Albufeira has been blessed with an abundance of beaches varying from long, sprawling sandy ones to tiny, rocky coves. Formerly a fishing town that transformed into a tourist spot in the mid-’60s, this town has gone through many identities and still changes dramatically with the seasons. Visitors coming in the height of summer will experience a buzzing city with loud music and clubs galore, packed with restaurants and more activities than you can pack into a fortnights break.

Should you choose to visit Albufeira off-season, you’ll find a somewhat different atmosphere. It’s so much more relaxed, and visitors can discover the other side of Albufeira, with horse rides on the beach, spa and wellness retreats, inland adventures and even as a base to explore different regions. There’s always something to do in Albufeira whether it’s cultural, gourmet, luxurious, artistic, budget, upbeat or tranquil, they’ve been mastering the art of delivering multi-faceted tourism for nearly 60 years, and there truly is something for everyone here.

If a day of banana boats, riding a bucking bronco, dancing until 6 am and grabbing a kebab on your way home is your thing, then come in the summer. Alternatively, you can enjoy 2 Michelin star dining and total tranquillity. Albufeira has it all.

Hotel California

Created by a local architectural studio, Hotel California Urban Beach is an Adults only, four-star hotel slap bang in the centre of the old town and just a 2-minute walk to the famous Praia dos Pescadores Beach. A rooftop pool and views overlooking Albufeira complement this modern, funky downtown hotel.

With elegant air-conditioned rooms that are contemporary in style, featuring Smart TVs with some rooms including a seating area.

Enjoy a visit to the onsite D’Spa, with its heated indoor pool and a water circuit along with a good range of massages and beauty treatments using Organic & Vegan products. Cocktails and refreshments are available at the pool bar, lounge bar and also in the onsite restaurant Wine & Sushi Califórnia.

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EDITORS PICK

© Epic SANA

© Epic SANA

EPIC SANA Algarve Hotel

This five-star resort hotel has everything you could hope for when looking for comfort, facilities and excellent service. Located in the Falesia area of Albufeira, in a highly privileged cliff top position surrounded by perfectly manicured gardens you’ll find this haven away from the summer crowds. The accommodation is varied with a selection of sea-view and resorts view hotel rooms, studios and apartments in the residences with a children’s club, and then there are the gorgeous sea-view, garden suites all decorated very tastefully. Every room has an oversized bath and rain shower with gorgeous toiletries, robes and slippers.
With direct access to the award-winning Falesia beach, there are two large outdoor pools, one adult only that is standing level, so perfect for both laps and those who prefer just to cool off next to the Open Deck restaurant serving delicious Portuguese dishes in a relaxed atmosphere.

The SAYANNA Spa is divine and definitely worth a visit. Breakfast shouldn’t be missed and offers the perfect balance to start your day. The jewel in the crown here is the Al Quimia Gourmet restaurant, which is a must-visit for lovers of excellent food and wines. Naturally inspired decor envelopes an instant feeling of comfort and relaxation throughout.

Luna Solaqua

Right in the middle of the Old Town and the Oura strip lays this large, central aparthotel. With modern air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, along with both an indoor and outdoor swimming pool make this a great choice.

The suites feature a balcony with table and chairs, a kitchenette, en-suite bathroom with toiletries and a hairdryer. As an aparthotel, you get the best of both worlds, being able to prepare light meals and having refreshments in your studio or one-bedroom apartment or at the onsite restaurant.

Other onsite facilities include a hot tub; bar kids play area and communal lounges where you can get to know your fellow holidaymakers.

Jupiter Albufeira Hotel – Family & Fun

Newly renovated five-star Jupiter Albufeira Hotel – Family & Fun is located in Montechoro, in a quiet area just a 10-minute drive by complimentary free shuttle service to and from Oura Beach and Albufeira’s centre. A water park, many outdoor pools, a spa area and entertainment program giving the hotel a resort feel.

