13 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Spent one week at the Estrelicia with my...
"Spent one week at the Estrelicia with my mother (aged 35 and 51 respectively), the first and the last day of our stay were beautiful sunny hot days, the intervening days very wet and cool. Location of hotel: As it is a hilly island, it is hard to escape the steep walks but after a hard day of sightseeing to have to climb to this hotel was hard going - not recommended for the elderly or the unfit. Hotel Quality: The rooms were small but adequate - most of them including our own had a small balcony and ours in particular was poolside. The decor was a bit dated but clean. Had a fridge and hairdryer and we got a coffee percolator from reception- no kettles available. Staff: Very friendly Food: We went B&B and their buffet was quite nice - sausages and bacon not like our own! We tried the dinner on a couple of nights - were a bit stingy with their portions and overpriced for what you get - better to try the restaurants in the area if you can bare to walk back up the hill with a full stomach! There are a couple of pizza restaurants that were cheap and excellent quality. My mother got food poisoning in an 'authentic' restaurant from chicken. Avoid the one that gives out free madeira wine as an enticement to go in! Lots of things to do on this island - tours are very reasonable and can be booked in an office near the hotel."
- Travel date: 9th May 2008
Me and a friend booked this holday via t...
"Me and a friend booked this holday via teletext holidays...we asked for a location which would have sun, sand, be relaxing but still would have stuff for us to do (as we are both 24)...he said madeira, funchal would be ideal....HE LIED!!!!!!! As soon as i arrived at the airport, i realised we were the youngest, as everyone was over 50!!! The hotel was a let down....the rooms were tiny...no balcony....one staff member was sooooo rude and unhelpful....breakfast was horrible....we never ate there again..... Madeira was a nice place and we just found stuff to do, but it did not feel like a holiday... Nice place, but would not go there again x"
- Travel date: 21st March 2008
My wife and I have recently returned fro...
"My wife and I have recently returned from a holiday in Madeira, staying in Funchal for 7 nights at the hotel Dorisol Estrelicia in the lido district of the city. The holiday itself was disappointing due to the large amount of development taking place, especially of the high rise variety in Funchal, which, IMHO is ruining the island as a tourist destination as, little by little, it is becoming like the Costa del concrete. Having said that, the hotel Dorisol Estrelicia was a great place to stay. Location wise, not brilliant as it was necessary to climb 138 steps to the front door, but once inside it was excellent. Lovely staff, clean hotel, good food, comfortable rooms, and all for a small charge per night. I would thoroughly recommend it to any traveller, so long as they are fit and able."
- Travel date: 21st December 2007
A Very Satisfactory Hotel
"Stayed at the Estrelicia for a week at the end of Jan, and was quite satisfied, especially in view of the very reasonable price. Had a large room, well lighted and well equipped with a writing desk (a little worn though), a coffee table and two chairs, a large cupboard with folding doors and also a drawer, all in all ample room for clothes. The bathroom was ok and well cleaned. The room had a balcony with two extra chairs, though with my room on the second floor, the ocean view was a bit restricted. Higher up (it was a highrise building), the view would be magnificent. The breakfast buffet included was ok with fresh rolls, freshly made fruit salad and a couple of hot dishes (eggs/sausages/bacon). The pool cafeteria had a nice little menu, including a good espada with fried banana, absolutely worth trying. Alternatively, there was a wide selection of eateris and pubs close by and within walking distance, including several really quite good ones. Hotel amenities include an outdoor pool, ping-pong tables and some board games on loan, a tennis court (rather expensive to rent), a well-stocked exercise room and a free heated indoor pool with jacuzzi. This was really a pleasure to use in January! A big nice lobby with free use of Internet (there was a nominal fee, but the people behind the desk never cared about charging you). The hotel service people was exceptionally friendly and helpful. Some negative things: The soundproofing wasn't too good so your room neighbours coming in late at night happy and a bit tipsy might cause a problem. The beds, and especially the pillow, was a bit hard. And then there was an exceptionally steep little hill the last 100 meters from the main road up to the entrance, really a challenge for elderly people. Taxis drive right up to the door, though. A taxiride to downtown was regularly about 4 euros, but there were several attempts during the week by drivers to cheat me and and others in my travelling party through different tricks: Driving a roundabout route, "forgetting" to put on the taxametre, pushing a button which added a couple of euros to the price (presumably for night fare) etc. Walking to downtown to and from downtown to avoid the hassle was absolutely an option: A brisk 15-20 minutes. There were also cheap local busses."
