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“The perfect holiday”

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Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #9 of 20 Hotels in Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 6, 2013

Having read the reviews, our expectation levels were quite high.We were not disappointed.Check-in was extremely efficient. A buggy takes you and your luggage to the two bedroom, two bathroom apartment. Wow!.The manager of the complex introduced himself at the welcome meeting and was often seen during our holiday. Every member of staff works extremely hard to make your holiday as enjoyable as possible and their cheerfulness is very infectious. O.K the bars did seem to be understaffed at times but, hey, you're on holiday- does it matter if you have to wait a couple of minutes for a drink?. Unlike some reviewers, we never had a problem getting a bed-chair.
The food in the Spices buffet restaurant was excellent- a different theme every night, something for every taste, and replaced regularly, plus show cooking.One of the best we've seen.Daytime activities were good, but no hassle if you didn't want to take part.
There is evening entertainment every night., five nights by the entertainment team,and two nights by professional acts. You must see Patrick De Santos (Sunday) He's a singer/ guitarist with an incredible vocal range, who can sing anything from Beethoven to Bob Marley (check him out on You Tube). A-ma-zing.
There is not much to do outside the hotel, but so much going on you don't need it. Not a lot to see on the island, but floating in the salt-lake is a unique experience.There is a free shuttle bus to Santa Maria.
There is a good range of drinks available on the all-inclusive, but premium drinks are chargeable- charged to your room. We paid just under 5 euros for a very generous Grand Marnier. No cash is required, everything charged to your room.
N.B Don't forget to validate your details on-line for the Cape Verde visa at least one week before departure.
If you want a totally relaxing, stress-free holiday in the sun, without a long-haul flight, this is the place to go.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Sunseekers60
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 December 10, 2013

Dear Sunseekers60,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to tell us about your holiday experience.

It is always delightful to read that our guests have returned home pleased with their stay at our hotel and carrying nice memories of their time here.

The team of Melia Tortuga work tirelessly every day to ensure that our guests make the most of their holidays and feel at home with us. Positive feedbacks serve as an incentive to keep up with the good work as we come to understand that these are worthwhile and constructive criticism are taken as another reason to work even harder to achieve our goals.

Once again thank you for your review, we hope that with this in mind you will give us the pleasure of your visit 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.
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Reviewed December 5, 2013

I have just returned from spending a relaxing week at the Hotel Melia Tortuga. Due to some of the reviews on here. I was becoming increasingly worried about the food hygiene and the amount of fly's that people were reporting. I e-mailed the hotel direct a couple weeks before we were due to arrive and got a very reassuring e-mail in return.

I understand that the reviews on here are subjective and are peoples own experiences.However I have got to say that in my experience, I did not have the same views.The rooms are cleaned to a very hight standard and we did not encounter any bugs of any type in the room.The food is also prepared to a very high standard and presented very well in all the restaurants. The staff in all department work tirelessly to ensure you are having a good time. The service in the bars was fine and you did not have to wait long before you were served. Overall this was an excellent relaxing week with plenty of sunshine......The staff team are a credit to the Hotel and the management take a very hands on approach to ensure you have a wonderful stay.....

Thank you.......

PS..If you like sea views ask for room 242

Room Tip: ROOM 242 sea views, sun rise and sun sets!!
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank cirrus1
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 December 10, 2013

Dear cirrus1,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to tell us about your holiday experience.

I am very pleased to read that you have enjoyed your stay with us and that you have had a positive perception of our hotel, our services and our staff. It is always a pleasure to be able to cater to the needs of our guests and we also work very hard to ensure that the quality of our services are according to your expectations and at the same time ensure a continuous improvement in all areas whenever it is necessary.

It has been a delight having you with us and your feedback has given me a great satisfaction. We hope that you will give us the pleasure of having you as our guests again in the near future.


Warm regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed December 5, 2013

Read some reviews after we had booked the holiday - always a bit risky! Arrived and we were met by friendly reception staff. There were additional staff on hand to make arrival a swift and pleasant experience.

Staff are friendly and are likely to reflect your approach. We have been treated very warmly so far. Food is good and there Is always a wide selection available. Staff are conscious of food hygiene measures and take them seriously.

