is served about 7.30pm. If you have a room facing Funchal (East) which is a full sea view you will get the first morning rays of sun but is in the shade by about 3.00pm.
The room has free tea and coffee making facilities, TV, DVD and safe. The TV had a number of British Channels, we also had ITV Wales somehow. There is also a turn down service.

Bathroom: Twin basins, separate bath and shower, hairdryer. Complementary Rituals Cosmetics products.

Food: We were on breakfast only. We were glad that we choose this option as there are plenty of very good restaurants near to the hotel. The food at breakfast was very nice and well replenished. There is varied selection of choice for all nationalities. We enjoyed trying all the various options during our 2 week stay. We eat at the hotel on a couple of occasion for lunch and dinner The prices were a little higher than the UK but it was very good and large potions.we didn't try the main evening restaurant as it was €45 per person if you are B&B.

Drinks: The drinks were expensive for non alcoholic or alcoholic drinks in the hotel it was €5 for a beer and €5 for a milk shake, but most restaurants outside of the hotel charge about €2 for a beer or €3.50 for a glass of wine, and these were in very nice restaurants. 6 bottles of Coral 330ml for €5 at the local Spar and a 2Ltr bottle of Coke €2.50.

Entertainment: We enjoyed the entertainment that was provide and in a relaxed atmosphere. It was very suited to the hotel.

Cosmos: We booked with Cosmos, first and last time. We were met at the airport by the taxi driver, upon leaving in the taxi we were stopped by security and the police. The driver was questioned and asked to produce his documents. He wasn't able or he didn't have some documents so they were talking in raised voices. We were waiting in the taxi for about 30 minutes for it to be sorted out. He didn't provide what they want but let us carry on. There was no rep visiting the hotel during our two stay, so we never seen anybody from Cosmos, unlike the other tour operators who we saw at the hotel regularly. We did try to make contact with Cosmos to arrange what time we were being picked up to the airport for your return, as it was 4.00pm and we were leaving at 9.00am the following morning. With much thanks to girls on reception at hotel they made contact with Cosmos and was told they would phone back but they didn't, so the Hotel tried to contact Cosmos again eventually at 11.00pm we was told what time we was being picked up in the morning.

Room Tip: Decide if you want the sun on our balcony in the evening or the morning
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
3 Thank srrees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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    5 of 5 bubbles
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  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
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  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
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Glasgow, Scotland
Level Contributor
71 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 11, 2013

There are many hotels in Portugal and Spain rated as 5 star which frankly are not. The Cliff Bay is not one of them and truly lives up to its rating. With large well appointed bedrooms, excellent facilities, and most importantly, friendly and helpful staff, it is everything it claims to be. Chatting with some of the management team at the manager’s cocktail party one sees clearly the level of professionalism and commitment which is brought to bear in achieving the hotel’s high standard. This was our sixth visit and we will definitely return.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank almara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
falmouth
Level Contributor
20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 9, 2013

My wife and I have just returned from a week at the Cliff Bay Hotel. This was our first experience of Madeira and we loved it; the scenery, climate and, above all, the people are terrific. We took the only scheduled TAP flight out of London Gatwick, arriving for the 0430 check-in only to find it had been delayed, for unspecified reasons, for nearly three hours. So, not a good start! However, the three and a half hour flight was uneventful and pre-arranged transfer to the Hotel was quick and easy. Reception procedures were welcoming and efficient. On the advice of previous reviewers, we had asked for an Upper Floor room and were duly given one on the sixth floor with a very pleasant balcony looking towards Funchal on the left and the Atlantic to the right. The room was spacious and well equipped, with a huge double bed. We particularly liked the bathroom arrangements, with twin basins, a bath, plus separate shower and loo. Soft drinks were complimentary, but minibar prices (like most hotels) a tad steep. Without wishing to send readers to sleep, if we were to rate the Cliff Bay on its staff alone we would have no hesitation in awarding a resounding 'excellent'. In every regard, we found the staff to be wholly professional. They all spoke fluent English and nothing appeared to be too difficult; service with a smile! Why we have gone for an overall 'Very Good' is because of catering issues. We booked on a bed and breakfast basis, to give us the flexibility to eat out as well as in, and it was the breakfasts with which we had issues. Although assessment of food is subjective, we make the points nonetheless. Upper Floor guests take their breakfasts in the Gallo d'Oro Restaurant, which offers well spaced tables, inside or out on the balcony. Food is primarily from a buffet, but can also be ordered from a menu, with all sorts of extras, at a price. Each day, we asked for orange juice and each day we asked whether it was fresh, or from a carton. It was fresh (although watered down) on three of the seven days! Equally, we did not like the scrambled eggs and bacon from the buffet; the former were heavy and cooked in milk, the latter undercooked, greasy and flabby. On one day, we asked for poached eggs, but they took 30 minutes to arrive, albeit they were good. Whilst croissants were fresh and delicious, most of the accompanying pastries were either stodgy and bland, or over-sweet. We suspect the latter were bought in and not made on site. We tried the Rose Garden for breakfast on one day and, although the bacon was crisp, the place was a bit of a bunfight with so many guests attempting to get food from the buffet. Other than that, we dined at the Rose Garden on one night and the food was excellent. The wines were a variable feast and we wished we had a greater knowledge of Portugese reds, in particular. Wine prices were high, which tends to be the norm now for 4/5 star hotels. We used the Bar on several occasions and found it very good, both for service and for drinks and snacks. Perhaps our favourite was the Bistro by the saltwater pool on the lower level. We ate there every day and were never disappointed with the choices on offer, the service or the presentation. Of the pools, our preference was the one on the upper level, near the Gym. Wonderful views, great loungers, good bar service, towels etc. We found the saltwater pool too heavily chlorinated for our taste, but others obviously enjoyed it. We did not eat at Gallo d'Oro in the evening, mainly because we judged the prices to be too high for what was offered. A mid-range meal there, plus a decent bottle, would run out at about £80 per head. We preferred to try the local restaurants, of which there are many, but we particularly liked the one closest to the Cliff Bay; fish to die for! Overall, would we recommend the Cliff Bay to other travellers? Certainly! If they take note of our small criticisms and act upon them, we could become regulars!

