Set in a quiet resort town, within walking distance of the beach
One-bedroom apartments with cooking facilities
Furnished balconies or terraces, some with sea views
Buffet restaurant and two bars, one poolside
An outdoor pool and adjacent children's pool
Activity program for kids and adults
All-inclusive option available
Swimming pool is small and can get crowded
Rooms are dated, with old tube-style TVs and tired bathrooms
Some five-story buildings lack elevators
Cooking facilities lack microwaves or ovens
Fee for in-room Wi-Fi
The Luna Falesia Mar is a mid-range apartment complex spread over 15 blocks in its own private clifftop enclave. Set in the peaceful resort town of Olhos de Agua means that there's not a great deal in the immediate surroundings, though lovely beaches are accessible on foot. Its 240 apartments are roomy and equipped with basic cooking facilities, but they have dated furnishings and tube-style TVs. Most guests are on the all-inclusive option that includes decent if a bit limited buffet meals. A major gripe is the small swimming pool, which can get crowded during peak season, though kids do have a small separate pool. Neighboring Porto Bay Falesia has a much bigger pool and better sea views, though it's also more expensive.
Apartment complex spread over numerous buildings with sea-view gardens
Comprising two rows of apartment blocks lining a private road, the Luna Falesia Mar feels more like a gated community than a holiday complex. The 15 buildings, however, are finished in a cheerful sandstone-yellow and most feature circular balconied facades. Note that the six older blocks lack elevators and guests staying in fifth-floor rooms should expect plenty of stair climbing. The tiled lobby has a few wicker couches, two computers for guest use, and tourist brochures, while gardens consist of well-tended lawns dotted with a few palm trees and lined with hedges. Grounds skirt the edge of a cliff, and pretty sea views are available from various vantage points across the property. The vibe is relaxed and unfussy, aside from loud poolside music, and the hotel attracts an even split of vacationing couples and families with kids.
Set in peaceful Olhos de Agua resort town, within walking distance of two beaches
The hotel is set on a stretch of private road with grounds that extend above the dramatic, rust-colored cliffs overlooking Praia da Falesia's long stretch of golden sand. Located in the small and relatively sedate Algarve town of Olhos de Agua, there are a few restaurants, bars, and shops in the surrounding area, though for anything more lively, it's a 15- to 20-minute drive to either Vilamoura or Albufeira. There's direct footpath access to the sea, but it's over 130 steps down to the five-mile long beach, so the return journey can be taxing (especially for mobility impaired guests or younger children). Alternatively, it's a 10-minute walk to the smaller Praia dos Olhos de Agua. Albufeira's lovely Old Town Square is about a 20-minute drive from here, and the hotel offers a free daily shuttle. Albufeira's nightlife hub known as "The Strip" is a 10-minute drive away. Faro Airport can be reached in about 30 to 35 minutes by car.
Straightforward one-bedroom apartments with cooking facilities that lack microwaves
The complex has 240 one-bedroom apartments, all of which are pleasant but simply decorated with white walls and floors, dated wooden furnishings, and colorful patterned upholstery and curtains; some red brick and blue tiling, plus orange-and-blue modern artwork add interest to the spaces. All open to furnished balconies or terraces that primarily overlook the gardens or the road, though some do feature lovely cliff and partial sea views -- these can be prone to noise from the pool during the day.
All apartments include living areas with sofas, dining areas, and tube-style TVs, while separate kitchens come with electric hobs, mini-fridges, coffeemakers, and a range of cookware; however, there are no microwaves or ovens. Bathrooms are functional, with shower/tub combos, wall-mounted hairdryers, and basic toiletries. While generally clean, many are showing signs of age and could use a refresh. Wi-Fi is available for a fee.
Decent buffet restaurant, two bars, and a small swimming pool
The hotel has a spacious though rather dated-looking buffet restaurant that's open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and caters to all-inclusive guests. Reports suggest that the food is generally decent with more variety than most. There's also a poolside snack bar, while the Bela Vista bar offers evening entertainment and sea views.
The main pool is surrounded by an attractive cobblestone sundeck lined with white plastic loungers and umbrellas. However, it's small for the size of the complex and can get crowded. Guests have also complained that even the shallow end is deep. There is a separate pool for children. Kids also have a playground and there's a program of activities and entertainment for both younger and older guests. Other amenities include a tennis court, laundry services (for a fee), electric bike rentals, and free Wi-Fi in the lobby (but in-room Wi-Fi incurs a fee).