Take 1 sandy beach, add 2 massive pools, mix with a host of restaurants – and this is the impressive end result.
A sandy beach that rolls on for miles makes a great bolt-on to this hotel. Meanwhile, a free shuttle bus can run you into the little town of Vila Baleira in five minutes.
There are 2 lagoon pools with Balinese beds and chill-out areas. And the buffet restaurant is backed up by a range of themed places, here and at the sister hotel, Pestana Colombos.
TripAdvisor Traveller Rating
Based On 2088 reviews
- Official Rating
- Lifts: 10 - only 3 floor buildings have lifts, 2 floor buildings do not.
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All Inclusive - Here's what you get
Full Board buffet meals. 3 theme restaurant visits per stay. Snacks and ice-cream 11.00-19.00.
Unlimited local alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks including beer, wine, spirits and soft drinks 11.00-24.00.
Sports and Activities
All are included except where indicated.
Facilities► View all
2 outdoor pools
Towels and sunbeds are provided at this large outdoor pool.
Hours of fun for your little ones including a mini-disco. It's hotel-run for kids aged 4 to 12 years.
This large bar is on the first floor and is also where you'll find live entertainment in the evening as well as live sport screenings. It features sea views which are particularly spectacular at sunset.
TripAdvisor Traveller Reviews Show more reviews »
August great value for money family holiday
We were after a family holiday all inclusive in August for under Â£800 per person and when this hotel came up on offer at Â£650 each we booked it as friends had been the previous year. It's a unique holiday in that pretty much everyone on your flight will be going to the same hotel (or the sister hotel). Arrived on the last coach to check in to the hotel. Quite efficient check in - you send one person from your party in and the others wait outside and get the wrist bands and have a drink, they do this so that they efficiently check in the vast numbers all at once. Stick stickers on your luggage that you're given at room service and then we were then told to go and have some dinner and that our bags would be ready in our room after. Had dinner and drink in the restaurant and then went to find our room, We were a family of 4 with a six year old and 2 year old boy. Our room was supposed to be a twin room and I was concerned how were all going to fit in but we were actually allocated a suite, with a bedroom (massive bed) and then the children slept in lounge area. Room was a great size, bathroom was fine. Breakfast was fine - cava was nice at breakfast! Fresh omlettes if you wanted them, sometimes the croissants were hit and miss but otherwise good. Lunch options we didnt use the restaurant for lunch but instead used the snack bar. There can be queues from 1.30 till 3 for the grill food at snack bar but you are queing up for something freshly cooked and prepared for you so cant complain - food at grill - burgers, steak sandwich, hot dogs all to order. Next to that chips / snacks to help yourself to. And further along was the lady making paninis and toasted sandwiches which again were great. There was always a prepared baguette ready to grab if you didnt want to queue. Also freezer with little tubs of ice cream to help yourself to which kept my two children happy. Drinks wise in the day main bar serving drinks, bottled water (still and sparking). There was also a cocktail bar where you could get fresh cocktails made, I loved the mojitos my daughter loved the San Francisco mocktail. We tended to get our towels by the pool for 8ish to secure a spot that we liked. Sun doesnt break through clouds until 1ish but stays out later so most people dont go to breakfast until 10ish.... (hence why lunch grill is busy 2ish onwards...) so you just adjust to getting up later, staying by pool later than we normally would. Around the pool my daughter loved the 12.30 flash dance everyday for mini disco and when they did the 5pm mini disco. Kids club - my daughter enjoyed going off to kids club, this is in the area where the shallow kids pool is. She did a few activities and really enjoyed the treasure hunt one afternoon. Great play area for children of all ages, my son enjoyed the shallow pool to splash in. Beach is lovely, gorgeous sand, we enjoyed having that so close by and accessible to pop to. A la carte restaurants you can have 3 visits a week, booking of restaurants opens at 10ish (I think) on a Tuesday morning so queue up and book up for your week. We booked Italian twice and the Japanese. Evenings in the buffet restaurant - yes there are 3 seatings and you do queue but you go through to the restaurant quickly so was never any issue. We enjoyed eating outside as it was less hectic than inside. Enjoyed the white wine with dinner, again you could choose white, red wine or cava with your dinner. Food was fine, something for all of us even my fussy daughter. It was standard buffet hotel quality. After dinner there was entertainment upstairs in the bar. For the popular shows it was very busy and crowded, we secured seats early for the circus show only to find lots of people came in later and then stood in front of us.... We popped over to the other hotel one evening and had a drink, it was quieter, more modern