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“Over promised under delivered”

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Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #9 of 19 Hotels in Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
34 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Over promised under delivered”
Reviewed May 9, 2014

Burst boiler in room, these things happen, the initial response was OK once getting past reception who asked us to wait till next morning, hot water dripping through the hatch on to the toilet in bathroom, we convinced them that it would not wait, two maintenance guys turned up (22:30) drained it off and told us they would replace it then left, 20 mins later a call from reception telling us that we would have to wait till next morning and asked us to check with reception, the next morning reported as requested but they were unaware, after a while they said the boiler was being replaced that morning. Lunch time back to the room nothing done, went after reception they said we would have to move room, they had a new room number but said it was not ready come back in an hour, went and packed went back after an hour, told still not ready (they had cleaned the unusable room we were leaving) would be another 30 mins, but was still not ready had to get a little assertive at that time before finally being able to change, lost a days holiday sorting this out where were the management, no communication and a lack of urgency 5*****? Informed Thomson rep next day who said she would speak to management but no feedback.
Rooms good size, but cleanliness of shower room very poor (have pics) 5*****?
Restaurants:
Spices, a free for all buffet, food not that good often cold with various themes but not difference.
Aqua, good waiter service but you have to book however limited menu which does change.
Waterside, was only open for two days of the stay then closed as was the pool bar in the evening, why? Same limited menu.
O'grille by the beach, best one on site but again same menu every day and pestered by cats begging food, sad to say some people feeding them so don't blame the cats.
Sway bar, good bar but no sway as promised.
Late night bar good
Beach bar good.
Staff, most were excellent especially the bar staff of special mention, Guildo O'grille restaurant, Gilda various bars and Jose Sway bar.
I don't want to run on but the management need to practice what they preach, actions not words, Thomson needs to change this from a platinum 5***** to the 3*** that is appropriate! value for money? NO

Room Tip: Avoid close to lobby
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Michael H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, Assistant of the General Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 12, 2014
Dear Michael H,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having set aside some of your time to review our hotel.

After reading your review, we are quite sad to perceive that your holidays with us did not go as you have expected. We sincerely apologize for the incident with the boiler, unfortunately we were unable to solve the problem as soon as we would have liked to due to unforeseen circumstances. Upon receiving a request or complain from our guest we always send a follow up message to the guests and the management team is always available to offer any assistance to our guests whenever it is requested.

We appreciate your kind comments about our staff and we hope that you will give us another chance to change your perception about our hotel by paying us another visit in the near future.


Kind regards,
Anna Landim
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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London
Level Contributor
22 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed May 9, 2014

We stayed at this resort in December 2012, and I have finally got around to writing this review. beautifully managed, very high end all-inclusive resort. The food in the beach grill restaurant is particulalry good, and the fact that unlimited prosecco is part of the meal plan is of course a bonus! Stunning beach bar, love the bali beds too...
The apartments are spacious, modern and spotlessly clean...

We will return!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank intrepidexpl0rers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TortugaManager, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 12, 2014
Dear intrepidexpl0rers,


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 to learn that you have had an enjoyable holiday in December and thank you for your kind comments about our hotel.

It is also a great pleasure to know that you will be returning, we hope that it will be very soon.


Kind regards,
Anna Landim
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Worksop, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed May 6, 2014

My wife had wanted to go to a Cape Verde Island for a number of years.
02/04/2014 to 16/04/2014 we went.
Weather perfect.
Room a twin bedroom + a double bedroom,1 bathroom + 1 shower room,lounge and kitchen.
Restaurants 4.- 3 of which you had to book for(could never get in)Spices restaurant/cafeteria was the one we used.Had to stand in line.Not enough staff.Staff undertrained and didnot know how to smile.
Bars 4.Sways bar service poor except Jose friendly and efficient.
Pool bar service poor except David again friendly and efficient
Late bar only went in once asked for a Tequila Sunrise,Tequila put in Orange juice put in
Grenadine put in and then the barman shook the drink up.Undertrained.
Entertainment Sways bar good but stopped at 20.00hrs when childrens entertainment started just outside.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Ronald G
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, May 7, 2014
Dear Ronald G,


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

While it was nice to know that you were happy with the weather and the service by some of our staff, I am sad to perceive that our restaurant and bar services did not fully meet your expectations. The themed restaurants have a limited sitting, hence it may be difficult to get in to some of them while it is busy especially if you decide to make a booking at the last minute.

