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“completely relaxing”

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Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #9 of 20 Hotels in Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 24, 2011

My wife and I have just returned from a 2 week holiday here. We were getting a touch nervy reading some of the reviews here (ie, strong chemicals in pool, cat smell in O'Grill, food not up to much etc etc), but we experienced none of this.

All staff are excellent. Very accommodating and helpful, and happy. Special mention to receptionist 'Katia' who helped us with a room misunderstanding very early on. Thank you. We did not have to wait around to be served in bars and restaurants, we weren't imposed up on by staff taking photos or selling Spa sessions etc and all service was pretty prompt and always with a smile.

We had a suite in the main hotel block. Very big, spacious and clean. The room was serviced at our convenience too. Beds are huge, décor and design very clean and all linen and fabrics modern and clean. Cant fault the rooms.

The food was pretty excellent too. We wouldn't rate it as 5 * dining though. The choices of meals weren't particularly vast and the main restaurant, 'Spices' got very busy and noisy during peak times. But on the up side, the restaurant opening times were longer than most hotels opening times, meaning an extra early or late sitting was always nice and quiet.

Breakfast was fairly typical in a hotel of this standard. Very nice, but nothing special. Lunch was the highlight (food wise) of the day for us - very light and enjoyable. Salads were excellent. Dinner was sometimes hit and miss. The standard of food and cooking was always good, but the choices weren't always there or suited everybody's tastes. Personally I'm a huge fish and sea food fan, so I was happy all the time as their sea food choices was always of top standards.

The hotel 'fine dining' room, the 'Aqua', was again not up to 5 * standards. As opposed to the buffet style main restaurant dining, the Aqua gave you a choice of 3 set menus (typed out on cheap looking lists), and service here was very very slooooooooooow. Typically, a 4 course meal for 2 would easily last 1.5 hours plus.
But as mentioned, the staff were doing their best and I'm sure service will improve and the management will eventually address little problems like this.
The beach bar, the O'Grill, was always nice for a lunch time hot grill and a cold beer. What a great little place. Typical of what you'd hope and expect from a hotel's beach bar.

Pools were nice, and like the beach loungers, we always found somewhere to sit. And no loud over powering pool side music either. Evening entertainment was not too bad either. Very African based as you'd expect, and it didn't go on late into the night keeping you up either.

The beach directly off the hotel has a rocky bed. You'll find it difficult to wade out into the sea because of this. There is a floating pontoon, but this was tied off shore out of action for the majority of our stay for some reason. A shame, because the day or 2 it was in use at the beginning of the holiday it was fantastic and enabled us to go swimming.
But, walk literally 5 mins southwards down the shore and the rocks disappear and are replaced with sand. This is the ultimate place to go swimming.
The sea temperature was pretty tolerable too. Almost like a coldish bath. No problems. There is a constant wind, which might seam strong at times, but it's a very warm wind and a very welcoming wind too, which was always a nice welcoming addition.

The place and area itself is very very poor and under developed. Santa Maria just down the road is literally a shanty town. It really is. Prices for food aren't the cheapest, (a medium cold beer was around £1.20 so that's OK), and choices are pretty limited. And expect to struggle if you're going self catering - the local markets are really very poor indeed. Don't expect any luxuries, or even basics like we're used to either.
And the locals are very very persistent and pushy for you to go into their shops and buy stuff. They're very nice and we never felt threatened, but we always felt hassled. It's worse than Egypt. The irony is they all claim their shop is 'no stress'.

My wife and I did have a couple of complaints about the hotel experience though -

1) Salt and pepper - the salt and pepper shakers were at a premium for some reason. We ALWAYS had to either go looking for them or ask a member of staff for them, for almost every meal.

2) Towards the end of the holiday there was building works starting to happen around the hotel and both pool areas. Ok, we appreciate works are needed, but we didnt spend all this money to have construction teams build around us whilst on holiday.
One night we were even woken up at around 12.30 by drilling in the main hotel and I had to go to reception to complain!

