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“Sadly only 2 stars”

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Pousada Palacio Estoi
Ranked #2 of 28 Hotels in Faro
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 12 September 2017 via mobile

We looked at this hotel and very much wanted to like it for our 4 night stay . The old part of the hotel is very impressive but tired. It appears that it is not being kept up. The original rooms were beautiful but the furniture seemed cheap and did not match the beautiful rooms. Even the grounds appear neglected. The hotel could be spectacular but money required to turn this into a 5 star hotel is not being applied to it. We had just driven from a hotel in Seville where the staff seemed to take pride in their hotel . The entrance seemed off upon arrival. Front entrance glass not clean, no bellman, front desk not especially friendly. We could not even store our luggage until our room was ready. In order to use the hotel garage you must exit your vehicle to place your room card by the sensor.
Our room (suite) was quite large for myself, husband and adult daughter. They added another fold up bed for us in the sitting area .Walking through the new hallways to our room the marks and cleaning marks all over the painted walls were glaring . The wood floors of our room were terribly scratched probably due to an incorrect finish or type of floor. Very nice but not for the level of hotel we were paying for. The room cleaners were good but worked till late in the day maybe because there was not enough of them.
Dinner: only ONCE because food was at best mediocre for the high prices. Not enough staff and when we went to the bar there was no one there because barman was helping with dinner. We had lovely dinners with friendly staff outside the hotel and right up the street at Galeria dos Sentidos.
Bar: the only friendly staff member we encountered who was a pleasure to speak with .
Pool: very nice with scenic view but very slippery floor surface. Unnaturally cold water temperature even though exceptionally hot weather.
Breakfast : The breakfast/ dining room could be more attractive if not for all white walls and white plastic furniture . Anything on the walls would be an improvement .The breakfast itself was just OK. The outside dining was lovely but for the cheap furniture .
In closing, we liked the area but perhaps the hotel needs more employees to bring itself up to the standards it is advertising itself to have.

Stayed: September 2017, travelled with family
4  Thank Gail D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manager_Estoi, Manager at Pousada Palacio Estoi, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Dear Guest,
The Pousada de Estoi takes this opportunity to thank you for your review and for choosing our Pousada.
As you can imagine we are all very sorry to hear that some things throughout your stay did not meet your expectations and your concerns have been passed on to the entire team. Your comments have been already shared and discussed with the managment team. Please rest assured that we will focus on the described situations to develop our guest service and response.
I do hope you give us another chance the next time you visit Estoi.
Looking forward to hearing from you soon.
Best regards,
Orlando Araújo
Unit Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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8 - 12 of 733 reviews

Reviewed 9 September 2017 via mobile

This place is in a gorgeous building. The property is immaculate with incredible vistas. But that's it. Rooms are tired. Service is abysmal.

The shower leaked everywhere and flooded every corner of the bathroom. There was no way to move the shower head to avoid this. I had to use all the towels to dry the floor and when I called reception at 8pm to ask for new ones I was told that housekeeping was gone for the day so I couldn't receive any. I stated that notwithstanding that, I needed fresh towels since the shower had leaked. The receptionist then agreed to provide them. Every request was like this. "No" followed by my repeated request, Followed by disgruntled yes. Two hours later the towels had not yet arrived. I called again and they came. Earlier in the day I asked for a wine glass to have some wine as I had bought a bottle at a nearby vineyard. Upon delivery the hotel attempted to charge me a 5 euro fee for the glass and asked me to sign a receipt. I refused to do so, stating that it was absurd to charge me for an empty glass but the staff member said that all "room service" has a 5 euro fee. An empty glass can hardly be considered room service!

Service at the restaurant was similarly abysmal and the food was mediocre. Later, going to sleep was impossible because you can feel AND see every spring in the bed. I tried folding up the blanket to no avail. When I called reception to ask for some sort of a mattress, guess what, I was met with yet again the same response: "housekeeping is gone for the day so nothing can be done until morning." Once again I stated that something would need to be done tonight or I would be unable to sleep. I was told that other guests were being helped and I would receive a return call shortly. Now here I am waiting at midnight and no one is answering the phone at the front desk. What a surprise. Save your money and stay elsewhere. Come check out the property for a few photos and then leave.

Stayed: September 2017, travelled solo
2  Thank happydancer85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manager_Estoi, Manager at Pousada Palacio Estoi, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Dear Guest,
We are sincerely grateful for your feedback, and to give us the opportunity to improve our services.
We are sorry for the inconveniences you experienced at our hotel; the incidents described do not reflect our standards. Your comments were already forwarded to our management, and they will take action to prevent these from repeating.
Based on the positive notes of your stay, I do hope you give us another chance the next time you visit Estoi.
Looking forward to hearing from you soon.
Best regards,
Orlando Araújo
Unit Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2017 via mobile

This is a marvellous place to stay if you want to be outside the main beaches area/Faro but close enough to get around. I think you would need your own transport to get around. We had been travelling around the south of Portugal and south of Spain so wanted somewhere relaxing to finish off our holiday before our flight from Faro. We stayed three nights. We had a room on the ground floor which suited us as it was very quiet and tranquil. The hotel main areas are based in an old palace and it is wonderful to walk around the gardens and rooms. Lovely sunset views. The pool area is fantastic. Plenty of free parking. We ate at the hotel the first night ( bit pricy at 35 euros each without drinks. I'm vegetarian so not a huge choice for me so even more pricy for salads and cheese!!) Still, a lovely atmosphere on the dining terrace, dining staff very friendly and attentive. We ate out in Faro the following two evenings.
We loved this hotel and would definitely return there.

