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“Very good stay”

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TUI SENSIMAR Savoy Gardens
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 27, 2013

Very clean rooms, kettles and cups were provided, but bring your own tea and coffee and milk (there is an empty fridge) - supermarket quite near. We never heard any noise from other rooms or corridors. Roof top terrace for sunbathing on loungers with fantastic views of sea and town, good-sized pool although water was a bit chilly in February. Rooms not very warm at night but just about OK for us. Excellent breakfasts, very good choice with buffet dinners (including fish option and veggie option each evening). Guests were asked to disinfect their hands when coming into the dining room (probably because of the buffets). 20-minute downhill walk into Funchal was a bit boring. There is a bus-stop just outside the hotel, with timetables (usually an hourly service, but do check) and inexpensive tickets available from hotel reception, these tickets to be topped up in town. Bus up to Monte and its tropical gardens goes 5 minutes from hotel - big saving on the return cable-car ticket (15 Euros!) to Monte and there's also the cost of getting to cable car! Forum (nice new shopping centre with excellent value clothes shops and big supermarket) is 20 minutes walk the other way from town - bought a new coat for just 13 Euros in the sale! Only reservation is the hotel's 'couples only' policy - yes there was a quiet atmosphere, but at times it was too quiet and sedate - a few youngsters would have livened the atmosphere. Very good Thomson rep. who was onsite almosty every day - and who even speaks Portuguese! Thomson's musical duo 'Infusion' performed most evenings - their singer Kerrie Leonard was really excellent (Adele-like vocals) and deserves a far, far bigger audience. All the hotel guests (mostly OAPs) we met seemed very happy with the hotel. I learned that Thomson bought 80% of the hotel's rooms for the whole season, so clientele was virtually all British. (I thought Thomson's quiz evenings were a bit naff, although my wife thought they were quite good fun.)

Room Tip: Definitely ask for a high room (6th floor is highest). My wife preferred the sea-view rooms - availa...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank DBYLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,509 - 1,515 of 1,957 reviews

Reviewed February 26, 2013

Just returned from a week's stay at The Savoy Gardens. One of the reasons we went was the previous good reviews. We booked a junior suite (we were allocated room 501). It has 2 balconies and, obviously, a sea view, allowing great view towards Funchal and the harbour. Watching the cruise ships arriving and turning to berth in harbour was interesting. The room itself was spacious, well decorated and spotlessly clean. We were very pleased with the fruit and wine provided in the room on our arrival.The whole hotel is kept in excellent condition and decorated to a high standard (no splashes of paint on surfaces or bodged finishes). The pool area is is excellent. The pool, being heated, could be braved even in February! As previous reviews have mentioned, the approach to the hotel is steep and those of limited mobility should note this. Having said that, we observed older guests on walking sticks walking up the street. The food is good and well presented. Every night there is a different "theme" in the restaurant and the menu alters accordingly. One thing of note is that everyone entering the restaurant has to use an alcohol hand rub from a dispenser at the door. We thought this was an excellent way to minimise contamination of food being collected from the buffet (all food being served this way). The bar areas are well kept and attentively served. The entertainment, as such, was mainly provided by the Thomson reps and was of mixed quality (sometimes cheesy) but presented enthusiastically. We are not great one for hotel entertainment anyway, so perhaps the criticism is a little harsh. This being a Thomson "Couples" hotel, there are no screaming kids to contend with. There are couples from other European countries there too (we noted French, German and Norwegian as well as Portugese) and this stops the atmosphere from being dominated by Brits (something I hate; when I'm abroad I want to feel like I'm abroad!)

