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“Pousada in paradise”
Review of Asalem

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Asalem
Ranked #6 of 17 Hotels in Ilha Grande
Certificate of Excellence
San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
97 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Pousada in paradise”
Reviewed December 2, 2013

Asalem is nestled in its own private cove on beautiful Ilha Grande. Getting there requires a ferry ride from the mainland to the village Abraao, then a private short boat ride to Asalem. If you want to be away from the touristy shops and restaurants, this is the way to go. The staff was very nice and accommodating -- We were greeted at the dock by the manager and shown promptly to the Eco-Honeymoon Suite. We have not viewed the standard suites, but highly recommend the honeymoon suite, which sits off by itself, away from the main part of the pousada, jutting from the forest with breathtaking views of the bay. One could be happy not leaving this eco-chic bungalow, with its private deck and hammock, but the staff is happy to arrange excursions to other parts of the island which boasts more than 100 beaches. The main part of the pousada is comfortable and relaxed. Meals are served at a long table overlooking the water. In the evening, they offer made-to-order happy hour caipirinhas and casually elegant candlelit dinners with Brazilian music. You place your order to the small kitchen about an hour before you'd like to eat, choose your bottle of wine and enjoy the sunset. For a change of pace, Abraao is only minutes away by boat and offers a number of restaurants. Only two things during our stay were mildly displeasing. Boats tend to dock outside the pousada during the day, and one was playing very loud music one day. Secondly, on our day of departure we we're told, only at 9:00 a.m., that they would need our room by 10:00 a.m. to prepare for the next guests. Just a word of advice to clarify your check-out time. Neither of these incidents, however, would deter me from visiting again.

Room Tip: Go for the Honeymoon-Eco Suite.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Michele M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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283 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
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English first
Rio de Janeiro, RJ
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 25, 2013

I stayed at Asalem at a holiday. The island and the village were really crowded. It doesnt support too many people. On the other hand, Asalem is far from the mess, its really quiet. The room and the service are very good.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank renatofontes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013

We had a standard room for 3 people. The room had a lovely area upstairs with a comfortable double bed with view to the ocean. The downstairs area could have been a bit more decorated, and the extra bed more comfortable. The bathroom was simple with a slow flush. The aircon worked well and all inn all the room was comfortable with an outdoor area as well. The internet was very slow, often not working at all, but it was like this on the whole island so it can't be faulted on the hotel.
The food was great, breakfast was bread, cakes, loads of fresh fruit, yoghurt, eggs, coffee, freshly made juices etc. Dinner was excellent, both the fish, chicken, pasta and desserts. Asalem also made great Caipirinhas for the happy hour.
The crew at Asalem was always helpful and friendly. Service was always quick. All in all a very nice stay! The closest beach praia Crena was very nice, and it was not a long walk to the next beach Abraaozinho, or to Abraao city centre.
Recommended! ( If you can afford it, the suites looked very nice and of a higher standard)

Room Tip: The standard rooms are probably better for 2 people, for 3 it was a bit small. The suites looked mor...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank artistina81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2013

We stayed at Asalem in early November and had an unfortunate spell of 3 days of rain, punctuated at the end by a few beautiful days. Our overall impression was that Asalem is located in a beautiful setting and that the rooms are clean. The location is a bit inconvenient, but we didn't mind it because we enjoyed hiking back and forth to the town. We stayed in a standard room. However, it was extremely hard to justify paying over$200 USD/night, mostly based on the following:

- We had almost no water pressure, and a very lukewarm shower. Because the temperatures on the island were cool and rainy, we were very cold for three days. A warm shower would have helped, but we couldn't take one.

- The wifi never worked. We came expecting difficulties because of the rain, but wifi was working all over the island -- just not at Asalem. The staff never seemed to make a genuine effort to fix the situation.

- The walls between the standard rooms are paper thin. We could have had conversations with our neighbors every night in a completely normal voice through the walls.

- The breakfast is really average. The caipirinhas are weak and not nearly as delicious as the many others we tried over 3 weeks in Brazil. (Although the happy hour is a cool idea, and we enjoyed it)

- Our safe broke, which was not a terribly big deal except that our passports and my computer were inside. We were in a good mood about it, but rather than utilizing some kind of electronic reset code, the staff decided to drill into the safe door, which was a loud and tedious process spanning two days. We had to hang around while they tested various drill bits and attempted to pry the safe open. My sense was that this had happened before.

- The overarching impression is that people are being paid to manage the place, but nobody feels terribly attached or responsible for the place. The staff were definitely helpful, but not terribly confident or authoritative. Only one kind staff member (I think Lorena) reimbursed us for a taxi ride after the safe-breaking debacle. For the most part, it seemed every time we turned it around, we had to pay money for some other additional thing.

My sense is that the higher category rooms are a much better experience.

Room Tip: Don't stay in the standard rooms - they are overpriced for the services and lack of privacy.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank damcycle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2013

My friends and I had a good stay here. The cheaper (older) rooms are nice but very bare/basic. The grounds are pretty but not a super comfortable space to hang out there, especially in the evenings when it gets dark. The restaurant area is very very small. Nice for breakfast as you have beautiful views. If this is just your base from which to explore the island and then return to peace in the evenings, it's ok. They have a decently priced 24 hour boat service to the main village which helps.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Dianatravelsaround
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
2 reviews
Reviewed October 8, 2013

Stayed here for part of our honeymoon. It was beautiful, the staff were AMAZING! So helpful, friendly and accommodating. We loved the location outside of town it was very peaceful. The Eco suites are far superior to the standard rooms but the standards are really great too, the Eco suites are much more private and new. All have amazing views. The food at the restaurant was some of the best on the island!

  • Stayed September 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Shastapants81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1 review
Reviewed October 2, 2013

We stayed 4 days at this great place. Location and rooms are very nice, cocktails and food are prepared with care and the service is really personal. Small nice beach within 5 minutes walk and also great day trips which are easy to arrange (diving, boat trip, etc).

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank MeldeGraaf83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Asalem

Property: Asalem
Address: Praia da Crena, Ilha Grande, State of Rio de Janeiro 23968-000, Brazil
Phone Number:
Location: Brazil > State of Rio de Janeiro > Ilha Grande
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Ilha Grande
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Asalem 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
ASALEM is a seaside hideaway situated in Ilha Grande, a protected reserve of natural land where no cars are allowed. All our 5 enchanting waterfront suites are surrounded by the rain forest that overlooks the spectacular Bay of Abraäo. This proximity to the ocean offers rare, intimate glimpses of sea creatures such as starfish and turtles, as well as abundant schools of fish. The forest brings frequent visitors, including monkeys, squirrels, fireflies, blue butterflies and a wide variety of exotic tropical birds. This unspoiled peace of paradise is the perfect spot for honeymooners looking for privacy: we are 20 minutes apart from the main village walking in an accessible path or 5 minutes by the taxi boat we provide. Apart from the taxi boat service, available 24/7, we can arrange boat trips, transfers, massages, scuba diving, snorkeling and guided hikes. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Asalem Ilha Grande, Brazil
Asalem Hotel Ilha Grande

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