Historical Traveller Reviews of Hotel Vila Gale Ampalius
A lazy distance to the beach
from A TripAdvisor Member
Took family including son (15) daughter (17) to the Algarve for the first time this July for a weeks R&R. The transfer from Faro airport was 30 mins and the hotel is located a few minutes from the marina with its decent choice of restaurants and bars. Food is cheaper away from the marina and a walk or cab ride to Quatera provides better value. The beach is a stones throw away and clean with double loungers & shade 13 euro per day. This is not a rowdy resort and ideal for families. There are many Portuguese families holidaying and this makes for a more authentic atmosphere. Weather was lovely although on some mornings the sun waits until 10am to fully appear. We only breakfasted at the Amphilius however this is a treat in itself because there is such a selection including full english and fresh cut fruit etc. I would recommend a sea veiw and the rooms and service are good, I was told they are due a refurbishment next winter which should improve the place even more. Only one gripe, the annoying habit of reserving sun-oungers around the pool at 7am with their silly towel and then dissapearing for hours on end!
Stay here, its great.
We have now stayed at this hotel 3 times in the last 4 years, and are already planning next years visit. We would recommed this hotel to anyone. Its in a great location, just a few yards from the beach and a few minutes walk from the Marina, where you will find dozens of reasonably priced restaurants in a great setting.
The hotel is clean, well managed, with attentive staff and the facilities are very good. The choice at breakfast is excellent in a pleasant restaurant area and the bar area is very good with nightly entertainment. The swimming pool area is fine, however there is the usual problem of people reserving beds with towels from about 7.00am. (hopefully the hotel will address this soon)
The rooms are very good, they are cleaned daily, with new towels provided daily if required. Make sure you book a sea view, the location here is so good it would be a crime to miss out on this wonderful view, you also get a good size balcony, (the alternative is not so good)
Quite simply- stay here, its excellent value. We will return.
Great Hotel, Great Location
from A TripAdvisor Member
My husband and I stayed at the Ampalius for a week at the begninning of July. As soon as we arrived at the hotel we were impressed with the service, everyone was very helpful and friendly. We were given a room on the 6th floor, the room was very big and had a fridge rather than a mini-bar which was fantastic and saved quite a lot of money.
The hotel is in a great location, 2 seconds to the beach and 2 minutes walk to the Marina (2 second walk to the Casino too!).
Like other reviewers I would definitely recommend paying a little extra for the sea view, it's well worth it!
There are only 3 reasons why I have marked this hotel with 4 rather than 5 stars. 1) The fridge was great but there were no glasses in the room so I had to go down to the bar every day to get more glasses (a bit petty but just a little annoying after the first few days). 2) We had 3 nights half board, the food is okay but really not great, the tables in the restaurant at breakfast and in the evening are never set and we had to wait 30 minutes for cutlery after 2 waitresses completely ignored us. 3) The lifts are ridiciulous, you can wait for 10 minutes after countless have by-passed you so would recommend taking the stairs if you can.
Overall had a great holiday in Vilamoura - if you can take a stroll down the beach past Quarteria and down the coast it's amazing!!
The manager, or who's entitled to be he's a terrible manager, he should be working in construction, because of hotel management he does not understant a bit. Mr Figueiredas, tried to charmed my girlsfriend offering cocktails he is a nasty guy.
I tried to speak with someone above him, but he was never available, and i tried for 4 times, probably it is a Hotel policy charming the guests girlfriends. I asked the general manager name, and they said they were not sur Silva or Carlos. Silva was never available, carlos was way from the hotel in a new hotel project.
Be careful with this so called " gentleman ".
I would like to say that there was a member of the staff, who heard my complaint and tried to calm me and that the rest of my stay was more pleasant as possible, he is a excellent worker and person, he should be the manager, he's name it is Joseph Manoel.
Thank you very much again joseph manoel.
Overall had a great time however one warning, we opted not to pay the supplement for a beach/sea view and therefore fully expected to be stuck at the back of the hotel, what we did not realise is that half the rooms at the back have no balconies. They did move us after three nights though but will never assume again that you get a balcony. The rooms are a bit dated that we were moved to, but any faults were fixed very quickly. The lifts get busy especially in the mornings, try the lifts at the end of the building instead. The breakfasts were OK, you won't go hungry but the cooked breakfasts are not brilliant. The resturant is in chaos after 9am, but the earlier you go the emptier. We ate in the evening once, not very good compared with the town. Whilst there a lots of good resturants by the marina (ate at Galius? or similar twice) but it is cheaper away from the waterfront, try the Piscador for Portugese food (or similar name - they give out flyers by the marina). There are several chinese, we ate at the Marina View which was very good. The hotel has a shortage of sun beds most of which are 'reserved' by soon after 9am. The pool can get a bit busy with children. Don't bother with the gym, its cost 7.5 euros and is very small and the equiptment doesn't work. We got out and about and hired a car which was great, the best was Lagos and the grottos but Tavira and Silves were great. Also the day trip to Lisbon which I would reccomend although was a long day (we booked through the rep but think you might get cheaper in the town). Had a great holiday and although would probably go to a different part of the Algarve next time.
