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“Splendid surprise”

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Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #10 of 20 Hotels in Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Laure-Minervois, France
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Splendid surprise”
Reviewed February 18, 2013

Stayed 2 weeks 24 Jan - 7 Feb 13. Having booked 10 months in advance, we read the many reviews on TripAdvisor and went with some trepidation. It is, after all, Africa....

Absolutely nothing to criticise. This is a resort that has matured quickly in two years and we found none of the grumbles we had read about. It is interesting that most recent reviews are generally favourable so it suggests management has been attentive to the criticisms and effective action taken to rectify them. One thing worthy of note - hardly a day went by without seeing the "suits" (top managers) out and about early in the day and through to the evening within various parts of the resort, overseeing, tweaking a bit here and there - real hands-on stuff that we reckon really makes a difference in terms of smooth running and anticipating problems before they arise.

What did we appreciate? 1. The staff - always smiling and cheerful and trying to do their best - all of them from the security guys, the room maids,waiters, reception and animators - might not speak good English but they all communicated effectively and pleasantly.
2. The gardens - nicely laid out plenty of green shrubs trees and grass (nothing like the barren brochure pics now probably 2 years old), an oasis in what is otherwise a desert island.
3. The variety of restaurants and the lovely fresh seafood.

Will we go back - like a shot, but perhaps next time explore another island - Boa Vista seems to be coming up to a similar standard.

You could go a long way and pay a lot more for a place to equal this to escape the European winter. Bravo, Melia Tortuga Beach Resort!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Paul B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear Paul B,

On behalf of everyone at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa I would like to thank you for having taken the time to share this review with us and for your kind comments about our resort and our staff service.

We give a lot of importance to the feedback of our guests and continually work towards improving and perfecting our services, the hotel grounds, etc. The real soul of this hotel are its human resources, we have received a lot of positive feedback from our guests regarding the friendliness and the helpfulness of our staff, we sincerely appreciate it and this gives us a motivation to carry on.

My management team and I are always available to listen or offer any assistance to our guests at any time as your satisfaction is also our satisfaction, it is a great feeling when you know that your guests are enjoying their holidays and will go home with great memories of their stay.

It will certainly be a pleasure for me to have you again as our guests in the near future, should you wish to return to Sal, and greet you personally then.


Sincerely yours,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (647)
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2013

Read a few negative reviews before staying here but people talk rubbish. The place is stunning. Yes the rooms are apartments with washing machines but who cares?? We had 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and a great balcony! Even had wine and chocs on arrival which was a lovely touch. Whoever said you struggle to get into the restaurants must have wanted to eat at 7 every night. We stumbled into the booking place at 4.30 when we arrived on our first day and managed to get into the waterside the same night at 9pm. Who wants to eat at 7 anyway when theres a sunset to watch on the beach? The food was great quality and always piping hot, not something many all inclusive resorts manage to achieve. I found it strange having to order what you wanted for dinner when booking the restaurants but it's much better than the alternative of luke warm buffet offerings of other hotels! (Riu!) The beach bar is great for lunch but again if you go early its rammed..give it until 2-2.30 and its much better. You can't get into the sea directly in front of the hotel but you can a little further along the beach so not a massive issue. The beaches are amazing and it's well worth a walk down the beach to the ponte preta restaurant where you can get fish of the day for lunch. You can also carry on into Santa Maria, takes about an hour and a half to get to the pier. There is a restaurant there called Barracuda which is definitely worth a visit. Or it's 3 euros in a taxi and takes you 10 mins. You are all inclusive here but you should get out and see some more of cape verde. It's amazing. Thanks for a tremendous holiday, we will be back!

Room Tip: We emailed ahead to ask for a room by the sea and we got one. Always worth asking if you have a spec...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank aahadfield
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Dear aahadfield,

I’m so pleased to read that you have enjoyed your stay at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and would like to thank you sincerely for your time in sharing your review with us.

It’s nice to read that you have made the most of your holidays by going around Santa Maria, at our hotel we also offer a complimentary bus service between the hotel and Santa Maria, twice in the morning and twice in the afternoon.