As for the staff, the general perception from our guests and fellow colleagues is that they are helpful and friendly. Tourism is fairly new in Cape Verde and so is the five star concept, hence we are aware that continuous training is needed for local staff in order to meet the expectation of our international guests. All of our staff have a continuous training plan at work and they are more than willing to learn and each constructive suggestion that we receive serves as a motivation to keep moving forward and we also have received a lot of positive feedbacks from our guests regarding our staff.

As the Sway Bar is quite close to the piazza, having both entertainment going on at the same time will cancel each other out, however, there is always entertainment throughout the evening for both children and adults.

I hope that you will give us another chance to prove to you that we can fully meet your expectations by paying us another visit 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.
Bristol, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed April 30, 2014

We have just returned from 2 weeks at this hotel.
The rooms are excellent and are very spacious and modern.
The hotel management are very hands on and are always out and about asking if everything is ok. The bar and restaurant manager (from Tunisia) couldn't do enough for us to help resolve an issue with a shortage of green tea and even started calling us Mr and Mrs Green when enquiring if we were ok and needed more.

There are a few other members of Melia staff worthy of a mention.
Vivienne in the restaurant is very pleasant and always made sure everything was ok.
The lady who always wore black blouses with white collars and cuffs also from the restaurant was great and nothing was too much trouble.
The man behind the bar in the reception area who lived for a long while in Boston US before returning back to his homeland was great too and was always served with a smile.

Special thanks to Trish the Thomsons rep.
She made sure everything was ok and given she is relatively new to this career she is excellent and has a great attitude and willingness to care for the Thomsons customers at the hotel.
She mentioned that she is looking to secure a place in Goa next year and we hope that we are fortunate to meet her again is she is successful.
She is a credit to Thomsons.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Franpercy
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, May 2, 2014
Dear Franpercy,


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 through Tripadvisor.

It is a pleasure to read that you have both enjoyed your stay at our resort and that the room and the services are all according to your standards. Thank you for your kind comments about our staff, it is with pleasure that I will share your message with them and I am sure that they will be very happy to hear from you again.

My management team and I are always available at the hotel to speak with our guests and offer them any assistance that they may need.

I hope that with such a good recollection of your stay you will give us the pleasure of having you as our guests 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.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed April 29, 2014

We returned to Melia Tortuga Beach for a second visit in February 2014 with some trepidation for it has been our rule not to return to a good hotel twice. We found it even better than 2013 and most of our comments from the first time had been addressed. This does not feel in any way like an all-inclusive hotel. High quality food and excellent service overseen by the highly visible General Manager and F&B Manager. We found the staff to be extremely happy, friendly and helpful. Probably not a hotel for children especially teenagers, however. Just a nice walk into Santa Maria for a beer and an inexpensive taxi back. The suites are very spacious and comfortable with large well equipped balconies.

Room Tip: Second floor rooms Facing and near to the beach are peaceful and have to evening sun
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Brian M
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, May 2, 2014
Dear Brian M,


I sincerely thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for the time that you have set aside to write a review about our hotel.

I am glad that you chose to visit us for the second time in February and I am even more pleased to know that you have had an even better experience than last year. We thank you for your kind comments not only regarding our services but also regarding our staff as this is very motivating for all of us to keep up with our efforts.

We hope that you will not hesitate to give us the pleasure of your visit for the third time in the near future and recommend our hotel to future guests.


Kind regards,
Jose Luis Cuevas
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed April 27, 2014

Starting on a positive note the staff are extremely good and helpful - although getting one to smile is not that easy, probably due to the mismanagement of this hotel.

On arrival we were given a room near to the plaza, where the entertainment takes place, the hotel gave us room move due to the noise, after a request from the rep. The rooms are large, a lounge area with a kitchen (not sure why there is one), 2 bedrooms and a bathroom. We had a terrace which looked over roofs to the sea and we were close to the quiet pool.

On arriving in our new room we found that the electric sockets were loose on the wall, the air conditioning unit in the lounge sent water onto the light fitting and a socket. The cushions on the settee were filthy as was the rug on the floor. The tap in the kitchen was nearly dropping off. The towels were grey and tatty - threads were coming off them, the bath was chipped and the table on the balcony was not safe to put a cup on. We reported this to our rep who brought it to the attention of the management and some were fixed - the table was replaced and the kitchen tap, none of the rest were done.

The following day the tap in the bathroom stopped working, we mentioned it to reception and it was fixed the next day.