A very civilised hotel and very much looking forward to our stay. The room was roomy and well stocked with all of the essentials.

I have been impressed by how some of the previous comments have been acknowledged by the manager and built into standard practice. Good evidence of a style and culture which values continuous improvement. A lot of returning couples here. Based on our first two days I would recommend a visit.

Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
Thank Tom D
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 December 10, 2013

Dear Tom D,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to review our hotel.
I am very pleased to read that you have had a pleasant arrival and that you are happy with your room and with the food. I hope that you feel at home with us and thank you for your kind comments about our staff, you can rest assured that you will be treated with warmth and hospitality throughout your stay.
After a few years of being open, it is a great pleasure for us to now have the honor of welcoming guests who have visited us in past years as this means that we are in the right direction.
Thank you for recommending our hotel to future guests, I wish you a pleasant stay at our resort and please do not hesitate to contact us for more information or assistance.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2013

Just returned from a very relaxing week in the Melia. Staff very friendly and obliging they work extremely hard. Entertainment staff work continuously very happy team. We stayed in a suite very spacious and clean, beds very comfy rooms cleaned daily. Restaurants kept very clean and tidy buffet restaurant extremely busy good selection of food, we enjoyed the beach side restaurant and ate there most lunch times. We spent the days on the beach you had to be there very early to get a sun bed unable to swim in the sea there it was to dangerous a 20 min walk up the beach or a trip into Santa Maria on the free bus from reception and you can swim in the beautiful sea there. We were 2 women on our own and were bothered by the locals in Santa Maria you have to be vocal and tell them to leave you alone and they do but at times it was very intimidating. Thomson rep ilias very helpful and friendly spoke to us daily he also took us on a walking tour around Santa Maria it was very enjoyable. Thoroughly enjoyed our stay and if you are looking for a relaxing week in the sunshine I would recommend this hotel. Regards julie

  • Stayed: November 2013
    • Value
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1  Thank Aycliffe123
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 December 2, 2013

Dear Aycliffe123,


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

I sincerely appreciate the kind mention of our staff and our entertainment team and it is with pleasure that I will forward your message to everyone, this will also serve as an incentive to continue with the hard work and keep improving more each day.

I am also glad that you were happy with your room and the restaurants and took the opportunity to get to know the local town.

Once again thank you for having recommended our hotel to future guests, I hope that you will also return for another visit in the near future.


Warm regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2013

We returned back to the UK on 19 November following a wonderful two weeks at the Melia. I had been looking at the reviews prior to booking and afterwards too and since our stay I must admit I was a little shocked at what some people constitute as a complaint! We already knew that the flight would be a little cramped and that there would be no in-flight entertainment as we’d already seen this on Trip Advisor plus, this was our third trip to Cape Verde so fully understood what we would and wouldn’t be getting! We arrived at the resort and were impressed at how clean everything was - there is a ‘boutique’ feel here. Check in was a little slow but we weren’t late for anything so didn’t mind; we were surprised at how many people weren’t aware of the tax payable in resort so make sure you have payment ready. We were shown to our apartment and were extremely impressed, the furnishings are lovely – what you see on the Melia and Thomson website is exactly what you get; I really don’t know why anyone would complain about the facilities - why would you get upset about having two bedrooms and a kitchen but some do! There are several bar areas to visit and we loved the sunset DJ sessions down at the O’Grille beach bar each evening; enjoying Ibiza-ish tunes and watching the sun go down became a bit of a ritual. The pool areas were nice and clean and were cleaned several times during our visit. The main pool is where the water activities happen, we don’t normally join in but I did do the Aqua Gym each day which was always a giggle plus we joined in the water polo, ran the pool mat and the water zorb – all good fun! As there are a couple of pools plus a shallow pool and toddlers pool, the main pool wasn’t majorly busy so quite nice to lounge around. The only bugbear at the beach and pools was that although there are notices to say that you can’t reserve sunbeds before 9.00am people do and on many occasions they were reserved from 7.30am (and earlier) and not occupied until much later during the morning and in some cases early afternoon! Would have been good if staff removed the towels from the unoccupied beds… With regard to eating, we were more than happy with what was available; the offerings in main buffet ‘Spices’ were always nice and tasty and there seemed to be something to suit everyone; there’s also fresh pasta cooked to order which was yummy! The speciality restaurants have to be booked and offer waiter service but if you don’t enjoy fish the Waterside probably isn’t the place for you in the evening. The only suggestion I would make is that the menus served in the speciality restaurants change fortnightly to introduce a little variety as they are the same every day. There are excellent lunch time choices at all of the restaurants and this was the only time we saw chips – not that we were hankering but some people were! At O’Grille and the Waterside you could enjoy salad, burgers, pizza, kebabs etc. and Spices offered a wider variety. I would like to say a big thanks to Katia who organised an anniversary dinner for us which was lovely, we also received a cake and our waitresses sang to us! Katia has to be one of the happiest people I’ve ever met; she had a smile for everyone! All of the staff are more than helpful and if they do sometimes seem a bit off, just watch how hard they work. We did find there were lots of times where the bars and restaurants seemed to be understaffed so at busy times they were doing the jobs of several people. The animation crew are great and didn’t bother you if you didn’t want to join in; the bar staff are also a good bunch and a special thanks to Jose who looked after us in the Sway Bar. One really nice touch at this resort is that the directors and managers are always walking around and are open to questions and suggestions. We’d go back to this resort in a heartbeat and are hoping to book for next year and I have already recommended this resort to close friends that I know will enjoy the experience as we did…Thanks to everyone at the Melia and we’ll see you next year…