At Melia Tortuga we have a passion for service and I’m glad that you noticed and were happy with the wine and chocolate in your room.

On behalf of everyone, I would like to thank you for your kind comments, it will certainly be a pleasure for us to welcome you again in the near future.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin, Germany
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2013

I stayed at the hotel on 18-25 January 2013. It was my first time in Cape Verde but I was not disappointed. I would say it's somewhere in between Egypt and Caribbean. It was very windy, but somehow I read a lot about it before so wind didn't become unpleasant surprise. And no mosquitoes :-)

Before our holidays I read also a lot about the hotel both good and bad. I have to say my experience was positive. We didn't meet overcrowded restaurants, lack of glasses or towels, totally occupied sun beds, there was not even a queue for pasta during lunch time. We visited all the restaurants that can be preordered, there was also no long waiting or something.

Ok, yes, the hotel did not provide such big variety of exotic fruits, vegetables, sea food and fresh juices, like in Cuba or Dominican Republic, for example. But, come on! the island itself is almost a desert as well as surrounded islands. No, they do not grow coconut palms on the territory of the hotel, but why to expect it :-) I enjoyed the food and drinks that were served. I saw that waiters tried their best. Again, probably they were not the best in the world, but I was satisfied. I also appreciated that for guests who like to serve themselves (like me) there were tea and coffee in free access for breakfast and wine/juices for lunch and dinner. But frankly speaking I really missed coffee and tea for lunch and dinner to drink it with delicious desserts that were served.

Probably the most negative point was plastic glasses in pool/beach bars. They looked not perfectly clean... But it was always possibility to go to the bar at the reception they served in glass glasses.

Finally, what I absolutely loved, it was the possibility to find something to eat all day round. I came to spend my week of holidays in lazy style. It means I expected quiet sunbathing, reading, good sleeping and eating. So I had no problems with the latter. All day round I could find different snacks, fruits and a cup of coffee (well in bars but not in restaurants).

Well, I see the review happened to be more gastronomic but it was my holidays.

Among other things, I was pretty satisfied with everything: our room (2-bedroom) was cleaned daily, animators tried their best to entertain us, evening live music was absolutely chill-out.
If I have a chance i will come back again.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Mar146
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Dear Mar146,


Thank you sincerely for having taken the time to write such a nice review on Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, I’m very pleased to read that you have had a positive experience with us.

We always give a lot of importance to the valuable feedback and comments from our guests who have stayed with us and whenever possible we do a follow up on any of the issues addressed. Your satisfaction is always a priority for us.

As you have noticed the island is dry and over 90% of the food product here is imported from Europe, the availability of certain fruits depend mainly on the season, for example mango is not easy to find during this time of the year but in summer it is readily available.

Coffee and tea are available for breakfast at the Spices Restaurant, but for lunch and dinner we do not serve them, however, guests who would like to have a coffee or tea can easily order them at the Sway bar or at the piazza, where it can be enjoyed slowly and you can relax.

At the pool and beach bar the drinks are served in polycarbonate glasses for safety reasons, as it is an area where everybody tends to circulate bare feet, the glasses are cleaned according to a high standard, however, because the water here is desalinized it leaves an impression of the glass not being clean.

I’m also happy that you were pleased with your suite, the housekeeping service and the entertainment. I do hope that you will have the chance of returning to our resort for another visit in the near future as it will be a pleasure to welcome and greet you personally then.


Best regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2013 via mobile

What a fantastic resort! My parents, sister and I stayed for a week, and we all really enjoyed it. It suited everybody, whether you were there to relax, do sports, or have fun. The food was excellent; we ended up going to spices most nights as the variety there was great, especially the fresh fish. The only small thing was that the desserts were a little disappointing, but this is understandable as Cape Verde is an island, so there won't be many fresh ingredients. The staff were very friendly and smiley, and all did their jobs very well. We were upgraded to a villa on arrival and we couldn't have been more pleased! The cleanliness and spaciousness of the rooms were excellent. Will definitely be coming again!