3) The whole resort is basically a complex where villas and apartments are actually sold to private individuals. The hotel side of it is a very very small part of things. minor in fact. And quite often the hotel or management guides would be hosting and touring around prospective investors and buyers. This was quite off putting to be honest. We quite often felt 'on show', and, these prospective clients always had preferential treatment over the general hotel guest. (ie, the Aqua restaurant was limited to hotel guests and given priority to groups of clients in case they fancied it)


But in general we had a most wonderful time. Dont expect activities galore and tones of stuff to do as there isnt. And excursions to the other islands are very expensive. Children, young families and self catering peeps might find it not what they expect here. Couples and people just wanting to chill out in the heat for a week or so will love it.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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14  Thank sjleworthy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 4, 2011

Dear Guest,

Firstly, I would like to thank you for choosing to spend your holidays with us at The Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and also for taking the time in writing this review. Your comments are very important for us because they serve as orientation in our continuous efforts to improve the quality of our services. Taking into account that we’ve only been open for only four months, we are aware that there is much to be done before we reach “cruise mode”.

We are continually placing more salt and pepper shakers on the tables and these are available for all guests without exception.
Due to complaints on lack of umbrellas we are carrying out works to install more fixed umbrellas in the swimming pool areas in order to provide our guests with more shades. We are also building a new restaurant at the main swimming pool area in order to provide our guests with more choices of restaurant, we sincerely apologize for any inconveniences that this may have caused you.

Our hotel management does not sell villas or apartments to any individuals, we do however carry out tours with the tour operators and these are done in a way that does not disturb our guests. We do not give any preferential treatments to non-hotel guests, our hotel guests are always our priority. Once again, I’m very sorry if any situation has led to any misunderstanding, thank you for pointing this out we will look into the matter at once.

Once again, thank you for your comments, we hope to have the pleasure of having you as our guests again in the near future.


Best Regards,

General Manager

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2,025 - 2,031 of 3,172 reviews

Reviewed September 21, 2011

I was so impressed with the hotel facilities, staff, food and the weather! I had a really relaxing time just laying by the pool and enjoying the sunshine. I was also very impressed with my room, the bed was fantastic and just so comfortable - by a mile the most comfortable I've slept in. I went and had a look round some of the beaches along from the hotel and they were just stunning too. I'm looking forward to going back there again some day.

Room Tip: I had a 2 bedroom apartment to myself and it was great!
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  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled solo
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8  Thank pauln2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 22, 2011

Dear Guest,

Firstly I would like to thank you for choosing to stay with us that the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, and also for taking the time in writing this review. We greatly appreciate the comments of our clients.
I am very happy to learn that you enjoyed your stay here with us, its been a pleasure having you as our guests. We hope that you will visit us again in the near future.

Best Regards,

The General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2011

This was my first ever visit to Cape Verde. I travelled with my wife and really enjoyed the experience. The beaches on Sal are beautiful and we really enjoyed the rest and relaxation. It was really quiet at night which we like with no discos blaring into the small hours. having read some earlier reviews we had mixed feelings. But you need to go there to experience the place for yourself. The hotel was lovely we had a 2 bed luxury apartment with leather sofa 50 inch plasma tv in lounge and smaller one in the bedroom. The air-conditioning was needed and a welcome retreat from the heat. We had a small patio area outside which was great. The food was good but the choice I found was limited ie no ice-cream for dessert pastries repetitive at breakfast but all in all I loved the whole experience. It is a developing island so dont expect it to be similar to the Canaries. But that is the appeal if you are looking for rest, tranquility and a holiday with a difference I would recommend it.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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9  Thank Petertoto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 22, 2011

Dear Guest,

Firstly, on behalf of my staff and myself, we would like to thank you for choosing to stay with us at the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and for taking the time in writing your review. I'm very happy to learn that you enjoyed your first visit to Cape Verde and I truly do hope that you will repeat your visits here more often. Cape Verde is jewel in the middle of the Atlantic still to be discovered by many, on first glimpse it may look like there is not much but the country surprises you with its unique environment, the genuine friendliness of its people and its amazing weather. Our hotel is the newest hotel on the island, we have only been open for 4 months, and we are aware that there are a lot of improvements to be made and I assure that we are making daily efforts in order to offer our guests the best quality service that they deserve. We hope to have the pleasure of your company at our hotel again in the near future during your visits to
Cape Verde.

Best Regards,

General Manager

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Reviewed September 20, 2011

Beautiful hotel, new resort. Stayed for a week in sept with a friend. Was given a two bed two bath apartment, which was beautifully designed and felt like a home away from home. Was a nice touch having tv in the bedrooms too.
Locals and staff were all very friendly.
A nice variety of evening entertainment each night making it easy and appealing to stay at the resort.
Buffet restaurant served a great variety of meals and we left with very satisfied stomachs.
Cape verde is an upcoming tourist attraction and with plenty of secrets to discover it is a must see for all.