seek decor, less of a family one more for couples, pool wasnt as large so we didnt go in the day. I think they've pitched it well with the two hotels, one for families and the other more for couples. We're quite lazy on holiday so didn't go on any trips. My daughter happily made friends with other children around the pool and at kids club so she was happy. A la carte Italian - enjoyed a pizza the one night and a pasta the second, nice menu a bit small inside so we sat out on our second visit. Waiter kindly unprompted bought out some ice cream for our childrens pudding which they enjoyed... I enjoyed the chocolate salami... Japanese - slow service, there was one older waiter there who was very stern (only person I'd complain about on the holiday). Limited menu suitable for children but that's to be expected they stuck to rice and noodles and lets face it with the lunch and snacks they were always eating throught out the day they didnt go hungry ... I had the sushi which was lovely followed by the duck which was very good. This restaurant is more up market feel and we enjoyed it. Room was really well maintained by the housekeeping staff. Weather could be mixed, we had a day that was totally cloudy but its still warm so didnt stop us going in pool. Overall we had a really good family holiday, and for what we paid the value for money was amazing. Would I say it was 5* probably not compared to our previous 5* holiday hotel stay in Dubai earlier this year but a good 4 to 4.5*. I'd definitely recommend it and if we found it on offer at that price again we'd be there!More
Another great week. 29 August - 5 Sept. Busier than our previous visits, but to be expected as it was the end of the school holiday. Occasional issue with queuing but not in a hurry to go anywhere so didn't matter. Requested villa 7 ahead of arrival and were given 726 which is a suite, rather than a room and great views down across the gardens and out to sea. As usual the animation team made our week and I was dancing with Luciano before we'd even been to our room to unpack! Thanks Luciano, Gustavo, Valdemir and team for all the dancing and happy faces. Team 2016 are fantastic!More
More then I expected
This is a place one can easily get used to. Even though it is a very large hotel, with plenty of guest, there is so much to do, that you never feel trapped or overwhelmed by crowds. The villas are generously spread apart and the pool area is ginormous, but the garden around the pool area is so cleverly layer out that you never have the feeling of too many people around you. Should you ever get the feeling of really being alone, then there is always the Atlantic with its endless beach. However, what really makes this hotel special is the endless food supply and the various places you can enjoy it. The only suggestion I might have is that the serving points at the Dunes pool bar are increased. There are times when a slight cue is building, but then, you are on holiday and it is not as if you are waiting for a bus or something. All in all a great place to eat, drink, swim and be merry.More
This is a lovely hot with very friendly staff. It is lots of little villas with bedrooms and suites. So no big building and no more than two floors high! Lots of pool options and the best beach I have ever experienced in the world! Lots of relaxing things to do. A great complex that shares facilities with the sister hotel next door. The sister hotel is more expensive but looks like a prison and it does not have the facilities that this one does. Free courtesy bus into the main town every day bar Mondays.More
In line with expectations
3.5 hr flight and 10 minute transfer was great. Porto santo airport is tiny so don't expect much. Yes we had to queue for about 25 mins to get through passport control but I've encountered much worse. Changeover day is Monday. It reminded me centre parcs change over day. The staff are busy doing their jobs and what feels like thousands of guests wander about clueless. We opted to take our own luggage to the room which was no bother even though we were the furthest Block (15) Our room was amazing. The bed was enormous but my daughter (being 10) had to sleep on what was essentially the sofa. Her legs dangled off the end. But she is tall. The dining room was a source of amusement. The sittings seemed pointless but to be fair they were never an issue for us. Everyone queued and queued for the onsite dining facilities. Every night we took the 5 minute stroll next door to the Columbus which was always much quieter and a lot more airier. We enjoyed our meals there and the very short stroll back along the breathtaking beach at twilight. The food was fine and I enjoyed far too many mojitos throughout the week. The pools were great. A bit cold at first (last week in Aug) but once you were in there was no hurry to get back out. We had a lovely week. Our daughter made lots of friends from likeminded families. It was hard to say goodbye because we'd had such a lovely time. We like to travel to different places but I certainly wouldn't rule out going back again some day. More
Things To Do► View all
Chic little boutiques can be found on the cobbled Rua Joao Goncalves Zarco, just off the main square, while just out of town…View details »
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