10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Paradise for our 2 year old
"We spent 10 days in June at the Vila Vita, and had a fantastic time. The hotel is a bit like a cross between the 1960's TV show 'the prisoner' and 'teletubby' land (if you have a 2 year old you'll know what I mean) but none the less beautiful for that. I think the food was pricey, but you have to expect that from a hotel in the LHW chain. The food in the main was pretty good, and we had some really good meals. There are also lots of options for good food locally, although the local resort is not all that attractive. Our two year old loved the creche and the swimming pools and had a brilliant holiday, as did we. The facilities for kids are among the best we have seen, and if they're hainv fun it's easier to relax as a parent. We're going back next year, draw your own conclusions."
- Travel date: 18th June 2006
Superb service and excellent facilities
"I have just returned from villa Vita parc after having organised a 3 day customer conference for more than 40 delegates. Events co-ordination and all staff service was excellent .. they could not do enough for us and genuinely seemed as concerned as we were that the event went according to plan. This review may not help those looking for advise about Villa Vita Parc as a holiday destination, but the hotel gardens & surroundings are beautiful, immaculate in fact. Not excellent food but certainly good. The fish restuarant at the beach is very good. All 40 odd delegates raved about their rooms ( almost all upgraded to at least Junior suites). And whilst I did not get the time to really enjoy all the facilities, what I did see looked good .. Would I go back ?? probably !"
- Travel date: 4th June 2006
Good hotel, but perhaps not a 5 star
"We spent a week at Vila Vita Parc in may with our 6-month old daughter. Overall, we found that while the hotel had several positives, it was hard to justify rating it a 5* when compared to other 5* properties we have stayed in. The positives: * Great staff - they were extremely friendly and went out of their way to attend to our needs. Most appear to genuinely ove kids which is a great bonus. * Beautiful grounds - impeccable manicured lawns, beautiful vegetation, and access to two lovely coves with beaches. * Good facilities - gym (although the main gym attached to the healthclub is closed pending refurbishment), tennis courts, pools. * Spacious rooms - we had a juinior suite which had a separate sitting area with more than enough room for a cot. Large-sized balcony as well where we could hang out easily while our daughter slept in the room. Decor is slightly 70s but not tacky. The negative: * there is only one real one and that is the food (as others have mentioned). A few of the restaurants were closed and the ones that were open were all unnecessarily formal. The food is definitely not good value for money (our dinner for 2 ranged from 120 - 150 euros for 2 including wine). Quality of food is average and same is true for room service. This might not be a big problem if eating out of the resort but note that there don't appear to be many good choices nearby."
- Travel date: 15th May 2006
5 star with kids
"We - two adults and three kids (2,5,9) stayed at the Vila Vita Parc for a week during February Half Term. The multitudes of multi lingual Portuguese staff are warm and eager to please and the German management efficient. The hotel grounds are beautiful and the two coves absolutely lovely (access is relatively easy even with a toddler) - yes, our kids spent one sunny afternoon in swim suits playing in the sand! The definite plus points for us were: 1. A very spacious appartment - a large living and dining room, two reasonable sized bedrooms and bathrooms, two balconies and a large (and safe) roof terrace. Be warned though, the 'full' kitchen only has a fridge (good size but doubles as the mini bar so warn your kids / remove the items), a small freezer, a dishwasher and a two ringed hob. There is no toaster, grill or oven.) 2. An indoor pool which was warm and a real boon on a winter holiday. 3. A kids club that is open all year. It was quiet when we were there and I thought the kids might be bored - it wasn't exactly a hive of activity. However, our kids enjoyed it and one of the staff was especially lovely. The kids menu was very reasonably priced making a morning - or a day - at the club extremely good value (the club itself is free for 4 plus). Our toddler was looked after very well - the creche has ample space and nice equipment to play with and a large darkened room with cots in which he slept like a log. 4. Well equipped playgrounds - though more suited to younger kids. Our nine year old daughter and her new found friend were quite happy though. 5. A superb breakfast - not just in quantity and variety but quality too. All the staff were very child friendly and the children had a ball. 6. The transfer from the airport was excellent - all the right car seats, ample room and a kindly driver. 