We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great for sun and relaxatiopn”
Review of VOI Vila do Farol

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 8 more sites!
VOI Vila do Farol
Ranked #7 of 20 Hotels in Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 11, 2011

We spent a week at Club Bravo and enjoyed the casual and relaxed atmosphere..
This is an Italian resort and there were very few other nationalities present.
The food was good very fresh and while not of goumet quality was never the less very well presented and quite varied. The fresh fruit was particularly good.
The staff is friendly and produce very entertaining animation.
An understanding of Italian is necessary to be able to enjoy the evening entertainment.
Reception was cordial and most spoke english.
The island is in the midst of a gigantic building program and the infrastructure is primative..
We stayed at the resort most of the time and were oblivious to the islands growing problems.There is massive construction projects everywhere, many incomplete.
There is little nite life other than the resort. The nearest town, Santa Maria is quite limited. So forget shopping, there isnt any.
The hotel itself is somewhat dated and some features could be updated, however all in all, we enjoyed the stay and considered that the Bravo Club organization was preferable to some of the more formal hotels we have visited.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Jrdu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (1,803)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

23 - 29 of 1,803 reviews

Reviewed September 27, 2009

Cape Verde is a fantastic place for relax and sunbath... Bravo Club Vila do Farol is good but NOT at the level of the other Bravo Clubs I've seen before (Zanzibar, Maldives, Marsa Alam).
I've been there with a group of 61 people, all of us from a Salsa school. The animation staff turned against us from the 1st day, probably thinking we wanted to steal their scene?!? To note that the animation agency was MOVIDA and not SAMARCANDA (that is fantastic) as other Bravo Clubs. It rained continuosly for 2 days and the animation staff completely disappeared!!!!!
The bungalow are nice with independent air conditioned and with TV with channels in Italian, English, German and Portuguese.
We had a very bad thunderstorm that last for 2 days and after 10 hrs of rain water started to drop in most of the rooms of me and my friends and the resort was practically flooded.
The restaurant is amasing (both for food and service), the bar near the raception has a very good espresso that wasn't so good in the pool bar. The bar that serve breakfast/lunch was good too but full of black flyes.
The town of Santa Maria was 5 minutes away by cab and the transfer costs only 3€!!!!

  • Stayed: September 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank gigand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2009

I stayed here with my wife and two daughters (10 and 7) on an all-inclusive basis. We were transferred from the Djadsal (where we originally booked) due to overunning building works on the pool there (please see my review of the Djadsal for more details).

We have travelled quite a lot and usually organise our holidays independently so our expectations of Cape Verde and the hotels there were not high. This hotel is 4 stars by European standards but probably 3 stars when compared to English hotels, we were not disappointed.

We are English and speak very little Italian so when we arrived at Vila do Farol we weren't sure what to expect, we need not have worried. We were the only English family for a couple of days (another English couple transferred with us) and we were joined by another English chap with his son (12) after a couple of days, he was also transferred from the Djadsal.

We were included in all the entertainment right from the start. The Italian animation team were fantastic, without exception, and always spoke English to us if they could, we reciprocated with any broken Italian we learned. My daughters both attended the kids club (the ladies running it spoke English quite well) and they both came away with a few Italian phrases they had learned from the other children.

As we showed we were happy to join in and laugh at ourselves we were simply involved more and more, what a bloody laugh. The pool area is one of the best I have seen with plenty of quality sunbeds (and no idiots creeping down at dawn to save them with their towels). The pool is salt water, which is fine once you get used to it with a large shallow area for the children. The pool is very important if you have young children as the sea is simply too dangerous for the little ones, the waves are very strong and the undertow can be deceiving.

There were two sports tournaments each day (boules, football, volleyball, archery, basketball etc) and regular dancing / aerobics / pilates around the pool (which we had a go at, you MUST try the Fundanela, hilarious). Yes there was loud music around the pool, but it wasn't loud all day, and there was no music at all during siesta hours (1pm-3.30pm).

In the evening there was pre-dinner music in the main bar and a show in the theatre at 10pm. The shows were either variety shows or musicals set to backing tracks and were mostly in Italian. I say mostly because once the manager of the entertainment staff realised he had some English guests he gave us an overview of the what was happening and explained everything in English. Most of the comedy is very visual though and my girls loved it.

The hotel is lovely, right on the edge of town and close to the beach. There is a walk to the sea but hey, it's a bloody big beach. The rooms were basic but kept very clean and the gardens are excellent, considering the lack of water available.