Room Tip: We had room 230 which was a first floor apartment that was realy central to all of the facilities...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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1  Thank HaniandMalc
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 December 2, 2013

Dear HaniandMalc,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having taken the time to share your holiday experience with us and fellow travelers on Tripadvisor.

From reading your description I am very pleased to read that you have enjoyed your stay with us and thank you for such a detailed description of our services and the hotel in general. We always try to do our best to ensure that our hotel exudes that homely feel without loosing its elegant touch.

As an All Inclusive we also strive to offer our guests a more personalized service, as each one of you are special and have different needs and wants. I am sincerely happy to be able to count on the support and hard work from my management team and staff and I am glad that this reflects on the satisfaction of our guests.

I would also like to thank you for your constructive suggestions and feedback, we encourage our guests to tell us about their opinion as we would like to gain insight into their preferences and adapt our services accordingly.

I am very pleased that you will be returning for another visit next year, it will be a great pleasure to welcome and greet you then.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed November 27, 2013

On arrival at Melia Tortuga we were allocated a ground floor room towards the corner of the complex, handy for the reception amenities but a walk, although not a long walk, to the beach area. The room itself consisted of a double and twin bedroom, kitchen area, main seating area, bath room and separate shower room, also as we were on the ground floor we also got a patio area with table and chairs. The rooms themselves were clean and modern looking, and just for anyone like the wife yes you do get an iron and kettle, you also get two televisions, although few English channels and perhaps a DVD player may have been useful. One concern I had before arriving was that 'all inclusive' meant a poor quality service would be provided, not at all, the meals, buffet style in the main restaurant with service in the other three, were excellent and drinks served in a professional manner, however slow at times, this is perhaps more likely due to the west African way rather than hotel policy. There are limited sun loungers, so you do need to be early to get one, especially near the pools, a bonus is that if you get to them early enough you can always pick up a spare towel, yes people put their towels out at 7am, only to start using the sun lounger after 10am. The hotel lays on a free shuttle bus into Santa Maria, it runs 6 times a day to Santa Maria, returning 4 times a day, easier to just use a taxi, €3 each way or €4 if they put the lights on. Wifi is available in parts of the hotel, costing between €3.50 for 100Mb to €40 for 3Gb, although in Santa Maria you can get free Wifi in some establishments. Top tip if you wish to get close to the stranger on the next sun lounger use the pool area, if you like to have your own space use the beach, the beach also has a cool breeze for most of the day although if you want a swim during the day it's the pool area.

Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Reborn2006
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 December 1, 2013

Dear Reborn2006,


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

I am pleased in reading your description of the hotel as I can perceive that you were happy with your stay and with the standard of our All Inclusive service. We try to do our best to ensure that our guests receive the best quality service possible.

