11 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
4 star all the way
"This Hotel was exactly as we imagined it would be from other reviews.We were looked after from check in to check out, nothing was to much trouble. The rooms all have superb sea views with double glass windows and are well equiped with air conditioning,a safe (1.25euros per night) power shower, hair dryer, etc, etc. There is a roof top pool, sauna, jacuzzi and extensive gardens. Breakfast was continental style which was fine by us, and they even lay on a glass of sparkling wine, if you wish to dine here for lunch or dinner use the Montanha Restaurant below, good food at reasonable prices. We booked our room with RoomsNet.com and paid Â£273 for a standard double for the week, when we arrived the tariff in reception was 90euros per night. We booked our flight with TAP the portugese airline from Gatwick, 2 passengers total price Â£234, free paper, free meal, free drinks, free sit together. There is a Hotel Courtesy bus in to Funchal that leaves at 9.30 11.30 14.00 16.00 and 18.00 and returns 30 minutes later, no service on Sunday, where it drops you in Funchal is where you pick it up for the return journey (it's right outside a shopping centre which has toilets just inside the entrance always good to know) We used the local buses to travel around, timetable 1.25 euros from the information centre in town, they were cheap, clean, and on time. Cable car to Monte 10euros one way 15 euros return, the toboggan 25 euros for two. "
- Travel date: 30th March 2009
Wonderful Ocean Gardens
"My friend and I stayed for a week from the end of July and thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the hotel. It is spotlessly clean, beautifully decorated and the staff were exceptionally helpful. The courtesy bus into Funchal was a bonus (about 10 minute ride) and although the last one back was very early evening, we had no problem catching local buses. Guests ranged from couples in theirs 20s to older couples, but there were not many children. Breakfast was typical buffet of different bread, rolls, croissants, cakes, yoghurts, sliced fresh fruit (pineapple, kiwi, oranges, melon), hard boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, bacon and frankfurters, ham, salami, cheese, yoghurts, fruit juice, tea and coffee. Several days we went out for the morning and came back around 3pm for a late lunch on the terrace, which has fabulous views down over the bay of Funchal. If you like garlic their garlic bread is delicious and if you have a ham and cheese toasted sandwich it is made with garlic bread. Make sure you ask for toasties without garlic if you don't like it. Very reasonable prices for sandwiches and for the evening meals. Can recommend the Tuna Madeira Style at about 11 euros for a lovely tuna steak with very tasty local boiled potatoes and veg (or chips and salad if you prefer). Wine starts at about 11 euros on the list, but you can ask for a bottle of house red which is about 7 euros and very drinkable. The swimming pool on the roof is a good size and surrounded by beautiful terraces and gardens, with stunning views from seating, down over the bay. Traffic noise minimal up there, but can be heard from about 6 in the morning until about 11 at night in your room if you leave the patio doors open. It is mostly light traffic with the odd bus or bin lorry and we did not find it a problem, although some people who like absolute quiet might. Taxi from airport 20 euros but more going back (30). I will definitely be returning to Madeira and would not stay anywhere else. It is close enough to Funchal to be able to get in and out easily, but far enough away from the overall noise and bustle of the city. Would recommend this hotel to anyone. It was quite quiet for early August and the snack bar by the pool was not open, but there was a phone you could use to ring down for drinks/food to be brought up, and a waitress came up every half hour or so to see if anyone wanted anything. To sum up, a cracking hotel in a good location with great service."
- Travel date: 11th September 2008
Great view, nice hotel
"HOTEL: + great view + renovated not long ago + clean rooms & common areas + nice teracce on the roof, swimming pool, view of Funchal + friendly staff - a bit remote (it's OK for hiking trips, but once you're back at the hotel you cannot go anywhere on foot - steep&narrow roads surround it, too far to the city, no pavements, no other stores/restaurants/bars anywhere within walking distance) - but this is just a comment of the location, which has nothing to do with the quality of the hotel itself! - restaurant is nothing special, we preferred eating someplace else; waiters are slow (but kind) In short: a very nice hotel, would definitely recommend it, but it's not for those who want to be near the city center. We had a room with a sea&panoramic view - this was great, since we had also a lovely view of Funchal. There were fireworks due to 500th anniversary of the city, and it can really be nicely seen from these rooms (see the picture attached) - so definitely good location for observing new year's fireworks. Breakfast was OK, choice was good enough to prepare yourself for a day of hiking."