Room Tip: An upgrade to a junior suite is recommended, one on the right of the building especially (rooms 101...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Trevor W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2013

This was our first time at this hotel. First impressions of a new (to us) hotel are very much the reception welcome. This was not good. After a long day of travelling we expected to have our cases brought up to our room by a porter. There was no sign of this happening. I am disabled and on crutches so my wife had had to do the heavy work. We asked if the cases would be brought up to the room, the receptionists looked at each other as if we had asked them for a loan of 1000 euros!
Eventually my wife managed to get the cases up to the room. The room was very nice, the standard of decor was to a high quality. There was plenty of storage space for clothes. The bed was a little hard and I had trouble sleeping.
The bathroom was nice but the bath was small, I used the shower and was cramped between the wall and the shower curtain. The were no toiletries except some soap in a container on the wall and couple of soap bars by the sink and the bidet. Penny pinching in my eyes.
On the first day our waste basket was not emptied. However subsequently the room appeared to be cleaned to a high standard.
The balcony was tiny! But it did afford a lovely sea view and a view of the harbour. Whoever mentioned the dogs barking almost all day was not kidding. They did!
There was a welcome pack (of sorts) of some sachets of coffee/tea, powdered milk provided along with a notice informing us that if we wanted this each day a charge of 10 euros would be levied. This levy, together with a charge of 9 euros per week for a dressing gown I thought another example of penny pinching and not what we are used to.
The weather was very sunny and warm which gave us the opportunity to sit on the rooftop terrace. This facility was nicely kitted out and well maintained. As neither of us wanted to swim, we did not visit the pool area.
The dining area was nicely appointed, light levels just about right and the waiters attentive. The food was excellent to my mind. Every night was a different theme and the menu reflected this theme. However drinks were expensive and 'happy hour' had a reduction of 30% and not 2 for 1 as in other hotels.
Entertainment was provided but we only went to the show on one occasion. The view of the performance area was obscured by structural pillars and we would have had to get a seat at about 7.00pm to be able to see clearly.
Would we go back? We did enjoy ourselves. The hotel has some excellent aspects to it. I know other people have thoroughly enjoyed their stay. If we hadn't been to other hotels on the island we might be fully agreeing with them. but we have and there are better hotels in our opinion. If there were an offer available them we would stay again. I don't think we would pay full price to stay at this hotel.

Room Tip: If you want a sea view specify that you want a high floor as the views can be obstructed on lower fl...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank GeorgeMerseyside
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2013

We have just returned from a week at this hotel.
We booked with Thomson on the internet and the booking included a double mountain view room with balcony. We chose the option for a seaview at an extra £70.
On arrival we were allocated Room 702, a seaview with 'Juliette Balcony' or a window which opens!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We went back to reception and were told Thomson guests who ask for a seaview are given rooms on the 7th floor all with this 'juliette balcony'- Don't be mistaken for Room 712 which has a large balcony and a whopping 40 Euros extra a night!!!!!!
There was no sympathy from the staff just cold, unfriendliness!!!! We were offered Room 504 which was exactly the same with a small balcony at an extra 10 Euros a night for this privilege!!!!!!! We took the room as enjoy sitting out on a balcony as we have mobility issues and this is a big part of our holiday!!
We are well seasoned travellers and have never experienced this before we have always had a balcony!!!!! So in total paid £140 extra!!!!!!!

By the way, seaview rooms face the main road and noisy!!!!

Ok, the food!!!!!!!!! Yes if you eat at 6.30 when the dinner service starts the food is probably hot and fresh but for guests like us who enjoy dining a little later, we found the food lukewarm, hard and floating in a various liquids!!!!! The live chef station should be in operation throughout the dining period NOT the first bit!!!!!!! The main meal was bland, unappetising and poor.
The salads and desserts were nice but more emphasis should be on the main meal in our opinion.
Thomson brochure had a photo of the private dining room where tables were well spaced, NOT the regular dining room where tables were so close together you had no alternative to join in conversation with the next couple- so much for a 'Couples hotel.'

The swimming pool was NOT heate as featured.

Rooms and areas were clean but again the housekeeping had no imagination as I have found in other hotels where towels are folded into swans etc.

We spoke to returning guests who feel the food standards have dropped and many people were eating outside the hotel!!!!!