  • Stayed: September 2011
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10  Thank purplepimms24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 22, 2011

Dear Guest,

On behalf of my staff and myself, we would like to thank you for choosing to stay with us at the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa. It's been a pleasure for us having you as our guests here and we are very happy that you considered this a home away from home and also for the fact that you enjoyed your stay here with us.
We hope to have the pleasure of having you again as our guests in the near future.

Best Regards,

The General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2011

Fantastic accommodation with excellent amenities. Apartment very clean and had everything we wanted. Staff friendly and helpful. Enjoyed the restaurants and bars and the food was very good.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled on business
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7  Thank Carol B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 15, 2011

Dear Guest,

Thank you for choosing to stay with us at the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and for taking the time in writing your review. We are happy to learn that you have enjoyed your stay here with us and we hope to have the pleasure of your company again in the near future.


Best Regards,

General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2011

From the moment I arrived at the Hotel I knew I had made the right decision to make the trip and stay at the Melia Tortuga. The Hotel was spotless, as was my room which was fitted out with the most top quality furniture.The staff were very friendly and always available If you needed help/assistance.The complex has been carefully thought out allowing you a simple route to the many swimming pools available, leading down to the beach.The restaurants and bars had a good variety of food and drink to suit anyones taste (having the option to go all Inclusive for me Is the best way).I also liked that there was an entertainments programme laid on during the day and evening, and If you wanted to go Into town, It was only a short journey away. Overall It was a great experience, with a nice relaxed pace about It and an excellent climate.

Room Tip: If you have small children,there Is a kiddies swimmimg pool about half way down the complex so rooms...
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  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled on business
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11  Thank David B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 14, 2011

Dear Guest,

Thank you for choosing to stay with us at the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and also for taking the time in writing this review. We are glad that you enjoyed your stay with us and we hope to have the pleasure of having you again as our guest in the near future.


Best Regards,

General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 9, 2011

The staff were very friendly and helpful. The apartment was well laid out and very clean. We were close to pool and beach. The restaurant had a good variety of food. The fitness room and the spa treatments are very good assets to the resort. It is a very quiet and relaxing place to be. You can take long walks or just relax by the pool and chill out.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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11  Thank olive b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManagement1, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded September 14, 2011

Dear Guest,

I would like to thank you for choosing to stay with us at the Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and also thank you for taking the time in writing this review of our hotel. I am very happy to learn that you were pleased with our facilities and with the hospitality of our staff. Your comments are very important to us, the positive comments give us motivation to keep up with the good work and the negative comments give us guidelines on how to improve our quality, we make it our commitment to bring the best quality service that you deserve beyond your expectations.
We hope to have the pleasure of you as our guests again in the Hotel during your next visit to Cape Verde.

Best Regards,

General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Urbanizacao da Cabocan | ZDTI Ponta Preta, Cape Verde - Sal, Santa Maria, Ilha do Sal 4111, Cape Verde
Phone Number:
Location: Cape Verde > Ilha do Sal > Santa Maria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Santa Maria
#3 Romantic Hotel in Santa Maria
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Luxury Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Spa Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Maria
Price Range: $169 - $356 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 286
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The 5 star Melia Tortuga All-Inclusive Resort is located in the southeast of the island Sal, only a few minutes from the colourful town Santa María and Amilcar Cabral international airport. During your stay you will find relaxation and fun right on the fabulous Algodoeiro beach, with its white sand and turquoise waters. The resort offers spectacular suites and villas with up to 4 bedrooms, private garden and swimming-pool. Set in gardens there are 2 magnificent adult pools and 2 pools for children. Experience Yhi Wellness with sauna, Turkish bath, whirlpool, thermal circuit, fitness facilities, massage and beauty treatments. Dining options include a variety of 4 restaurants and bars, offering a selection of international and local cuisine. The Melia Tortuga All-Inclusive is also the perfect destination for windsurfing, kitesurfing or scuba diving. Events for up to 200 people can be organised in 2 meeting rooms with natural daylight. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa Cape Verde/Ilha Do Sal - Santa Maria

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