I decided to take the whole family away for a week in June . Tryng to decide on a resort that would suit 2 x 53 year olds 2 x 26 year olds both of whom just wanted a relaxing break, my pregnant daughter and her partner who wanted a beach on the doorstep and no hills to climb and finally a single 23 year old male was not an easy task Vilamoura and Ampalius hotel suited us all. The location is ideal with the beach just across the road and the lovely marina a short walk away. The casino just round the corner was very dissappointing (minimum stake 5 Euros) but this was compensated for by Figos bar particularly with many famous footballers dropping in for a drink!Although most of the restaurants around the marina are adequate i would reccomend trying a few up the alleyways just behind. Excellent food at cheaper prices. We didnt eat in the hotel other than breakfast which was reasonable apart from the fact that they couldnt cope at busy periods and the tables were not laid (coffee dreadful) The only real negatives are the gate access from the pool to the beach is dangerous as it opens straight out onto what looks like a pavement but is in actual fact the road. There are not enough sun beds round the pool. The few that they have (which would probably be enough for 25% of the guests )are all reserved by 7.00a.m. and stay that way for the remainder of the day even if people are not using them The snacks round the bar are okay but the beach bars are much nicer , more variety and much cheaper.
I do not mean to sound negative the location is excellent and the hotel is a standard 4 star, we would all definately return to both the resort and the hotel
Our Summer Break
from A TripAdvisor Member
Just back form an excellent break in the algarve (June 2005). Stayed at the vila gale ampalius in Vilamoura. Excellent Hotel, friendly helpful staff and level of cleanliness good. Went bed and breakfast and for a junior suite option, both of which we would recommend, we have a two year old and there was plently of choice for him at breakfast time for the 14 days and a healthly choice for adults too. Our room had a great view of the beach and atlantic sea with a seperate kitchen (cooker, fridge, sink, toaster, NO kettle) and dressing room which was really handy for leaving the buggy etc. King size firm bed with a dining area and sofa to lounge on, TV had some UK and satillitechannels. Everything worked and was very neat looking, sheets were changed regularly and towels were plentyfull, fresh everyday and soft to the touch. Two swimming pools, one for adults etc and other for kids shallow enough for the little ones to play, again very clean and plently of inflatables supplied by the hotel to play on. The small swimming pool is set in the garden so has a nicer setting than the concrete surrounded main pool so you had to be shart to get sun bed in the morning. Bring yopu own towels as if you want a towel for the pool it is 1.5 euros for the day. Snack bars served the usual stuff and was well prepared and served promptly. We did not eat there at night as there are plenty of fine resturants around the marina where you can watch the world go by, but buffet style evening meals along with the entertainment were on every night for about 23 euros. Went to the zoo marine park and the aqua show park, if you are going to the zoomarine park book it through the hotel reception as it then contacts the park and they will pick you up and take you back for free, it costs about 35 euros each way in a taxi!. The aqua show water park is only about 7 euros in a taxi each way and has a host of slides etc and a place to eat, we spent the whole day there and had a ball. Not much more to say but if you want a nice hotel for a relaxing break with small kids only a couple of hours from the UK we would recommed this hotel to anyone we know.
from A TripAdvisor Member
Just returned from a weeks holiday at this impressive hotel - sea view room a must to take advantage of location (situated a stone's throw from beach and marina). Down to the detail - room spacious. well maintained, fridge very useful, air con & large balcony. Only downside is forget the hotel 1970's "stuck to the wall" hairdryer (take your own). Breakfast excellent in terms of choice - fresh fruit selection fantastic. Try not to be put off by the queuing frenzy of new arrivals (have to say nearly all brits !!) - only slight negative was the fact that you have to queue for coffee at machines and its pretty awful. Excellent pool and sunbathing facilities, service really good - just beware that everything is an extra ! Overall excellent value for money and we will definitely return with hairdryer !! Vilamoura itself is a perfect getaway for a week's break at this time of year and really seems to have got its act together compared with a couple of years ago - loads of good restaurants - favourites Old Navy for lunchtime and Zu Yi Chinese in the evening
We stayed for 2 weeks in June/July with our 4 and 1 year old. We found the hotel fantastic - especially the mini suite that we managed to get at no extra cost - it had a full kitchen which they opened up for us (although it was not meant to be apparently!). It was invaluable for preparing baby food and washing bottles, etc. The other fantastic thing about the hotel was the breakfast - full hot choices every day as well as tons of fruit and healty options too. The only fault we can give it which is why it loses a star for us is the kiddies club. We would not go back again until the kids are older as their kids club doesnt suit our ages (now 2 and 5). The only activities were indoors and out of sight - which is very different to other places we have been. The kiddies pool was brilliant - 3 different levels in it so suitable for very young babies. All in all though fab. The location couldnt be any better - just across the road from both the beach and the marina where you spend every evening - super place.
The Vilamoura experience
from A TripAdvisor Member
Returned from a golfing holiday in Portugal staying at the Vila gale Ampalius, Vilamoura. B&BHotel clean with wonderful breakfast choices.Only criticism, hotel has 4 very small lifts for a 10 storey 500 plus room hotel. Variety of food around the Marina within walking distance excellent. In one week, we sampled Italian, Portuguese, Thai, Indian, Chinese and traditional seafood at night. Three courses and one or two drinks for 20 to 30 Euros per person. Seafood nearer 40 Euros per head. All fantastic value, food superb. People very welcoming and friendly everywhere, no language problems. Golf courses excellent, not cheap, but good value. Can't wait to come back and would do the whole lot again.
Top Local Tips for Vilamoura
Choice of Restaurants
If you visit Vilamoura over the new year period make sure you pre-book your restaurant if you are eating out on hogmany.
Best restaurant, sight seeing
The recently opened Thai restaurant, behind the marina was excellent. Get the bus through to Faro for a day trip.
Airport To Hotel
Get a taxi from the airport they're very reasonably priced ~ cuts out all that coach transfer hassle...