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Overhead view of a swimming pool with a bridge going across it

Hot hotels: five-star service

A king-sized bed, a fantastic restaurant, a heated pool – we all have our hotel priorities, but just how high does ‘great service’ rank in yours? To celebrate the hard-working teams who continue to weather the Covid-19 storm, Hannah Ralph picks out the five-star boltholes with the best staff in the biz. After all, what is a hotel without its people?

stylish hotel bedroom with a view of the sea
High Life highlight

Savoy Palace Hotel, Madeira

The Savoy Premium Experience package at this palatial, ocean-side property is the bee’s knees when it comes to superior service. PE guests can enjoy residency on the hotel’s exclusive 16th floor, home to the Jacarandá Lounge & Club – a bar, restaurant and sundeck sporting an infinity pool, Jacuzzi and host of dreamy day beds. The real gems of the package, however, are the Guest Experience Personal Assistants (GEPA) assigned to every visitor. These organisational hotshots possess encyclopaedic knowledge of the island and can devise the perfect itinerary for any stay, whatever the duration. Fancy an off-road 4x4 adventure and a guided walk along the island’s pretty levadas? Your GEPA will make it happen. Perhaps a misty mountain-top yoga session followed by whale and dolphin watching is more your speed? No stress, your GEPA has got it. Or, if you’d rather bronze slowly by one of the four cool pools with cocktails on command (try the local rum and honey-laced poncha or the hotel’s signature Dragonfruit Cosmopolitan), you guessed it: ask your GEPA. None of this is forgetting the plentiful five-star amenities such as a pillow menu, complimentary mini-bar, daily ironing service and fresh local fruit bowl in every room. Don’t trust us? Trust Cristiano Ronaldo, who celebrated New Year’s Eve and his mother’s 65th birthday here in 2020.

PE members also enjoy unlimited access to the indulgent, nature-inspired Laurea Spa’s wet area, generous in-room breakfast, packing and unpacking services, airport transfers and a poolside butler. What more could you want?

When it comes to room selection, start with the Ocean, Pool Ocean and Superior Suites and go from there. All come with the PE package and hypnotising views – one even boasts a balcony pool.

While all of the on-site restaurants accommodate dietary requirements, menu labelling leaves something to be desired, so be sure to check with your server ahead of ordering if you have any intolerances.

Book a stay at Savoy Palace Hotel

British Airways Holidays is here to help you find your perfect break. From carefully selected hotels to straightforward car hire, all costs are included in the final price, meaning there are no surprise extras. Plus, with a Customer Promise, ATOL protection and a 24-hour helpline, you’ll have total peace of mind when booking your holiday

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