Child-friendly features include kids' clubs, family rooms, and kid menus
Water sports, snorkeling, diving, private yacht hire, and fishing excursions
Free mini-golf, pitch and putt, bocce, ping pong, soccer, and volleyball
Fee for tennis courts and bike rental
Two of the meal-plan-included restaurants are off-site
Eateries are seasonal and some may not be open during stay
Water sports are seasonal (June to September) and are off-site
Situated on a cliff facing the ocean, the luxury Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa has the feel of an elegant estate and village spanning 54 acres of garden grounds. The property has 180 rooms, the most basic of which have contemporary decor by local artists, sunken living rooms, and outdoor areas. Many features are off-site or seasonal, but the resort presents a slew of dining and recreation options, along with access to a small beach with Portugal's largest reef offshore. The nine restaurants include a two-star Michelin spot, and there are seven bars and an elegant wine cellar. Other bonuses are the European-style holistic spa, eight swimming pools, kids' clubs, and golf facilities. Across the road, the resort's main competitor, Blue & Green Vilalara Thalassa Resort, offers a well-respected Thalassotherapy spa and more tranquility, but less of a luxury-estate feel.
A large and luxe estate-like property with Moorish architecture, favored among seniors and families
The Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa has a clifftop setting and occupies over 50 acres of gorgeous, manicured grounds. The hotel's whitewashed Moorish architecture sits amidst lush gardens laced with duck ponds, stone footbridges, and decorative fountains, with views of the sea in the distance. There's not much happening around the hotel in terms of restaurants, bars, or entertainment -- though the property's biggest competitor, Blue & Green Vilalara Thalassa Resort, is just across the way. As such, most guests spend their time on the golden-sand beach or around the eight glorious swimming pools lined with cushioned wicker loungers and cheerful palm trees. The nautical-themed lobby has model ships, blue velvet seating, and Portuguese tile accents. Sunlight floods in though floor-to-ceiling windows framed with decadent drapery. The resort has an estate-like elegance, though some of the artwork and decor can feel a bit old-fashioned. The hotel suited to both couples and families, thanks to facilities for each.
Beautiful and slightly secluded seaside location in Algarve, right on top of the cliff
Set on an expansive clifftop with garden grounds in the slightly secluded Faro District of Algarve, this resort doesn't have much nearby outside of other hotels and a few small restaurants. It's six minutes by car to the town of Porches, where there are larger local restaurants, bars, ATMs, and shops. Armacao de Pera, a small fishing village with a few cafes, is a five-minute drive away. Bustling Carvoeiro, with more dining and entertainment, is a 20-minute drive. However, there's an Intermarche grocery store about a 15-minute walk from the resort for Villa guests who want to stock their kitchens. Faro Airport is about a 40-minute drive east. The hotel has airport transfers, but booking in advance with an outside company is usually cheaper.
Spacious and stylish rooms with a beach-house vibe and balconies or patios
Rooms have contemporary decor with a color scheme of beige, white, and blue to reflect the beach setting. Across the board, rooms are spacious and have hardwood floors and floor-to-ceiling windows that let in lots of light and open to private furnished balconies or patios. The standard Deluxe Rooms have unique sunken living rooms, plus blue-and-white plates hanging on the room walls made by local artists. Bathrooms outfitted with Portuguese tile feature local toiletries, dual vanity sinks, and either rainfall showers or bathtubs. Amenities include minibars stocked with wines, ports, and snacks, as well as free bottles of water, large flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Accessible rooms are available. Deluxe Ocean View or Deluxe Garden View rooms have more scenic views of either the ocean or gardens.
As for Suites, they add espresso machines and entertainment consoles with Bluetooth speakers. Grand Suites and higher category units have separate bedrooms and living spaces, some with two levels. Penthouse Suites offer more detailed and elegant decor, six-person dining areas, and bathrooms with separate bathtubs and steam showers. While the Penthouse is on the top floor of the main building, upgrading to an Oasis Suite Premium Rooftop Suite comes with luxurious leather chairs, a canopy bed, walk-in shower, and a large, private rooftop terrace with great ocean views. Private Villas have their own kitchens, private pools, private beach area, and service staff. These villas can sleep between six and 10 people.
Gorgeous cliffside private beach area with food service and setups
Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa has a small but beautiful beach area surrounded by high cliff walls. While the beach has a slightly less manicured look than similar beaches in the area, no guests seem to mind. The beach is outfitted for guests with sunbeds, umbrellas, and towels, plus there's a lifeguard hut. Note, however, that access to the beach is down a long set of steps carved through the cliffside, which may be tricky for children or guests with mobility issues. During the high season, the hotel has food and drink service during certain hours.