Modern décor, with private balconies, en-suite bathrooms with a walk-in shower and large rooms make this hotel perfect for families. Restaurants serving buffet, Italian and a la carte are available on room-only or all-inclusive board. The rooftop bar is the cherry on the cake with stunning views over Albufeira and the ocean.

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Santa Eulalia Hotel & Spa

Great location for beach lovers, the Santa Eulalia is only 500 meters from two of Albufeira’s famous beaches, Praia da Oura and it’s namesake Santa Eulália. This hotel has a mixture of air-conditioned studio and suite accommodation that comprise of a kitchenette, seating and dining area, bedroom and bathroom with all amenities along with a private outside terrace.
Communal features include indoor and outdoor swimming pools, evening entertainment, including live music, karaoke and there’s an onsite restaurant too. The hotel is located just off the road and surrounded by gardens.

Pine Cliffs

The name says it all. Set amongst mature pine trees in the stunning cliffs of Falesia, The five-star Pine Cliffs is a luxury, award-winning family resort managed by Marriott International. The resort offers many styles of accommodation with Pine Cliffs Ocean Suites, Pine Cliffs Residence, Pine Cliffs Terraces, Pine Cliffs Deluxe Villas, Pine Cliffs Townhouses.

The beautiful, natural location, 800 m from the Atlantic beaches with private access, the 9-hole golf course, Anabel Croft Tennis academy, Serenity Spa, two swimming pools and many dining and socialising option make this a perfect resort for those with a taste for the finer things in life.

Vila Recife Hotel

You’ll find Vila Recife a short 5-minute walk away from Fisherman’s Beach. A large terrace welcomes guests to this budget option where you might be surprised to find an outdoor swimming pool with a bar and loungers.

The rooms are basic but comfortable, and they all have air-conditioning along with satellite TV and are equipped with a refrigerator, telephone, a work desk and a private bathroom with shower. Enjoy the outdoor areas relaxing on sun loungers by the pool area, and enjoy a drink at the garden bar. A lounge area and games room add to the facilities making the hotel a good choice for a short break.

Albufeira Beach Hotel

In the middle of Albufeira’s historic centre, just around the corner from Fisherman’s Beach, Albufeira Beach Hotel is ideally located for those wanting a crash pad. Comfortable rooms, some with balconies are spread over the four floors with comfortable en-suite rooms have air-conditioning, satellite TV and a safe.

Free wifi and a 24-hour reception help plan excursions and look for local recommendations. The rooms can be reached by stairs or lift. This hotel is located in the middle of a busy bar street with an excellent variety of restaurants, bars and clubs within a stone’s throw.

Hotel Ondamar

A selection of studio, one and two-bedroom apartments make up this aparthotel. All apartments are fully equipped with fitted kitchenettes and large balconies and bright, airy decor.

Slightly set back in a more residential area, and around a leisurely 15 minutes’ walk from the main Albufeira beaches and the old town. With an indoor heated pool, and two outdoor pools (one just for children) and set in landscaped gardens with bridges and water features.

The onsite Restaurante, A Lota where guests can enjoy a continental breakfast or traditional Portuguese cuisine in the evening. The complimentary shuttle bus is available to and from the beach, and downtown Albufeira.

Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

Beautiful restaurants, a variety of crafted outdoor swimming pools, outdoor and indoor bars and sculpted gardens create the mood here in the Salgados area of Albufeira.

Designer rooms and suites come in a range of pool or garden views, right next to the sea with large balconies and great amenities. Interconnecting family rooms are also available.

This five-star resort is on the Marina side of Albufeira and is set in a tranquil location, perfect for a week or so to recharge your batteries in luxurious surroundings. The surrounding area has many of the Algarves’ best restaurants and pristine beaches. There’s a kid’s club for the children along with room service to add to your comfort.

Finding the perfect hotel will make your holiday in the Algarve one to remember. As you’ll be aware, we are indeed blessed with fabulous weather in this part of the world and so much accommodation that it can be hard to choose where to stay.

