15 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Great stay, great staff
"We had an excellent stay at the Pousada for a landmark birthday. Particular thanks to all the staff who made us so very welcome throughout the long weekend. From reception to the bar and the chamber maids, everyone was very helpful and a credit to the hotel. Peaceful location, great views, good food. Thanks to the hotel for my little gift on my birthday, what a surprise."
- Travel date: 24th November 2010
Very good location and modern rooms
"This palace is very well situated, just in the shore of Douro river and with a beautiful view. The rooms are very modern and all the hotel grounds are nice. The breakfast was OK. The staff was very nice but they take too long to get me a room and they even forget to take the luggage to the room. That's not acceptable in a hotel like this."
- Travel date: 10th November 2010
"Having we flown in on our Â£50 RyanAir return tickets, we checked into the Pousada for our half price special deal and negotiated an upgrade to a superb room with a view over the Douro. Breakfast was comprehensive and very good. The dinner we eat in the Pousada was the best of our three night stay. In addition we made good use of the indoor and outdoor swimming pools and the outdoor sitting areas. The service was fine. The many young waiters and waitresses were friendly and well trained. The older staff were more reserved but were also friendly and helpful with good English. The layout of the hotel is confusing but a 15 minute exploration soon reveals the layout. Even if the hotel looks only half full it is still advisable to book a table in the restaurant for dinner, as the Pousada provides venues for conferences and other businees meetings that will use the restaurant. The hotel is a few kilometres from the centre of Porto. Apart from Taxis the easiest way to get in and out of the centre is to use the bus service that runs round the river road to Ribiera. Alternatively walking to Ribiera only takes 40 minutes with a splendid river view along the way."
- Travel date: 21st October 2010
WOW! What a wonderful and beautiful property!
"We were told of this place by a Porto businessman. Sight unseen, we showed up. WOW! What an awesome place......so very lovingly (and accurately) restored to its historic splendor. The public rooms are spectacular. The guest rooms are actually in a restored/redone mill building next door/attached to the palace building. We had a "room with a view" to die for.....the property sits on the Douro River, and our view was riverfront. Food was great, too. Wonderful spread laid out for breakfast each morning. Staff is excellent....Suzanna took the time to personally show me points of interest and mark them on a map for me. Rooms are a little smallish, but very chic. Wireless in room and free. Outdoor infinity pool, indoor pool, sauna, steam...all included. Quality throughout this place! I HIGHLY recommend this hotel!"
- Travel date: 25th September 2010
"We felt lucky to have booked at this hotel. When we first arrived in OPorto the main tourist area of OPorto was not what we expected, so a hotel in that area would not have been our preference. The location of this hotel, with a beautiful pool and nice sized rooms right on the river was worth the taxi fares. The staff were helpful with advice on where to go, and kindly organised a recommended guided tour of the Douro Valley by car (some of the river cruises in July looked like they were packed to the rafters going by the view of them from our room). The deserts in the hotel restaurant were to die for, and the breakfasts were very nice. Whilst our room had excellent fittings and nicely furnished, it was all wall to wall dark mustard colour which was was easy to leave behind. A really enjoyable stay."
- Travel date: 26th August 2010
Peaceful stay in a very well restored historical building
"Overall a very nice experience. Great old building, nice, modern, big and well appointed rooms. The service is below what you expect in a hotel of this category though. This should be reviewed if the hotel wants to keep a high standard. The staff was very friendly although insecure and lacked experience. We ordered some cocktails at the bar but there were some ingredients missing (such as bacardi rum!) which is not acceptable. But we could have been offered other cocktails for free, for example. For the beauty of the palace and the big rooms it deserves a 5 star in the hope that il will work on the shortcomings."
- Travel date: 25th August 2010
Impressive renovation by River Douro but awful service
"The hotel has been recently renovated from two buildings about 1km out of the centre of Oprto - one old palace and a cereal store, leads to an unusual layout of going from one building (restaurant & reception) to another (bedrooms). Now structurally impressive with a good pool area at the riverside. However, the chaotic nature of their service at the bar and restaurant was unbelievably poor. For instance, the bar had no staff on either evening we ate there - we had to search out restaurant waiters to get a drink. When we were asked to wait for a table, they put us in the lounge then forgot about us!. Reception was limited in offering useful ideas for sightseeing. Internet access was good. Location is awkward for sightseeing but they are planning to introduce a (free?) shuttlebus."
- Travel date: 9th August 2010
Beautifuly restored palace on the banks of the Douro river!
