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“first trip to cape verde”

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Foya Branca Resort Hotel
Ranked #7 of 13 Hotels in Mindelo
Reviewed October 3, 2007

we had our first week in Santa Marie, Sal then 2nd week at the Foya Branca Hotel, Sao Vicente, The hotel was excellent, although alittle disappointed on arrival as we requested a suite, as it was late at night was just glad to put our head down, but in the morning the room was very small with two single beds which you could hardly more around, then another small lounge with a balcony overlooking the sea.
we asked if we could upgrade then was shown the new building with lovely double rooms overlooking the pool and the beach with sea, wonderful!!!! was told no further cost so move to the new building straight away. so when you book make sure you are in the new building!
the staff were very helpful and friendly.
the resturant for eveings meals was of very high standard and we had a couple of meals there which were very good.
the resturants in town which the rep mentioned were also very good.
we hired a car for a couple of days and took to the road doing the sights which the rep had suggested, the beaches are wonderful but you need to take your own drink and food with you as no bars or resturants about, very very quite, especially during the week, on one beach we were the only people!!
the beach is wonderdul but the sea is not good if you are not a strong swimmer, lots of under currents.
the swimming pools areas are great with the sun beds, not on top of one another - loads of room to sunbathe especially during the week at the moment - last week maybe only 30 people in the hotel if that, so sun beds galore to pick your space!!!!!
if you want to see green trees etc this is not the place to come , rock and rock with more rock.
if you just want to relaxe., swim, get a good tan, and read lots of books this is the place to come.
one comment i would make about the hotel, is at weekends lots of the local families come for a fun day out, it is not quite at all in fact we did not use the hotel on the sunday we went out in the car.
my view on cape verde, is have one week on one island then change to another island for the second week, otherwise you will get very bored - at the moment not enough to see on the islands.

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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11  Thank Jane_2004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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48 - 54 of 233 reviews

Reviewed August 22, 2007

The location of the hotel on San Pedro bay is quite breath-taking. We spent hours walking up and down the deserted beach, watching the waves crash and floating in the surf. Although the sea is not suitable for children to swim, the hotel has three pools and a big fence to keep kids off the beach. The hotel's facilities were generally very good, particularly the restaurant which was of a very high standard. The latter is also willing and able to accommodate the tastes of veggies. When we stayed at the hotel the majority of guests were Cape Verdian, which made the overall experience more authentic. In short, a smashing hotel and a lovely location.

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled with family
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7  Thank Matti-Pringle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 3, 2007

The hotel is set up as a four star European standard establishment. We had nice big rooms overlooking the pool area and the beach. The beach is windy and the surf not suitable for all but the strongest swimmers.
The restaurant served some very acceptable food at reasonable prices however there is a free bus into town and a taxi back will cost approx 10 euros. Caution - the gates are closed late at night so if your out partying to the early hours, find out how to getback in!
Sao Vicente is very windy most of the time but there is plenty of sun all day. This can lead to sunburn as you don't feel it happening. The local shops don't stock alot of sunblock products so bring it with you.
The island's bank ATM's do not support Maestro or Sirrus cash cards so take plenty of cash in euros and get it changed into escudos. Alternatively take a visa card! The hotel does change currency but only at selectd times and when the have it!
Overall the hotel was better than I was expecting but a 10 min journey out of town!

  • Stayed: May 2007
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4  Thank Gungadin99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 18, 2007

We arrived in Sao Vicente and stayed at the Foya Branca Hotel. The hotel was very clean and had 3 pools, a dining area for breakfast and menu lunches, and a separate restaurant for evening meals.

We stayed in a Junior suite for the first week, but asked for an upgrade to a Villa which was 2 bedroomed, 2 bathroomed, with a kitchenette and a private patio with sunloungers and hammock. The hotel accommodated this free of chargem due to some minor work going on at the Junior suites.

The holiday was very relaxing, and the only thing that seemed a bit disappointing was the lack of people ! There were more staff than guests, and on one day of our holiday we were the only couple in the resort as the few other couples had gone out on a day trip ! so having a choice of pool and sunbeds was no problem.