- Travel date: 8th February 2006
Excellent place to stay
"The rooms are fresh, very comfortable and small but the en-suite bathrooms are spacious which I thought was a good trade-off as you can, if so inclined, sing and dance around while shaving....well...each to their own. Lots of storage space, no mini-bar unless you order same but a number of dispensing machines outside the lifts take care of most non-alcoholic needs. Nice hill and sea view from 4th floor with or without balcony as there is a nice alcove with table and two chairs beside sliding windows....lovely and cool and almost as good if not better than a small balcony. Staff are pleasant in a cursory sort of way.Everyone claims English is their second language but those who clearly struggle with it just get huffy rather than admit not understanding...this is quite common everywhere in Madeira so don't be fazed if you get blank looks for the simplest questions asked in the friendliest most mannerly way. Madeirans can be friendly but evaluate who you're dealing with first before wearing your heart on your sleeve as some are downright stroppy...just like everywhere really....reminds me of Paris where being as self-sufficient and monosyllabic as possible works a treat.Smile if you see a smile , don't if you don't...hard for those of a terminally sunny disposition. The entrance to the hotel is atop a very very steep hill which is common for Madeira so don't even think about it if you have walking difficulties unless you intend using taxis frequently @ circa Euro 5 per trip to/from Funchal.It should be Euro 3.50 ish but they tended to quote five euro when asked in advance and they stick to that regardless.Only one taxi actually turned on the meter during our week there, so perhaps asking in advance can work against you as well, if you follow me. The food at the Estrelicia, self-service breakfast to be precise, was adequate but not consistent in what was offered each morning.Sometimes there was tepid scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage, other times not.There was always cereals, bread, cheese, processed ham, juice, toast if you make it yourself, fruit but that ran out too frequently for some.Staff in the restaurant struggled to smile which lent an unnecessarily dour atmosphere to the proceedings but did their jobs of clearing and setting. All in all this is a package holiday factory but a good one. Do NOT miss the Madeira Mandolin Orchestra if they are at the Teatro Municipal or the Museo Quinta Das Cruzes.If at the latter go two hours early and enjoy the gardens first.....perfection. Do NOT miss the Mercado, fruit and veg market...up-stairs particularly and the fish market below to see the Mareno ,Espada and massive Tuna. Do NOT go on the eastern tour in a people carrier if prone to travel sickness.By all means go by coach. The best restaurant we visited was the Premier (aka Charcoal Grill) on the right hand side as you walk downhill from the hotel. The welcome is so warm and the service smiling with just the right degree of attention and the food is first class and modestly priced. The Indian place next door offered a curt unsmiling offhand welcome and the male waiting staff seemed overwhelmed when 4 couples arrived at the same time.When they regained their composure there was a hint of a smile but I sense these two are natural bullies who think customers are a nuisance.However, the food was quite good, but not good enough to compensate for the chilly atmosphere created by these two waiters thoroughly unsuited to public service.No doubt it is reflected in their turnover. In Funchal we loved the small local restaurant called Tigal on the Rua de Carriera (sp?) and the very small bars you find on the trevasses (sp?) where they'll make you a heartwarming Poncha from scratch. The bistros on the lower harbour might best be avoided as their staff persistently and irritatingly solicit passers-by in a manner I've only seen on the Reeperbahn in Hamburg circa 1970...nuff said....who needs it. All the usual activites such as the cable-cars, gardens, carnivals are great fun.Keep in mind that the wicker toboggan rides do not get you all the way back down to Funchal so add a stiff Euro 8 taxi fare to the initial cost plus another tenner for a photo, which is a must, but it adds up to a tidy sum for one particular item. There is simply no alternative to this taxi so don't be fooled into thinking that Funchal harbour is a ten minute walk downhill because you can see it...it is approx 2 miles away and two miles of the steepest hill imagineable...too dangerous to walk in my view. Madeira is just magical.....'can't wait to return and the Estrelicia will do fine too."