Stayed: August 2017, travelled as a couple
2  Thank spanishmiss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2017 via mobile

We have just returned from a 5 night stay at the Pousada and have to say that we had a wonderful, relaxing time. Our group of 6 ranged in age from 9 to 67 and everyone enjoyed the holiday. We arrived early due to our flight and the staff could not have been more accommodating. They stored our luggage and we were able to change in the Spa and go straight to the pool (more than one toilet here would have been handy but that's a minor point). The pool area is beautiful and each day there were plenty of sun beds and shaded areas which were required as we had children and a red head with us!
We opted to have dinner in the restaurant on the first evening and as it was Sunday this was a buffet. Tasty food and plenty of options so much so that you could have just had the starter!
Lunchtimes, we ate in the pool bar were there is a menu of toasties, salads, burgers, pizza - pretty standard poolside options. There was something for everyone on the days that we ate there so we were more than happy.
On Tuesday evening we chose to use the hotel restaurant again (remember to book this at reception!) and it was BBQ night. Again lots of choice - fish, steak and chicken - all of which were exceptionally tasty and beautifully cooked.
Two of our group used the Spa facilities, choosing a 'Magic Foot Treatment' and back massages all of which were fantastic and very relaxing, leaving them feeling totally pampered!
All of the staff were wonderful and friendly, always offering a warm greeting. They work exceptionally hard, many in more than one area of the hotel and the majority speak excellent English. We must say a special thank you to Jorge who took great care of us making us feel like regulars!!
Yes, some of the decor may be a little tired and in need of some tlc, but in no way did this detract from our experience at the Pousada. So much so, that we are already thinking about our next visit.
We didn't hire a car but this didn't stop us visiting Faro. Reception ordered us a 6 seater taxi, the fare was very reasonable and the driver extremely helpful. If you are staying in Estoi for more than a couple of days, a trip to Faro is highly recommended.
A massive thank you to all the staff at the Pousada who helped to make our stay so wonderful.

Stayed: August 2017, travelled with family
3  Thank Sian J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2017 via mobile

What a real let down!
The building and gardens are lovely on the outside, staying here as a paying guest, you see a completely different side!
This hotel certainly does not hold the standards expected of a luxury destination!
It's noticeable even at the entrance!
Yes the building is old, but the modern glass doors at the entrance aren't!
They need cleaning more regularly, it sets the standard to paying guests when they're covered with finger prints!
In the old building which houses the restaurant, bar, reception and toilets amongst other rooms, the modern additions are just looking very tired!
Wether it's the toilets or the horrible plastic chairs in the dining room!
Ordering drinks at the bar is somewhat of an experience!
After waiting 45 minutes we eventually received our G and T's, to be served in mixed oddball glasses and minus the good measure of gin we would expect for €12 a shot!
Dinner was a complete and utter farce!
After sitting at our table at 8.30 pm sharp we eventually received our starters at 9.45pm... the restaurant must have had less than 30 covers!
We noted that no other table we're eating and a real un rest was occurring, particularly amongst families with younger children!
Our starters when they did arrive we're only to be described as "bloody awful"!!
After waiting another half hour and numerous complaints to the two waiting staff we had, our mains arrived, which couldn't be put down as the table was full of glasses and plates from both starters and cover courses!
Once again upon taking a look at our food we could see that something was amiss!
Our octopus was cold in the middle and scalding at the edges... indicating warm through in a micro wave!
The rest of the mains were equally as bad!
At this juncture we joined the droves of other families lining to complain to the night manager!
The food was totally in edible and we needed to feed our children, this was now at 10.30 pm!!!
After ringing round, the night manager couldn't find any where local for us to eat as they were all fully booked!
We ventured outside to a small snack bar and managed to grab three bags of potato crisps and a kit Kat!..... very healthy for our children!
On another cleanliness note, the pool area is not up to scratch!
Pestana sort out your maintenance team!
Parts of the deck area were heavily littered with food dropped on the floor, napkins blown off plates etc.
Oh and your pool needs renovating!
The tiles are coming off in places and grout lines in places look as if Algae if forming!
Scruffy and un kept us how we would describe the pool area!
And we won't accept excuses like it's because it's August and we're busy.. or excuses like I'm sorry we couldn't feed you or your children as we have a staff shortage!
The night manager should have taken his back side out of the office he was hiding in, rolled up his sleeves and got stuck in!
This experience has definitely been our worst of any hotel experience we've ever had!
We now have the pleasure of arguing with the reception staff as we refuse to pay!

Stayed: August 2017, travelled with friends
5  Thank cayenne40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pousada Palacio Estoi

Address: Rua Sao Jose, Faro 8005-465, Portugal (Formerly Pousada de Faro - Estoi Palace Hotel)
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Faro
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 28 Hotels in Faro
Price Range: RM410 - RM1,052 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Pousada Palacio Estoi 4*
Number of rooms: 63
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The luxurious Pousada de Estoi, the Estoi Palace, born out of the recovery of an old eighteenth century palace, is located in the village of Estoi only 10 km from Faro. This palace once belonged to Jose Francisco da Silva, Viscount of Estoi, and was opened in 1909. In 1987, it was purchased by the Town Hall of Faro, and in 1977, it was considered a property of Public Interest. A project by architect Goncalo Byrne, this hotel in Faro has a Health Club where you can enjoy a Turkish bath, sauna, tropical showers and heated indoor pool with a whirlpool. In a region with great gastronomic traditions you can find the Visconde restaurant, one of the Algarvian establishments which include fish and fresh seafood. The whole menu is inspired by Portuguese cuisine and exhibits a genuine form of art for good eating. Don't miss out on the deserts from Algarve made with figs and almonds grown locally. Experiencing the Pousada de Estoi is a pleasant journey with a combination of the classical, Baroque and contemporary elements that will definitely be a memorable experience. ... more   less 
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