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“Good, but not as good as we expected”

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Sensimar Savoy Gardens
Certificate of Excellence
England
Level Contributor
108 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“Good, but not as good as we expected”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 6, 2012

Most reviews about this hotel are excellent, and we would agree with them. However, the 4-star rating did not seem appropriate for some aspects.

We booked two weeks beforehand with Thomson as a package deal. The 'mountain view' room was small, and the tea and coffee facilities were only provided for the first night - an extra payment was required for the rest of the week. The small room was adequate, but not really 4-star, and tea and coffee facilities come in nearly the most basic of hotels.

We were most surprised to find that wifi was not included in the price. There was an old Windows PC in the basement, which worked most of the time, but it wasn't used very much, although it was free to use. Wifi was available for 5 euros per hour, although it was a very weak signal on the fifth floor. The 5 euros could be used in one single chunk of one hour, or broken up into smaller chunks throughout the hotel stay. However, we discovered that it was very difficult to switch it off - impossible by switching off the laptop's wifi, or logging out of a user account. Even switching off the laptop, and then switching it on again found the wifi still connected (and still using up the 5 euros). There was no way to log out of the wifi, and no way of checking how much had been used. The reception staff evidently knew of some of the problems, and willingly issued another free hour's worth. It may be that it all works perfectly on Windows, but not on our MacBook Air, which works perfectly everywhere else. (These details have been provided just so that future visitors may be forewarned of the problems.)

Overall, we enjoyed the hotel and the food. We loved the island with its possibilities for walking and intend to return. We might return to the same hotel, as we found its position to be ideal. A different 4-star hotel may have full 4-star facilities…

Room Tip: All sorts of extras are possible for extra costs.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ColinBut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (876)
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Nottingham
Level Contributor
58 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 4, 2012

This was a good, four star hotel. The facilities were excellent with an good sized pool, well situated on the ground and a hot tub on the roof terrace with great views over Funchal. The hotel had a spa offering a range of treatments and a free sauna. The hotel had a number of areas where you could relax with a book. The staff were excellent and, because the hotel catered for an older clientele - no guests under 18 with an average age (I guess) nearer 50 - the place had a quiet ambience.
We had half board and the breakfasts were good although the evening meals were unadventurous and on the boring side.
The rooms were spacious, clean and well appointed with tea and coffee making facilities. We had a sea view and enjoyed great views over the area.
As long as you were fit the walk into town was easy. However, if you have mobility problems this would be an issue. However, the hotel had good access to public transport - the local bus (24) stopped outside; however it only ran every hour.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Exiled_Cumbrian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evesham Worcs
Level Contributor
16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 31, 2012

We chose this hotel because it was 4* Adults only and recently refurbished. We were thrilled with it. We had a beautiful spacious room, lovely bathroom, comfy bed, all spotlessly clean. The staff were hardworking and helpful, the food plentiful. I loved the fresh fruit salad available at breakfast and also in the evenings! The pool area was great, lots of sunbeds and umbrellas, the pool clean and warm enough once you were in it. The roof garden was a nice idea, fantastic views in the evening. I imagine rooms at the back (not sea view) were perhaps a bit disappointing. We paid extra for a suite which gave us an additional room plus a huge balcony. Being on the top floor the views were fantastic and although expensive we loved it! The Thomson team were faultless, so friendly and good at entertaining although we weren,t too keen on the quizzes each night other people seemed to enjoy them. The hotel is up a hill but so is most of Madeira , we were prepared for some stiff walking but not everyone had done their homework so some guests found the location hard. It took us an hour to walk into the old town and up to the cable car (all downhill). A taxi back cost 5e which we though good value. We also walked to the end of the Lido promenade again this took about an hour.There is a bus stop just outside the hotel and lots of guests seemed to use this to get into the town. We thought the hotel represented great value for money and wished we had booked two weeks and not one!

Room Tip: Worth paying for a sea view the rooms are a little larger and sunny
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Santoriniblue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockport
Level Contributor
117 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2012

I couldn't agree more with all the comments about this hotel. I desperately needed a rest and my every need was catered for. I agree completely with the comments made by Bronxyglenn who was staying there at the same time as me. Paula is a fantastic Rep and is always on hand for any problem - I've personally never known a Rep to work so hard. As for the Entertainment Team they are unbelievably talented. Carl, Jen, Matt and Sarah work very hard to ensure that everyone has a great holiday and Thomsons should be proud to have five dedicated and enthusiastic people working for them. I thank them especially for making my holiday so memorable. I'm usually quite happy to sit quietly with a book but, probably because there was no pressure to get involved if you didn't want to, I actually did. Spending an hour, out of the sunshine in the middle of the day, making earrings was a welcome break. My only criticism is that we had to wait an hour and a half on arrival before we could get into our room. This should not stop anyone spending a holiday at this hotel because it is a holiday I will remember for a very long time and I wouldn't hesitate to return. The free internet was also a blessing for me because my 96 year old mother was rushed into hospital two days after I arrived and it was a relief to be able to communicate with my brother in Australia and my son in the U.S. and keep them updated on her progress.

Room Tip: Choose a room with a sea view, you won't regret it.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Valerious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
York, UK
Level Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2012

A Thomson Holidays Couples hotel with no guest under 18 and a mainly mature British clients.
Clean, comfortable, welcoming and relaxing where everyone- including the guests- were well behaved!

Our room at the rear had a small balcony and little direct sunlight and that kept the room cool.
Rooms were clean and comfortable with a TV channels including BBC Entertainment, BBC and Sky news.
Good features - the sun deck on the roof was spacious with excellent double loungers and a jacuzzi and an Honesty bar with hot and cold drinks and snacks.
Games deck with giant chess/draughts, golf driving net, matted putting "green", boules pit and shuffle board provided some amusement on a cloudy morning.
Location is a half hour down-hill walk into Funchal centre with a 45min uphill walk return.