Nine seasonal restaurants, one with two Michelin stars; and a confusing meal plan
Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa has three fine dining restaurants, three casual spots, a teppinyaki dinner restaurant, and two off-site restaurants located in nearby towns. Ocean restaurant is the fine-dining star of the hotel overlooking the water; awarded two Michelin stars, this Austrian chef-led spot serves a gourmet, seasonal menu, but it's only open nights from Wednesday to Sunday, and is completely closed in the winter. The other two fine dining restaurants are the Aladin Grill, which has an open kitchen for seafood and meat preparations, and Altantico, the summer terrace restaurant that serves fine Mediterranean dishes. None of the fine dining establishments are included in the half-board meal plan.
Casual dining options are all on-site and are included in half-board plans. Adega serves tapas and regional cuisine accompanied by live music. Bela Vita, the hotel's main buffet restaurant, serves free breakfast and has a panoramic garden terrace. The free breakfast buffet smorgasbord includes smoked salmon and cold cuts; omelette, crepe, and waffle stations; freshly squeezed juices and smoothies; a variety of cheeses, pastries, breads, yogurt, fresh fruit and vegetables, and cereal; plus champagne. The family-friendly Italian restaurant, The Whale, serves wood-fired pizzas and an a la carte menu.
The two off-site spots include the German Biergarten in Porches and a casual beachside spot called Arte Nautica on the sands of Amacao de Pera. These two restaurants are included in the meal plan. The hotel also has 24-hour room service, plus villa guests have access to an in-room cooking service.
A cafe with traditional coffee drinks, plus six bars, some seasonal
There are seven bars at the hotel, plus Cafe Bica, which pours traditional Portuguese Bica coffee in a cheery, partially open parlor setting. The Aladin Bar is open seasonally for pre-dinner drinks and after-dinner live music and dancing. A year-round spot with live music is the Oasis Bar, located in the lobby; it serves morning or afternoon tea, as well as cocktails late into the night. Vila Vita Parc also has a unique, underground wine cellar, Cave de Vinhos, where guests are given free tours.
The Garden Bar, Palm Bar, and Pool Bar are only open during summer months. Located in the center of the hotel complex, Palm Bar is the hotel's swim-up bar, serving drinks and light snacks. The Pool Bar services the outdoor pools with ice cream, pizza, juices, and milkshakes. The Garden Bar overlooks the garden, slinging drinks to guests sunbathing at the Residence building. The Manzar Terrace Lounge is also open only during summer and it has an open-air terrace with panoramic ocean views. Delfim Bar, located inside the main building by the health club, has a menu of fresh juices, sandwiches, and the occasional milkshake. V-Club Disco Bar is open for adults during the summer.
Kid- and family-friendly features from activities to rooms
There are a wide variety of family- and kid-friendly features here. While several of the room types are large enough to sleep a small family, the Ocean Family Suites are specifically designed with families in mind. These spacious two-bedroom suites each have a main bedroom with king-size bed and a second room with twin beds. There are three different kids' clubs with specifically designed programs for kids ages 6 months to 3 years old, 4 to 11 years old, and 12 to 18 years old. Participation is free, but excursions, art materials, and food and drink cost extra. Kids also get a free kids' check-in kit on arrival and have their own dedicated menus in some restaurants. For the youngest kids there are cots, cribs, high chairs, changing pads, and bottle warmers available on request.
However, the Residence area of the resort and one of the pools is adult-only. Plus, the fine-dining restaurants are restricted to certain ages.
European spa with Hypoxi Studio, pitch-and-putt course, eight pools, and water sports
The Vila Vita Parc Resprt & Spa has a ton of features for kids and adults alike. The classically presented European spa draws on a holistic approach and is popular for its Hypoxi Studio. Featuring a cave-like design with delicately painted wall details, the spa offers beauty treatments, an ice grotto, Finnish and infrared saunas, a whirlpool, and a relaxation area. There are eight swimming pools, including three especially for kids. All non-kiddy pools are set up with sunbeds, loungers, and pool towels, plus they have a restaurant or snack service. The hotel's largest pool, the Oasis, is immaculate and features a swim-up bar. The Club House pool has modern Cycladic decor, hanging sunbeds, and a small grotto-style whirlpool.
The fitness center includes an indoor pool and modern gym with machines and weights, exercise classes, and personal training. The hotel has a nine-hole, Pitch and Putt course, in addition to mini-golf. The property also has golf packages with discounts at various courses throughout Algarve. For more action, there are on-site sports facilities such as volleyball, badminton, and tennis courts (the latter for a fee).
Marine lovers should take note that the largest natural reef in Portugal rests right off the coastline of the Vila Vita Parc, making it an ideal spot for divers and snorkelers. The resort can also organize cave trips, fishing trips, rented yachts, and water sports such as kayaking or canoeing. However, guests must take the hotel's free shuttle boat service to the nearby beach of Armacao de Pera to take advantage of the seasonal water sports.
This hotel also has a business center, library, and meeting/event spaces. Wi-Fi is free throughout the property and there's also free on-site parking.
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