Image of Pedras Da Rainha ApartHotel

Pedras Da Rainha ApartHotel

2 of 2 hotels in Cabanas

4 out of 5 from 1 review
3 stars
Aldeamento Pedras da Rainha, Cabanas, Tavira, 8800-591 Portugal
Pedras Da Rainha is a 3 star aparthotel located in the fishing village of Cabanas. Facilities include Tennis court, parking and a currency exchange service.

1 Review

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Review Overview

  • Cleanliness
  • Entertainment
  • Service
  • Location
15 years 11 months ago
Pedras de Rainha (jmc) review 2 adults from SEPTEMBER 2002, both adults in early 30's, one with some mobility and other medical problems, not heavy drinkers.

WHEELCHAIR USERS VERY IMPORTANT PLEASE READ-:IT'S Not the greatest for wheel chair friendliness, the resort is not level and neither is the town itself, for that reason I would give it 1 out of five mainly as theres no ramping as such, fortunately none of us are in such a position.

I must say if your after a quieter holiday of just reading, eating out, walks, architecture, painting, photography, wildlife, fishing, practicing your Portuguese/German/Dutch, or golf then this area is ideal, mores so off the main season.. The locals are quite laid back and if you at least try some of the language you'll reap the benefits. If the "booter" in you needs some air ask the locals about markets, there's usually a few markets on every week along the Algarve.

CABANAS town, where the resort of Pedras de Rainha is situated, is still a relatively unspoilt town compared to the rest of the algarve. It's primarilly used by the Iberians themselves and then Dutch, German, as well as those sly Brits seeking a relaxing holiday away from the noise/pace of the other holiday resorts in the med. If you're after the Costa del Eastenders or Tenner-tastic-rife then you will most probably be dissapointed here, there's no major clubbing, no hen/stag weekends, or kiss me quick hats....and thats the way the area's repeat visitor likes it. Most people whom go once and like its charm invariably do go back up to 3 times a year, and every year. Along the coast there is a resort very similar called Pedras Del Rei, pretty much the same in structure and operation seeing as how its the same company that operate them...I would say though that form the clientele it's mostly older holidayers.

RESORT TOWN FULL NAME is Cabanas de Tavira if your looking for it on maps or the internet youll get more info with its Sunday name.The nearest bigger town next to it is called Tavira, hence why its Cabanas (DE Tavira). Tavira is sold as the most beautiful town in the Algarve and I for one quite agree, as has plenty of artists including I believe Charles Rennie Macintosh. It is but 10 mins away by car from the resort, it also has a Roman bridge and an insane amount of churches for its size. It's lovely cobbled streets meander round buildings built hundreds of years ago too.

Cabanas also has a smaller town at the head end of it called Conceicao but 10 mins walk away, its in the opposite direction away from the beach. A lot of private apartments were being finsished off but the work could not be heard from our resort, and should be all completed now in 2005. If you need a chemist urgently youll find one here.

FARO is the nearest major town/city that you would see on an undetailed map, only 30-35 mins by car. It's a considerably more modern city/large town when compared to Tavira, it's also where you most likely landed and will once again be again to reluctantly fly off home, if you cant go a week witout a big Mac you'll find them here in FARO. Eastern Algarve's major hospital is also there. Have a phrase book handy as it may be needed at times for any medical or urgent reasons....all the more reasons to practice ones VERY poor and extremely limited Portuguese.

RESORT

We arrived at the resort through jmc and in the late evening, ferried by a newish mini-bus from Faro, it took about 45 mins. As usual it was a multi drop journey but fortunately we were the first stop. It is 10 mins faster now due to an upgraded road from Faro along the Algarve. It had been raining quite unseasonally for the previous two weeks and the damp still hung in the air, flies too, so lucky us. September, October can be thundery and stormy, but rain showers rairly appear or when they do dont actually last very long.

THE MAIN OFFICE-: This is where you check in and provides the following services of tv hire, telephone, internet and a small safe deposit area. I would recommend using other ways of calling home that are cheaper than theirs ie a unlocked mobile and a local sim-card, payphone cards available in most shops, the internet could readilly be found cheaper and faster elsewhere too in Cabanas or Tavira and of course you could use voip.

