The Clube Praia da Oura is a mid-range, 564-room hotel with a prime setting perched on a low cliff overlooking the picturesque Praia da Oura beach. Apartment-style units features kitchenettes and terrace areas, though quality can vary wildly -- some have modern accents and others are dated. Additionally, Wi-Fi isn't free. On-site dining is nothing special, but bars keep everyone lubricated, and the area has plenty of restaurants to offer -- the town of Albufeira is a seven-minute drive away. Features include a gigantic pool, a charming kids' pool with a footbridge, and a children's club. Being popular with vacationing groups means the property can get noisy, so families after more serene surrounds should consider the comparably priced Balaia Golf Village Resort.
Huge cliffside resort set in pretty gardens popular with families and groups
The Clube Praia da Oura is a behemoth of a hotel with a bit of an identity crisis. The lobby is also a rather beguiling mix of contemporary design and traditional Middle Eastern furnishings that gives the impression of an idea that's not been quite realized. This quality carries over to the 560 rooms, spread throughout the vast, tiered property. The labyrinthine layout can feel a little overwhelming for some, and there are lots of steps to navigate. The extensive gardens, however, are pretty and well-maintained, comprising manicured lawns lined with colorful flowers and sculpted shrubbery, plus numerous tropical plants, mature palms, and a scattering of rattan daybeds. Much of the hotel features ocean views and a pleasant sea breeze wafts over the complex. Being largely an apartment hotel, it attracts both families and groups of vacationing friends. This, however, also means it's popular with stag/hen parties often keen to take full advantage of the all-inclusive options, resulting in some less-than-subdued revelry.
Prime clifftop setting overlooking Praia da Oura beach on Albufeira
The hotel's location is without doubt a highlight, built on a low cliff overlooking the lovely Praia da Oura beach just below. It's set on the eastern outskirts of the popular resort town of Albufeira in the southern Algarve. There are still plenty of eateries in the immediate area and it's about a 10-minute walk to the lively '"strip" of bars and clubs around Rua Vitoria and Avenida Sa Carneiro. Being set on a hilltop, however, makes for some rather steep walks back to the hotel. Alternatively Albufeira Old Town center is just a five- to 10-minute cab journey. Faro Airport is around 40 minutes' drive from the hotel.
Wide variation in room quality though some feature sea-view terraces
Options range from studios to one- and two-bedroom apartments. Decor tends to be split between the slightly dated, country-style interiors of the hotel's older accommodations and the smart contemporary finish of the 2014-renovated units (which guests agree are a big improvement). Some guests have complained about poor-quality, camping-style beds in older rooms as well as maintenance issues and odors. A two-bedroom apartment we visited featured interesting touches, such as zig-zag-patterned wallpaper and cherry-red lamps, with clean white walls and modern wood furniture. However, an older-looking studio with a murphy bed had dated wicker furnishings and faded plaid drapes.
Apartments do tend to have very spacious terraces with tables and loungers, some with lovely sea views. Living areas include sofa beds and flat-screen TVs (some up to 42 inches) while kitchenettes come with stovetops, mini-fridges, microwaves (or ovens in some), and coffee/tea facilities. In-room Wi-Fi is available only for a fee. Bathrooms are also divided between the older, tired ones and those that have benefitted from a contemporary update. Some have dated shower/tub combos while others feature marble showers with plexiglass doors. Pump-dispenser soap is provided.
Various dining options, large pool, child-friendly facilities, and direct beach access
The hotel's main eatery, Jac's Bar and Restaurant, serves breakfast and lunch buffet style and opens to a terrace overlooking the pool. While many choose the all-inclusive plan, breakfast is otherwise not included in the rate (some guests have also complained that the all-inclusive plan is very restrictive and food is mediocre). There's also Aqua Restaurant, situated in the gardens, and three bars: one for coffee, another for live evening entertainment, and one poolside. The sea-view Ocean Bar also has a large outdoor space often used for bowling.
A large outdoor pool is lined with plenty of loungers, though it's unheated and can be a little cold. A separate splash pool for kids is warmer, and the little ones can also be kept entertained by a mini-club and playground. A range of water sports are available at the neighboring beach, about five minutes' walk away down wooden stairs. A sauna and outdoor tennis court are also on-site, as well as ping-pong and other activities. A computer station offers free Wi-Fi access.
Customers Who Viewed Muthu Clube Praia da Oura Also Viewed