2 days later we had no water, I know this sort of thing happens but to be told by reception that it would take 20 minutes (the rep was told 40 minutes); I was then told an hour when I asked a second time - all of this by going up to reception. A good hotel would have notified guests, brought water to the room, arranged for alternative showers without having to be asked, even 3 star hotels would do this!

The room had some coffee, tea and sugar but no milk. There was a fridge (not mini bar) that had 2 bottles of water in it. None of these were ever replaced during the whole of the holiday - in fact we found out that we had to get a glass of milk from the bar for the coffee and any replacement coffees and teas had to be obtained from the restaurant (once I had to go back as they were too busy and then wait again for someone to get them for me)

The restaurants are placed across the site; the Spices restaurant is the main one. Food often ran out and took ages to replace; the crockery was often dirty and we often had to ask for clean glasses and cups. The food was OK - not sure if I will eat Tropical Risotto again (bananas from breakfast with chicken!). Breakfast was not the best as it was greasy and there was not always enough - the hotel ran out of certain dishes.

One evening we had got our starters, eaten them leaving my reading glasses and a glass of wine with water on the table. We got our main course from the buffet, returned to the table to find my reading glasses. We then had to look for knives and forks (none around) and ask for the table to be re-set.

Once the restaurant ran out of fruit (apart from a couple of slices of pineapple); I went to ask for some more fruit just before seeing the manager coming out of the kitchen area to get his meal (noticing that there was little fruit - he got it), then went into the kitchen to eat his meal. He did nothing about the slow replacement of food. Just to be clear this was the overall manager of the hotel - we were introduced to them by the Thomson Rep on the first morning.

I remember him saying that they were like no other 5 star hotel - they went above and beyond to provide a personal service.

He was right this is not a 5 star hotel - it just about scrapes a 3 star!

The best meal was at the Waterside restaurant which you have to book - do it well in advance as there are few places. It is not A la Carte, as it describes itself - you get a choice of 2 main courses.

The hotel was crammed, there was no covered areas on the plaza - which would have helped. The pools were nice to look at, but the grout around the tiles was black in places - showing that the cleaning is not up to standard. There are sun-loungers, but not enough. Our Thomson rep (who was good) told us that there had been a problem getting a lounger as people put their towels on them early in the day. I'm afraid the real reason was that there were not enough for the guests; some days you saw people sunbathing on any piece of ground that they could find.

I have travelled widely, to Africa (on Safari), the Caribbean, Egypt as well as Europe; never staying in anything less than a 4 star hotel. I regularly travel on business staying in many hotels.

This is the most over-rated hotel that I have been to. The management are poor and slow to respond to any requests (our sockets were never repaired, the towels never improved - despite this being brought to their attention by our rep).

I would recommend that you do not go to this hotel and that Thomsons remove it from their brochure - it is definitely miss-sold as part of their platinum range

We went as part of a package with Thomsons, the flights were both delayed by 45 - 60 minutes (these sort of things happen - although not good to be told by the pilot that the computer wasn't working and they were having to do something manually, which they hadn't done for ages). The flight on the way out was one of the coldest that I have been on, the cabin crew put carpets around the doors to stop the draughts (not sure where this was coming from). Being slightly cynical I wondered whether this was because they were selling comfort packs (pillow and blanket)

I have been to Cape Verde before - the weather is great, the people friendly, the 4x4 trip was brilliant, the Thomson Rep knew her stuff.

The Melia Tortuga Beach is only a 3 star so don't pay the price of a 5 star.

Having read the responses form the Management Team on Tripadvisor - don't bother responding as your words are meaningless as was your poor service

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank DannyNeal
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, April 28, 2014
Dear DannyNeal,


Thank you for having chosen Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa for your holidays and for having set aside some of your time to write a review on our hotel.

We always encourage and welcome the opinions from our guests be it negative or positive as it allows us to gain an insight into our services and decide which improvements can be made and which services need to be adapted to fully meet the needs of our guests.

I am sad to read from your review that you did not have an enjoyable stay at our hotel. Our rooms undergo routine check up to ensure that everything is in perfect condition and any anomaly that may arise during your stay is immediately resolved and followed up with the guests.

Upon your arrival two bottles of water is provided in your room as well as tea, coffee and sugar sachets, and as we have informed all of our guests, for further replenishment of these you only need to request them from any of our bars for free as this is an All Inclusive Service.

