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Customer reviews for Pestana Bay Hotel

Pestana Bay Hotel

Enjoy spectacular views over the Atlantic Ocean and Cabo Girao, a dramatic sea cliff, from the modern 4-star Pestana Bay Hotel, set in a quiet location on the outskirts of Funchal. Out and about The hotel is approximately five kilometres from the centre of Funchal and within walking distance of a small shopping centre with some bars and restaurants. A free hotel shuttle bus runs several times daily into the centre of town. Funchal airport is approximately 45 minutes’ drive away. Funchal Situated on Madeira’s south coast, Funchal is surrounded by hills, nestled snugly between the Atlantic and a string of terraced hills and mountains, and provides the perfect centre for discovering the island. It has many elegant shops, delightful botanical gardens, lively pavement cafes and a bustling market.
Average Customer Rating:
3.375 out of 5
3.4
 out of 
5
(8 Reviews) 8
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (8 reviews)
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Customer Reviews for Pestana Bay Hotel
Review 1 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Good location for walkers

Date:07 June 2013
Customer Avatar
Anonymous
Location:Greater Manchester
Gender:Male
Age:65-69
Travel companions:with a partner
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:lots of variety
Overall experience: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Accommodation: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Excursions: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Saga representative: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Value for money: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Pestana Bay Hotel is a good choice if you enjoy walking as you can easily access a great levada walk. However the hotel's location suffers because the tunnel, giving access to the lido and promenade is permanently closed. We have experienced this before on this holiday and even if you pay to use the lift you still have a good climb up to the main road. However the promenade walk to Camara de Lobos is now complete and very popular. There is a great view from the hotel which is right on the sea front - a pebble beach. The food is only average and was very repetitive. The hotel has also introduced two sittings with Saga guests expected to go on the 6.30 sitting, which didn't suit us. We requested the 8.00 sitting which was fine by the hotel. Entertainment is average but starts too early - 8 p.m. - and is in the same area as the diners so it can be noisy while you eat and the hotel needs to address this. The staff are generally friendly apart from the daytime head barman who is rather surly and somewhat unfriendly! We would go again as it suits us for the walking on the Levadas and into Funchal.
Response from Saga:By RebeccaCustomer Relations14 June 2013
Thank you for your review – it’s great to read your enjoyed your holiday but I’m sorry some issues affected your overall experience.

Other customers share your opinion about the great location of this hotel but it's unfortunate the tunnel between the hotel and shops is closed due to health and safety reasons. As you mention there is a chargeable lift at the Regency Palace Hotel or the option to walk up a fairly steep hill. There’s also a free hotel shuttle bus to the town centre for any guests not wishing to walk too far.

I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy all the food during your stay. We’re closely monitoring food variety at the hotel and I'm pleased to advise some recent improvements to the menu have shown a marked improvement. Customer feedback suggests most guests prefer to dine at the earlier sitting in order to enjoy the evening’s entertainment, but any guests wishing to dine later are very welcome to do so. Your comments regarding the entertainment have been noted and passed to our Quality Department for review.

Thanks again for taking the time to post a review and we look forward to welcoming you back on another Saga holiday soon.
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 2 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Pestana (very much at) bay

Date:15 June 2011
Customer Avatar
Najgor
Location:London
Gender:Male
Age:55-59
Travel companions:with a partner
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:seeing the sights
Overall experience: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Accommodation: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Excursions: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Saga representative: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value for money: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
My wife and I stayed at Pestana Bay during the second week in April and found the accommodation and surrounding areas pleasant enough but nothing to write home about.The bar service was very efficient and served by very polite staff until the hotel became crowded and then they struggled to cope to the point that we were told to get our own coffee from a machine which did not work so we gave up. A well equipped gym and nice pool and surrounding area and nice reception staff although this area was sometimes understaffed.The disappointing feature was the very poor food comprising of unimaginative dishes lacking in flavour with synthetic meat cooked in the same old tired sauce or gravy every night. Most of the fruit on offer was tinned and revolting.The hotel was full for most of that week which made the self service and lounge areas overcrowded and uncomfortable.We have already complained to SAGA about the food and we hope that something will be done to improve the situation. The Nuns Valley tour was very good and comprehensive although the tour of the coast which was included in the holiday had little to offer and very boring.Although the holiday in all was passable I do not think we will be returning to The Pestana Hotel again.
+6points
6out of 6found this review helpful.
Review 3 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

First visit to Madeira

Date:26 May 2011
Customer Avatar
holidaymad
Location:Ipswich
Gender:Male
Age:70-74
Travel companions:on my own
Favourite holiday activities:lots of variety
Overall experience: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Accommodation: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Excursions: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Saga representative: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Good clean hotel at the cliff base by the shingle beach. All rooms have a balcony facing the ocean and there are glorious sunsets to be seen.The staff were friendly and helpful. The food served was fine but did lack variety especially in the hot vegetables on offer. There was adequate outside sitting space.
The downside to the hotel is its location. The shuttle bus was too infrequent and could be oversubscribed at choice times. The public bus stop is a difficult walk away although there is a good cheap service when you get there. When I stayed in March the promenade adjacent to the hotel and the tunnel leading towards Funchal were closed due to winter storm damage. For this hotel to be ideal it is important that these are open.
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
Review 4 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Good holiday destination.