The entertainment team Rebeca and Carl were very good and should be left to their own devices to organise their programme which they can do quite adequately. Therefore the resident duo are Not needed you only have to look around the Magnolia lounge to count people on one hand after Carl or Rebecca had done their nightly quiz!!! people couildn't get out quick enough before the screeching and wailing of this duo began!!! enough to burst your ear drum. or blow your hearing aid!!!!!
Easy listening music iwould be more appropriate when couples would be happy to stay and perhaps have a little dance!!!!! Jazz, tribute bands, magician,pianist the list is endless as what COULD be offered.

This is a couples hotel where the average age is 60!!

We therefore think this hotel should be rated 3 star and We will not return here!!!

The one thing we really enjoyed were treatments at the Spa by the lovely Rachel which were good value for money!!

Room Tip: Take your own tea bags as only provided for one day then guess what??? yes you have to pay to restoc...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank DancingqueenSurrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2013 via mobile

We have just returned from the savoy gardens for the 2nd time and its as fabulous as it was last year.
The staff are wonderful, our room was so comfortable and spotlessly clean with a sea view.
The food which gets alot of criticism from people was lovely every night. The staff in the restaurant are great. It's not a big restaurant but there is a lovely atmosphere.
The entertainment is downstairs in the magnolia lounge and there is always something going on. The quizzes are fun there was a duo called infusion who were excellent. Carl is excellent and we realised he is a brilliant singer too he tells some pretty cheesy jokes though (sorry Carl lol)
The hotel is up a pretty steep hill which gets a bit wearing after a while, but it wouldn't put us off.
We hired a car to get around and the scenery is breathtaking. Madeira can be quite tricky to drive around but well worth it.
The pool though heated can be a bit chilly but there is the jacuzzi on the roof with spectacular views.
This is a hotel we could go back to every year, we love it and would recommend it to anyone. Thankyou to all at the savoy gardens for another brilliant holiday.

  • Stayed: February 2013
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6  Thank Gsagb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

We have just spent a week at the Savoy Gardens and we seem to be out of sync with most of the previous reviews. Yes it is clean and comfortable and the staff are helpful and friendly. We upgraded to a junior suite which was very nice but had no toiletries except a container of an unknown substance by the side of the bath.Bath robes were available for an extra charge. WiFi was slow and did not work at all for 2 days. You need to be pretty hardy to use the pool and it did'nt seem to us to be heated except by the sun.
Our main complaint is the restaurant which although had a majority of tables for two they were so close together that the might just as well have been for 4 or 6. Meals are buffet style which worked for breakfast but dinner was a chaotic affair with people moving about in cramped conditions. The menus were unimaginative and the food bland and often only just warm so by the time we got to our table was cold. After 3 nights we gave up on dinner although we were half board and went into Funchal where we found really good restaurants with fabulous food and very welcoming people.
The hotel is in a residential area up a steep hill about 30 minute walk from Funchal centre although there is a bus stop nearby you need to be pretty mobile if you want to walk.
Will definately go back to Madeira but not this hotel.

Room Tip: Go for a sea view with balcony. Book a taxi transfer from and to airport as coach cannot get to hot...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Robert H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 10, 2013

Would recommend the Savoy Gardens 110% to all & sundry. We were treated like royality from the start of holiday until we booked out..Our room was spotlessly clean massive & view to die for.

We had sea view room..you have to pay extra for but worth every penny..
The staff were attentive to your needs. They could not do enough for us to make sure we enjoyed our stay. .We had lovely table every night for dinner..( pool view) it was reserved for us
by head waiter. Food was lovely..Pipping hot..alternitivly you could have cold buffet..

Our bed linen was changed every two days with our fluffy white towels changed every day..
Could go on & on about hotel...Check it out for yourselve & you will see what I am on about.
Having been to Maderia 5 times before...will be going back in the near future.

Room Tip: Sea view rooms Level 6 or 7
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank joan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about TUI 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 #2 of 42 Specialty Lodging in Funchal
Price Range: $81 - $225 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — TUI 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
TUI SENSIMAR Savoy Gardens Madeira/Funchal

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