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Portugal: 3 Hotels Under The Microscope

By Vikki Ashton

Last month we told you about our very own Sam Rippingham visiting Aphrodite Hills in Cyprus, and Sam has been on his travels again having just returned from the Algarve in Portugal. It's a tough job but somebody has to do it! We sat down and caught up with Sam who gave us his thoughts on three hotels he visited that caught his imagination.

Conrad Algarve

"I was really excited about visiting the Conrad Algarve having seen all of the pictures online and hearing such great reports from my colleagues about the resort. I wasn't disappointed, it was extremely modern and sleek and one of the newest hotels in the Algarve. It was situated in an area called Quinta do Lago, a very upmarket and exclusive location close to some of Portugal's best golf courses."

"Highlights for me here were the spa (which is also open to the public) - the facilities were outstanding and much care and love has gone into the composition of the layout. Also, I must mention the Mediterranean restaurant which is run by Michelin starred chef Heinz Beck. The food here was exceptional and also very reasonably priced."

Vila Vita Parc

"Much has been made of this resort and rightly so. I just thought it was beautiful throughout. It has a two Michelin starred restaurant called The Ocean - we however ate in the Portuguese restaurant which was amazing and featured beautiful views of the lake with its water fountain and swans. This is a great resort for families seeking an up market destination with gorgeous beach and golf club. There are lots of facilities and a great kids club for the younger ones. I stayed in an Oasis Suite Premium (pictured above, right) which was one of the most amazing rooms I have ever stayed in - the bathroom was as big as my bungalow.

Hilton Vilamoura

"Out of all the hotels we saw in the Algarve, this hotel had the best kids club and play area out of all of them. Fitness aficionados will love the gymnasium which was superb, and there's a personal trainer on call to tend to all of your bespoke needs if you are looking to stay healthy whilst away. The spa too here was amazing, in fact beautiful spas seemed to be a theme of all the hotels we saw."

"I would principally recommend this hotel to families who want a nice 5* hotel and want to relax, let the kids enjoy the kids club and the parents enjoy the spa and pool areas. There are not a huge amount of facilities like in some of the other resorts and it's not as big either, so it felt a lot more personal."

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