Skip past the shopping-centre setting and focus on the super-funky reception, a 21st-century sculptural space by Ricardo Bofill and João Francisco Caires. The inside sparkles with polished surfaces that are softened by elegant sofas in soothing colours that continue throughout the 70 airy rooms and suites. All of the rooms are packed with little extras to make sure you have a holiday to remember, from Acqua di Parma toiletries to a complimentary minibar. On the roof, you'll find a gorgeous view over the mountains, as well as a stunner of a pool and a bar. Just next door, the fine-dining Uva restaurant serves creative gourmet takes on traditional coastal cuisine.
From landing on its famously tricky runway to hurtling down a polished hill in a wicker basket or venturing onto a glass platform almost 600 metres above sea level, Madeira really is jam-packed with thrills and fun. Add in crisscrossing walking trails across hills and mountains via a centuries-old irrigation system, a breathtaking coastline that mixes natural volcanic pools with both beautiful beaches, magical laurel forests, bountiful nature reserves, a great food scene and a gorgeous climate that fills the island with all sorts of fantastic flora, you've got a bucket-list holiday hotspot.
The hotels here reflects the many facets of the island, from sleek contemporary ocean-facing beauties to old-school old town spots set in, you guessed it, old schools. Add in Art Nouveau villas, a funky collaboration with famous local boy Cristiano Ronaldo and James Bond-style cliff-top eyries and you really do have something for everyone – which nicely sums up Madeira itself.