Vila Gale Praia
Travel Blogs from Albufeira
... wall leading down from the house today, to edge a flower bed and contribute to the positive feng shui by breaking up the straight line of the path to the front door. We're joined by two Germans, Hanas and Inken. Like all 20 something travellers they are fabulous switched on and friendly and they cheerfully bobbed about the site in the back of the tractor tailor collecting strangely shaped stone which Ol and I tried our best to jigsaw into the wall. The connection ...
... nighttime activities consisted of comparing Portuguese lagers and watching penalties, you can tell the Dutch have been practicing, they even have a special keeper only for shoot-outs. Hats off to Costa Rica in any case. Today we might quickly check out Faro, but our next stop is now inland. Evora, another unesco heritage place, awaits us in the ...
... are going up slightly. The highlight of today was undeniably the best beach I've seen so far in Portugal, Carvalho beach near Lagoa, between Lagos and Albufeira. Some places in Lagoa look like a Portuguese version of Beverly Hills, but it has really sweet collection of cove beaches. See pictures below. Tomorrow, we may or may not make it to ...
... and we finally managed to have a swim in the sea (I think I stayed 5 minutes inside). The beach itself, Dona Ana, was actually very pretty, down a cove between cliffs, deep green water... making it a tropical paradise for Northern Europeans. You can count on them to be here to enjoy it with you. For dinner, a short walk in the old town and we set our minds on a seafood restaurant again. Cataplana, bacalhau, seafood rice, fish soup, everything fresh, simple ...
Day 1- Arrive into Lagos on the 13th by bus (4.5 hours). When we arrive at the Rising cock we realise it's 99% Australians, even the people that work there. Staying in an 11 bed dorm, all the other girls are from Sydney. Get ready and go see Marty at his work, the green room. We go to the tavern to watch the World Cup, three ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews Vila Gale Praia Albufeira
The photo's speak for themselves
This holiday was amazing, and the hotel was spectacular.
I will be coming back here.
The people were so friendly, and even if you don't have a car, you can explore Portugal and the Algarve through some of the very reasonable and very interesting coach trips available.
I could not find fault with anything. At one point it was just me and my husband alone on the local beach watching the sunset...heaven!
I will let the pictures do the rest of the talking!
I visited this hotel on the strength of the reviews I read on this website. I was not disappointed...at all! Talk about relaxation! The hotel was SO quiet! No kids, no loudness from anyone. Now, April is off-season, but still it was quiet.The spa is amazing and the staff cannot do enough for you. I even availed of the yoga class which was taught by someone who actually knew their stuff. Very professional. The bar is lovely and the staff are really considerate. It is mostly couples...middle age couples. I went with a friend of mine as my husband couldn't get away...and we felt a little out of place in the pre-dominately couple atmosphere. The pool is spotless and so is the beach which is literally a stone's throw away from the hotel. It is a 45 min taxi ride from the Faro airport, though, and it is in a somewhat suburban neighbourhood. Don't expect to walk to anything interesting.I was only there for 3 days and if I were there for any longer I'd want a car. The hotel restaurant is v. good, but not spectacular. This is truly a relaxing place...but not overly stimulating in terms of eating, shoping etc. The hotel, the spa and the beach are enough to warrant a visit...albeit for only a few days...if you have a short attention span like myself.
They returned my cardigan for free!
We stayed at the Vial Gale Praia from the 22 to the 29th April this year. I booked the hotel based upon the tripadvisor reviews - as usual they were spot on.
Staff really helpful, quiet and peaceful location, good food, really comfortable bed and lovely 'little touches' that you normally find in a luxury class hotel.
The best bit though was that they returned my favourite cardigan to me - free of postage charges! How's that for service and honesty?
Waiting to leave for the airport on our last day we sat in the bar and I forgot my cardigan. I called the hotel when I arrived at the airport and they already had the matter under control. I received the cardigan today and postage charges were requested
I am extremely impressed. Over the years my we have stayed at the Villa Des Orangers (again excellent hotel) Burg Al Arab, la residencia in Majorca etc. The Vial Gale Praia top the lot due to the efforts and high standards of the staff and management team - well done
P.s a good nearby restuarant is Sao Dominigoes on the road to Gia excellent family run restaurant with good reasonable home cooking.
