We recently stayed at the Sao Rafael Villas in Albufeira, Portugal in early July 2019. We really enjoyed our stay and hope this review can be helpful since there wasn't very much info online when we booked in late May.
The villas are part of Vidmar properties and there are three small buildings interspersed between other private properties across two streets all within walking distance - there are villas, a guest house and an apartment building. The location is in the newer part of Albufeira approximately 5 min by car to the new Marina and about 10-15 by car to Old Town Albufeira.
Upon arrival, check-in was friendly and competent in the guest house and we quickly went to the building one street over where the villas are located.
The villas are surrounded by a wall with an automatic gate the opens with your key card for car access. There is reserved underground parking for each villa with stairs that lead up to the front door to each respective unit.
Villa #520 that we stayed in had two floors. The master bedroom has a king-sized bed with a large ensuite and a fairly large patio with a table and day bed. The second bedroom has two single beds, a small patio and a three-piece bathroom.
The main floor has a bathroom with a shower, a safe located in the front foyer (not ideal) and an open concept kitchen and living room with lots of space. There are remote controlled wall-mounted ac units and large screen TVs in the main living area and bedrooms.
The living room has large sliding doors that open up to a covered patio with a dining table and day bed that leads to a private heated swimming pool and spacious deck area.
Overall, the villa is modern and well thought out but needs some small touch-ups, nothing serious though. More importantly, we really enjoyed the private backyard and heated pool since the water at the beach could be cold.
Re. the beach, Arrifana beach is approximated 500 metres down the street from the villa. There is an excellent seafood restaurant called Sardinhas on the small but beautiful beach. If you go slightly east of the villas there is Sao Rafael beach which is bigger and busier, in our opinion better for sunbathing and swimming.
We got the breakfast option during our stay which is served in the guesthouse each morning. There is a good choice and all of the standards are there.
Just to qualify this review, these are self-service villas. So there isn't a concierge or bell boys, you may prefer the Four Seasons in Villamoura if that's your preference. The villas are modern in design so lots of tile, marble and wood that does not dampen noise like other finishes. So you may hear your neighbours if they're noisy.
Overall we had an excellent time at Sao Rafael Villas and would highly recommend it to families looking for a quiet place to relax in luxury accommodations. It was close to everything and came equipped for a great vacation. We will definitely stay there again.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC