The subtropical gardens are home to rare and exotic plants and flowers from all over the world
Imaginative reinterpretation of traditional Portuguese cuisine served in the award-winning restaurant
The spa’s Caci Ultra non-surgical facelift
What To Know
Walking the long, steep, hairpin approach to the property isn’t practical
You can hear a pin drop here, and the bucolic ambiance will not suit partygoers
Ground floor guestrooms in the two wings can appear gloomy when the weather is overcast
WiFi is free in the public areas
Parking on site
Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.
Hunting lodge turned country house hotel surrounded by subtropical gardens and a hilltop golf course
Converted from an early 19th-century hunting lodge, Casa Velha do Palheiro maintains a classical veneer that upholds the property’s noble past. The sober palette is enriched by colorful and decorative design flourishes including floral drapes and printed fabrics. Delicate sprays of fresh flowers arranged on polished mahogany furnishings further enhance the chic-rustic look. Madeira’s history and that of the estate is depicted through a series of fascinating lithographs that grace the walls, and the refined ambiance of a bygone age pervades the entire building.
Bed and Bath
Guestrooms reflect the country house theme with their pastel-hued walls, flower-patterned décor and pastoral motifs. Comfortable oversize beds replete with marshmallow-soft pillows are set over wall-to-wall carpeting. Dark wood furniture lends weight to the dimensions. Bathrooms feature chunky enamel tubs with authentic brass fittings and traditional Portuguese tiles embellish the shower units. Some of the rooms afford pleasing garden and golf course views.
Regional gastronomy characterizes the menu at Casa Velha restaurant. Madeira-born executive chef Francisco Quintal draws on the Atlantic Ocean and traditional Portuguese recipes for his inspiration; southern European influences add zest and panache. An eclectic wine list includes Blandy’s own vintage Madeira. Signature treatments at the boutique spa include sports massages and special anti-ageing procedures. Indoor and outdoor swimming pools provide further recreation. Golfers meanwhile can play the stunning Cabell B.Robinson-designed 18-hole layout that meanders through the estate. The adjoining gardens are a world-class visitor attraction.
In the Area
The hotel is perched high above Funchal so guests will need transport to enjoy city sights such as Blandy's Wine Lodge. Take a tour of the winery before tasting a heart warming Malmsey or a dry, chilled Sercial. History buffs should head for Quinta das Cruzes, the mansion-museum where João Gonçalves Zarco, the man who claimed Madeira for Portugal in 1418, lived. Terrace tables are quickly snapped up at Riso, the city’s celebrated rice-with-everything oceanfront eatery. For local character with a Mediterranean accent, make a date with Dona Amelía: The grilled scabbard fish is an island delicacy.