- Travel date: 20th February 2005
Madeira, the beautiful, island of flowers
"The Hotel, Estrelicia,is a very good place to stay in Funchal, albeit at the top of a steep hill,(good for toning up your figure) The hotel itself was spotless, the service was excellent, the food was generally good.the facilities at this hotel, were very good, ranging from outdoor and indoor swimming pools,the indoor with a jaccuzi,and gymnasium, if you want it. There is also a full size tennis court.We were lucky when we went, we had continuous good weather.(Really spoiled us!) The flowers that grow all over the Island are beautiful. The gardens at the top of the cable car are breathtaking. Funchal, well worth a visit. Mrs J McKane"
- Travel date: 15th February 2005
Some work needed
"Just spent a week at this hotel, ok for two stars but not three.The bedroom was small, and needed to be refurbished, it was very dated indeed.The bathroom was very small and dark, it was a case of one in at a time. It is up quite a steep hill, so any trip down, is a pain back up, ok if fit. Lots of places to eat out, but all very much the same,the only one that we did not like, was the Indian one (just down the hill) poor sevice, starter ok, but main meal very bad, dont go if you like Indian food.The Fire work display on New Years eve in Funchal was fantastic, and made it all worth while."
- Travel date: 11th January 2005
Building Site Nightmare
"We stayed here in low season whilst they were doing some building work. It was extremely noisy and the room shook whenever the builders were drilling! This hotel is situated on a small complex with two Aparthotels and the staff were really great and sorted us out with a great room with a balcony with sea views and most importantly away from the building work! Rather than stay here I'd recommend the Aparthotel Buganvilla on the same site. You get the best of both worlds as breakfast is included but you get a kitchenette and dining area in your room. The only thing is that in low season the pool here is frrrrreeeezing! It's well worth the walk up the hill to the Estrelicia where the pool is heated."
- Travel date: 22nd July 2004
good 3 star hotel
"Hotel is a good 3 star choice, very clean, friendly staff, breakfast limited chioce but plentiful. Not for those with walking problems but located with a plentiful selection of good resturants nearby. improvements going on at the moment so quite a bit of building noise. nice new indoor pool and gym just opened entertainment poor except for the sunday night parrot show Went for 2 weeks to the island but one week is enough to see the sights"
- Travel date: 26th May 2004
Worth every step up the hill
"Just returned from a five day stay at the HotelEstrelicia in Funchal< Maderia. We had a great room and great service. The room was clean andserviced every day. The hotel personel werefriendly and were will to help out in any way theycould. The buffet breakfast was outstanding.You could get real tired walking up and down thesteep hill to the hotel but there was a bus thatyou could ride to town several times a day.Local transportation was at the bottom of the hill.This is probably one of the best Best WesternsI have stayed in for the value it offered.We also had a great view of the harbor and the sea."
- Travel date: 2nd January 2004
Good 3 *** Hotel
"For a 3*** hotel this Estrelicia is a nice and quiet place to stay. Nice rooms ( for the price ) and two normal pools which you can use all day round. An excelent entertainement team will make your nights nice. Good food and nice staff. If you don't want to spend lots of money then this is the place to stay. Don't forget to hire a car and see this beautifull island from side to side."
- Travel date: 4th August 2003
"Stayed at this hotel in October 2002, hotel was up a 100 metre hill so if you are not good on your feet beware. Hotel was comfortable but a little untidy otherwise a nice place to stay and Funchal is just beautiful"
- Travel date: 30th March 2003
Dorisol Estrelicia is also called
- Dorisol Estrelicia Hotel
- dorisol estrelicia funchal
- dorisol estrelicia hotel funchal