We arrived at 11-00 in the morning to be told that the room would not be available until 15-00 at the earliest, the holiday was all inclusive but we were not allowed wristbands until 15-00 by which time we had missed lunch. When we finally got into our room we found it insecure in as much as the balcony doors did not lock properly, we also had no towels which meant another run up and down the six flights of stairs to reception.
After obtaining towels which weren't the cleanest by any stretch of the imagination I inspected our room more closely to find a little friend dearly departed cockroach legs in the air beneath the cooker and sink in the kitchenette area. This poor creature was still there six days into the holiday and i have photos taken on different days to prove that the room was not cleaned for six days. We complained after one hour of being in our room that we wanted to be moved, the guy that I spoke to at A1 Travel told me that he would call me back first thing next morning. We then went for a drink at the poolside bar where i asked for two beers only to be told that i could only obtain one drink per person, this is ludicrous as my wife has never had to get her own drinks before on holiday at any all inclusive resort. We then looked for sun loungers only to find that there were less than 40 of them dotted around the pool area between approximately 200 paying holidaymakers.
The next insult was the restaurant for evening meals, to call it a restaurant is a complete oxymoron as it was like a greasy spoon cafe except a cafe serves warm food as opposed to this place where very meal was virtually the same menu and the food was cold even on our first night when we were the fourth couple to enter the (restaurant)? as a result of this we ended up eating out on a daily basis and luckily for us there was good value for money down in the town.
At 10-00 next morning I had not received a call so I rang A1 Travel and asked to speak to the said person, i was informed by the lady i spoke to that this guy was not in today until after 15-00. I asked if their employees were in the habit of lying to customers because he had clearly stated that he would call me back first thing in the morning. I then asked to speak to a manager and when i finally got a call back from him he said that he could not do anything for us until i have made my complaint official with the manager of the hotel which i duly did, however it was not until my penultimate day of the holiday that a portuguese local told me that my complaint would not be observed unless i signed the Red Book.
I went to see the manager about this and she denied any knowledge of a Red Book until i asked to speak to her manager and she conveniently found it within two minutes. I then received a call back the next day offering us a move to another hotel but at the cost of another 500 euros or there about.
I told the manager that we could not afford this and he said that the only other option was to see out the holiday and make an official complaint on return to the UK, I am still awaiting a reply to my complaint
Travel operator: A1 travel
The staff were very good, most of the time .They disappeared a lot, near closing time at the bar, after 11pm you had to purchase your drinks, then they seemed to be there, all the time. There were no reps on site, no daily activities at all. Drinks you could only get two drinks at a time, which was no good when there are more than two of you on holiday. The manager was a total idiot, a lady was ill, her partner wanted some bottled water to take back to their room, he was only allowed to take two small bottles back. Then return for some more after walking up a lot of stairs to get back to the apartment. He also cleared tables, whilst people were still eating. Breakfast was the same every day boring. Lunch and evening meal very good lots of choice.
Travel operator: sun save
Hotel tip: check out reviews first.don't go lower than a four star.
Once our room was ready, it was like doing an assault course as there were so many steps to our apartment. After sweating profusely we arrived and found the apartment to be basic but ok.
Fast forward to the evening and being All Inclusive meant food and drink was served all day. We had lunch and toured the grounds. Very very steep and hard to manoeuvre around if elderly.
Dinner was basic. Variety was ok but nothing spectacular that couldn't be had in my own home in the UK.
The grounds were very dimly lit and a bit scary if you had to walk to your apartment on your own.
Our apartment was also dimly lit and needed proper lighting.
The next day we decided to do the '10 min' walk to the beach. Damn!! The steep decline/incline took forever to do. Very arduous if elderly and non fit.
I could go on but will say:
You get what you pay for!
Choose very very wisely!
Travel operator: Sunsave
Travel operator: hotels4u
Location, definatly not suitable for people with walking difficulties. No entertainment what-so-ever, which is much needed!
I would not visit these apartments again.
Travel operator: On the beach.
Check-in at the reception passed without much comment, greeted by polite though rather serious receptionist who confirmed our details... on taking the short walk to our studio appartment we noticed the tremendous views across the Old town and the sea beyond, although our optimistic mood changed as we approached the front door of the appartment...
we can relate to the review earlier on this page where we stood in our living area and questioned where on earth we were going to sleep!!! The beds are under the rather old faded and drab sofa, after some shifting and rearranging of furniture we had just about established a rather basic sleeping area and the cushions were quickly removed and placed in a cupboard never to be touched again for the duration of the stay! To say they were old and worn would be an understatement!
The kitchen area is basic, although we only used the fridge so couldnt comment on the condition of the appliances...
on entering the bathroom i was transported back to the early 70s with some very "tasteful" decor that im sure would have been lovely in its day although that day is long gone!! The toilet could have done with a new seat, preferably one less discoulored and the shower, well you needed a degree in physics to get the balance right between the waterpressure and the shower head staying in its holder whilst still directing water to a position that you could actually stand under... all this without drowning the odd cockroach on the bathroom floor that may have escaped from the air vent that had previously been blocked with toilet roll in a rather DIY fashion!!!
However, after getting over our initial shock, we made the best of the appartment which apart from the bathroom was clean enough and the views were excellent! Old Albufeira in our opinion was the best side of town and still has an array of good bars and restaurants, the hotel staff were fine, and the maids very pleasant.. we didnt experience the entertainment as we spent every evening in the bars in the Old Town. The walk home was tiring but good to burn of the beer calories, not recommended for the elderly or young children though... also be wary of the slippy roads and pavements especially if it rains during your holiday.
Overall, would go back to Old Albufeira, probaly not to these appartments as you could get better for your money.
Travel operator: Barrhead
Travel operator: seaside travel
This took us 50 mins. of debating,arguing and a very expensive mobile call to the U.K. (as they would not allow us to use the phone) to eventually resolve.
When we did get to the block it was right at the top behind the tennis courts with overhead cranes working all day Mon. - Fri. drilling,hammering etc.
The studio was quite small and rather dated and the entrance had a permanent musty smell.
The snack bar by the pool was fine and the staff friendly as were the bar staff and you do expect it to be a bit more expensive by the pool.
The location suited us even though it was a steep 10-15 min walk from the old town but a lot of families were complaining about how hard it was with kids and buggies.
The entertainment was karaoke three nights a week and was sometimes that bad it was good! Kids weren't impressed by the games room as the air hockey had no air, two pool cues (one without a tip), no chalk and the machine three boys were putting their money never worked.
Overall we felt that this hotel was probably a huge entertainment complex in it's heyday but was now past it's prime.
Travel operator: Independent
I was in block B1 at the front of the complex with the pools and reception behind. The apartment was clean and well equipped with fabulous views out to sea and over the old town.
The complex is on a hill but nowhere as near as steep as reports made out. If you entered the complex via the main entrance, where the cars turn in you can avoid the path up the embankment.
The entertainment is not the best but you are 10 mins walk from the town square where there is fantastic live entertainment in many of the bars. The complex is also only 10 mins from the fantastic beaches.
I would certainly return here and definitely recommend it to friends and family.
Travel operator: independent
Apartment what we expected,probably built in 1970s.lots of steps to apartment,need to be fit.Cleaned every day,but could have used bleach to clean floor after daughter sick in the night. No toaster,kettle.
Ate at restaurant ,part of complex ,expensive but freshly made. Pools clean,not many other guests staying at the time so sunbeds available pretty much all time. Kareoke only entertainment.
Word of advice ,don't book a taxi to take you to airport in the town,didn't turn up. However, man on reception gladly rang one for us and was there in 5 mins.
Travel operator: med.hotels
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