Belmond Reid’s Palace
What We Love
- Glittering guestbook crammed full of prestigious patrons
- Cool pools: freshwater, seawater and an ocean-level pool and bathing jetty, cut into the rocks
- Subtropical gardens with more than 500 plant species
What To Know
- Free shuttle service to/from Funchal
- A strict dress code is enforced in the dining room (open Tuesdays and Saturdays): jackets and ties must be worn
- Afternoon tea is very popular; make a reservation in advance for the best spots on the terrace
- Free WiFi
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
From its dusky pink façade to its chandelier-studded ballroom and afternoon tea terrace, Belmond Reid’s Palace, on the Portuguese island of Madeira, is a grande dame that can count Winston Churchill, George Bernard Shaw and Captain Scott as former guests. Teetering on a rocky cliff above the Atlantic Ocean and surrounded by 10 acres of subtropical gardens, the hotel may have a dramatic setting, but inside it’s all comfortingly traditional and luxuriously old-fashioned.
Bed & Bath
Guestrooms have an English country pad theme (floral fabrics, lacquered furniture, marble bathrooms) and are sprinkled with such homegrown touches as traditional embroidered bed linens. All have sizable balconies with views of the Atlantic or the palm tree–studded subtropical gardens. The vibe is resolutely traditional, but flat-screen TVs, DVD players, iPod docking stations and free WiFi come standard. Free soft drinks from the minibar and sweet local snacks on arrival are a nice, homey touch.
Dining options range from the jacket-and-tie formality of the Dining Room, a former hall-of-mirrors ballroom with ornate ceilings and twice-weekly dinner dances and champagne receptions; fancy French at Les Faunes; and Ristorante Villa Cipriani for hearty Italian fare served with spectacular sea views. Afternoon tea on the terrace is a Belmond Reid’s institution. Tuck into finger sandwiches, scones and homemade pastries, sip from a selection of more than 20 teas (including Reid’s own blend) and take in the sweeping views of Funchal as a pianist plays in the lounge. The 10-acre gardens boast more than 500 plant species, and they lead down to a terrace with saltwater and freshwater pools and a historic ocean-level pool and bathing jetty. On the grounds you’ll find tennis courts and a sublime spa offering La Prairie treatments and an outdoor relaxation terrace.
In the Area
Dubbed the Hawaii of the Atlantic, Madeira lies southwest of Lisbon and due west of Marrakech. As you prepare to land in the capital, Funchal, you’ll fly over deep gorges, rugged mountains and banana plantations before swooping onto the landing strip, cut into a cliffside. Take a traditional toboggan ride from the village of Monte to Funchal, a bone-rattling milelong descent down a winding road in a two-seat wicker basket. The sleds are steered by local men who wear thick rubber boots, should they need to break on sharp corners. Follow the paths that run alongside the island’s levadas, an ancient network of channels used to irrigate vineyards and orchards. The tracks cut through stunning laurisilva forest, rugged mountains and rural villages. Funchal’s two-story food market, Mercado dos Lavradores, is packed full of colorful stalls selling some of the island’s best produce. Don’t miss the tropical fruit tastings on the second floor, where you can sample sweet custard apples, lemon-spiked passion fruit and fresh sugar cane.
How to Get There
There are 5 star hotels available, all of which will be good.However, there is only one Belmont Reid's Palace which, if you want something special, over & above the norm, is where you should head for!
we had the afternoon tea on arrival and which was much improved on the Tea we had 20 years ago.
The staff are attentive and the breakfast was a highlight of the day.
We especially enjoyed the special tasting Menu in the Italian restaurant .
What an experience !
Difficult to fault
Staff very caring and attentive
Food top quality
Take a sea view room with balcony
Views are incredible
Grounds are immaculate
Hope to return again next year
Very pleasant week spent here mid-November. Victorian charm - not for young boisterous couples looking for nightlife (true for the whole of Madeira). Excellent breakfast. Service all round superb, staff appear to genuinely enjoy working there and doing as much as they can for their guests. Superb pools/gardens/gym/tennis court. Room very good - cannot find fault. Location is good - 15-20 min walk into city centre. Afternoon tea on the veranda decadent, pricey but worth every cent.
We went for afternoon tea which was absolutely lovely. Delicate sandwiches, dainty cakes and a warm scone and cream! All served with bone china and the tea or coffee of your choice! If that wasn't enough, before all of this we had a tour of the garden led by the charismatic Christiana! It was an hour of pure joy to walk through the grounds of this magnificent garden and learn all the names of the plants (both common and Latin!) and quite a bit of Madeira history and that of Reid's Palace! As Christiana said, it rains somewhere in Madeira every day (hence the lush greenery)so there is no bad weather, only bad clothing!! It really is a wonderful afternoon, you should go!!