Minor niggles - drinks purchased at the bar cannot be taken into the dining room - range and quality of wine is restricted - and if you use the drinks bar and pool bar a lot you will find a hefty bill at the end of the week - replenishment of tea & coffee in the room have to be paid for - I have marked down the Value score for this.

Thomson ran a faultless service with a experienced reps with the evening entertainment in the basement lounge bar of singers and musicians performing with backing tracks was not to my taste. The "Hole in One" Pub a 10 min walk downhill from the hotel provided better live entertainment in my opinion. Each to his own as they say.

Room Tip: Sea view rooms have larger balconies and get all-day sun - they overlook the pool where early evenin...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SoloMan_York_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oldham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 23, 2012

Arrived home 8th october after two weeks at the Savoy Gardens.. brilliant. can't fault this hotel & will definately return, i don't think we have ever been to a (mainly brits) hotel & found so many available sun-loungers & parasols, never saw anybody try to reserve a bed !
The staff, the entertainment team & Paula the rep were all great. we had a room with a sea view on the 7th floor & could often watch the cruise ships come & go, walked in to Funchal most days or evening so much going on with festivals etc. was great to sit outside at one of the many bars or restaurants & listen to some great musicians,
Once again... a very friendly hotel, a great resort. lovely climate, if your thinking of booking this hotel... dont think anymore, 'just do it' !!

Room Tip: choose a high floor.. great views.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank chaddertoneric2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scotland
Level Contributor
186 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 206 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 23, 2012

We just arrived home last night from a week half board at The Savoy Gardens Hotel, booked through Thomsons. It had been recommended by my wife's cousin.
We paid for a seaview and what a panoramic view over Madeira, the cruiseliners in the habour and the Atlantic. The hotel operates a cash free system so no need to carry money until the dreaded check out & " settle your bar bill " time. Throughout our stay absolutely nothing was to much trouble for the excellent staff.

Reception. fast, friendly and efficient.

Public areas. Stylous, spacious and immaculate. FREE internet access.

Dining. A beautiful and perfect buffet dining room with a table service option. Fantastic choice of food both at breakfast and dinner. Professional and friendly staff keep the place running smoothly.

Room. Modern, immaculate, spacious and a nice little cleaning lady.

Bar. A luxurious place to sit and enjoy the Thomsons evening entertainment which was hosted by Carl and was fun every evening. House wine just 10 Euros a bottle.

Cocktail Bar. A handy 2 hour " happy hour " to enjoy a cocktail before or after dinner.

Pool. Spotless cleaned every morning and great to look down from our balcony and not see every sunbed covered with towels by 7.30 am.

Roof terrace. Views to die for. Large, chique, a hot tub, classy sun loungers a WAIT FOR IT.....an Honesty Bar.

The only thing I would change about this hotel is never going to happen. It really would benefit from moving lock, stock & barrel a quarter of a mile downhill towards the sea. For this reason alone I have only voted 4/5.

It was our first trip to Madeira and it certainly won't be out last.

Room Tip: Pay the little bit extra for a seaview or a suite. It's well worth it.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Bronxglenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sensimar Savoy Gardens

Property: Sensimar Savoy Gardens
Address: Azinhaga Casa Branca 7, Funchal, Madeira 9004-543, Portugal (Formerly Savoy Gardens)
Location: Portugal > Madeira Islands > Madeira > Funchal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 38 Specialty Lodging in Funchal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Sensimar Savoy Gardens 4*
Number of rooms: 119
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cradled against an oceanfront hillside and located in a quiet and sunny suburb of Funchal, within approx 2km from the city centre, the renovated Hotel Savoy Gardens (ex-Vila Ramos), renowned for the provision of friendly and personalised service, offers amazing mountain and sea views across lush verdant plantations. The Savoy Gardens is a friendly boutique-style hotel that provides its guests a modern feel and a traditional quality. All 119 completely renovated rooms include 9 suites. All have their own furnished balcony and are equipped with air-conditioning, direct dial telephone, flat screen TV set with interactive TV, FREE internet wireless system, tea and coffee making facilities, safety box and mini-bar, plus a fully equipped bathroom with bathtub, shower and hairdryer.The elegant and new interiors are all designed in soft colours with excellent materials to create a relaxing atmosphere throughout the hotel. The Savoy Gardens Hotel features the Restaurant Laurissilva, serving a daily buffet breakfast and themed Buffet dinners with cooking station. In a reserved cosy area, this restaurant also features a elegant a la carte dinner service. The Cica cocktail bar serving evening cocktails and the Palmeira bar serving snacks, hot and fresh drinks throughout the day as well as a daily suggestion of healthy and delicious light dishes for lunch. One outdoor freshwater heated swimming pool, a panoramic rooftop 360º view terrace with sun-lounges, jacuzzi, shower and self-service bar - the ideal location to spot the daily arrivals and departures of cruise liners in Funchal's harbour. Some of the facilities are also located in the lower-ground floor, such as the Spa with themed and seasonal promotions and special spa packages, the hairdresser, a games and TV room with internet desk and the Night Club Magnolia with nightly live music and entertainment. The Savoy Gardens Hotel is a new concept in Adults Only accommodation. Conceived as a place for rest and fun specially dedicated for those seeking a relaxing although extravagant vacation: unique experiences, amazing entertainment programmes, personalised service and attention to detail and all the commodities and services of a hotel for guests over 16 years of age. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Savoy Gardens
Savoy Gardens Funchal
Sensimar Savoy Gardens Madeira/Funchal

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