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Velamar Boutique Hotel 3.0

Albufeira, Faro District, Portugal

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Quiet and relaxed location in a small fishing village
  • Easy walking distance to beaches, bars, and restaurants
  • Stylish, contemporary decor with a minimalist bent throughout
  • Spacious and spotless rooms have balconies, AC, minibars, and flat-screen TVs
  • Small outdoor pool area with adjacent kiddy pool and plenty of loungers
  • Pool bar and casual Lounge Bar offering piano music and cocktails
  • Free breakfast with hot dishes served in room with views over the Algarve
  • Small game room with pool table and television
  • Massage services available
  • Free Wi-Fi and free parking

Cons

  • Beds are extra-firm (pro for some)
  • Not much for kids to do
  • No gym on-site

Bottom Line

Velamar Boutique Hotel is a bright, 75-room boutique with contemporary, minimalist style and a great location in the quiet fishing village of Olhos de Agua. This non-smoking, mid-range property is most popular among couples and an easy walk to beaches, bars, restaurants, and shops. All spotless and stylish rooms come with free water, minibars, 32-inch flat-screen TVs, balconies, and big (if hard) beds. Bathrooms have hairdryers and bidets, but no toiletries. Still, the free breakfast, two bars, small outdoor pool, game room, and all-day snacks make it an excellent bang-for-your-buck option near Albufeira. The fresh decor particularly stands out next to the often dated hotels in the area. For a more lively and kid-friendly spot in the area (but significantly higher price tag), check out the 500-room ClubHotel Riu Guarana

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Scene

A comfortable and stylish hotel with bright, immaculate spaces; popular with couples

It's not uncommon for hotels in Portugal to be slightly outdated or filled with antique-style furniture that reminds you of your grandparent's home. It's also rare to find a refurbished hotel that has successfully integrated its style into a cohesive, contemporary space -- but, Velamar Boutique Hotel has done just that. This small boutique has upgraded all of its public spaces, making them bolder, brighter, and yet still cozy. Expect a lot of polished metal, stark white and bright teal walls, striped wallpaper, and a few thoughtful touches of old wicker-based furniture. A slight maritime vibe lingers through a geometric steel sail sculpture in reception, round mirrors and wall decor reminiscent of portholes, and the deep turquoise-teal accent walls. Unlike a ship, the hotel has a very comfortable feel, similar to a country house. While the hotel is kid-friendly (cots and highchairs available), there's not much on-site for kids to do, making it a top choice for couples or anyone seeking a quiet and relaxed spot with a walkable location and affordable price. 

Location

Quiet location just outside of Albufeira, within walking distance to two beaches

Velamar is located just outside of Albufeira, between the small fishing village of Olhos de Agua and Santa Eulalia Beach. The out-of-center location is away from the tourist hubbub of Albufeira, but still within a 15-minute walk to Maria Luisa Beach or Olhos de Agua Beach. The local supermarket is a five-minute walk from the hotel and there are several restaurants, ranging from Indian take-out and pizza to beachside seafood, all within a one- to 15-minute walk. Reaching the Old or New Town, it takes about 15 to 20 minutes by car. Faro Airport is a 40-minute drive east. 

Rooms

Spotless and stylish rooms with contemporary decor, flat-screen TVs, and AC

The hotel has 73 rooms and two suites with a more minimalist look than the common areas. Rooms feel fresh, sporting faux-hardwood floors, gray-painted furniture, gray curtains, and blue-gray walls. Though some travelers may find the look underwhelming, it's crisp and well-maintained. All rooms come with 32-inch flat-screen TVs, air-conditioning, work desks, an electric kettle with tea and coffee, and minibars, plus balconies in some. Sand-colored bathrooms don't feel as sleek, though they're spotless and come with bidets, hairdryers, and huge vanity mirrors. Not all rooms have shower/tub combos (some just have a shower), and guests will need to pack their own toiletries. 

Travelers wanting a balcony will have to upgrade from a Classic Room to a Classic Room with Balcony, though going for gold with one of the two Suites means gorgeous corner rooms with tons of natural light, separate living space with sofa beds, and occupancy of up to four. Note that some guests have complained of beds being extra firm.

Features

Great bang-for-your-buck features, from free breakfast and a cocktail bar to an outdoor pool

Velamar is a deal that is pretty hard to beat. The hotel's affordable price not only snags guests some of the more stylish, up-to-date digs in the area, but it doesn't skimp on features, especially for a mid-range boutique. There's an outdoor pool area with a separate shallow pool for kids, plenty of loungers, and pool bar with seating. Pool towels can be rented with a deposit. A free buffet breakfast is served up with a view every morning in the light-filled breakfast room, but travelers will need to rely elsewhere for lunch and dinner. The hotel's Lounge Bar is a casual spot to grab reasonably priced cocktails or mingle amid piano music before dinner, but don't expect it to be an all-night party spot, as it closes before midnight. Other services available include a meeting room, small game room with a pool table and TV, and massage treatments on-request. Those looking to exercise will be disappointed that there's no gym here. Wi-Fi and parking are free and the entire hotel is non-smoking.  

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Things You Should Know About Velamar Boutique Hotel

Address

Estrada de Albufeira, Olhos d'Agua, Albufeira 8200-635, Portugal

Also Known As

  • Velamar Budget Boutique Hotel
  • Velamar Hotel

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