As tourism is still fairly new in the island we are aware that our staff needs to continuously develop their skills, however they are friendly, motivated and they work very hard therefore I am sure that very soon they would have overcome any gaps in their skills.

Once again thank you for your feedback and we hope that you will give us the pleasure of your visit again in the near future.


Best regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas

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Reviewed November 24, 2013

It is touted as the African Caribbean .... not at all as it doesn't have the Caribbean sea but if you want to relax on a sunbed it is a great place - If you can get one! The wind is too strong to lay on the sand for example. The sea on our visit was rough most times on all days, there were lots of bruises lol!

Very relaxing place, everyone we spoke to (and including us) said they hadn't slept so much on a holiday before! No stress is the Cape Verde Logo!

There is little to see on Sal although we highly recommend the Salt mines! The treatments are great but even a swim in the weightless waters is good too, it leaves your skin so soft! - Mind your eyes though!

We love to snorkel and was very disappointed not to get the chance - even on the boat trips fellow travelers saw so little we didn't bother. That could have been the season though.

RESORT - GOOD - The resort is clean at all times, food wonderful there is a great choice at all meals, also several restaurants that you can book for that "dining" experience although with less choice than the buffet. The entertainment staff are great and very talented, not all the guest shows were to our taste but others enjoyed them. The staff are very nice,helpful and friendly - apart from a few individuals which you get anywhere. Rooms are not rooms but suites and are very comfy and spacious. Our Rep's (Thomson's) were very nice and helpful too.

RESORT - BAD - Tea and coffee - a machine could be provided for this away from the bars as at times (especially meals) the queue for the single (most times!) barman can be 20 minutes! Also similar for cokes and soft drinks - as they do at the Riu's down the road. Drinks menu's on the bars is a MUST! If you happen to get that individual that isn't as helpful it can be a chore especially at the beginning of your holiday. There are menu's but you have to ask for them. The local alcohol is harsh - similar tasting too lol. They do branded spirits but they are premium and you have to pay for them.

There is an issue with the lack of bar and table serving staff for drinks, in the Piazza and buffet. They are there but not enough of them!The resort has a 2 late bars open until 2am but on our two weeks it was extremely quiet after 11pm.

Pools - the pool bed situation is irritating as they are "reserved" as early as 6am, same for the beach beds, we were told in our introduction that the beds should not be reserved and to remove towels etc or ask for them to be removed, if you wish to use them - however not a situation you would put yourself in, especially on a holiday. They do have Bali beds that you can hire for the day - we didn't, mainly because they were too close to the beds and not very private. Beach - is sandy but the surf line is very rocky and as it is generally very windy with rough surf, it is also dangerous to swim.

There is a beach - Ponta Prieta - about a 15/20 minutes walk that is good for swimming although rough there are few rocks. Hard walking on the beachline but there is a path through rough land that is easier. Also a roadway to the left side of the hotel that is easier still. There is a beach bar there too for the amenities and cold drinks.

Room Tip: Upper floors have less insect problems and if you are not a night person the area around the Piazza...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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3  Thank Sheri-lee S
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 November 25, 2013

Dear Sheri-lee S,


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

I am sorry to read that the wind wasn’t so cooperative during your stay, but I assure you that Cape Verde enjoys a warm nice weather throughout the year.

I am glad that you had a relaxing stay and that you were able to get a lot of sleep here. The salt mines are located in an extinct volcano and it is below sea level, like you have said, it is great for the skin and don’t forget to take some water with you.

For those who love to do water sports, do not hesitate to request information at our reception, as you will be directed to the right places and will be advised on where to snorkel.

Thank you for your kind comments about the staff, they are all friendly and some are just shy, but they all work hard to guarantee that you feel welcome and at home at the hotel.

I would like to thank you for your constructive feedbacks on our services, it is always very important to gain insight into the preferences of our guests and adapt our services to ensure their complete satisfaction. I hope that you will return for another visit and enjoy some relaxing holidays with us 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.
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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 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Spa Hotel in Santa Maria
Price Range: $170 - $359 (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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