What a Little Gem - but keep it quiet!
Not much to add to the rave reviews already posted. This was our first visit to the Algarve and I agree with all the positive comments concerning this little gem. I held off posting a review in the hope that the fewer people know about it, the more chance it will stay an idilic oasis of peace and personal pampering. However, now that the word is out, I have to add my voice (and my wife's) to its praises. Every thing about it is superb, the staff, the food, the facilities and the location - provided you are looking for peace and quiet. We loved it so much we have booked to return for ten days in September!
Regards to fellow subscriber Brian from Northern Ireland - we were that couple in the lounge (Willie & Carole)!
We arrived at the town and went to the wrong vila gale hotel first. Then in the right one (newer and closer to the beach) we had a very warm welcome and we were asked to sit down at the reception to drink a green tea which was very refreshing. The check in was very friendly and relaxed so we felt like on vacation immediately after the travelling. The room is large and in a modern style. I really like the design. The bed is comfortable, they have a flat screen LCD TV and a DVD player (you can rent DVDs at the reception for free!). The pool is beautiful and the whole hotel and garden is in perfect shape. Unfortunatley we did not find the time to use the Spa. The restaurant offers excellent service, a good wine card and decent food. I can definately recommend this hotel. I think it is not a 3* (like Expedia says) star but a 4* (every * worth it) and we did not pay the "average price" of 425 EUR but 109 EUR for a standard double room which is more than "standard".
We spent a week in Vila Praia Gale from the 27th March. On arriving at the hotel - we were offered tea whilst checking in - the service in the hotel really is impeccable, there was always somebody on hand to help if needed, but you could just do your own thing, the service was never overbearing. I have to say, having travelled extensively, I was surprised that the hotel was a 4 star - I would have given it 5 stars!
This is not the hotel for you if you are looking for a wild holiday, BUT, if you are looking for a holiday for relaxing and destressing - this is the place for you.
The hotel itself was refurbished just over a year ago, the beds were lovely - large and covered with white quilts, there were flat screen television in the room and the hotel operates a complimentary DVD lending service. The spa was lovely and the swimming pool was great (if not a bit cold at this time of year!)
When we were there, the hotel was full,although you would never have known. This is certainly not a hotel where you have to get up at 5.30am to place your towel on a sun bed - there are only 40 rooms and there are plenty of loungers to go round.
Believe the hype!
My wife and I choose this hotel mainly from reviews. It turned out to be all we expected and more. We arrived earlier than expected and we told our room was ready and given a welcoming cuppa and warm refreshing towels as we completed the registration process. Then on to our room with its LCD tv and DVD player, bathrobes, slippers, towels for use at the pool, a bottle of water and a bowl of fresh fruit! What a relaxing week we had, staff were very friendly and atmosphere so peaceful. Only drawback is its in an isolated location, but you can`t have peace and tranquility in the middle of a bustling resort! We had a hire car and it proved essential.Apart from this one slight nitpick it is an absolutely brilliant experience which I would recommend to anybody.
Believe the reviews !
Believe the reviews!
Being a huge sceptic about hotel/holiday reviews I was a bit apprehensive about booking on-line, But I am pleased to say that the hotel was fabulous. The staff are very welcoming, kind and attentive.
The hotel is very modern and stylish without being cold and clinical. The setting and location are very peaceful and relaxing, Being close the beach and away from any main roads.
The restaurant deserves high praise for both evening fayre and the breakfast buffet which was varied and un-hurried (served until 11am) .
All in all we will return to this delightful Hotel A.S.A.P
We stayed late Feb 2006
A Touch of Class
We have just returned from a 4 night stay at this hotel and what can we say .It was romantic, sophisticated and friendly boutique style hotel.
This hotel has recently been refurbished and was done to a very high standard. Small touches in the room like a bowl of fresh friut, candles and incense sticks to burn made it also even more romantic this is prodomantly adults only wanting to relax.