Date:19 May 2011
Customer Avatar
Anonymous
Location:kingsbridge, Devon
Gender:Male
Age:85-89
Travel companions:on my own
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:seeing the sights
Overall experience: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Accommodation: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Excursions: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Saga representative: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value for money: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
My second visit in April 2011 confirmed my first impressions in July 2009. The hotel is very comfortable, although the food lacks variety, particularly hot vegetables. Even though the hotel was full there were plenty of sunbeds.The location is rather remote but there is an hourly courtesy bus into Funchal. The wooden walkway along the beach to the tunnel, leading to a few shops and a cliff walk had been destroyed in a storm; hopefully it wll be restored. The Saga rep, Rowena, was very good and the Saga lounge a nice place to rest if one wanted peace and quiet. Evening entertainment was so so.
+1point
1out of 1found this review helpful.
Review 5 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Excellent Winter Break

Date:13 May 2011
Customer Avatar
pinny
Location:Kent
Gender:Female
Age:65-69
Travel companions:with a partner
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:meeting new friends
Overall experience: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Accommodation: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Excursions: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Saga representative: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value for money: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Having been to Madeira 3 times previously we knew what to expect - we stayed for a fortnight in February and enjoyed every minute. Accommodation was excellent and, although some complained, I thought the food was very good - perhaps a little old-fashioned but then I like that - especially jelly which was on offer every lunch and dinnertime! I have to say our Saga rep Frances was excellent - went the extra mile to help everyone enjoy their holiday. We went on a few trips and enjoyed them all - hotel staff were excellent - friendly and helpful - the only disappointment was the location of the hotel - a bit far away from Funchal but the shuttle buses solved this problem. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
+5points
5out of 5found this review helpful.
Review 6 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Worst Holiday Ever

Date:11 May 2011
Customer Avatar
Reviews
Overall experience: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Accommodation: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Excursions: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Saga representative: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Value for money: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Whilst the hotel itself was clean & comfortable & the staff friendly, the food left a lot to be desired. Tinned fruit at breakfast, little variation in main meals, few hot veggies & once Powdered mashed potato!! Because the tunnel was still closed many Saga guests could not manage the walk into Funchal & the courtesy bus was overcrowded. The "CrowningGlory"? We were burgled in our room while we slept (along with a further 3 rooms on the same night (all Saga guests). The management & security did not seem unduly concerned & told us we would have to go to the police station in Funchal to report it as the police would not come to the hotel.
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 7 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Pestana Bay Hotel

Date:10 May 2011
Customer Avatar
comfy
Location:Nottingham
Gender:Female
Age:80-84
Travel companions:on my own
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:meeting new friends
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The location is probably the most dramatic and spectacular of any other I have stayed in. My main problem was that it was further from Funchal than I expected, the promenade leading to the next village had been destroyed in the 2010 floods and mud slides. To walk to the village entailed a climb up a hill both there and back which I was unable to do. The coaches were not easy to get on, in fact the one we had to return to the airport had such a high step that the rep who accompanied us said it was like climbing a mountain.
The hotel was clean, the staff very friendly and helpful and the food excellant. The SAGA rep worked very hard and was always available when needed. Unfortunately the SAGA lounge was downstairs with no lift and I found that rather daunting. The entertainment was good and the other SAGA guests were very friendly and helped make it a holiday to remember.
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 8 for Pestana Bay Hotel
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Nearly Perfect

Date:10 May 2011
Customer Avatar
Beryl and William
Location:North Devon
Gender:Female
Age:75-79
Travel companions:with a partner
Favourite destination:Southern Europe
Favourite holiday activities:seeing the sights
Overall experience: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Accommodation: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Excursions: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Saga representative: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value for money: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
This hotel has much to recommend it and we enjoyed staying there except for one thing. The advertised shuttle bus service was not adequate for the number of people needing to use it and the climb to the public bus service stop is very challenging in spite of there being a lift for the first part.
The staff were excellent but when the hotel was really full they found it hard to maintain their usual efficiency. Nevertheless, they were charming and helpful.
The Saga Rep (Rowena) was the best Rep we have ever encountered!
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.