THE FRONT DESK-:On arrival it is quite normal to be asked to give them your passport overnight, while the paperwork of warnings from our government agencies warn against this practice it is quite normal here I assure you.
Your greeted by the book in clerk/ess, whom most probably will also be the duty manager. You will be whisked away from here to your room, suitcases included...don't forget your tip. Don't expect FULL on expert knowledge of the English language from all the staff, especially so if your accent is really quite broad .....this resort caters for the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and German also.

Next to the main office is a small "arcade" area that no doubt the sunshy kids will spend most of their time. It has pool tables and quite old arcade games, local boys sometimes hang around there too although not in any way menacingly. There is public toilets just here next to the arcade, handy so you dont need to go back to the apartment, and convienent being adjacent to the important part of the complex "the bar".

THE BAR -:It supplies the usual fair of seating outside and inside, it provides quick snacks like hotdogs, crisps, chips(fries) etc. If the fast food is not to your liking there's always the site restaurant next to it. I found the bar area quiet and relaxing, although it has a "host" whom djs, karaokes, and quizmasters in many broken languages. Some apartments that face it can bear the audible brunt till late so be warned.....Fortunately it's not hardcore dance by choice but can be a tad "basey" if your in the line of fire. If you find that this dull the enjoyment of your stay ask for a room change from your rep to the other side of the buildings.

THE POOL-:Your water fun is directly behind/beside the bar/restaurant area depending on where you are looking from. I'ts a sizeable pool but unheated and quite deep at one end, there is though a kiddies pool for paddling, but in general the bigger pool should be kept to adept swimmers only. At one end of the pool is a rinse shower, the other end the chap that hires you the sun loungers, handy for well you know why so lets not stereotype here.

At the small pool area theres a souvenier shop, tabac thats also a newsagents. I prefer the newsagents on the promenade outside the complex altogether myself( both are handy for Brit papers but I prefer the walk in such good weather). Behind these is a mini mercado, aka a mini market (think a Co-op or Spar), handy for milk or the occasional desperately needed thing. Instead of using the onsite one, or any local Cabanas shops for groceries, I would reccomend the journey to Tavira more on why later.

SPORTS/KIDS AREA-:Close to the main building (office/bar/resturant) is the tennis courts and a kids zone. The kid zone is like a seasonal creche and for older kids to pre-teenage moper of course, at nights they have a mini disco. Being that we arrived at the end of the season this was not on, and having no kids with us we know very little about its quality anyway.

APARTMENT-:Think a step up from the old Butlins camp, basic and functional is probably the best way to describe what ours was without being insutling, although for the price paid it should have been more. If it was allocated on arrival I would have been quite happy but for around 700 quid each for two weeks S.C there definitely should have been more to it. The resort was made circa early 80s, and luckily its never more than a flight of stairs to your apartment. The stairs ARE steep though if your on the top deck, so make sure your rep knows of any mobility problems as soon as you get off the plane, over and above the info you would have given in advance of this of course....it pays to remind. I would safely say that for the completely wheelchair bound this resort is nowhere near suitable, and the town area too.

Our room for two was a studio flat affair and on the top flight and partially shaded by a large oleander tree. It had 3 single beds one in an alcove and two doubling up as seating. In the centre of the room stood a dining table, there was a door leading off to toilet and bath with shower. Electricity was included. My wife suffered terribly from bites which I can only assume is because of the tree, so have your potions and lotions to hand.

The kitchen area, remember it's a studio flat we have so its in the living area. It has a two ring hob, fridge, microwave, ketttle, kitchen utensils and plates in the storage area provided in an Algarvian style. Off the main living area is a door leading to the veranda/terrace/porch area, handy to eat your breakfast basking in morning sunlight, you can also use this bit as a drying area as most seem to do. There is no laundrette on the resort, towels are changed regularly with the maid service. If you NEED a laundry service there is a washing service shop just off the road at the beach road in a small shopping arcade.

