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Axis Vermar Conference & Beach Hotel
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Reviewed July 3, 2014

Very clean and modern and an excellent location. The only down sides were that there are only 4 lifts each only holding 4 people - with 12 floors to cope with there was a bit of queuing at peak times! The staff were friendly - especially in the bar and reception and there is also a small shop selling a variety of things including stamps and postcards. The breakfasts were good although sometimes the bacon could have done with a bit more cooking and, although there was a good variety in the evening the soup was never hot enough (lukewarm) and the meat seemed as if it had been cooked ages before and was often a bit dry and toughened up - some gravy might have made it better. One day there was mashed potato but no extra gravy as the juices with the meat had dried up. Salads and desserts excellent and plenty to choose. from. All in all, I would stay here again - the sandwiches from the bar at lunch times are really good too.

Room Tip: Go for a room overlooking the pool and sea/beach.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Solway_Settlers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2014

I stayed here for 7 nights as part of the Archers/Cosmos coach tour Discover Northern Portugal and the Douro Valley. I was pleasantly surprised at the hotel and its facilities and would return.
As a single traveller I often do not have very high expectation of the room I am allocated, even after paying a single room supplement. However, this was not the case here. As the hotel was only half-full for half of our stay our whole group were allocated rooms with balconies overlooking the pool and with a sea view rather than those on the other side of the hotel which do not have a balcony and overlook the local housing and scrub land.
My room had a king size double bed, not two singles put together. There is good storage in a sliding door wardrobe - four drawers, a number of shelves and a hanging rack (for tall people only!). A long table against one room with bench seat underneath, a single easy chair to match and two bedside tables (no storage within). On the side of the wardrobe is a full length mirror. Decent wall-mounted TV with remote that has over 60 channels in many languages including Manchester United and Chelsea TV, Sky News and BBC World News. Many programmes in Portugal are subtitled and are in English. The air conditioning worked fine. The bathroom area is very nice with basin, toilet and a walk in shower that has a hand-held shower and an overhead rain shower. Nice white towels and bathmat. There is also a good hairdryer attached to the wall and a well-lit circular mirror over the sink.
I was staying on a half-board basis. All meals are buffet style in a large dining room. The breakfast is very good with a nice choice of fruit juice, cereals, yoghurts, fruit, breads, croissants, scrambled egg, bacon, sausages, boiled eggs, ham and cheeses. Make your own toast.
Evening meals are fine. For starters there is a choice of salads, some with meat and fish, and also calamari rings. The main courses are OK, but not very Portugese, and cater for English, French and other nationalities appetites. The range of vegetables is basic, as often found outside the UK. Dessert is a range of prepared fresh fruit, flan/crème caramel or cake with fruit and cream topping. The range of dessert did not change over the week.
Free Wi-Fi is available which has a very good signal in the reception area and I think the tower rooms, but the signal in my room was poor and so needed to go elsewhere to use it.
There are 4 lifts to the 13 floors in the tower/4 floors in the side extension. These lifts are small, maximum 6 people and at peak times a wait can be expected.
The staff are very friendly and the hotel is clean throughout. On the ground floor there is a large seating area and bar with access to the outside pool area.
The hotel has been refurbished over the last three years and is almost finished except for the indoor swimming pool which should be available soon. The hotel has a beach-front location with easy access from the back-door of the hotel grounds. It makes a great location for touring, conferences and family beach holidays. It is about a 10 minute plus walk into the local town.
Hint: Pack comfy shoes as Portugal has a lot of cobbled streets.

Room Tip: Choose a sea-view room on front of hotel (supplement may apply)
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled solo
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9  Thank anne4brown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2014

We have just spent 8 days at this hotel, very modern, very clean and we'll run.
The food was excellent with a very good choice of main courses. We were on Newmarket Travels Hidden Portugal which was very well organised, and the tours were brilliant.
We would definitely go back.
We think some people complain just for the sake of it.

Room Tip: Room that face pool 3rd floor or above.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Colin675
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2014

Stayed there from 9th - 16th on a Newmarket Holidays package, and was very comfortable with the hotel... you gets what you pays for! This is a 'conference hotel' so maybe lacks character, but it's recently been refurbished and we were perfectly content with our room and the facilities. Our room and bathroom were squeaky clean. Colour scheme ? Not to everyone's taste - but we found it quite a relaxing scheme. Not all the rooms have balconies and sea views - ours did so I guess we were lucky - but you don't spend that amount of time in your rooms on a holiday like this. The hotel is very close to the beach - quite literally out of the gate and across the (largely) pedestrianised road, and you're there. But remember that this is the Atlantic, not the Med! Food is served buffet style - OK, it's not gourmet, but we thought it was well cooked and presented within the context - and there was certainly plenty of it. Restaurant staff worked hard and efficiently to keep tables clear of dirty crockery etc, and were unfailingly attentive and polite in doing so. The buffet could get a bit crowded on occasions (other tour groups) but sharpened elbows were never necessary! The recently refurbished 'prom' provides a nice opportunity for an amble down to the town centre after dinner; the locals seem to use it as a power walking route - lycra and Nike's seem to be required... however, tourists are allowed to dress down and amble! It's about 15 - 20 minutes amble to town along the prom - a pleasant walk. Povoa de Varzim probably isn't for you if clubbing and nightlife is your thing - but it seems to have a perfectly acceptable range of beach bars / restaurants as well as those in the town itself. Would I clamber over hot coals to go back to this hotel? No; but it did what it said on the tin and did it well for the price paid. We enjoyed our stay at this hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Viridis21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 16, 2014

On the plus side, clean and quiet and right next to beach. On the bad side our room had no balcony or good view, and when we were told we could move to a sea view with balcony for extra 10 euros a night, only with a double bed. Most 4 stars we have stayed in simple moved the beds, but not here.

Second disappointing was no vegetarian option for dinner which we had to pay ans extra 10 euros each for, just the salad and veg available to all. Some salad had ham or crab stick mixed in and the so called mushroom source for the pasta was fulll of bacon. Vegans had an even lesser choice. They claim to be 5 mins walk from town centre, more like a 10 minute run.

We would not choose this hotel - it was allocated on arrival by Newmarket travel on their hidden portugal deal and their inclusive day trips were badly organised, we had just 30 mins in the national park then 2 and a half hours in the samall town of ponte de lima on a stiffling hot day

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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4  Thank abfree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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