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Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
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Reviewed March 15, 2013

Just returned from a weeks holiday in Cape Verde staying at Melia Tortuga, lovely hotel, we stayed in 2 bed appartment which was lovely, spacious and clean but still had fully inclusive. The meals were of a good standard, plenty to choose from, you also get the option of eating in three of the hotels restaurants but do need to pre book. We ate in two of them and choice was very limited but had good food and the view from O Grill is stunning, being practically on the beach. The staff were helpful and friendly and everywhere is kept very clean. There is entertainment at various locations around the hotel during the evening which was good but mainly not in English. There were things on during the day but we never made use of these so can't comment. We spent our days on the beach which was stunning, beds and umbrellas were free. We found it difficult to get a sun bed by the pool. Drinks were generally of a good standard but the cocktails we found were a bit hit and miss! They seemed to substitute ingrediants so we found they ranged from excellant to awful depending on who made them! Maybe more training is needed? If you want a totally relaxing chilled out break then give it a try but if you prefer action packed then this is not for you.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank nikkiMidlands
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 reviewResponded March 19, 2013

Dear nikkiMidlands,

I’m very pleased to read that you have enjoyed your stay with us, thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to share your experience with us.

Thank you for your kind description of our services and for your nice comments on our staff. As tourism is still new to the island many of the staff is also new, most of them are undergoing training on the job to ensure that an excellent service is provided to our most distinguished guests.

I hope to look forward to another visit from you 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.
Reviewed March 13, 2013

We contacted the resort direct by email prior to booking to clarify if we could upgrade to a villa, at extra cost - didn't want a freebie - as Thomson didn't offer it. Try 'gex.melia.tortuga@melia.com'.

Such was the positive response that we chose this resort over Barbados which was nearly four times the cost of Melia Tortuga. The villa was arranged and a note made of the fact that we were enjoying my wife's birthday and our wedding anniversary during our stay.

The flight, Birmingham, was not as bad as we expected. We have been in tighter seats. Don't forget that you have to pay for a visa on entry. Easy enough in euros at the airport. Short trip to the hotel and a brief wait for the villa to be ready.

We were greeted by the operations manager, Marco Azevedo, and then by the general manager, Sr Cuevas. Very professional, totally devoted to good service, always around so don't be frightened to let them know if anything is not right - too late when you get home.

First impressions were positive, well kept grounds, nice public areas, high level of housekeeping. At the villa, we were impressed - villa 15 - view over bungalows to the sea, massive surf, lovely beach. Villa was everything we could have asked for.

Visitors need to remember that tourism is relatively new here. OK, sometimes the service might not be as slick as one would wish (and here, tipping makes absolutely no difference - full credit) and you have to remember that almost all the goods used in resort are imported. We agree that the wine offered all inclusive is filthy - out of a pick-and mix dispenser but drink the beer (very palatable) the cava (bit sweet but at least out of a bottle) or stick to the spirits and mixers. If you want, as we did, a decent bottle of wine with dinner, remember what you are paying for the holiday and splash out a bit extra - the wine list is not terrifyingly expensive.

As regards meals, we found that breakfast at the Waterside was relaxed and that few people used it. Freshly cooked eggs, good bacon etc. Overall in resort, the coffee was outstanding.
Don't fail to use O Grille for lunch - the best meal of the day and a pity that the resort can't employ the same menu here in the evening in place of the slightly bizarre limited choice offered at night. Excellent lunchtime choice including burgers, steak and frites, kebabs etc all freshly cooked to order and in a great setting on the beach. (Don't worry if the menu offered has prices on - if you are all inc this does not apply). The Aqua restaurant was used by us for both the special occasions and they made a real fuss of us on each. Spices is the main buffet style restaurant. Management went out of their way to make our celebrations memorable - cakes, champagne breakfast etc so if you have something to celebrate, let them know.

The entertainment in the evening was first class. Strange to see the young man who had been organising the beach sports - Christiano - in the morning, making such a powerful appearance in the evening drumming/dancing! Wonderful to watch.

The resort was pleasantly quiet at night apart from the crashing surf. Red flag all the time we were there but a quieter beach only a free regular transfer away from the hotel. No building work during our stay but an empty lot next door so ask the question before booking. High level of security on resort night and day.