The restaurant was mostly Italian food with a couple of gala nights with Cape Verdean cuisine. We found there was always something we liked on the buffet. In addition the snack bar served breakfast until noon followed by pizza, salad, etc. Pizzas were cooked to order at lunchtime and burgers/hot dogs fried to order until 6pm. Sometimes some of the dishes were cold and the little birds which scavenge the leftover crumbs are lovely to watch but may worry your average Heath & Safety Inspector (not sure if that's a good or a bad thing).

The hotel staff were all really friendly and spoke the local Creole but once we had learned the basics (please, thank you, beer, wine, water, good morning, good afternoon) we were fine.

Finally I have to mention our fellow guests. Word soon went round that there was an English family staying in the hotel and many of the Italian guests went out of their way to be friendly and, where they could, speak to us. Once we had played Boules (Bocce) or danced, or joined in a guest talent show together we immediately had a bond which was sometimes simply expressed with a simple "caio" a smile and a nod of recognition, or more often we were joined for drinks around one of the bars or helped with the Italian version of Bingo.

Big Tip:
If you go with an open mind, be prepared to laugh at yourself, don't worry if you don't understand everything all the time and enjoy pasta you will have THE BEST TIME, if not you are probably better off going to the Riu.

As my daughter (aged 7) put it as we walked back from the beach party on the last night , "Dad this holiday is in my top 1".

Nuff said!

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank DaveBuz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2009

We were a bit apprehensive before going to Vila do Farol hotel as we had just read the reviews about the language issues with it being an Italian hotel, we should not have worried. The hotel staff speak various languages and hand signals work well. There is 2 English speaking reception staff so if you have any problems or queries they can help.
The entertainment staff or Bravo club members are all Italian and speak limited English but they try very hard to get you to join in with the various sports and activities they put on. If you don’t want to join in they will leave you alone but I recommend trying some of the things as we ended up having a right laugh with them.

Around the pool the music can be quite loud. They play a mixture of pop, Italian hits and cheesy dance along tunes like YMCA……and yes you need to join in for that one!!!!

There are plenty of bars, a beach bar with snacks all day long, a pool bar (doesn’t do cocktails unless you explain what goes into the drink) and a bar that is open all day and into the night (which does do cocktails….Yum). Water is by the glass, if you want a bottle you have to buy this from the bar. It’s quite expensive as the pound to Euro is the same. Everything on the island is imported and water is a luxury (tap water is through a treatment works so do not drink it), so don’t waste it. The beer is very nice and the table wine is included and this is also very good. If you are a lover of wine you can buy bottles at diner times.

There is a main restaurant were buffet breakfast/ lunch and diner are served and the food is fabulous. I have never eaten so much in one week. It’s a mix of Italian pastas and pizzas plus fresh fish, vegetables, cheeses, salads, fruits and salads.

In the evening there is music in the all day bar which finishes at midnight. The nightclub opens at midnight and closes at 2am but the drinks here are not all inclusive and the music is terrible.

At 10pm every night there is a “show” in the theatre. This is the only time you miss out if you don’t understand Italian, so I recommend staying in the bar!!!!

All in all I recommend this hotel as it’s nice to get away from the typical British stereotypes that will be on the plane with you, who thankfully all stay at the RUI Thompson hotel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Betty-Rose-Blossom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 16, 2008

My husband and I read all the site reviews after we booked our holiday! Oh my God what are we going too? we tried to change hotels but they were all booked (this was a last min cheapo deal)
so we left the UK with no illusions as to how fab this hotel was not going to be. We had a great time, the food was excellent lots of fresh fish lots of pasta as you would expect from a Italian hotel, yes it was quite noisey but all Italians are they were good fun and very entertaining. Not speaking Italian did have its advantages, nobody bothered you!

There was a bit of a hike to the beach and the water was cold but we have been to the Red Sea at the same time of year and the water is freezing as are the swimming pools.

Cape Verde is not green so when you travel to your hotel be prepared for the barren landascape .

We did have a problem with our Visa your travel agent will get one for you but it costs about £40.00 at the airport it will cost you 15 euros so make sure you have some euros with you( thats 15 each).

Go to the Bravo have some fun. For anyone who is wheelchair bound they have a lift to the bar, ramps around the pool and accomodation is all on one level.

  • Stayed: January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Fiftesomething
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2007

We have just come back from a one week holiday in Cape Verde. Whilst we both had a relaxing time, we left wondering why the media hype about these newly developing islands does not really live up to reality.

It might be to attract property investors perhaps?

We started our stay at the Bravo Vila Do Farol (which we had booked from the UK).