As part of our hygiene and safety standards, all of our utensils are always well presented and clean. At the end of each course, the dirty plate and utensil is removed to set a new one. Food is always replaced as soon as possible and prepared under the supervision of an executive chef according to a menu that offers a balanced healthy diet. I perfectly recall the occasion when the fruit ran out, I went to inform the chef to replenish the fruit, waited until it was prepared and as I came out I saw you waiting for the fruit replenishment and I then proceeded to serve my breakfast. I always have my meals at the restaurants to ensure that the food and the services are according to standards.

Our themed restaurants offer fixed menus and we recommend our guests to try each different menu at different restaurants as you will always find something different each night.

There are covered areas as well as open areas at the hotel, the piazza is an open area as some guests do like to sit under the sun while having their coffee. Your rep was correct, there were guests who were reserving the sun loungers which resulted in not having enough for everybody.

It is a pity that your perception of our services was not a positive one, my management team and I are always available to listen to our guests and offer them any needed assistance and as part of our commitment to you we also take care in reading each one of your feedbacks and answering them one by one, we hope that you will give us a chance to make it up to you 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.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed April 24, 2014

Our family consists of myself,my wife and out 6&7 year olds. Having visited Boa Vista last year and stopped at the Riu we decided to return to Cape Verdi and booked the Melia on Sal. The hotel was clean on a lovely beach and modern however it was staffed throughout by people who had no idea of customer service, good manners or general politeness. The bar staff would never return a smile and gave the impression that they did not want you there or to be there themselves. Over the course of a week I must have spent well over an hour queuing for a drink at the bar, it was always understaffed, to get a glass of coke or a bottle of water from the pool bar would generally take 10 mins per visit. The main restaurant was undersized for the amount of guests, the food was at best average and the choice was limited, with a very poor selection for he children. I have read the reviews raving about the food and can only assume they have never visited a decent hotel restaurant. The restaurant staff were not only miserable but were blatantly rude, ignoring questions and walking off whilst you were in mid sentence trying to find the elusive spoons or glasses or just asking a basic question. Of the three special restaurants we only managed to get into two and after eating at the first we decided to eat out in the town after our dining experience there. Again poor staff, and average food. The children's club was the worst staffing experience, we were completely ignored despite making eye contact and saying hi there with a smile when we went in and indeed the only acknowledgment we got was when my daughter picked up a piece of paper to paint on, the woman in the kids room, immediately walked over and put the pile of paper into the cupboard. I am sure the managers will ask why we didn't speak to them about this and the many many other issues we had, but we were on a weeks holiday and had no intention of spending our afternoons complaining about problems that should not exist in a supposed 4/5 star hotel. We were bitterly disappointed and would not recommend this hotel for family's with young children. If the staff have no interest in serving you with a smile what chance do you have - as another guest said to me trying to get the smallest thing done is like taking a trip to the dentist for a root filling !!!! The outside area for the evening consisted of a small area with approximately 25 table it was far too small for the hotel and again was serviced by a small bar that as you can imagine took forever to get a drink from. Why they don't put soda,s and beer on self service to help beat the queues down is beyond me. We had a great time on the island but this was dispute the hotel staff not because of them.

Room Tip: Don't do it !!! Look elsewhere
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank HappyPhil
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, April 28, 2014
Dear HappyPhil,


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 sad to perceive that your stay with us did not turn out as you have expected. I am frankly quite surprised that you have not had a positive experience with our staff service as this is not the general perception of our guests. Our staff members are made up of dedicated and hardworking people who are generally warm and friendly towards our guests and fellow workers.
Each one of our restaurants have a personality of its own with it's distinctive menu, for dinner there is limited seating hence previous reservation is required to ensure an efficient service. During busy hours at our outlets some patience is required, however, the staff will always offer you a personalized service.
There is a good choice of menu for all ages and preferences, which includes a balanced diet and each food is prepared under the supervision of an executive chef.
We encourage our guests to approach us for any assistance as we would like to hear your feedback and also make sure that your stay is a pleasant one. We are always more than happy to make amends for any anomalies that may occur. It was a pity that you did not give us the chance to contact you to clear any misunderstanding that may have arised.
We enhance a lot on human touch on each one of our services, we work hard to give our best as humanly possible.
It is a pity that we were not able to satisfy your demands, we hope that you will give us another chance to do do in the near future.



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
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Spa Hotel in Santa Maria
#7 Luxury 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 
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa Cape Verde/Ilha Do Sal - Santa Maria

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