7. All our requests - bar one 'lost' dinner reservation - were handled with super efficiency. On the downside ... 1. If you are in the appartments you can feel a bit detached from the main activity of the hotel and there is a very small resort road to cross. There is nowhere safe to let the kids out in the direct vicinity of the apartments and you need to wait until you enter the hotel grounds proper (though beware the buggies racing around, we had a few near misses and you need to alert your kids). 2. The food, other than breakfast was more of an issue - not unexpected. Out of season not all the restaurants are open - and not the Italian child friendly one. Kids menus are available but the restaurants don't open particularly early in the evening and have the sort of high prices you would expect. The restaurants are also fairly formal. Not sure that in any event the food was much to write home about. Anyhow, none of this makes for a great combination when you have three tired children at the end of the day. Fortunately we had a car, so enjoyed the local delicacy of Frango (Chicken) Piri Piri with a large plate of frites and salad with the locals in nearby Guia and all for some ridiculously small price. 3. The surrounding area and local resort are souless (though probably a broiling nightmare in high season). If you are looking for pretty white washed villages and stunning countryside, you won't find them here. Development is mostly unattractive high rise blocks. All in all, we would return to the resort. If you've got kids, want the space of a self catering appartment with the services of a child friendly five star establishment then the Vila Vita Parc for the most part delivers."
- Travel date: 4th March 2006
4 star Holiday Hotel
"This was our first time in the Algarve. We booked this hotel as it was on the leading Hotel of The World website. it should NOT be included as a LHW as it really is a large package tour hotel. Plus points: i) Very large room with large terrace and nice views of the grounds. ii) Very friendly helpful staff. iii) Massive breakfast buffet - but see below. iv) Lovely and immaculate grounds which go right down to the cliff edge. You can then walk down some steep steps to the beautiful secluded cove and beach. very pretty indeed. v) Beautiful swimming pool. vi) Fabulous indoor pool and health spa. The indoor pool and sauna etc are free to guests. Obviously the beauty treatments are not! Minus points: i) The room had ants. ii) Not enough hot water for 2 people to have a bath in the evening or for 2 to have showers in the morning. We did report this. It happened every night/morning. Not acceptable for a 5 star hotel. iii) Heating and air conditioning are old and circumspect - electric heating in a bathroom?! And the noise from both! iii) The hotel is German owned and managed. Which meant frosty faces over breakfast and at dinner. Sorry, but it's a fact. Germans are miserable even on holiday. Many of the staff are German. And German guests do not like English ones invading their turf! So it was several scowls all around when we appeared at breakfast and dinner! iv) Cold buffet breakfast was great, but the hot...frankfurters and greasy ham. But they did have a pancake station which also did fried eggs and omelettes. v) VERY busy at breakfast even in February, so would not want to see it in summer. vi) Evening meals were DIRE. The Portugese restaurant served poor quality dishes which were not fresh and some of which were inedible. The other restaurant was equally dire. I simply cannot descirbe the slop that was served up. They have closed the Italian restaurant - no doubt because they simply cannot cook Italian. But the only thing on on the menu I could manage was the tagliatelle which was hard and cold and full of salt. vii) We had room service and we got undercooked hamburger, cold hard over fried french fries. And watery tomato soup. Dire. Overall this hotel is very pretty with gorgeous grounds. But it is not a 5 star leading hotel of the world. It is a typical 4 star package tour hotel - a Portugese Riu that you would get on Gran Canaria. You do NOT get organised games and evening karaoke in a 5 star hotel. The guests are also package holiday makers of a certain age. You simply cannot compare this to the Crillon in Paris or the Marbella Club Hotel, but it does try to by including itself in LHW. It should just market itself honestly. There is a huge difference in service, food and guests. As for the resort - awful 1970s tower blocks line the front. Ruining a lovely beach. The resort itself is dated and depressing. But we toured the whole of the Algarve in 3 days and I have to say that it is all dated, dirty, covered in graffiti, and cheap, cheap, cheap. It makes Benidorm look like Beverly Hills. We stayed here 3 nights. We would not return. But then again we would not return to the Algarve which we found dreay, dirty, delapidated and a bit Eastern block. So if you want a niceish hotel then fine, but there are many others like it in much nicer locations."