To conclude, we were looking for a hassle free week in the sun and the Tortuga delivered in spades. Remember not to underestimate the strength of the sun/wind - I go factor 25 but it wasn't enough!

Room Tip: Ask the hotel if they have special offers on three or four bedroom villas - great value if two or three couples travelling together
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank chrissym3
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 reviewResponded March 14, 2013

Dear chrissym3,

On behalf of everyone at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, I would like to thank you for having chosen our hotel for your holidays and for having taken the time to share your experience with us.

I’m glad that you contacted our hotel prior to coming, it helps when a guest has a question or a request prior to coming here as we will be able to offer you any information or assistance that you may need.

It’s a great satisfaction to read that you and your wife have enjoyed your holidays with us, thank you for having allowed us to be part of such an important event in your life. Here, we strive to ensure that each one of our distinguished guests enjoy a memorable stay with us as they are our reason for being.

We sincerely appreciate your kind comments about our services and our staff, it has been a pleasure having you as our guests and we will surely be hoping to see you again at our hotel hopefully very soon.


Warm regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed March 9, 2013

We returned from a week at the Melia Tortuga earlier this week. Overall the experience was positive. We emailed the resort a week before flying out and requested, if possible, an upper floor suite overlooking the quiet pool and this is exactly what we got - thank you. The grounds of the resort are lovely and well kept and the 2 bedroom suite that we had was huge and kept very clean. We enjoyed the good variety of food at the Spices buffet restaurant and this was kept replenished well. The chef put together some quite unusual combinations of flavours at times and we enjoyed trying these. We tried the other 3 restaurants (and had no problem booking into them a day or so in advance) and liked the fact that there was an alternative to the buffet - we thought that the O Grill on the beach was the best of those 3, but Spices was our favourite due to the variety.

The wine was another story! The red wine was disgusting - it tasted like watered down cherry cough linctus! The rose was marginally better, tasting like coloured water. The white wine was perfectly acceptable. People only seemed to drink the red wine when they first arrived, left it and switched to white as did we. I spoke to the General Manager about this on our last day (having mentioned it to the rep, Amy, earlier in the week). He was very pleasant, but I was rather disappointed with his response. He said that we could pay 25 euros a day each for 'Premium AI) and have as many bottles as we would like. That wasn't the point - we felt that the red wine on the ordinary AI should at least have been of an acceptable standard. (He did agree that it didn't taste good!). Also, when we visited the Aqua restaurant that night, it stated on the menu that wine on 'Premium AI' was served by the glass, not bottle and not all types were included. We found the whole thing confusing as did other guests who we saw arguing with staff at the beach bar. It would be helpful if there was clear, written information about what was on offer (a cocktail menu would also have been appreciated).

All in all we enjoyed our stay and feel that the resort deserves to be higher than fifth in the Trip Advisor ratings, but Senor Cuevas PLEASE do something about the wine!

Room Tip: Email the resort to request your preference.
  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank GaynorS
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 reviewResponded March 11, 2013

Dear GaynorS,

Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to share your review with us.

I’m happy to read that you had a positive experience with us. I’m glad that you were happy with your room, it was a pleasure to be able to cater to the requests of our guests when it is possible. I’m glad that you were happy with the variety offered by the Spices restaurant.

It’s a pity that you did not enjoy the standard all inclusive wine, tastes may vary from person to person. I suggested the Premium A.L. as you indicated that you were not happy with the standard A.L. since the Premium will offer you a wider choice in terms of drinks. There is wine menu available at all the restaurants and at the bars there is also cocktail menu. Thank you once again for your observation, I have taken your feedback into account for future improvement of our services.

I will look forward for the pleasure of having you as guests at our hotel in the not too distant future.


Best regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed March 6, 2013

Have just returned from the Hotel Melia Tortuga. 05/03/2013

The 1st holiday in 10 years without the children, we wanted only 2 things, the sun and a relaxing holiday.

Well we had plenty of the sun, we had read lots of reviews about the wind, its not that bad and is actually quite pleasant at times. However because of the wind making it feel cooler, there was a lot of red / burned people around - so be warned.