Room Tip: Go for the Upper Floors, away from the bars.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank galingale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham
Level Contributor
117 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 8, 2013

We booked this holiday after seeing the lovely picture in the brochure and review about the hotel. We decided to book a holiday with a hotel that does not have screaming children and lots of noise and beautiful views and nice hotel food with a bit of style and ambience.
Cliff Bay Hotel met all these qualities. A lovely quiet stylish hotel set back from the main road with stunning lush gardens and stunning views overlooking the sea and a stones throw away from the fabulous hallmark hotel Reids of Funchal. We had a smooth taxi ride from the airport to the hotel door and greeted by some very handsome Portugese doormen who took our cases and delivered them to our rooms. The rotating doors led us to a stunning flower arrangement decorating the main reception foyer and a nice calm reception area. We were greeted with smiling smart receptionists to check us in. Unfortunately our rooms were not quite ready we were about an hour early so we agreed to go for lunch in the hotel bar . We were shown to a lovely table overlooking the hotels Rose garden and had a Club sandwich and a glass of wine. We sat in a beautiful flower garden decorated by Fragipani trees and Bird of Paradise flowers and a breathtaking view of the sea from the tearrace. It was a fabulous day and a very welcoming lunch and a nice taste of things to come on this holiday.
We were shown to our room 237 and it was huge so spacious about 3 times the size of our own bedrooms at home and overlooking a stunning view of the hotel gardens and terrace and to our left the view of the Blue Lagoon swimming pool and terrace and the sea. What a lovely view. Our room was amazing 2 desks one huge bed and a lovely ensuite with Bday and Shower cubicle. We were mazed at the size of the bedrooms . Wow!!
We loved the room instantly. The room was equipped with Wi fi so had internet access to ipad and mini bar complimentary bottled water and fresh fruit as a welcoming gift. There were many books to read in the room with guide books and information about the country and a nice size television to watch.
Breakfast in the morning was in the Rose Garden Restaurant downstairs very nice selection and we were shown to a window view of the terrace and sea but must go down early to get the nice view . Going down late you may not always get a good view. Nice tablecloths and stunning breakfast big selection of tropical fruits, fresh juice , cooked breakfast, lovely pastries and cakes and cereals, breads and rolls. There were also pancakes and waffles on offer as well as meats, hams and cheese and yoghurts and porridge. I]Every morning was an enjoyment and fabulous choice of breakfast one of the best we have ever experienced. Waiters were wonderful smiling and chatty yet very professional and attentive.
I was amazed every morning there is a mini newsletter provided for all the guests to read in international languages provided by the hotel. In the foyer there is always a notice board of all the events of the day and the weather for Madeira which is a lovely touch.
In particular was a lovely lady who was immaculate and lovely Lina guest liason manager she greeted us every day and always had a little chat with us she asked if we wanted to meet her for a tour of the hotel. We spent nearly an hour going round all the restaurants and facilities that the hotel offered which was an excellent idea and a very nice touch. Lina asked if we wanted to watch the flower arranging on a Thursday morning which was a lovely touch too we attended this event and found it very informative she showed us books and guides of the native flowers found on the island which was used for the massive arrangement and small bouquets for all the hotel and restaurants and bars and rooms. We thought Lina did a fabulous job and she certainly made us feel welcome in the hotel. The hotel throughout was immaculate and clean.
We had some lovely walks around Funchal and booked afternoon tea at Reids well worth the money for the fabulous experience and view. My late father in law enjoyed many holidays at Reids so we had to make the visit. We had a good time on the cable cars and come down on the wicker sleighs great fun. Visited many gardens all so colourful and stunning wished we had come in the summer because the flower festivals would be in operation. We did not have any bad meals or bad experiences in Madeira. The staff were amazing and friendly and the hotel had such attention to detail we even had a barometer in the room to check the weather daily.
The best holiday we have ever had so nice to see so many couples here and no screaming kids to be seen. The nice touch was the staff always give way to the guest with a polite smile and always greet you whenever you pass them any time of the day. Thank you Lina for doing such a fabulous job at this hotel you were marvellous! We recommend this hotel highly.