"Stayed four nights at the Pousada Palacio do Freixo. Beautifuly restored palace! Great mix of old with the new! We had a suite with beautiful view of the Douro River and bridges. If you rent a car with navigation system, good luck finding the place! Enter Rue do Frexio and you'll find your way. It's right beside the marina, the entrance is not easy to notice when you don't know. Keep your right at the roundabout and you'll notice the sign. Hotel staff say they are working on that issue but they should just mention it on their website. Location is good if you have car or open to taxi services. Our suite was very big, even for North American standards! Breakfast buffet was good. Lunch, snacks or cocktails by the pool are nice. Dinner is ok, a bit on the salty side. Service at the bar was non-existant. But service elsewhere was always prompt and courteous. Staff at reception were nice and effectve. However, when recommanding restaurants, they always recommanded tourist-trap places. We were fortunate to have friends from Portugal who recommanded places. If you're looking for great fin dinning, stay away from the Ribeira area. It is fun and lively, but quality of food is not at par. We had dinner at PORTUCALE which is old-school style with great service. Great view of the city for the restaurant is on the rooftop of a hotel. It's way out of the tourist area and has little ambiance, but great service & meal. RUI PAULA'S DOP in Old Town part of Porto was a great dinner experience. Much more contemporary. We had the chef's tasting menu and Rui Paula himself came to our table to ask questions as to our likes and dislikes. Meal was great!!! If you have a car, drive out to the Douro Valley! So worth the trip!!! Awesome wineries and great wine for so little! We've made many wine routes all over Europe and California and the Douro Valley's wine are incredible and soooo affordable! Many need reservations for tastings however..."
- Travel date: 4th August 2010
the renovation is so well done that it all deserves praise
"Porto, itself a nice city but it has since 2009 also now a Pousada (Thu postage) and I have visited several Pousada's but this surpasses everything! In an old flour or corn plant has created a hotel with all modern conveniences of today. While retaining old atmosphere of the old factory! The old house (palace) is reception and restaurant, bar etc. and the usual rooms. A lovely (outdoor) pool. With a huge beautiful view over the Douro. There is also a beautiful indoor swimming pool. It is a bit outside the city but you are so. The room (204) fully equipped with a comfortable bed. And excellent free internet in the room, quite right! Good air conditioning so you sleep well at night. I've been through so many hotels but the atmosphere of this hotel and the renovation is so well done that it all deserves praise, as are highly recommended. Excellent restaurant and excellent quality."
- Travel date: 26th July 2010
What a SUPRISE
"We've visited several pousadas and our last one would be a hotel in Porto. But instead of that it was changed in Palacio do Freixo. We checked in on my birthday and because of that the lady at the reception upgraded our room and gave us a room with a beautiful view over the Douro and the palce garden. The staff was very friendly, polite and helpfull. The outdoor swimming pool is one of the nicest we've seen and is wonderful located on the Douro river. The food was excelent and the palace itself is a piece of cultural exitment. We certainly will visit this pousada again with much pleasure."
- Travel date: 21st July 2010
Magnificent building, below standard hotel.
"I was anticipating staying at Palacio do Freixo ever since knowing it would be turned into a Pousada by Pestana Hotels. The groups catalogue consists mostly of 4 star business properties, but they do run one or two exceptional hotels, like the Pestana Palace in Lisbon. Given Palacio do Freixo's history and heritage value I was sure Pestana Hotels would put an extra effort to make this property flawless, but unfortunately that is not the case. The location: The hotel is not very convenient to visit the city, as it is on its eastern edge, surrounded by bridges, decaying industrial structures and poor neighbourhoods. There is absolutely nothing to do in the hotels surroundings. That however, is not really the hotels responsibility. That so many 200 euro rooms face a cereal silo is also not entirely their problem, although cutting that price in half would be the decent thing to do. The dÃ©cor: The original architecture is magnificent, and the wall paintings, stucco and wood panelling are wonderful. As for the furniture, there are some good ideas, some excellent pieces, but also some terrible ones. Those shiny orange tables at the bar are hideous. My room was quite spacious, but facing the back it was quite dark. It looked a bit bland, as did the bathrooms, which, far from wonderful, looked quite weak (fake walls covered in fake mosaic, etc...). The service: Their biggest problem. The bar takes ages, the restaurant takes ages, and it's very difficult to come across to housekeeping or concierge with any kind of out of the ordinary request (an iron, a working remote control). Plus, we carried our bags. Mind you, they are a very nice bunch of people, but they just don't seem trained enough. Value: This is a very expensive hotel given Oporto's price range and the quality delivered. It costs 50% more than Sheraton, Porto Palacio or Park Atlantic, and isn't as good. There's some room for improvement, but some irreversible missteps have been taken, and I doubt this property will ever work for me."
- Travel date: 16th July 2010
Wonderful, relaxing and impressive hotel
"What an amzing hotel. it was quite unexpected as the Pousada da Portugal website really doesn't do it justice. The palace itself was simply stunning with amazing high ceilings and beautiful architecture. The staff were lovely and not at all pushy. The facilities, bedrooms and breakfasts were all great. The outdoor swimming pool was one of the nicest I have seen with a wonderful location on the Douro river. Go there if you want a relaxing stay in exquisite sorroundings!"
- Travel date: 1st June 2010
Pestana Palacio do Freixo is also called
- Palacio do Freixo
- pousada palacio do freixo
- palacio do freixo. oporto