- Travel date: 27th February 2006
Excellent but pricey
"We stayed at the Vila Vita in February. Our 5th floor sea view room was lovely overlooking the grounds towards the sea. The complex has several restaurants, mini golf and full size pitch and putt course, good indoor and ourdoor pools and 2 gyms (only one open in winter) and what looked like a first class spa and homeapathic medical centre. On the plus side - superb staff, friendly, helpful and very professional, beautiful grounds, rooms, public areas, well located to visit all the Algarve and an outstanding breakfast ( though some folks who were looking for a full cooked english were les impressed with the massive buffet) and a first class wine list. A few tiny niggles, for me the place was just a little too well manicured so the grounds has an artificial feel, the food was perfectly OK but not up to the 5* prices charged and the Valentine's Day dinner was a rip off - small, tepid portions on oversize plates does not make Gourmet unless the taste is outstanding and ours was not. Praps because of this the restaurants were often nearly empty which made us more critical of the food. Other guests said that the tennis courts were expensive to use. In spite of these moans I would go back again any time and readily recommend this German run hotel but maybe next time eat out more often."
- Travel date: 23rd February 2006
Beautiful Hotel, faultless
"Stayed for 10 days in June, in Oasis Park which is a village of small suites. We had a Junior Suite which was fine for our 4 yr old and 2 yr old (still in a cot). Once he's in a bed we will need a Family Suite which is 2 bedrooms. The room was lovely, bedroom, lounge area where the kids slept. The grounds of this hotel are stunning and immaculate. Certainly the best I've seen in Europe. The restuarants are all good, very good choice, you really do not need to leave the hotel for anything as there is such variety in foods, Italian, Portuguese, European, Grill, and more. The babysitting service was very good - a lovely girl. The swimming pools were all 1st class. The hotel is expensive all summer, and mega expensive in August, so when our kids are school age and we need 2 rooms or a family suite, sadly I do not think we will visiting in August. Otherwise a true Delxue Hotel in every way."
- Travel date: 26th July 2005
"We were staying at the Sheraton Algarve Pine Cliffs Golf resort and spa, but had Christmas day lunch here and it was very quiet and there were wonderful service and grounds. However the beach access was limited. The lunch was excellent."
- Travel date: 4th January 2005
Children and Parents Paradise
"We took our children and grandchildren to what we consider the best child friendly luxury hotel we have ever been to. The Algarve has just had the best weather in Europe so to be swimming in an outside pool with my 4 year old grand-daughter on Dec 31 in temperatures of 72 degrees in the sun was an extra bonus! This hotel resort with its beautiful gardens, swans swimming in the lake, mini golf course, cliffsde walks, secluded sandy beach, inside swimming pool, when it is too cold outside, very friendly staff, buggies taking you about from A to B if you are lazy. A Creche for the under fours, a kids club, very attractive family suites,the list is endless. The one drawback is that it can be very expensive. If you want it to be,and we were slightlly dissapointed with a very expensive New Years Eve dinner dance. We will definately go back, but will use the other cheaper attractions of the outsde locality to our advantage."
- Travel date: 2nd January 2005
Very Good and very expensive
"No question this is a very nice hotel, but not many previous reviewers mentioned value for money, which is poor. Also, the Sheraton Algarve is a far better place for kids. The swimming pools at VVP are ordinary; there's very little room around them for kids to play. Biggest gripe was the restaurants; they are numerous but are all VERY similar. Lengthy menu descriptions and hefty prices often failed to live up to expectations. Best if you can eat salt by the spoonful (see below). Childrens menu is good in all but none open before 7pm. Beautiful grounds, but don't leave the hotel. Armacao de Pera, locally, is well worth avoiding, especially the beach, unless you enjoy a good sandblasting."
- Travel date: 4th November 2004
Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa is also called
- Vila Vita Parc Hotel
- Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa
- vila vita parc porches