Thomson Holidays were great through out, Amy at the hotel was always on hand and very helpful, you need to hang on to her. The only real issue is using a 757-200 for a 6 hour flight - at 6'4" the seats are far to small and uncomfortable. How you expect me to eat a meal when i am wider than the seat i have no idea. But in fairness this isn't just a Thompson issue....

Areas where i feel that there is room For Improvement.
After reading all the reviews and hotel jargon my wife was really looking forward to having a fish feast for the week - she was however quite disappointed as there was not a lot of selection and what was there was was full of bones.
the "A LA CARTE RESTAURANTS", whilst okay, is nothing to get excited about, actually i think they should change it to "SET MENU RESTAURANTS" but please tell us what you want to eat at least 3 hours beforehand.
Having said that, they did serve up some tasty dishes, and as a rule were superior to most all inclusives I've been to before.
After 3 days, i decided i could no longer live with the house wine (its just me, as plenty of people were happy with it) but in a 5* Hotel if i am going to pay £25 for a bottle of wine, i would expect to be able to taste it first, this wasn't an option. if you like your wine- take it with you...
The sun beds, can get a bit uncomfortable after a while, they will need replacing soon, or as someone else had mentioned - if your photo's show a sunbed with a cushion on them, then there should be cushions on them.

Positives.
Staff were all fabulous, very helpful and attentive.
Rooms were clean and tidy, no issues here at all.
The pool areas, always clean and presentable.
The entertainment was good, i particularly liked spiderman (no idea what his name was but he had spider tattoo's on his back / side) he was very good with the customers around the pool, and is clearly a talented athlete.

Overall experience.
Perhaps a 5* is a tiny bit optimistic (but who marks it?),
Despite my comments, or as i would prefer to say - constructive feedback we had a wonderful week's break, would i recommend it or return - no hesitation.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank steven c
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 reviewResponded March 7, 2013

Dear credos,

Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to share your comments and feedback with us.

I’m pleased to read that you had plenty of sun and relaxation. Thank you for your kind comments regarding our staff, our rooms, the pool areas and the entertainment.

Fish is one of the freshest products that we have to offer our guests, the availability of certain species varies according to the time of the year. I’m sorry that you didn’t find what you were looking for. Our themed restaurants have waiter service, but no “A La Carte” is mentioned anywhere. Your observations and feedbacks are very important for us as they will enable us to ensure your complete satisfaction with our service.

The photos on our website represent what we have at the hotel, the Bali Beds are cushioned, the Spa has cushioned chairs and no cushions on the sun beds.

Once again I sincerely appreciate your constructive feedback and recommendation, and I will look forward for another visit from you in the not too distant future and greet you personally then.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed March 4, 2013

My partner and I stayed at Melia Tortuga between 22nd November and 6th December. Wow and what a pleasant stay it was!. I was a little concerned about some of the comments on here before our holiday and emailed Guest Experience before hand to put my mine at rest, we received a reassuring personal email very quickly. The service we received from the staff and especially the lovely Elisa Lima was first class. After a long hard year the resort was just what we needed, a place for reading,chilling, sleeping, eating and drinking. The accommodation is lovely and we stayed in a villa near to the beach with a private garden and pool. It was great to have privacy and we would recommend, everyone we spoke to were very impressed with their apartments and accommodation. Weather was great and just the right temp, being very fair skinned I was impressed that I actually got a tan for the first time! Food - the food was very good but at times but could be rather boring however all the food has to be brought onto the island so there is not always a great choice. We have decided to go back in November as it really was so relaxing, if you are looking for masses to do and a nightlife this is not the place for you. The resort is for total relaxation and You time. Go and enjoy, we highly recommend and thank you Elisa for a great experience. Julie and Simon see you at the end of the year.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank JoolsW-J
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 reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Dear JoolsW-J,

I sincerely appreciate you having elected Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your winter holiday escape and for having shared this experience with us.

I’m glad that you contacted us prior to coming here, especially if you have any questions or worries as we are always more than happy to answer your questions and assist you in any way that we can. Thank you for your kind comments on our staff and Elisa in particular, I will forward your message to them who I’m sure will be very happy to hear from you.

It’s always a great pleasure to read that our guests were happy with their room, with the food and most of all that they were able to relax. Your successful holiday experience means a lot for us.

I will surely be looking forward to the pleasure of having you as our guests again at the end of the year or hopefully sooner.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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