The paths and general upkeep of the resort is of a decent level, although some roads and surfaces can be a bit ruff ie crumbling in appearance and off the main areas, but for the most part it's clean and well kempt. I did not see any proliferation of chewing gum, litter, glass, or cigarette ends unlike at home. The grassy areas were well manicured with hardied grass and there was some nice bedding areas here, including an old horses cart which features on most of the pictures of the resort.

BEACH-:The beach is part of the national park area, which helps stop the area getting too well built up.Next to the boat taxi are usually parks a tourist train, I assume you've seen one of these before, I would advise taking it at least once and hopefully you'll enjoy the town and get your bearings. The resort partons get the river taxi for free and for some of the other resorts in Cabanas, but the tourist train you must pay for and it doesn't go to the beach.

The beach just seems to go on and on and is quite clean, it's like a manufactured sandbank and you have to travel by boat taxi to get to it, while there there is a bar/snack shop and toilets. They also rent sunshade, and loungers, the sun is particularly strong on the beach so be warned. The waves and sea is quite strong.

I would rate the whole holiday as 7.5 out of ten. If it was more reasonably priced for what you get then it would have received more, if there was a better layout in the apartment and a larger kitchen it would have done better also. For peace and quiet the area gets a 9 out of ten, the locals get 9 out of 10....One was in a bad mood when we only wanted a drink in a restaurant in Tavira so not 10 out of 10.

TIP-:For rainy days If you end up with a wet spell then rent a TV from the main office, they aren't cheap but give you some programming at night in English with Portuguese subs around peak time, sometimes they are a couple of weeks ahead of sky one on some programmes. In tavira there's a cinema if you need a film fix for you or your kids....and more again in FARO to do.

TIP-:SHOPPING.Don't do your FOOD shopping on the site or even in the town of Cabanas itself, to save a couple of quid hop in the taxi and do your shopping in Tavira. Look for a Pingo Doce, Lidl, or Aldi as the savings are considerable. The storage you will have is quite limited to a small fridge in the apartment, so be wise and get dry foods like cereal, noodles, rices etc there.

TIP-:Excursions. There's days out to water parks, zoos, jeep runs etc these can be had cheaper than from your rep or even the onsite office if you only ask about. Pack up to save money on food and drink which will be more expensive at these things.

TIP-:FOOD. In Tavira there's a Chinese if you absolutely must have some, search it out if your dying for a m.s.g fix ...It's just over the foot/car bridge but not the Roman or the new concrete traffic one.It most likely won't be like the Britified dishes but more like real authentic Chinese. There's a couple of Brit places in Tavira that do a FRIED BREAKFAST.

TIP-:TRANSPORT. Across from where your dropped off by your transfer when you arrive is the taxi rank, usually there's one guy there all the time and reasonably priced, infact if you're not going to be travelling much it's a lot cheaper to "cab" it than to hire a car.

For a longer journey the train in a nearby town Conceicao is only 10 mins walk away for the Faro train, and then from there on to elsewhere like Spain or the WEST/NORTH.

Approx four hundred yards from the taxi rank and going slightly downhill towards the sea is car hire, or more in Tavira and FARO. The next town along Tavira, which is really a city (duly informed by the taxi driver) has resctricted scooter hire also, look for the tourist info and it's right next to it.

TIP-Eating out. Local food is just as good as home fair I would say, local speciallity is a cataplan, it's a kind of risotto/stew and being the Algarve fish and seafood is the speciallity. There plenty of eateries and pubs to keep you amused in this small town, one that does a poor interpretation of the fried breakfast. There's CASA Pedros in Cabanas main beach road but is more expensive than most, but the food was worth it, but specify how you want it cooked though ...ie well done etc.

Directly across from Pedros is a family owned cafe, usually showing portugeuse football (cheap and cheerfull) does french fries and I would recommend them with mayo and tom sauce and ice cold coke in a bottle. Look for where the locals go, where they usually are on Saturday nights will be good and cheap, off the side streets there's more too.

There's other eateries that the locals prefer especially on footbal nights, cheap and cheerful and without any frills. There's also a secret bar that does beer for a euro a pint according to a poster on here, so find the hidden gem.

For pictures see http://www.pedrasrainha.com/
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Travel operator: JMC

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