We’ve explored many of the 52 luxury five-star hotels and selected our top ten based on a few factors.

High standards in comfort, service and facilities are essential along with the setting, most five-star properties have a sea view in the Algarve, and some even have Michelin star restaurants to add to their exclusivity. While prices in high season can be on par with city prices, there are always off-season bargains to be had, and many hotels and resorts run wellness retreats in the slower months.

The spas are world-class with brands such as L’Occitane and Sisley providing gorgeous products to enhance the experience. Fine cotton linen, plush pillows, luxurious toiletries, bonbons and little surprises in your suite make all the difference. The service has to be flawless, and a feeling of wellbeing should be almost instant when walking into the reception area. With that in mind, here’s our pick of the best. Enjoy and sweet dreams in the Algarve!

Vila Vita Parc

Vila Vita is so much more than a hotel or resort, located in Armacao de Pera, Central Algarve.

It’s a unique oasis of sea-inspired rooms, suites and villas with ocean views and some of the best dining outlets in the area. The clifftop location has 54 acres of subtropical gardens, a Morrocan garden, fountains, pools, a private beach and their own yacht. A wine cellar that’s 8 metres underground with dining options, Misu Japanese restaurant, Ocean their Michelin star restaurant and many more besides. The Sisley Spa, Vila Vita shopping area and bars dotted around, should keep guests entertained. They also have a Bavarian Bier Garten, beach restaurants and a beach club in the local area along with their own vineyard in the Alentejo.

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Photography supplied by Bela Vista Palace

Photography supplied by Bela Vista Palace

Bela Vista Hotel & Spa – Relais & Chateaux

A magnificent, historical building in the unlikely yet privileged location on the cliffs of Praia da Rocha. This is a boutique hotel with an eclectic and flamboyant style with some of the best views around. Direct beach access, a large pool and decked dining area are some of the outdoor features worth mentioning.

Spread over three areas, each with totally unique nautical design features and mostly facing the stunning panoramic sea views. The Vistas restaurant has a Michelin star and is worth a visit. We love the L’Occtiane Spa for a spot of pampering, and there are many restaurants and bars within walking distance – an ideal luxury hotel in the Algarve.

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Photography supplied by Tivoli Carvoeiro

Photography supplied by Tivoli Carvoeiro

Tivoli Carvoeiro

In the picturesque, old fishing town of Carvoeiro, perched inside the face of a cliff lays the breathtaking Tivoli Carvoeiro. From the hotel lobby, the eye is instantly drawn to the view at the back of the hotel, which is simply stunning. The recent refurbishment has seen the addition of a Sky Bar, The One fine dining restaurant, spa with gym and many large suites to accommodate more families. The design is light, bright and elegant, taking elements from the ocean and nature.

There is a lobby bar and two further, more informal restaurants along with a kids club and conference facilities. This is a very popular wedding venue too because of the excellent view and walking distance to the village and beaches.

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EDITORS PICK

© Epic SANA

© Epic SANA

EPIC SANA Algarve Hotel

Located in the Falesia area of Albufeira, in a highly privileged cliff top position framed with perfectly manicured gardens you’ll find this haven. With a selection of sea-view and resorts view hotel rooms, studios and apartments in the residences with a children’s club, and then there are the gorgeous sea-view, garden suites. This is one of the best dreamy Algarve luxury hotels you can book. Every room has an oversized bath and rain shower with delightful toiletries, robes and slippers.

With direct access to the award-winning Falesia beach, there are two large outdoor pools, next to the Open Deck restaurant serving delicious Portuguese dishes in a relaxed atmosphere. The SAYANNA Spa is divine and definitely worth a visit, while their Al Quimia Gourmet restaurant is a must-visit for lovers of excellent food and wines.

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Conrad Algarve

World-class service, gourmet dining, brunches, fabulous events and an infinity pool are a few things worth mentioning about the luxury 5-star Conrad Algarve. Set in the golden circles’, Quinta do Lago where the rich and famous hang out.