- Travel date: 30th August 2008
"I would agree with all the positive comments so no point repeating all the positives. you could not fault this hotel for breakfast for facilitiesand service but nothing is perfect-so at risk of being thought negative,here are some points to look out for 1--dont try and walk down the road-no footpath and too dangerous 2the much praised restaurant is only average-food not as good as the setting 3the bar area is usually empty so you are as well staying on in town to drink and have a nightcap before bed 4watch you are not overcharged on the way back from town we were warned by a taxi driver and still got ripped off but all these are minor compared to the fabulous pluses the hotel offers a place you should visit to avoid all the bucket and spade merchants"
- Travel date: 23rd July 2008
"Married couple in early 40s from South Wales We were blessed with a fabulous 7 nights stay at the fantastic Ocean Gardens, it really is a wonderful hotel - best 4 star hotel we have stayed in - its standard is more than the four stars awarded, very clean not a spec of dust in sight, you could see your reflection in the marble floors. The views from the Montana Restaurant (traditional Madeira style - like a taverna), breakfast rooms, roof top pool and gardens are spectacular, one of the best views of Funchal on the island. Although the hotel is situated on the cliff top approx 1.5 miles from Funchal there is a courtesy bus available free of charge into Funchal, you can also catch a local bus for 2 euros - bus stop right outside hotel. Although the location is a short distance from the centre of Funchal, its position provides views which you would not have from any of the hotels within the main hotel district, worth the short bus ride every day. The bedrooms are decorated/furnished to a high standard (very comfortable) and spacious with sea views, we could see birds of prey and dolphin's from our balcony, a wonderful experience - binoculars a must. The extensive menu, food and service is excellent within the Montana restaurant and very good value for money, locals use it (says it all) a three course meal with wine for 2 on average costs approx 44 euros. If you are looking for a quality hotel with excellent views and wonderful gardens then Ocean Gardens is the hotel for you. We will be back!!!"
- Travel date: 7th June 2008
"Just come back from a 4 night stay at the Ocean Gardens Hotel. We booked direct with the hotel and the service we received was excellent, both before and during the stay. The rooms were spacious and had the sea view that was promised. My only complaint would be that due the wooden floors you could hear the people above walking around their room. There was the usual continental breakfast with fantastic views out to sea and over to Funchal. We loved the location of this hotel as it was outside all the hussle and bustle of Funchal and staying in the Hotel zone there would have been our idea of hell, as we like peace and quiet. We found the hotel after one slight detour! When you come past the petrol station at the roundabout in Cancela, take the road to Funchal on the left (as both directions point to Funchal) and the hotel is on that road. We ate in the hotel twice - the first time was Good Friday and even though we had booked as we were on an evening flight, the waiters was pacing up and down past our table trying to get us to eat up as quick as possible - which we couldn't understand at the time as it is open until 12am. But it turned out they wanted us to go so they could go home, which did ruin the meal there for us. It was better the second time but it you want a really nice meal, we a relaxed pace of service and top quality food, go into Sao Goncalo - turn right out of the hotel, and it is about 3minutes down the road, on the left past the church - and eat at Zarcoes. The food was delicious and it was lovely to see the views as the sun set at night. We had a car, but we caught the hotel bus into Funchal, which was a much better idea as Funchal is much busier than we expected. We did the cable car up to Monte and the tobogan back down again, though it is worth noting that the tobogan stops at Livemente and that you need to then find a way back into town (there is a bus stop or taxis or you can walk - apparently it is about 3kms). The other days we went off exploring the island. The volcanic pools at Porto Moniz are worth seeing if you get out that way - we just wished it was warmer so that we could have gone for a dip! The weather does change a lot - we saw it go from 2 to 18 degrees as we went to different parts of the island, so you need to go prepared! We liked the hotel a lot and would definitely stay there again if we went back to Madeira. If you like peace and quiet, excellent views, but be near enough to the city you can visit if you want, then this is the place for you!"
- Travel date: 27th March 2008
fab, fab, fab!
