Porto Antigo Residence Santa Maria (Cape Verde)
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Porto Antigo Residence Santa Maria (Cape Verde) Reviews
Trip to Sal (Cape Verde) in December 2009 Dec 29, 2009
Architecturally speaking, Porto Antigo Residence is a beautiful setting with a view onto the ocean and the units built hop-scotch to another with gentle pastel colors and abundant plants (bougainville, hibuscus, acacia, et al) enhancing the tropical appearance. It is easy to forget that tens of thousands of slaves were unloaded at this very harbor for culling before further transport & trade.
The Porto Antigo Residence pool is large enough and maintained well, as are the grounds, and the harbour is nicely protected from the roughest of seas. In December, the pool is too cold for comfort but the ocean is still pleasant for swimming.
On the inside, the Porto Antigo Residence units are a let-down; with their spare and sparse lights (est. 40 Watt energy saving bulbs),minimal furniture and bare of decoration, they exude all the charm of a deserted waiting room at the railroad station. Dishes & flatware were not complete and of poor quality.
Our bedroom window did not have a grill so we didn't dare sleep with it open at night. This was unpleasant since the power goes down frequently - especially during the night - and the air conditioning no longer functions. Porto Antigo Residence does not provide a back-up generator, so re-charge your equipment while you have power.
There is evidence of organized approach to keeping the island Sal clear of garbage but it is equally clear that the local population has as yet little notion of environmental concerns. However, tourists too are rather careless with empty bottles, caps etc. Here and there you'll find glass shards in the sand.
The island is extremely poor both agriculturally and economically and you need to exercise extreme caution for theft. Suggestion, take a key chain along that fits around your neck for your room key, and keep the safe-key separately elsewhere. Trust no one: our camera disappeared after the security guard showed us to our unit. We never saw it or the security guard again. A woman alone would probably have an unpleasant time as there are many young man very eager to relieve her of her loneliness and funds - and it is difficult to shed these persistent folks.
Fortunately the meals and financial administration of Porto Antigo are maintained by the Odjo d'Agua hotel next door, which offers outstanding service; that is when you are able to speak with an English-speaking employee. Apparently Odjo d"Agua is the hotel for all highly placed government officials. In the restaurant I limited myself to fish dishes, but these were splendid without exception; the service excellent.
One last suggestion: take along a a bunch of loose Euros (in coin!) to have at hand for gratuities.
In summation: Porto Antigo is a reasonable place to hang your hat and park your suitcase. Look elsewhere for ambiance.
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Porto Antigo Residence Santa Maria (Cape Verde) Overview
The Porto antigo residence has 44 apartments (studios, T1 and T2), all equipped with kitchenette, air conditioning, telephone, Internet, satellite TV and safety deposit box. This complex includes a panoramic restaurant, a bar, a 24-hour reception, a terrace with a marvellous sea view, a large outdoor swimming pool and private beach. Also note the laundry service and the room service.
Porto Antigo Residence Amenities