I was also wondering if anyone could tell me what the song is called that was playing on the first channel (hotel information channel) on the televisions in the rooms? It was beautiful!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Izzaay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Dear Izzaay,

Thank you for having opted to spend your family holidays at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and for sharing your comments and feedback with us.

I’m so happy that you have enjoyed your stay with us and I’m glad that we were able to cater to the different needs of each member of your group. Our staffs strive to ensure that you have a memorable stay with us through their passion for service and your acknowledgement will serve as a motivation for us to keep up with the good work, therefore, we sincerely appreciate it.

I’m pleased that you liked the song on our information channel, it is called “Mnine de Rua” by a Cape Verdian group called Cordas do Sol, in 2011 they received an award for the best song of the year in Cape Verde.

My staff and I will look forward to welcoming and greeting you and your family again on your next visit to our hotel in the not too distant future.


Sincerely yours,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2013

We spent a week at this hotel in early jan the rooms were better than we expected the location was superb . The food was good but bear in mind although it was european food it had african limitations although you could choose from several resturant styles. negatives was a 6hr flight in a cramped plane and dont go holiday time if you want a kids free vacation or plenty of things to do , if your after a chilling holiday it is superb as the weather is fabulous and we will definately go back there again as the week we spent there was lovely, i think that the best time to go will be in the next 5 years as after that i feel that it will become very commercialised and will lose its attraction and become like spain

  • Stayed January 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Anne maire L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Dear Anne maire L,

We are pleased to read that you have enjoyed your stay with us, thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and for your kind comments regarding our hotel and our services.

For us it has been a pleasure to have had you here, I’m glad that you like the location of our hotel and the room quality exceeded your expectation. It will certainly give me a great satisfaction to welcome you again as our guests in the near future and greet you personally then.


Best regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
penzance
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2013

we visitrd this resort in january 2013, Jose the manager couldnt do enough to make us happy. the rooms were fabulouse, we even had an upgrade, wow. the whole complex is immaculate. the pools great and cater for every one, at times their can be a rush for the sun beds, i feel the management need to address towel being left on beds, sometimes for hours with nobody useing them. the restaurants [4] 2 offer a good selection of food, the waterside food is very good if you like fish in the evenig with no other choice, but you can go to spices which does, however the ambience is not the same. entertainment was of good quality especially the drummers and dancers, but that finishes early [2200] approx. thereafter there is nothing but the disco? the holiday was one of complete relaxtion in a very nice complex, we would go again but not for a couple of years, when there is a bit more to do.

Room Tip: for peace the east side or quiet pool area 271 was great
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank jackaitken
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Dear jackaitken,

On behalf of everyone at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa I would like to thank you for having visited us in January, it has been a pleasure to have had you as our guests and thank you also for your kind comments about our accommodation.

I’m glad to read that you were able to completely relax during your holidays, the towel on the sun beds issue has been appropriately addressed. There is live music and visual entertainment between 17:30 and 22:30, for guests who would like to continue with the entertainment after 22:30 they could head off to the Late Bar where there is a live music by the best DJ in Sal.

I’m looking forward to greeting you again upon your next visit, I hope that you would change your mind and return earlier for visit.


Warm regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 14, 2013

We went to the Melia Tortuga in January for my 50th birthday.
The staff were really friendly and helpful especially Katia,
Daniel who works at the Beach bar always gave us excellent service.
The Hotel is very clean, the food is excellent and varied.
We would highly recommend this Hotel and will be returning for another holiday.

The Thompson flight however was very cramped for the 6 hour flight.
They had run out of many drinks and snacks on the return journey.
Thompson need to improve on the leg room and service.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Sally E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 15, 2013
Dear Sally E,

We sincerely appreciate you having chosen to spend your holidays with us at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa and for having taken the time to review our hotel.

I’m very pleased to read that you have enjoyed your holidays and glad that Daniel, Katia and other staff members have been friendly and helpful.

It has been a great pleasure to have you as our guests and we appreciate you having recommended our hotel and I will look forward to greeting you personally upon your next visit.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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

Property: 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
#7 Luxury Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Santa Maria
#8 Spa Hotel in Santa Maria
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Maria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
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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