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“Good week away...but maybe a little lucky?”

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ClubHotel Riu Guarana
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Olhos de Agua
Certificate of Excellence
Leicester
Level 6 Contributor
121 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“Good week away...but maybe a little lucky?”
Reviewed 12 April 2012

Just got back from a week at the RIU Guarana, and overall we all (that's a family of 4 with 2 teenage boys) enjoyed the experience. However, we maybe were a little lucky. When we first arrived the hotel was full and (as previous reviews have said) there were many families with young children. The hotel obviously is marketed as a family venue. Maybe Spanish / Portuguese children are allowed to express themselves more than we are use to, and there was a feeling of massed ranks of kids running around making a lot of noise. Frankly, if the week had been the same throughout we would not have had such a good time. However day two (Good Friday) many of these families left, perhaps for a more traditional Easter at home? There was a small influx of Brits, but the hotel remained about half full - and much more peaceful!

The hotel is very clean (even my other half was impressed and that's saying something...) and the staff good - very helpful and friendly. The rooms are big enough and well equipped, good bathrooms and even a good selection of UK TV channels. We were all inclusive and found the food generally of a good quality. The other restaurant (that was alternating Asian and Grill food when we were there) was OK, but the food pretty much the same as the main buffet. It did have a feeling of a more adult atmosphere, but not so different really. Yes, the menu was repetitive but there was a wide range to choose from including various meats, fish and pasta. The repetitive nature is no different from other AI's we have been to, but the quality was good. I have to agree with previous reviews about the evening entertainment - it was not very good, made all the worse by the fact that there is only one bar and that is in the same area as the evening 'show' (if that's what you call it). Maybe there is a 'quiet' bar in the summer? The entertainment team do work hard, but the end results are not up to much.

The only other main point is about the beds which are very hard, and a long relaxing nights sleep was hard to achieve. Also the swimming pools (which are large) were very cold, but this was mainly due to the time of year.

Nice area, the village has some small shops and restaurants if you fancy something different and a small beach area. There is also a vast beach the other side of town, but a lot of steps to contend with. Albufeira is a short bus / taxi ride away, so something for all generations.

All in all, a good week away - but not sure how we would have felt if the massed ranks of kids had remained...

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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4 Thank LeicesterChipper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (415)
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Nottingham
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2012

Ok, firstly I should start by saying - this is my first ever trip to stay at a Riu hotel. I travelled on our first family holiday for 15 years to celebrate various special birthdays, and all of the other members of my family had done Riu hotels in various other countries - hence the choice of this hotel. I am going to break this down to make my review clear:

1) Cleanliness and bedrooms: I will start with a positive and say that this hotel is spotless, and the bedrooms are also the same. The cleaning staff are fast and work in the background without anyone knowing they are there.

2) Beds: Now although the rooms are clean and are cleaned everyday - the beds themselves are a complete joke. For a 4/5 * hotel - it really is almost laughable. The beds are nothing more than you would find in a cheap 1/2 * hotel at best. I guess the best way I can sum them up, would be they remind me of the beds you get in premier inns. Cheap, hard and nasty, nothing but a glorified camp bed.

3) Bars and bar staff: The bars are great, they are fast, serve drinks quickly - even duplicate orders at times as more than one bar man hears your order and goes away to get the drinks! A bonus for everyone!!

4) Restaurants & Food: Now this is the worst part. The main restaurant is nothing but a glorified food hall that you would get at a cheap comprehensive school. The food is bland, the same all the time and even after being there for only a few days is boring and tasteless. We stayed all inclusive, and the last few days we actually started eating outside of the hotel as it was a better option. They make a big speech when your first arrive saying the food is on a 14 day rotation, so is always new options etc - this may be the case, but the new options taste the same as the others and again, are nothing more than you would expect from a 1/2* hotel. Again, they make a big thing of the 'special restaurants' being an Asian and Grill restaurant - don't want to bang on, but food is bland, and is exactly the same as what is served in the main restaurant. This was the worst part of my stay - the food.

5) Entertainment and Riu Entertainment Staff: Ok, note the food is at the bottom of the list for items at this hotel, but only by a tiny margin! The entertainment is pathetic! And that is me being nice! There are approx 6/7 entertainers that, as with other hotels, do bingo, volleyball etc during the day - and in the evenings in the main bar area do a show. The shows we had were a complete joke, and were more about polishing the staffs egos than actually entertaining people. Miming to a few Grease tracks was meant to be the star night of the week! Seriously it was like stuff for kids!! We actually found some really good live entertainment in the local bars and restaurants down the road from the hotel, a much better option than the crap at the hotel! Again, I will sum up the entertainment - nothing more than you would expect when staying at butlins!! And that's being harsh to butlins!! The bet they can do after these guys have done their stuff, is a supposed 'nightclub' - which again, is a complete joke! It's like a cellar in the hotel converted with some music! And the entertainers take their turns at playing the music, and again, is more about them playing stuff they can go out and show off on the dance floor to!!