Will definitely be back well worth the money. We love Cliff Bay !!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank daisyhall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belgium
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 8, 2013

We came home on Sunday after 7 days of absolute bliss! The Cliff Bay has to be one of the best hotels ever in our opinion. It was our 3rd visit, the last time being 2007, our next stay will definitely be as soon as we can go back - we wouldn't consider anywhere else just in case it wasn't as good as The Cliff Bay! We decided to organise our trip independently and were offered The Prestige Package which I think is offered to returning guests. It contained all sorts of advantages within the hotel, we had a superior room on the 8th floor with a Funchal view and to end the holiday on a high, there was a bottle of port waiting for us at the airport when we left, courtesy of The Cliff Bay. We arranged the flights ourselves and taking everything into consideration, we came out €1000 better off than if we'd booked with a tour company (and had much better "goodies"! I echo every other reviewer on the excellent service, always given with a smile and a chat (everyone speaks English extremely well - useful if your Portuguese is not up to scratch!). Nothing is too much trouble for the hotel personnel, although there was very little we needed to ask for as everything had already been thought of.
If you are thinking of going to Madeira, which is the most beautiful island, you just HAVE to stay at The Cliff Bay - it's just fantastic!
Thank you to all the staff at The Cliff Bay for playing a huge part in our lovely holiday.

Room Tip: We were in 801 almost at the top of the hotel, overlooking the sea and Funchal harbour. I'd ask...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JenPi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
75 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 8, 2013

Just returned from a great holiday here.

Like most reviewers I found the facilities and staff well above average and would definately return, the friendliest hotel we have ever experienced. It has been said that the hotel is aimed at older clients and this to an extent is true, but then Madeira as a whole is. An island designed by God for mountain goats and then inhabited by pensioners. The weather was just about perfect 21-25 deg. C. Being an island in the Atlantic you can expect and will get some stiff breezes as well.
We found lots of clients were on repeat visits and I think this could be the case with us as well.
The food was of a very good standard with lots of choices to suit all tastes, buffet in the Rose Garden with a seperate Michelin starred restaurant (tie or jacket required) which we never used as we preferred the more informal approach.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Mike J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wickford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 8, 2013

Just got back from the The Cliff Bay hotel one of the best holidays ever. The weather was fantastic and the staff are so friendly and helpful could have stayed a lot longer. We will be going back in a couple of years.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank KathyandJackie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel The Cliff Bay

Property: Hotel The Cliff Bay
Address: Estrada Monumental, 147, Funchal, Madeira 9004-532, Portugal
Phone Number:
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Funchal
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Funchal
#2 Family Hotel in Funchal
#3 Luxury Hotel in Funchal
#3 Business Hotel in Funchal
#4 Romantic Hotel in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel The Cliff Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 200
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Atlantic Ocean stretches as far as the eye can see at the foot of The Cliff Bay which is perched on the top of a natural promontory. The hotel is surrounded by gardens with innumerable secluded corners and centenary palm trees extending to the very edge of the cliff face. The panorama is completed by a magnificent view over the bay of Funchal to the left of the hotel.The most influential restaurant guide in the world, the Michelin Guide, has awarded a star to Il Gallo d'Oro, The Cliff Bay's gourmet restaurant run by Chef Benoît Sinthon. This is Madeira's first and only star ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Cliff Bay - Porto Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Porto Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Funchal
Cliff Bay Hotel Madeira
Hotel The Cliff Bay Madeira/Funchal

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