Hotel Golfinho, Lagos, Portugal

Posted: February 17, 2012 in Portugal

This place used to be a flamboyant hotel. I can tell! I spend part of my Summer vacations in the nearby camping site and it was hard to have e  good night sleep: all night long there was people coming in and out of the hotel, in a constant, non-stop party. That was 30 years ago.

I don’t know when the hotel was shut down, but just a couple years ago I remember seeing some promotion there. Really cheap stuff. One could tell they were having bad times. Then I guess the current economic situation finally killed the “Golfinho”.

A few weeks ago I spent a day wandering around in Lagos and that’s when I found out about the current situation of this hotel. By then I saw and entering spot but I was tired, running out of time to catch the returning train and I was not in the mood for Urbex after a day hiking on the cliffs and on the marvelous beaches of this region.

This week I had to return to this area, in a business trip, and between meetings I found myself nearby. Again, I was short on time (actually I arrived 40 minutes later to the afternoon meeting on account of this little adventure).  But now I was really in the mood! I couldn’t let go the change to explore this structure.

There was a motorbike parked near the gate and I new from that moment I would have some company. I was only hoping I could stay away of the other fellow, which I thought would be easy considering the size of the building. But it wasn’t. I saw his reflection, walking on the first floor, when I was taking pictures of the reception. That was the only sight I had of him but made me more cautious. I will never know if the man was an introduder, like me, looking for some booty, or if he was a security dude. When I finally left the motorbike wasn’t there so perhaps he left because he felt my presence or… just left…. or… it wasn’t his bike.

Anyway, because of him I couldn’t use the main stairs. So I took the emergency stairs, going up from the flank of the building. I guess most of the floors look pretty much the same. At least that’s the impression I got from the outside. So I entered the 3rd floor (if the fellow was still on the 1st floor he wouldn’t hear my steps there).

After exploring the floor I went down and found the coolest feature: the club! I entered the DJ boot and enjoyed the huge window glass which would allow people in the club to look at the others who were swimming in the pool. I mean, an underwater window.

The building is for sale. It actually has a huge board announcing its availability. So we never know when the someone will make it harder to visit. But considering the economic situation I guess it will take some time. A bit of agility is necessary to enter the premises.

Entering Spot


  1. Muito bom, obrigado pela contribuição!

  2. Manuela says:

    To me it’s so sad, because I has many memories of this place.
    My brother in law was the gardener and his wife employed Room.
    They was ruben’s uncles!


  3. Sara says:

    The golfinho hotel was shut down already a long time ago, I would say like 10 / 15 years, i don’t know for shure, but it wasn’t because of the current economic situation, it was way before that… I remember of being really little when that happened, and I´m 22.

  4. Os politicos e economistas portugueses não sabem dizer que isto é dinheiro mal parado.

  5. uma das estrelas já foi roubada

  6. Marisa says:

    Eu trabalhei neste hotel precisamente ha 10 anos atras e devo-vos dizer k e com enorme tristeza k vejo estas imagens… Este hotel tinha uma energia fantastica e era um local especial… Tinha uma vista do terraco de tirar o folego, tinha pista de bowling, discoteca, piscina, salas de reunioes e tenho mta pena k ninguem tenha visto o seu potencial e tenha investido nele… Ficam muitas saudades do hotel e do seu staff… foi uma honra ter trabalhado c akela equipa cheia de bom humor, boa vontade e de coracao grande; akele hotel era mto mais k um negocio: era uma familia!

    • José Eduardo says:

      Há 10 anos atrás não poderá ter sido, visto que o Hotel golfinho fechou em Janeiro de 2003.Isso eu sei, porque estava lá. Tristeza imensa que devemos agradecer ao Eng. Belmiro de Azevedo e ao Grupo Sonae.

  7. Valentimi says:

    We are two students, who have to write a paper in order to graduate.
    >>Thus, we have considered to rapport about the old hotel golfinho in
    >>Lagos and to anticipate a future analysis. To be able to do so, we
    >>need some information concerning the hotel, its history and its
    >>facielities. Moreover, it would be useful to require some
    >>information according to the data and facts which led to the
    >>insolvence of the hotel.
    >>Are there any written documents or general informations, which you
    >>could send us?

  8. Valentimi says:

    @manuela: do you have information about golfinho from your brother in law the gardener?

  9. yfande says:

    I’m stunned…..the most beautiful hotel and it’s in shambles…I spend mij summer holiday there in 1980, and we ate lots of times in the little restaurant behind the hotel, so sad to see the ruins of a once magnificent hotel.

  10. Sharron Cooper says:

    Very sad to see. We loved staying there. Have some pics but can’t see how to post.

  11. Gill lewis says:

    Stayed here 30 years ago it was a beautiful hotel and went several times very sad to see I hope it can be restored to its former glory very shocked

    • Ian says:

      Hi stayed here 36 years ago we enjoyed our family holiday but every night complaints about the food.Rabbit was always on the menu excuse the pun but it didn’t go down well.
      Really incredible that a group cannot buy a bargain and kick some life into the resort.

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