I stayed at the Lagotel for a week in August with my teenage son. This was our first visit to Majorca, and also of staying at an all-inclusive hotel. In some ways this is a great family hotel, but there are some problems, one or two being serious.
First impressions - enormous modern hotel complex with 6 pools, rather isolated location by a lake and the hospital. If you're looking for a clean lively family hotel, huge pools and almost limitless food and drink with the all-inclusive option, Lagotel has much to offer. If you're looking for attractive surroundings, peace and quiet, interesting architecture, good shopping nearby and sight seeing, look elsewhere! The man at reception who greeted us was unfortunately far from friendly, and quite abrupt in manner. He asked for our passports and then said he was keeping my passport. When I asked why, I was told the details would be sent to the police and I wouldnt have my passport back until the following morning. I haven't had my passport taken by a hotel receptionist before, so found this strange. I stayed in Spain a few months ago in a one-star hotel, and wasn't asked for my passport then, so its not down to being in another country.
Room and hotel staff
We had a suite comprising of a large living room with balcony, kitchenette with fridge, sink, microwave and electric hob; large bedroom with single beds and another balcony, and split bathroom with one room containing the sink, leading into another room with the bath/power shower and wc. The maid service comes every day to clean and tidy the room, and change towels if required. Beds were completely changed once in the seven days of our stay. Generally our rooms were kept very clean, and I never saw any ants or other insects.
There is air conditioning, which wasn't switched on when we arrived so the room was very hot. Not the best environment to greet you after a long day's travelling! I switched the air conditioning on, and it worked for a couple of hours then fizzled out. To cut a long story short, in which i had to go to reception twice and also speak to the excellent First Choice rep Mark, it transpired that the balcony doors had to be closed in a particular way or else the air con would be cut off. After some training with this by a more helpful receptionist, we had no further problems with the air con.
I thought the food was outstandingly good in the restaurant. A huge variety of good quality food is made available in buffet-style at breakfast, lunch and dinner times, and changes are made every day so it does not become repetitive. Definitely one of the most enjoyable features of the hotel, it was quite difficult sometimes to exercise restraint as one delicious course followed another - all in your own control!
The food available in the snack bars by the pool was of course far more limited, but also delicious - we enjoyed our hot dogs, burgers and pizzas there. Unlike the restaurant, food is available at the snack bars throughout most of the day, whereas at the restaurant there are time limits. In addition to the food, a wide range of drinks are available, including tea, coffee, hot chocolate, juices, slush puppies, pepsi, fizzy orange, etc. Every day ice creams are available in the bar, and also in the restaurant.
I have read some quite scathing reviews of the food on here, and can only conclude that the quality must have improved since then.
We didn't make much use of the huge pools, but they seemed clean enough. It was not always possible to obtain a sunlounger because many people "booked" them by placing their towels on the sunloungers. The hotel advises that residents cannot book sunloungers by doing this, and that staff will remove towels left on sunloungers, but I never saw staff doing this and it was clear people were taking advantage of the hotel's slack policing. Its not really a serious problem, but it is irritating.
Our room overlooked the pool, so was directly above the bar area where every night entertainment took place until midnight or 1am. Even with the doors shut, this was very noisy indeed, almost forcing us to go down to watch the entertainment whether we liked it or not. I would say the entertainment wasn't bad, fairly average. I did wonder though whether a Rod Stewart tribute singer, Beatles tribute band and another 70s tribute band are likely to appeal to most of the hotel's resdients who seemed to be young families with parents in their 30s/early 40s. I know the music but I'm in my 50s!
Several reviews refer to problems with mosquito bites at Lagotel because it is situated by a lake. I am particularly susceptible to bites, but fortunately neither of us were bitten during our week at the Lagotel despite the unusually hot weather. Not sure whether this was because our room overlooked the pool instead of the lake, or whether it was because of the insect repellant we sprayed on each day! I also used one of those plug-in insect repellants in the bedroom, which you can buy from amazon.
Several reviews have referred to unruly kids running about the hotel, which wouldn't normally particularly bother me, but the extent of this at Lagotel is more than I have seen before. Some of these unattended children are very young indeed eg about 5 or 6 years of age. On our second day at the hotel, one tiny little boy of about 4 or 5 seemed to be spending the entire day going up and down in the lift on his own, from the ground floor to the sixth floor. This is despite a sign in the lift, and also in the hotel's own welcome pack, that children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
There are a great many young children running about the hotel on their own, mostly in twos or threes, but sometimes alone, with no parent in sight. I am not sure why this is happening, but wondered if it had something to do with alcohol being available from 10am onwards and that the parents were, quite literally, too drunk to notice. Another incident I noticed was a mother pushing a toddler in a pushchair, with the child unsecured. The child fell out onto the path which runs outside the bar, and the mother reached down to the screaming child and literally threw him back into his seat, again unsecured, before roughly pushing the chair away again.
Clearly not all of this is the hotel's fault, but it is their fault that they are not policing the rule that children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. In the light of the Madeleine McCann tragedy, in which her parents were strongly criticised for leaving her unattended in their apartment whilst they ate at a restaurant within sight of the apartment, this problem at Lagotel should perhaps be taken rather more seriously than appears the case at present.
The hotel has at least three entrances I can think of, one at the front, and two at the back, none of which are secure. Hotel staff are clearly not acting in loco parentis, and nor are the First Choice reps apart from those involved in the kids club, so quite who some Lagotel parents think are looking after their very young kids when they aren't is anybody's guess!
Apart from the beautiful sandy beaches, there isn't a great deal to see in the immediate location of Lagotel. The hotel is a bit cut-off. On the walk down to the beach there are a great many shops but nearly all of these are beach/tourist shops full of beachwear, inflatables, sunglasses, toys, and of course food and confectionary. Several expensive excursions are offered by the hotel reps, and most of them are to attractions near the airport at Palma, about an hour away. If you decide to go on these, you can ask reception for a packed lunch the day before your excursion. We did this when we went to Marineworld, which was enjoyable if excessively busy. The hotel reps were especially plugging an excusion to see a show called Pirates.
Would I go to Lagotel again? Although I enjoyed our week and loved the food, I probably wouldn't stay there again. The hotel is clean, fun and for the most part, well run, but doesn't entirely make up for the sum of its negatives - the isolated position, noisy and rather dull entertainment, lack of sunbeds or policing of their occupation, lack of policing of unattended kids, and drunken residents.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A complex comprising hotel and apartments in the Platja de Muro, situated next to the natural park of s’Albufera. The park is formed by grassy areas, dunes and salt marshes and is of great ornithological and scenic value, and is surrounded by two gardens of approximately 200m² each with a lake and jetty. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Lagotel Hotel Playa De Muro
- Lagotel Alcudia
- Lagotel Majorca
- Eix Lagotel Playa De Muro, Majorca