"If you go to Madeira DON'T even consider staying anywhere else!! This hotel is amazing. I can't think of anywhere else that we have been where we have been so well looked after. The hotel's location was great. It's probably too far to walk especially back from Funchal as it's on a steep hill down in to Funchal. However, I thought that the FREE hotel bus in to Funchal was very good and to be honest, there was a bus stop right outside the hotel anyway so you could get a regular bus or cab easily if you needed to. We had a hire car which was great for seeing around the island. The views from the room and hotel in general, were spectacular. Sunrise from your balcony and sunset from the roof terrace. Hotel atmosphere was very relaxed and friendly and the staff could not do enough to help you. They even let us keep our room all day on check out day. We didn't leave until the afternoon and used the pool facilities on the last day. They loaned us free towels for pool use. Pool area and rooftop gardens were very well thought out and beautifully landscaped to give people privacy within the garden. There was many hidden tables and chairs and even a cave! We felt like kids exploring the garden. The pool was beautiful although too cold to use while we were there. The jacuzzi was nice though - heated to 37 degrees and very relaxing. What was most fantastic was that we ordered food in the restaurant and the waiters were more than happy to bring it up to our room for us which was fantastic as we were there with 2 children under 5 and so we were room bound in the evenings. They brought the food to us and were so kind and friendly about it. The food was fantastic. The restaurant seemed to specialise in meat dishes and we sampled a few dishes all cooked beautifully - very sucullent meat and fresh salad. Also massive portion sizes. One night we ordered tomato and onion soup and it came in a terrine! More than enough for 2 huge bowls and it cost about 3 euros! The restaurant was very reasonable. We only ordered one dish to share and the portions were so generous! Standard of cleaning everywhere in the hotel was very high. There always seemed to be someone cleaning at all times of the day! The whole place was spotless. There was a free Internet terminal in reception which was quite useful. Overall we were made to feel very welcome and we felt very comfortable and looked after. The staff were the most friendly and helpful hoteliers that we have ever encountered. I would recommend this hotel to anyone as the service makes such a difference to your holiday experience. TIP - Take a kettle and a couple of cups if you want hot drinks in your room as there are no tea or coffee facilities in the room. - anyone attempting to locate the hotel in a hire car should follow the hotel's instructions below (copied and pasted from an email I received from the hotel), Route description to the Hotel Ocean Gardens - When you leave the airport, take the highway (via rÃ¡pida) in the direction of Funchal. Drive all the way until you reach exit nÂº 15 CANCELA / GARAJAU, ride up und turn right at the crossing at the end of the exit road, this road leads you to a roundabout, get in the roundabout and leave at the sign HOTEL, which is in the direction of Funchal, go right in front until you see another sign with HOTEL written on, turn left down the road in the direction of Funchal, go past the entrance of the highway to Funchal, go straight ahead always in the direction of Funchal (it's a secondary road, that's why you don't take the highway) take note that both roads leads you to Funchal. Go always in front and after a viewpoint named the PinÃ¡culo, you'll see a little further the Hotel Ocean Gardens on the left-hand side of the road. Don't worry, it's actually much more straight forward than it sounds!"
- Travel date: 27th March 2008
"Contrary to reviews we read before going, you really don't need a car to stay here. Get the number 13 local bus from outside the airport and for 2 euros 65 it will drop you outside the hotel. It takes about 20 mins and takes the smaller roads so better than rushing down the motorway. There are several buses every hour from outside the hotel to and from the centre, they are fast and cheap and keep going until late in the evening. We did walk into the centre one day, it took an hour but we did keep stopping to take photos and enjoy the view. It was so good we walked back too! The bus service as a whole is excellent, cheap, frequent and on time. Coverage of the island is also excellent. Couldn't fault the hotel either, efficient, freindly service, clean and comfortable. Every room has a sea view. There is also a restaurant for lunches and evening meals which is frequented by locals. We would certainly go again."
- Travel date: 24th February 2008
Excellent price value and spectacular views.