6) Reception Staff: not good here either unfortunately! To the extent that I didn't even get my all inclusive wrist band and had to go back and ask for it! There were various other things I had to go back for too! And they couldn't answer most things I asked/needed!

I think that sums up most stuff - I know people reading this are going to be thinking "this guy must had a bad week, it will be ok"!! I am actually being kind with what I have said. There is much much better hotels and areas to stay in. I have been to the Algarve about 6 times, so know how good others are - and this place just doesn't measure up.

I can categorically say I would NEVER stay here again! Probably wouldn't stay at other Riu hotels now either, which is a shame as my family give some of the good reviews.

Room Tip: Select a different hotel, probably in Villamoura!!!
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
7 Thank Matthew O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kortrijk
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 April 2012

Going back for the 3rd time next month as a tourleader. This is really a very good hotel. The staff is excellent, very friendly and helpfull. Service at the bars is always quick, never have to wait long. The food is good. The 2 theme restaurants (a grill and an asian restaurant) are good aswell. It is never too crowded at the pools, you'll find a chair most of the times. There is always some animation during daytime. Every evening there is a show. The hotel is not directly at the beach, but you can take some wooden stairs (with nice views) or go through the hotel next to it, less stairs there. If you go left, you can do a very nice walk (+- 1.5h) along the beach just to the village of villamoura. If you leave the hotel and go left, you have several taxi's at the end of the road. A visit to Albufeira (+- 10km) is recommended, taxis ask +- 1 Euro per kilometer..With your local travel agency you can do several excursions to visit the rest of the Algarve. Looking forward to go back in May this year!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank DennisV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 April 2012

Hotel superb, as for previous reviewer re 4 year olds getting wine and beer for there parents what a load of rubbish! My 4 year old daughter was in nowhere reach of Anything like that and could not even rech the food, do not listen to these idiots they make things up as they go along clearly! I can not say 1 bad thing about this hotel it was Amazing and will be returning next year. Thankyou for a wonderful holiday.

  • Stayed March 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank georgigrace1980
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Derby, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 March 2012

We stayed here in July 2011 as we had stayed in previous Riu hotels and had been very impressed.
The little fishing village is lovely and first impressions of this hotel were good. However, meal times were just awful. As a previous post, we also found children( mainly Spanish) helping themselves to food, picking it up with fingers and then putting it back. Children as young as 4yrs getting parents their wine and beer etc so they were contstantly under your feet or pushing in front of you in the queues. The toilets are very clean but my family and myself witnessed kids and parents going to the toilet, not washing their hands and then walking into the restaurant and handling food! YaK!!
The pool was no better-noisy and kids running and splashing all the time. I realise kids have to have freedom and theyre on holiday but the parents just sat drinking oblivious to their kids so we ended up going to the beach every day out of the way( the beaches are gorgeous though).
We complained several times but nothing appeared to be done. We found we stayed as little as possible in the hotel eating late to try and avoid the kids and even eating out which after paying for all inclusive defeated the object.
.
Can I just add this is my first ever review. I have 2 children that I have taken abroad since they were small so I know children can be exciteable etc. but the lack of disipline was appalling. Overall, the hotel was clean and staff quite friendly but It has put me off going all inclusive again and we are trying the Riu palace across the road from this hotel this year as we loved this little village. I will let you know how we fare.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
18 Thank karenorme1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Guarana

Property: ClubHotel Riu Guarana
Address: Quinta do Milharo | Olhos D'Agua - Algarve, Olhos de Agua, Albufeira 08200, Portugal
Phone Number:
Region: Portugal > Algarve > Faro District > Albufeira > Olhos de Agua
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Olhos de Agua
Price range (per night): ₹ 11,781 - ₹ 31,481
Hotel Class:4 star — ClubHotel Riu Guarana 4*
Number of rooms: 500
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Renovated in 2017. Located in Olhos d'Agua in the Algarve. 6-Storey main building and 2-storey annex building. 15 Minutes' walk from Praia da Falesia beach. Access to a small cove from the hotel Riu Palace Algarve is via cliff side steps (an approximate 10 minute walk). 8 Km from Albufeira. 500 M from various shops. 35 Km from the airport. 500 M from a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clubhotel Riu Guarana Albufeira
Clubhotel Riu Guarana Hotel Albufeira
ClubHotel Riu Guarana Olhos De Agua, Portugal - Albufeira

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