Best hotels for foodies in the Algarve

Think of food from Portugal and fresh seafood is usually somewhere near the top of the list. And the Algarve has some of the country’s freshest and finest. Shellfish, including prawns and clams, are popular while grilled sardines - sardinhas no churrasco - washed down with a cool beer is almost compulsory. Other popular dishes include cataplana, a type of bouillabaisse named after the copper pan in which it’s cooked, and arroz de mariscos, a shellfish and rice stew. You will be able to sample all these and more at our pick of the best hotels for foodies in the Algarve.

Algarve cuisineFlickr user Jay Cross

Smoked hams, grilled meats and pork dishes are also worth looking out for whilst, for the sweet-toothed, a pastel de Nata - custard tartlet - is a must as, indeed, is anything made with almonds. Local wines are affordable and perfectly acceptable.

The finest way to enjoy the food is undoubtedly with a beachfront or sea-view dining terrace. Many of our choices of the best hotels in the Algarve for foodies give you just that.

Best hotels for foodies in the Algarve

For a michelin star (or two)

For serious eating, head for either Vila Joya or Vila Vita Parc, both with Michelin-starred restaurants.

Vila Joya

  • Overlooking the sea, Vila Joya has one of Portugal’s most celebrated restaurants, a two-Michelin-starred affair that spoils with locally sourced, and highly inspirational, cooking. With just 21 contemporary-luxury rooms, Moorish architecture, pool and spa, it’s a truly indulgent choice.
  • Vila Vita Parc, a cliff-top resort near Porches, also offers a two-Michelin-starred dining room as well as seven other dining options. Rooms are light and contemporary and there’s a host of activities from deep-sea fishing to golf as well as a children’s club and a spa.

For dinner with a view

Bela Vista Hotel and Spa

  • Also considered to have one of the best restaurants in the region, Bela Vista Hotel & Spa, perched above the beach at Praia da Rocha, has a fine-dining restaurant overlooking the sea. The adults-only hotel is cool and sophisticated with art deco-styled rooms and chic white cabanas around its pool.

For Portuguese specialities

Pousada de Faro

  • In the heart of Tavira, the Pousada da Convento, a former 16th-century convent, is beautifully atmospheric. Here you can breakfast in the cloisters to the sound of birdsong, while dinner of traditional Portuguese dishes together with a choice of excellent Portuguese wine list is served in the smart restaurant.
  • An alternative choice for traditional Portuguese specialities is Pousada de Faro, an 18th-century Rococo palace that has been turned into a contemporary boutique-style hotel.

For farm to fork cuisine

Vila Monte Farm House

  • With beautiful views over citrus groves and fields from its dining terrace, Vila Monte Farm House offers some of the area’s finest farm-to-fork cuisine. Rooms are cool and white with Moorish flourishes, plus there’s a pool and outdoor cinema.

Whether you want Michelin-starred finesse or quality traditional dishes, our choice of the best hotels for foodies in the Algarve has it covered. Still not decided? Check out our full range of Algarve hotels or contact a friendly guru for advice.

  • Vila Joya 22 rooms from £298

    Albufeira, Algarve

    Two-star Michelin restaurant with five-star rooms, fabulous spa, and majestic sea views. Moorish style architecture and the use of "azulejos" tiles maintains a traditional feel. An abundance of activities on offer within the hotel. A truly indulgent stay.

    Foodies  -  Chef Dieter Koschina runs the Two Michelin Star restaurant- phenomenally tasty, locally sourced and utterly inspired cuisine.
    Spa breaks  -  An indulgent spa with extensive therapies including Swedish massage, aromatherapy and reflexology.
    Lively  -  Hip and happening.
    House party feel  -  Be prepared to meet people.
    Recommended by  -  I Escape, Kiwi Collection, Fodors
    Check prices
  • Vila Vita Parc 170 rooms from £175

    Porches, Algarve

    Exclusive cliff-top family resort with Moorish-style accommodation in lush gardens. Contemporary, light rooms with white on white decor drawing the eye to the spectacular sea views. Fantastic children's facilities, tennis courts, golf course, luxurious spa, and excellent food. A beach paradise.

    Families  -  Loads of kiddie stuff so parents can unwind- playground with trampoline, swings and slides, kids club, creche and pool.
    Foodies  -  Eight onsite restaurants to choose from- we recommend the tasting menu from two Michelin Star Ocean with wine pairing.
    Diving  -  Vila Vita Parc run dive certification courses as well as courses in underwater photography& deep sea diving.
    Fishing  -  The concierge will organise for guests to head out on the ocean and try their hand at deep sea fishing.
    Recommended by  -  Kiwi Collection
    Check prices
  • Vila Monte Farm House 53 rooms from £100

    Moncarapacho, Algarve

    A refreshing Moorish style retreat, nestled in orange groves and organic gardens. Light, airy and effortlessly stylish rooms offer seclusion, comfort and private terraces. Gourmet farm to fork cuisine served in a relaxed atmosphere. Two pools, tennis courts, and open air cinema seal the deal. Bliss!

    Romantic Break  -  A sophisticated couples paradise- with secluded rooms, private terraces, couples massages and romantic picnics on the beach.
    Foodies  -  The wholesome delicious cuisine never dissapoints- perhaps because it comes straight from the garden or local organic farms.
    Cooking classes  -  The chef happily takes tours to the local markets such as Olhao's big fish market.
    Sights nearby  -  Ruins of Milreu in Estoi.
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Relais & Chateaux, Mr & Mrs Smith, I Escape
    Check prices
  • Bela Vista Hotel & Spa 38 rooms from £202

    Portimão (Praia Da Rocha)

    A unique boutique hotel on the beach front. Cerulean blue walls in striking rooms and suites match the azure of the sea seen from private balconies. Excellent spa facilities and a dreamy swimming pool make this spot a very luxurious beach holiday.

    Beach Life  -  A unique setting, almost completely surrounded by a beautiful sandy beach.
    Watersports  -  The property sits directly on the beach.
    Restrictions on children  -  Adults only property
    Swimming Pool  -  Lovely Outdoor Pool
    Recommended by  -  Relais & Chateaux
    Check prices
  • Pousada Convento Tavira 36 rooms from £114

    Tavira, Algarve

    A beautifully restored 16th Century convent on Tavira’s castle hill. With Renaissance cloisters, courtyard pool and central garden. Pretty rooms with splashes of bright colour and private balconies. Enjoy the traditional regional cuisine and wide range of Portuguese wines.

    Value chic  -  Reasonably priced charming Baroque and Renaissance Pousadas steeped in history with, plush rooms and pretty courtyard garden.
    Sights nearby  -  Within walking distance of the town’s great sites, such as the 16th-century Igreja da Misericórdia.
    Great walks  -  With wonderful walking around the hilly countryside and through the historic town.
    Swimming Pool  -  Outdoor pool
    Check prices
  • Pousada de Faro 63 rooms from £95

    Faro, Algarve

    An historic 18th century Rococo palace in the village of Estoi, ten kilometres from Faro. Now a comfortable hotel with a swimming pool, spa and restaurant O Visconde serving Portuguese specialities. The original ornate rooms are paired with contemporary furnishings, bedroom suites are luxurious.

    Restaurant  -  The restaurnt serves typical Portguese dishes such as Gaspacho, Tuna Carpaccio and Cataplana Fish
    Palace  -  The palace was built by Jose Franciscio da Silva, Viscount of Estoi
    Sit-out Terrace  -  Hot sunny terrace and shady parasols by the swimming pool
    Sights nearby  -  Well located for major sights.
    Check prices


Written by Helen Pickles

posted Monday, 17th October 2016