There is a spa which you pay a small fee for the staff are very helpful and friendly they provide treatments which you need to book.
The beach is just down the road so close you can see it from the hotel . We sat at the beach cafe with our sangria and watched the sun go down no cheap valentines gift could bring so much romance to enjoy.
The food in the hotel was mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm enjoy .
The staff recommend that we go back in June or Sept and we will thats for sure. If you book this hotel you will not be dissapointed.
Relaxing Winter Break
We stayed at the Gale Praia for 2 weeks over the xmas break, having booked a cheap deal through Expedia/Style. We wanted a quiet hotel, with a relaxing atmosphere and that's what you get with the Gale Praia. The hotel is about 200 meters from the the beach and it's possible to walk along to the next resort (about 2 miles away), at low tide, which involved a short wade through a stream, as it crosses the beach. On the beach itself there are three restaurants, all of which were open during our stay, all serving decent seafood, but like the rest of the Algarve, vistually no vegetarian choices.
We stayed B&B, the breakfasts were great, with a huge choice of hot and cold food, served buffet style. We ate in the hotel restaurant a couple of times, which is excellent but expensive by Algarve standards (about 15-20 euro for a main course, so maybe 60 euro for two for two courses incl. drinks). The portions were small, the chef obviously tried hard to impress with presentation. Other guests, staying half board weren't that happy with the choices available, half board guests basically had no choice, pointlessly being handed a "menu" at the beginning of their meal. This might be a problem for vegetarians, since the a la carte menu only had two proper vegetarian choices.
The hotel itself is finished to the highest standards, all rooms very well cleaned every day, twin beds pushed together to form a huge bed (quite firm bed) and each room has a DVD/CD player and flat panel TV (with Sky News and BBC world etc.). DVDs can be borrowed for free at reception. We used the gym a few times, basic but decent Precor cycle, crosstrainer and running machine, plus free weights. The pool is unheated so can't realistically be used by in the winter. There also a massive jacuzzi, small suana and steam room. The health centre/gym was free to Style guests but cost about 7 euro per day, which is reaosnable value (you can get a weeks pass for less).
Being a bit of light sleeper I usually use earplugs in hotels and we were both amazed that the hotel was so quiet that these weren't necessary. This is partly because this is NOT a family hotel (children are all but banned because of the atmosphere and lack of childrens facilities). There were only couples and one or business types staying when we were there, with more Portuguese over the new year.
The rooms are located one either the garden or pool side of the hotel, the pool side rooms costing more. The pool side would be the best option in the summer, since they don't get the sun directly and would have less road noise. But in the winter I'd go for the garden side, since they get the sun until the afternoon and there was very little road noise when we were there (these rooms are on the the side of the hotel, face out onto the rest of Gale).
Gale itself was very quiet when we were there. It consists of mainly upmarket holiday villas and apartments. There's a very good supermarket about a five minute walk away. We did have trouble finding restaurants at the time of year we went, there was Indian restaurant up the road (which closed after the new year), Hapimag Swiss resort even further away (good place for a quiet drink/expensive meal), Roa (cheap excellent vege/indonesian food always open) near Hapimag and Prima Pasta which unlike the others is 2 miles away and not really walkable (good food though).
Gale probably doesn't have huge amount to offer, in terms of laid-on entertainment (no loud bars/pubs etc.), but is good place for a relaxing holiday (it'll be very busy in the summer though). Hiring a car is an option, but to be blunt the Algarve's real assets are it's beaches and weather (and golf course if you like golf). We were going to hire bikes but after hiring a car for three days it's obvious that the Algarve doesn't have the scenery/roads for good cycling (unlike Majorca).
There is however Salgados lagoon (behind the main beach next to the golf course), a good place for birdwathing. Flamingos, spoonbills, little owls, fantail warblers and plenty of other's to keep the twitchers happy.
All in all a good holiday at an excellent hotel, with helpful staff. We might not return to the Algarve, but were happy with our choice of hotel and resort - having seen Albufeira (ugh), believe me we made the right choice!