Beatiful views of the ocean, great pools (two different temperatures and water types), incredibly generous breakfast buffet (try the bacon!) extraordinarily helpful staff (I forgot my charger to my GoPro and they donated their credit card machine cable overnight!). They made our two single beds into a king - but the choice of pillow types made up for it! Wonderful stay.
"Very welcoming staff and would definitely return."
We had a lovely time in Madeira. The hotel has a family atmosphere and the man in charge was very hospitable and was keen to ensure there were no problems and we had everything we needed. The building in places is a bit tired however for what we paid is good value for money. Rooms are basic but additional items such kettles, irons, etc are provided free of charge upon request. We didn't feel that we needed to request a safe as the area and the hotel feels safe, Madeira has a low crime rate.
There were some language barriers however these were overcome through the use of signs and an online translator, at times using this was very amusing. After using the online translator one day, I thanked the man by typing in that he was a very nice man. He gave a big smile and I think he was very happy with the compliment. It appears to us that he is happy in his work and that he likes to make others happy.
Some of the evenings we returned to the hotel early from the town and enjoyed spending this time sat on the patio terrace, which was quiet and relaxed. The man in charge would often bring us as part of his hospitality small dishes of cooked foods and snacks. The drinks were very reasonably priced.
The hotel is set on a steep hill and therefore you need to be prepared for this but if your hiring a car during your stay this is less of a worry. The hotel has available parking nearby.
Good hotel. At the top of a hill overlooking the harbour. Casino attached.
Bed and breakfast recommended for this stay because there are so many restaurants in the area.
Breakfast buffet good quality and well organised.
Could do with new bath towels as the current ones are pretty worn and threadbare !
Pool towels available free of charge.
We loved this hotel. Upon arriving at 10 am we didn't expect our room to be ready but it was so we were able to make the most of our holiday from the very beginning. The rooms are large, comfortable & immaculately clean. There is a huge bathroom with his & hers basins but the wraparound full length mirrors were a bit off putting! A nice touch was the tea & coffee making facilities with little cartons of UHT milk and a generous fridge to store your own drinks in (there are lots of small supermarkets & a largish branch of Pingo Doce within 10 minutes walk of the hotel - wine & beer was really cheap!) However, drinks prices in the hotel are very reasonable too. The dine around half board option was excellent. The main Ocean restaurant with a large outdoor terrace offered a good buffet but you could also book a table at any of 3 other restaurants - sushi, pizzeria or Madeiran speciality "espetadas" (skewered meat) so you could enjoy a wide variety if staying for a week or more. Unfortunately we were only there for a long weekend but we'll certainly go back for a longer stay. The staff were, without exception, friendly and helpful and the facilities are superb. Two large infinity pools and an indoor pool, spa & gym.There were plenty of sun loungers and the hotel provided fresh pool towels daily. The location of the Vidamar is perfect, in the Lido area of Funchal, on a variety of bus routes & just a 20-25 minute stroll into the centre of town. Try it - you won't be disappointed!
Spent a long weekend here and actually made a point of scheduling time to spend at the hotel itself, since there is lot to enjoy--the gorgeous pools (I used 3 of them); the gym (I did use it); the spa (I had a very good massage plus a facial); the tropical gardens with view of the ocean; the restaurants (I had an excellent dinner at Alfama). There's also mini golf, ping pong, tennis--lots of opportunity for games, though I did not do any of that, and most people during my visit were swimming and sunbathing and having a drink or gelato at the poolside bars. But with all the entertainment options (also a kiddie pool), I can see how this would be a great place to take your children, though that's not how I was traveling. At this time of year (November), the clientele seemed to be mostly retirees but there were also plenty of vacationing couples and groups of friends in their 30s and 40s.
The staff is very friendly and efficient. The ambiance is nice but casual and the decor is like that too--this is not a FANCY place; it's very clean but I would say it leans more towards "homey" rather than chic. There are some beautiful and peaceful spaces though, like the large indoor/outdoor pool near the spa, the gardens I already mentioned, and the restaurants are very attractive spaces (and you'd put on something nice to dine at Alfama, for example).
The included breakfast presents a vast array of options, buffet style. Very good.
"Is Madeira good for families with young children?"
Our first time back to Madeira since 2008 and the first time there with children. Madeira doesn't come to mind as a destination for young families and it's fair to say there aren't the quantity of kids activities or facilities as somewhere like Majorca or the Canary Isles, no beaches to speak of either. It is however, a quiet, safe and friendly place to have a holiday with lots of warm sunshine!
The hotel itself sits on a high cliff with an amazing 220 degree view of the horizon, the sea view rooms are definitely worth paying extra for. Outside pools are salt water, indoor heated pool, great for kids. There's a games room with table football and table tennis, other than a pool table near the bar and a climbing frame / swings in the grounds, that's the extent of children's facilities, but this is fairly normal for Madeira. For adults, there's everything you would expect from a high spec hotel, all of which you can see on the Pestana website.
We had a really good holiday and would go back again.
Funchal, capital of the Madeira Islands, curves along a harbor and rises up verdant mountain slopes. At the Mercado dos Lavradores market, vendors display basketry, produce, fresh fish, and profusions of flowers. The Madeira Wine Lodge, housed in a 17th-century monastery building, offers tastings and tours. A ride in a wicker toboggan down steep, narrow streets is a uniquely Funchal experience.