Review: Conrad Algarve
I’ve just returned from a 2 night stay at Conrad Algarve and thought I’d post a quick review. This was my second visit to the hotel, both have been equally impressive.
I booked two early October weekend nights (Fri/Sat) in a King Deluxe room at 73,000 points per night. The cash price per night would have been around €290 or £256, which is consistent with a value of around 0.35p per Hilton point.
Whilst the weather was beginning to cool in the Algarve, we had a comfortable 25C with plenty of sunshine. Last year we visited in September and had similar conditions – this period is typically quieter and cheaper, whilst still being good weather for enjoying the (three) outdoor pools.
The level of service at the Conrad Algarve has been nothing short of exceptional on both of our visits. Staff (of which there are plenty!) are attentive, quick to offer service and very friendly. When you arrive you’re immediately provided with a comfortable seat at a check in desk, offered drinks and provided with comprehensive information about your stay. When you go to sit down by the pool, towels and water magically (!) appear within moments. The service is clearly targeted to match a very high-end market and for us it felt like absolute luxury! There is very little waiting for anything at the Conrad Algarve, there is always someone on hand.
We didn’t get an availability upgrade on our Hilton Gold status (although we did get other benefits), but the standard ‘King Deluxe’ room is very comfortable. The attention to detail in the rooms is fantastic and they are finished to a very high quality.
Every room has a balcony with seating area, the more premium rooms benefit from an exceptional view over the pools and across the Algarve countryside. Although our room, at the front of the hotel, still had an attractive view across the grand driveway and fountains.
The rooms are spacious and features include a TV in the bathroom, a rain shower, coffee machine, slippers and bathrobes and media system. They are also very well equipped.
On a short stay we were almost loathed to leave the hotel grounds, they’re so attractive. There are two different, but equally stunning, pool areas – a heated infinity pool and a beautiful unheated large pool with islands and lots of greenery.
As gold members we also had complimentary access to the Conrad Spa, which contains another smaller infinity pool, plunge pools, jacuzzi, experience showers, sauna, steam room and ice fountain. This was generally pretty quiet, so we often took advantage of being the only ones to use the pool area.
It speaks volumes that on our first visit to the hotel, the closest I could come to a criticism was that they put lounges and parasols in front of the infinity pool – which ruined the illusion! This time they’d even rectified that!
The grounds also include a play park, tennis courts, an indoor pool, sauna and jacuzzi, art exhibitions, a Michelin Star restaurant and several other bars and restaurants. Not to mention the fact that even the lobby area and corridor areas have some stunning places to sit – complete with water features and works of art.
Full breakfast was complimentary with our Hilton Gold status. There is an enormous selection of items, but they also cook items to order from a menu – some of which have an additional charge.
Again, breakfast is in keeping with the high standards of the rest of the hotel. Service is quick, friendly and attentive. The food is good – any hotel which includes smoked salmon in its buffet breakfast scores points with me!
The breakfast area is at the rear of the property and overlooks the pool and countryside.
Hilton Gold Benefits
If you have Hilton Gold status – benefits include a complimentary cocktail experience. This is an opportunity to make your own cocktail with some expert guidance at the bar!
You also get free breakfast, complimentary access to the spa, daily newspaper and late check out where available. In our case we were able to secure a 1 p.m. check out and after this our luggage was stored whilst we used the spa until our flight time.
We can fly to Faro very cheaply direct from our local airport, it’s then less than 20 minutes transfer to the hotel (£15 in an Uber). Unsurprisingly, when we have Hilton Honors points to burn, this makes the Conrad Algarve a very attractive option for a quick getaway. The recent bonus offer American Express to Hilton transfer rate might even make this one I book again soon! For us it’s a real luxury experience and one I’d highly recommend, especially if you can do it on a budget by using points and/or cheaper flights – if you’re visiting, expect to be spoilt and make sure you make the most of the spectacular environment.
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