Madeira hotels - Hotel Vila Galé Santa Cruz

Hotel description.

Hotel vila Galé Santa Cruz received its first tourist in 2006. This 4 star hotel belongs to the Vila Galé hotel group, well known for its luxurious hotels in Portugal (eg. in the Algarve region, Porto and Lisbon) and in Brasil.
The hotel is situated at the sea side in Santa Cruz, a cosy village next to Madeira Airport.
Having 258 rooms, 4 suites, 2 restaurants, 3 bars and a congress centre of no less than 890 Sqm, it is one of the bigger hotels on Madeira.
In vila Galé Santa Cruz you can choose a room with the cheaper mountain view, to the more expensive side sea view or frontal sea view.

My first visit to this hotel was in the summer of 2007. The hotel description and review is based on my own experiences.
In the Madeira island tour i nowadays -and whenever the budget allows it- replace Hotel A Quinta in Santo da Serra by Hotel Vila Gale Santa Cruz.

From time to time the hotel offers an exceptional promotion. This one could be interesting :

Should you make a hotel reservation using the link below
then you'll receive a 15 euro rebate per day and per room during the month of May 2009 :

Now : room with frontal sea view, 2 persons, beakfast included
81€ instead of 96€
Click and make your online hotel reservation

View on Vila Galé Santa Cruz from the hotel room View from the restaurant of the hotel The hotel room

Book this hotel online...
Click here for availability, rates and reservations

Situation of the hotel.

The hotel is set at the sea side in Santa Cruz, a cosy town in the east of Madeira.
Santa Cruz is also the place where Madeira Airport resides. Airplanes flying by may appear disturbing to the visitors of Hotel Vila Galé but there is not that much air traffic on Madeira and there are no flights at night. In fact, for some peopke the airplanes may come as an additional attraction.
The weather in Santa Cruz is usually very good and similar to the weather in Funchal which is only 15 minutes away by car.
Therefor the hotel may be a good starting point to explore the East of Madeira including Funchal, Camacha (the Village of the Basket Makers), Ribeiro Frio and the Pico do Areeiro, Machico, Sao Lourenco and Santana.

Hotel accommodation.

There are 258 large rooms on four floors in a modernly equipped hotel. Vila Gale is wheelchair accessible and provides 4 additional disability-friendly rooms.
The hotel has 2 restaurants and 3 bars, a (non-heated) outdoor swimming pool for adults, an indoor pool and a wide range of spa facilities such as sauna, Jacuzzi, Turkish bath, fitness, 3 massage rooms and a treatment room,...
Children will be satisfies with the childrens pool, kids club and games room.
Remark: For the spa facilities there is a fee of 19&Euro; per person ! (Not cheap).

The room offer all comfort for the most demanding tourist :

  • Balcony with mounting view, sea view or side sea view
  • Modern LCD TV with a lot of channels
  • telephone
  • air conditioning
  • Minibar
  • Beautiful (marble) bath room with hair dryer
  • Fax/modem connection
  • Safe deposit box
Remarkable is the 24/24 room service and the swimming pool that seams to stratch into the sea and wherever you go in the hotel, there is always a peaceful background music.


The hotel provides a daily shuttly service to Funchal.
In Santa cruz there is also the largest water park of Madeira ("Aquaparque").


In the morning you are spoiled with a very large breakfast buffet.
I've read other hotel reviews before which stated that the same breakfast is served every day.
Now personally, i really would not know what these people desire. Everything is there already, from continental to English breakfast... several kinds of bread, croissant, toast, sweet cakes, cereals cold cuts, cheese, eggs, sausages, beans, coffee, tea, chocolate, fresh fruit juices and even sparkling wine (sekt) !

While breakfast is great, dinner and lunch at the restaurant is not really satisfying. The food is not bad, but given the price you expect the better. Must be said that this should not come as a surprise. You will seldom see me recommend a hotel+halfboard for your Madeira holiday.
The thing is, Madeira is very cheap when it comes to food and drink, and local food is very good, as long as you know where to go.
In Santa Cruz you will find some small restaurants that serve typical dishes. Also some side walk cafes at the sea side can surely please you.
And given that you are further away from Funchal, prices in the village are very low. To name a few : 0,75€ for a coffee or a tea and 2,50€ for a gin/tonic. Of course this is cheaper than in a 4 star hotel !

Hotel review.

I keep on coming back to this hotel since i first tried in in August 2007.
It is an excellent hotel which i can highly recommended.
Breakfast is great and belongs definitely to the better ones on Madeira.
The modern decorated rooms are very nice and comfortable as can be expected from a 4 star hotel.
The hotel offers a lot of facilities and which makes it suitable for a longer vacation.

Vila Gale hotels may be expensive -especially compared to other hotels in Madeira- but if you have flexible dates to go on a holiday, then you could and should keep an eye on any temporary promotions.

A minus could be that the balconies offer less privacy due to the U-shape of the hotel. Should privacy be very important to you, then the rooms that come with a frontal sea view will be the better option.

Tips when staying in this hotel.

For additional fee you can use the parking garage of Hotel Vila Galé, but your rented car could be parked for free in the center of the village.
Book your stay in bed and breakfast only and benefit from the local, cheap gastronomy on Madeira.
The landscape of the hills to the west of Santa Cruz provides a nice view but the houses next to the hotel are not really attractive. Therefor i suggest to select a room with side sea view of frontal sea view.

More information about the Vila Gale Hotel Group and Vila Galé Santa Cruz :