The elegant rooms have contemporary notes of grey in the design features and balconies overlooking the palms or the pool.
Luxurious toiletries make having a soak in the marble bathroom all the better.

Dining at the Conrad Algarve is a marvellous experience, and the Michelin star Gusto by Heinz Beck is the best they have. More casual dining is available downstairs or poolside, and the cocktail bar is a real treat. The spa has some fantastic water features that can be used before treatments or for a fee.

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Pine Cliffs

Surrounded by mature pine trees in the stunning cliffs of Falesia, The five-star Pine Cliffs is a luxury, award-winning family resort managed by the Marriott International group. With many styles of accommodation with Pine Cliffs Terraces, Pine Cliffs Deluxe Villas, Pine Cliffs Ocean Suites, Pine Cliffs Residence and Pine Cliffs Townhouses.

Only 800 m from the Atlantic beaches with private access, the 9-hole golf course, Serenity Spa, two swimming pools, the Anabel Croft Tennis academy. They have many dining venues including a private beach bar, Portuguese steak house and Japanese restaurant making this a perfect Luxury Algarve resort for those who enjoy the finer things in life and traditional hospitality.

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Lake Resort Luxury Hotel Algarve

Lake Resort Luxury Hotel Algarve

The Lake Resort

A luxurious resort with a natural, sandy beach pool and a floating restaurant that’s only 300 m from Falésia Beach. Balconies reach out from the rooms and have stunning views of the surrounding lake and sea.

A Moorish-style dome welcomes guests at the reception. Spacious, comfortable rooms with luxurious linens and bathroom treats put you in the mood to slow down and relax.

The resort has three restaurants, two bars and a library full of books and magazines but is also not far from Vilamoura Marina or Thai Beach Club for those who like to get out and about. There’s a spa area, Koala Kids Club, three pools and plenty of outdoor space to enjoy.

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Grand House

This beautiful, old school, grand house is Belle Époque hotel and the only 5-star hotel in the most eastern town of Vila Real de Santo António. On the bank of the Guadiana River, you can enjoy views of the harbour and Spanish town of Ayamonte at the other side of the river from one of the 30 rooms or suites.

The decor is traditional and features many antiques, mouldings and opulent design details. Fine dining, a rooftop terrace and bar are available to guests as is a complimentary transfer to the hotels’ beach club with its infinity pool – check-in and relax in the ultimate Algarvian luxury!

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The beach at Carvoeiro Tivoli

The beach at Carvoeiro Tivoli

Longevity Health and Wellness Hotel

This new hotel is built into a secluded hillside by the fishing village of Alvor and enjoys views out to the bay and the countryside. As a wellness hotel, the focus is on facilities such as their infinity rooftop outdoor swimming pool along with a heated indoor pool.

Contemporary, naturally inspired décor is evident throughout. All rooms have a balcony and all the amenities that you would expect from a five-star hotel.

The breakfast buffet is served at the Rooftop Pure Cafe by Longevity, which has beautiful panoramic sea views. There’s a spa and wellness centre, with a wide range of treatments and massages and state of the art fitness studio.

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Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

Salgados by Vidamar Hotel

A variety of interestingly sculpted outdoor swimming pools, outdoor and indoor bars and landscaped gardens along with a good selection of dining options create the mood here in the Salgados area of Albufeira.

Designer rooms and suites come in a range of pool, garden and sea views with large balconies and great amenities. Interconnecting family rooms are also available.

This five-star resort after the Marina of Albufeira, set in a tranquil location, perfect for a week or so to recharge your batteries in luxurious surroundings. The surrounding area has many of the Algarves’ best restaurants and pristine beaches. It’s also a great springboard to explore other areas as it’s very central.

There’s a kid’s club for the children along with room service to add to your comfort, as the parents can just enjoy the Algarve in luxury, you know you deserve it!

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