The hotel puts on a minibus to Mindelo which is 10 km away. The bus runs frequently (every hour or thereabouts) and is very reliable. Mindelo is a quaint small town with a few good restaurants. Recommended are Nellas (excellent atmosphere), Chez Loutcha (who also own a restaurant out near Calhau, which opens on Sunday only, for the best seafood buffet you will ever have !), Anchote (great lobster), Chuquisserra Grill for the carnivores amongst you, and the Hotel Mindelo if you just fancy a good pizza.

There are not too many shops, we saved a fortune as nothing to buy !.

The island is peaceful, tranquil, but I suspect it is about to embark on mass over-development, which will take away it's uniqueness, in a few years.

The weather was hot (29-30 degrees) in May and windy in the evening so a cardi is needed.

Overall a relaxing holiday, with a lovely stay at the Foya Branca. Hope tourism doesn't spoil the island.

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank CarolineCuthbert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 15, 2006

We spent the last week of November 2006 at the Foya Branca. This is an excellent hotel located 1km from the airport and 10km from Mindelo, the capital of Sao Vicente.
The hotel overlooks San Pedro beach, the best beach on the island, and is surrounded by a barren volcanic landscape.
Bedrooms are modern and spotlessly clean but short on storage space. There is an attractive pool, surrounded by astroturf, and no shortage of sun loungers.
Our only grumble was with the restaurant where we would wait a long time to be served our food after ordering and some of the main courses were not to our liking.
There is a free shuttle bus service to Mindelo, which has some interesting shops, bars and a large harbour. Apart from Mindelo, there is little else to see on Sao Vicente.
If you are looking for a relaxing holiday in the sun we could certainly recommend the Foya Branca.

  • Stayed: November 2006, traveled as a couple
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15  Thank Blade-on-Tour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 11, 2006

The small airport is only 1km from the hotel so short transfer time! At the moment the only planes to land are small and only 4-5 each day - so don't worry about aircraft noise.

The standard, sea view rooms at Foya Branca overlook the deserted San Pedro beach. The rooms are modern with contemporary furniture with plenty of room for a set of drawers which was lacking.

The bathroom was fine with a huge walk in shower and no need to take a hairdryer girls - this one was great!

Breakfast was limited but nicely prepared and fresh. If you were making a pre-breakfast start to your day then the hotel would provide continental breakfast in your room the previous evening.

The hotel provides a free shuttle service to Mindelo from 7.15am to 1.30am the next morning - to suit any party goers! It makes the 15 minute journey about 12 times a day.

The staff were friendly but for the majority of staff their English is limited - so plenty of pointing required!

The pool area is clean and astroturf is used on the surrounding areas which provided a nice surface to walk on. There were always plenty of sunbeds to go round and we understand that beach towels are available though we only discovered this on the day of departure - apparently you just ask the staff for them and they are brought to the loungers for you.

Cape Verde is well known for the 'breezy conditions' - this made the sea quite boisterous on occassions but the deserted beach - about 1km to the tiny fishing village of San Pedro at the opposite end to the hotel could not be faulted - a great walk.

The hotel arranged a day excursion to Santa Antao - the island adjacent to Sao Vicente. We were taken from the hotel to the port and collected two guides along the way (both worked in reception so their English was reasonable). The boat journey (on the 'big boat') takes about an hour - we were warned off travelling on the 'small boat' as apparently lots of passengers are sea sick - other hotel residents confirmed this! We were met by a minibus and spent the day sightseeing the island which is very different to Sao Vicente and well worth the trip.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Foya Branca - it was quiet and charming - we would go back.

  • Stayed: November 2006, traveled with family
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20  Thank tod5558
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 5 days ago
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  • Stayed: January 2018, traveled as a couple
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Thank Pierre M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Foya Branca Resort Hotel

Address: Sao Pedro, Mindelo, Sao Vicente 2110, Cape Verde
Location: Cape Verde > Sao Vicente > Mindelo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Mindelo
#3 Luxury Hotel in Mindelo
Price Range: $81 - $175 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Foya Branca Resort Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 74
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Also Known As:
Foya Branca Hotel Mindelo
Foya Branca Resort Hotel Mindelo, Cape Verde - Sao Vicente

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