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Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel has set itself a modest goal - to be the finest luxury family resort in Europe. We like what we see so far.
Sagres has long been a favourite destination for nature lovers, surfers and divers who all appreciate its unspoiled environment. Martinhal is the first luxury resort in the area, creating a new destination where eco-conscious couples and families with children of all ages can relax with one of the Algarve's most beautiful beaches literally on their doorstep. One thing for sure works in their favour: the weather here is - statistically, at least - the best in mainland Europe.
The resort is set on a 75 acre site and the pitch is "affordable, understated 'barefoot luxury'" and there are a number of differing accommodation options. There is the 38 bedroomed five star boutique Hotel Martinhal as well as a wide selection of spacious Village Houses, and an exclusive collection of privately-owned villas and townhouses with private pools, set in large gardens, that are perfect for families. In the hotel and in each house, the classic, modern, furniture and interiors have been designed by London based designer, Michael Sodeau. Hotel Martinhal has ten Terrace Rooms in the main hotel building opening onto the spacious hotel gardens, where a further 26 stylish wooden-clad one and two bedroom Cabanas are located. Each Cabana has its own private balcony or terrace, offering luxurious accommodation with spectacular sea views.
On the upper level of Hotel Martinhal the chic gourmet 'O Terraco' restaurant offers spectacular views of Martinhal Bay, with a menu of light dishes and an exciting range of (under-rated) Portuguese wines. In addition there are Village Houses set in various distinct locations around a central village square and all a short stroll from the beach.
There are 55 two- and three-bedroom Ocean Houses perched on the highest point of the resort with excellent views over the sea. In addition, 28 spacious two- and three-bedroom Bay Houses enjoy a quiet location on the eastern border of the resort, overlooking a wooded valley, with uninterrupted views of the Costa Vicentina National Park to the east and the ocean to the south. In the heart of the resort 39 one-, two- and three-bedroom Garden Houses are arranged around a large walled, natural garden, with a large children's freeform 'Oasis' pool, along with a snack bar where families can relax all day. The semi-detached villas feature a continuous Algarvian garden wall, to provide both privacy and a carefree environment for families with younger children. Completing the development, ten individual Pinewood Houses are set apart in their own 'close' each with their own small private swimming pool.
The Martinhal offers a huge range of activities for adults and children alike. For pampering treatments, visit the Finisterra Spa, set in its own grounds within the resort and with six wooden-clad treatment rooms. A sauna and steam room are also available. For a more energetic experience Club 98 is the lively, sporty meeting point for guests with its own swimming pool, bar, three tennis courts and two glass sided paddle tennis courts. It's also the place where guests come to book lessons for a range of sports, including surfing, windsurfing and kite surfing, mountain biking, horse riding, snorkelling and diving. In addition Martinhal offers five swimming pools including a large indoor/outdoor pool and a gym. There are also excellent children's facilities. Just above Martinhal beach the Beach Club area offers a huge elevated sunbathing deck, and large swimming pool, with drinks and food served all day from the poolside bar. In the Praca Central (village square), a variety of other facilities include the 'Mercado', the village store where guests can purchase high quality deli items including locally sourced fresh fish, meats, cheese and wines as well as freshly prepared bread and pastries. An informal bistro 'Os Gambozinos' also occupies the north end of the square and will provide a buzzy venue from breakfast through to late supper with good quality a la carte menus and a wood fired pizza oven. The restaurants offer a range of food and wines, from a delicious 'Pastel de Nata' and 'bica' first thing, to a true gourmet dinner 'a deux' in O Terraco. For those who wish to chill out at home and watch a movie with the children - guests can order from the Home Delivery service - home made Indian and Chinese dishes, pizza's, whole barbequed chicken etc - all brought to their door. The hotel's O Terraço gourmet restaurant offers a menu that is essentially Portuguese, but prepared with a modern flourish.
Why we love it
Sagres was the embarkation point for many of the intrepid 15th Century Portuguese naval expeditions that discovered previously unknown (to Europeans, at any rate) parts of the globe.