"Transfer from Funchal airport to the hotel was included in our package so we did not experience any trouble finding the hotel. It was only a 15 minute drive, which is comparatively short and therefore very welcome after an early bird 4 hour flight. Arriving at the hotel we were immediately taken aback by the spectacular views over Funchal bay offered by the hotel site. Ocean Gardens Hotel is located on a rock rising high above the sea and far and wide the only property in the area, which gives it an air of exclusiveness. We had requested sea view in advance, unnecessarily as turned out, because all 40 rooms offer ample views on the strikingly calm Atlantic. The rooms are elegant and comfortably furbished. A sliding door offers access to the balcony. The bathroom is spacious, featuring a large bath with shower, marble wash-basin, wall covering mirror and a separate toilet area. When thereâs no traffic, the silence is overwhelming. Unfortunately the road that runs by the hotel is a busy thoroughfare at least by day time. During the evening the traffic flow slows down gradually and there is no significant noise pollution at night. Our package was B&B based but for an additional daily fee of EUR 20 you can upgrade to half board. The restaurant, highly esteemed by both tourists and locals is very good and worth a bite, but please don't deny yourself the large amount of good restaurants offered by Funchal and surroundings by dining in the hotel every evening. Apart from that: they play the same annoying muzak as heard in the hotel's public areas all day only on an even higher volume. I would suggest you order the excellent food for takeaway like we did and have dinner in your room. Although the hotel doesn't advertise room service the staff is more than willing to bring the food to your room. Breakfast is excellent featuring deliciously fresh fruit, good coffee, great Madeira bread and the obligatory variety of hot and cold items. The breakfast room offers the most spectacular panorama of Funchal. Service is great and the staff is very friendly and always prepared to provide you with the right information. As mentioned in previous reviews accessibility to Funchal is poor unless you have a rental car. The timetable of the complimentary shuttle may raise a few eyebrows. Funchal public transport provides a bus service (line 39) between Funchal and the hotel, which stops at the hotel once an hour. Bus tickets are EUR 1.40 per ride but itâs much cheaper to buy the special chip card at the bus station downtown, which can be recharged for only EUR 0.80 per ride and is valid on all yellow buses of the âHorÃ¡rios do Funchalâ public transport company. The sun has been conspicuous by its absence during our eleven days stay, so we havenât frequented the rooftop poolside a lot. Needless to say that on the few occasions the weathergods allowed us a ray or two it was pure heaven. The gardenlike Pros: Ocean Gardens Hotel is a crisp and clean property in a pleasant area not spoiled by the advancing mass tourism offering excellent service, friendly staff, comfortable and stylish rooms, good food, spectacular views from both rooms and public areas, a well maintained roof top garden terrace with outdoor pool (again offering great views) and at only short distance from the airport. Excellent price value at only EUR 500 for 11 days. Contras: When you donât have a rental car youâre totally depending on the hotel shuttle (with its illogic time schedule) and a irregular bus service to Funchal. However the bumpy but beautiful 15 minute bus ride to Funchal and back is one of the things I miss most about my Madeira holiday. I will recommend this hotel to anyone whoâs planning to visit Madeira. Please donât book a hotel in the Lido area west of Funchal, unless you like the Soviet way of life. The hotel district is packed with ugly high-rise properties built in the late sixties and completely lacks any kind of ambience or atmosphere."
- Travel date: 15th February 2007
"Ocean Gardens Hotel is situated to the east of Funchal with a panoramic view over the harbour and town. It took a little finding as we arrived by hire car. We thought more detailed instructions on the web site would be helpful. Having got that minor niggle out of the way I can now tell you all the good bits. The hotel is privately owned with about 50 bedrooms all with full sea views. No horrendous hiking up of prices to get a glimpse of the sea here! The hotel is new, less than 3 years old and is maintained to a very high standard. The staff were very friendly and couldn't be faulted. We took the B&B option giving us the opportunity to try out restaurants in town. We also ate at the hotel restaurant which is well patronised by locals The food is typical Madeiran fare, good quality and excellent value. And the icing on the cake? The price. A week's B&B for 2 for less than Â£250. We'll be back!"
- Travel date: 31st January 2007
Very nice hotel
"The hotel is situated in Sao Goncalo which is a suburb very close to Funchal. It is newly built, very elegant, you have from everywhere (room, terace, breakfast room). The staff is very nice and they help if you had any question. The only problem is that you canÂ´t walk to Funchal, you have to take the bus. The hotel has a town shuttle service for free, but the timing is not good. Only one local bus stops in the front of the hotel. You shouldnÂ´t go out on Sunday evening, because the last bus leaves from the city centre at 21.45. You have to take the taxi which is not cheap (about 8 Euros). But I would recommend the hotel if you wanÂ´t to have a nice and peacefull holiday."
- Travel date: 23rd November 2006
Ocean Gardens is also called
- Ocean Gardens Hotel
- ocean gardens funchal
- ocean gardens hotel funchal