We stayed at the AC Alicante for 4 days in Spetember 2009 on a long weekend in the city. This was our first trip to Alicante and we had a great time.
All areas of the hotel were exceptionally clean. The rooms, whilst small were had everything you needed including a free minibar which was a nice touch. Minimalist in design they had good storage, comfy beds and nice toiletries provided. Wooden floors could have been a problem if you had noisy people above but we did not experience any problems. The only negative with regards to the room was the view, or lack of one. Although front facing, the view was of the commercial dock situated in front of the hotel although considering the location of the hotel I don't think any room would have a good view.
The location is the major drawback of this hotel. Sitauated on the outskirts of the city on the road leading from the airport, it is a good 25 minute walk to the old part of town and beach. Whilst the main shopping area with a selection of bars and restaurants is approximately 5-10 minutes walk (behind the hotel) most people may well, like us, be heading down the esplanade to the old town and beach. Doing this twice a day takes up almost 2 hours of your day. Whilst not a problem for a short stay, anyone staying for a week or longer may find this tiresome. This not withstandaing however, the walk is an easy one (completely flat) and once you get to the marina (approimately 10 minutes), it is a pleasant walk with plenty to see.
I have read, and indeed did read before I travelled, previous posts regarding prostitutes around the hotel. During our stay we never saw this and felt very safe the whole time. We returned to the hotel late each night and never had a problem. There is one back road which runs paralllel to the esplanade which did have prostitutes on it most evenings but only a small number and they were not blatant about it. They did not cause a problem and you do not need to use this road if you don't want to.
The included continental breakfast at the hotel was excellent with plenty of choice, frequent ref-filling and a pleasant dining room. The bar area was also nicely done out although we did not eat or drink in te hotel other than breakfast so I cannot review.
The gym/steam room/jacuzzi was nice although again, the view is of the commercial dock so felt a bit "industrial" rather than relaxing. Again, very clean with a nice shower/wash room attached. Fridges full of bottled water in the gym. The rooftop pool looked nice, although small with limited loungers, but the weather wasn't good enough for us to try it out.
Alicante itself was a really pleasant suprise. Although there is not loads to do, the beach is nice if the weather is good (it wasn't for us) and there are lots of good restaurants to while away a few hours if the weather isn't (which we did).
Alicante is a very typically spanish city and the restaurants and bars were filled with locals so it does not feel like a "holiday" destination which is nice. There are so many bars and restaurants tucked away in small squares and plazas which are worth exploring.
The trip up to the castle is a long walk but good exercise after all those long lunches. If it's too hot or for those who having mobility problems, there is a lift whose entrance is set into the mountain side directly opposite the pedestrian bridge from the beach, near the tram stop. The view from the top of the castle is definately worth it.
All in all we had a great time and enjoyed our trip. The hotel is excellent value for the price, and would undoubtedly be a lot more if it was in the heart of the city. Whilst we would probably stay in the old town if we went again, I would not be upset to return here for a cheap break and put up with the walk.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.