I don't know where they took the pictures that you see in the brochure, because reality is quite different.

The dining room was reminiscent of a Pontins Holiday camp, and either there was no food left, or what was left was covered in flies.

The constant loud noises that seemed to eminate from every quarter of the hotel was enough to make you search for for ear-plugs.

We met a number of couples who had also just arrived and were busilly trying to find somewhere else to stay on the island, which, thank goodness, we did also.

It was a bit of a shock all round.

No-one speaks more than a smattering of English on reception/front desk, and I am sure that they must be well used to complaints.

Our options were to either try and move hotels quickly, or get the next flight home. They are only once a week at the moment to Gatwick, so we went for making the best of it.

The holiday Rep was so helpful, and we moved the following day.

Do yourself a HUGE favour, when looking at the brochures for the Bravo Do Farol, bypass it as quickly as possible.

The best hotel on the island of Sal in our opinion, is the Ojua, and if you are hell bent on Cape Verde as a holiday destination, try and get yourself a room there!

  • Stayed: November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
7  Thank NurseJW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2007

My husband and I together with our two grown up children booked a holiday at this hotel in June. We knew from the brochure that it was Italian owned and that was fine. However when we arrived we quickly learned that unless we spoke Italian we would have problems. Only one member of reception staff understood English - everyone else we encountered could not even understand the words "taxi, milk or wine" etc. What would have happened if there was a medical emergency at night I shudder to imagine.
There was loud music around the pool most of the day and the entertainment in day and in evening all in Italian. When we complained to the manager we were told "we prefer only Italians at this hotel"!
We saw our rep the next day and he said he understood that if there was a communication problem then it was useless staying at the hotel and offered to move us. This he did the very next day to a hotel which was splendid. However we were charged a lot of money to do this and we are engrossed in communication with the travel company to recoupt this large sum. There were six other Englist guests and two German guests who had arrived the same day with other travel operators. They also were moved. this left only Italian speaking guests.
I do not believe that any English travel company should advertise this hotel in their brochures. It defies the Trade Descriptions Act.
Stay away if you are not Italian speaking.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
9  Thank MLittle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Santa Maria hotels
0.2 mi away
Crioula Club Hotel & Resort
Crioula Club Hotel & Resort
#14 of 20 in Santa Maria
1,983 reviews
0.8 mi away
Hotel Morabeza
Hotel Morabeza
#4 of 20 in Santa Maria
751 reviews
0.7 mi away
Hotel Oasis Salinas Sea
Hotel Oasis Salinas Sea
#8 of 20 in Santa Maria
2,592 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.6 mi away
Hotel Oasis Belorizonte
Hotel Oasis Belorizonte
#12 of 20 in Santa Maria
1,831 reviews
1.5 mi away
Melia Tortuga Beach Resort & Spa
1.8 mi away
Melia Dunas Beach Resort & Spa
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to VOI Vila do Farol? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about VOI Vila do Farol

Address: Praia Santa Maria, Santa Maria, Ilha do Sal 4111, Cape Verde
Phone Number:
Location: Cape Verde > Ilha do Sal > Santa Maria
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Santa Maria
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Maria
#5 Romantic Hotel in Santa Maria
Price Range: $134 - $1,218 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — VOI Vila do Farol 3*
Number of rooms: 236
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on Sal Island, the VOI Vila do Farol resort lies about 1 km away from Santa Maria, the main town, only a 20-minute drive from the international airport. It is immersed in a large garden overlooking the stunning beach. VOI Vila do Farol resort features 236 rooms housed in one-storey bungalows set along lovely lanes in a vast garden. The main meals are buffet served in the restaurant located in the main building, while a snack bar near the beach, a bar by the pool and a lovely bar in the lounge complete the offer. The main building includes a welcoming lounge with a reception desk, a disco, many boutiques, an internet point with wi-fi system, a multi-purpose room and a TV sat lounge. Between the main building and the seafront, a free-form swimming pool lies with a children section, surrounded by ample solarium terraces, and a separate plunge pool. Shady shelters and sun beds free as long as available by the pool and by the beach and towels. The beach is certainly one the main attractions of Sal. A shoreline of dazzling white sand extends for kilometres, lapped by the crystal clear water of sea characterized by unique colours… a true paradise for nature lovers. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, TripOnline SA, Agoda, Cancelon, Hotels.com, Hotwire, HotelQuickly and Evoline ltd so you can book your VOI Vila do Farol reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Aw Bravo Vila Do Farol Hotel Santa Maria
VOI Vila Do Farol Cape Verde/Ilha Do Sal - Santa Maria

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing