This hotel probably has the least character of any hotel I have been in. It is not unpleasant, it is just characterless. The rooms are neat, clean, tidy and comfortable. The one I had was large and with a big bathroom, but it was a box, big square box, but a box. For business stays and somewhere to put your head down I think this is adequate. Possibly if you have a room overlooking the sea and don't mind heights then it might appeal more. I didn't even go into the restaurant so I can't say a word about that, I can say that there was someone checking guests were entitled to breakfast as I was walking down from the 7th floor. The ground floor is well laid out but the reception is set back, so you can walk in without being greeted or even noticed really. There are steps up to the lifts and bar area so I am not sure that it is suitable for those who cannot get up them under their own steam. Bar area also looks clinical. It didn't make me inclined to get a coffee there. The evening entertainment that I saw looked quite good fun, not to watch but to join in, but the area is small so you can't watch of have fun effectively. The entertainers in Benidorm go out of their way to give people a good time, often without any results and working long, rather thankless hours. I applaud them. The Spanish people there are a credit to themselves and their culture, I love them. There are two fast lifts and there is a area called The Solarium on the 6th floor. It is tables/chairs and loungers overlooking the beach on an initation lawn, with a not very tall wall between the two! I saw a group of people enjoying an evening drink out there one night. That could get a bit noisy for the front rooms possibly if there were a lot of people or drink as the sound carried, but a nice idea. There is a soft drinks machine in the solarium and also outside there are others for bottled water, and it is next door to the Mar Y Sol where there is a coffee machine and sweet/crisp/drinks machine so you can always get something to fill the gap. The best thing is that this hotel is opposite the beach, the road is one level down and not full of traffic, so not noisy, at night time you have the sound of the surf and either the violin or accordian being played alongside the park. Elche Park is between the hotel and the promenade and beach. There are adult exercise machines and children's play areas, where you can sit and watch the children enjoying time with their parents, or grandparents, without feeling guilty for revelling in the antics, curiosity and creativity of youngsters. The Spanish spend far less time telling children not to do things and just assist them when they ask for help. Where we would be aghast and jumping to their aid Spanish children are allowed to maintain their own focus and decide what they want to do and how without interference. For me this in fascinating.There are plants, palms and bushes and tracks to follow, and the odd sprinkler to dodge if you don't notice it. A lovely place to wander. There are also seats, tables and stools, chess and a shed where tables and chairs are kept for some organisation that plays cards late into the evening. People promenade up and down the sea front or sit on the sea wall and chat, until the late hours and it is very safe. It is also near the old town if you want a difference atmosphere for a bit. The beach is safe and sandy, the water clear and quite big fish come in to see what you are doing so get some goggles and a kids ring to throw and try a few hand stands or mini dives you will probably find several fishes doing nose dives with you, or even a whole shoal of them. No one will take any notice and it's a good way to cool down. The beach always looks busy but there is always a space and when I went the spanish were on holiday so it was very pleasant. People do smoke on the beach, but they are very aware that others might not. If there is a breeze and it is in your direction, along with the smoke, the move, they don't mean to offend and it is not worth getting annoyed about. You are just as likely to have one of the white doves that inhabit Elche Park sitting on the sand next to you, sunning itself. They don't like food thrown at them so don't bother, they do grub around and sometimes they will respond to the 'here birdie birdie' as you scatter crumbs but mostly they don't, so don't do it. It leaves a mess and you look silly! I saw nothing of the stag and hen nights, although I have no doubt they aren't far away. I saw one drunk English boy and that was it, and he looked very silly. There is a small port there and boats of all kinds coming and going, there is a covered area near there, where you can go and read books that are provided. I didn't go and look but I guess the books may be in Spanish, but there is nothing to stop you reading you own book there and just being in the company of similar others? It is open on all side and abuts the beach. There is a small naval museum near the port/toilets. Not a lot in it and the person running it did not seem to the the most friendly of curators but it is free and an important little place to see. There are shops behind the hotel so you can buy bottles of water (rather than use the machine) as they are cheaper. A twix will cost 1Euro in the shop 1.20 in the machines, tins of drink about the same. There are cafes almost next door, it really isn't necessary to have any meals in this hotel. Breakfast will cost you about 5 Euros whatever you have and so will the odd sandwich or beans on toast. or go Spanish and have churros y corto cafe. Watch out for the small black coffee's though they are very stront, most of the coffee is. Cafe American con leche should be a large white coffee, but, well, it is Spain, and each cafe will be different. I asked for 'something like cappuchino' in Spanish, he understood very well. I got a medium sized black coffee with aerosol cream on the top. I worked quite well. So don't expect too much. Sit inside if you don't want to even see cigarette smoke, the laws are the same as here. Stay hydrated on the beach, it isn't far to a cafe or machine but the beach is wide. People do walk the beach with a bucket of chilled drinks at 3 Euros and one fun looking guy was toting huge glasses of sangria on on a tray. I don't know the price and I don't drink but it would be worth any price just for him walking all that way with the glass held high, they looked great. Most people just seem to leave their gear and wander off to get food/drinks/lunch and come back later. They leave the unbrellas and bags, just fold the seats up to indicate 'gone for lunch'. If you like the idea of a bit of fishing then just by the port where they have built it up with rocks people have single lines out and sit happily for hours waiting for something to bite, and they get very excited when something does. It is quite a nice, if uncomfortable, place to hang out for a while watching the doves and people perching on the few flat pieces they can sit on! I didn't pay too much for this hotel 32 Euros a night but the singles suppliment was 9. I think it is normally more. I had a large double room. There are courtesy soaps and a hairdryier, and the beds are very comfortable. You have to pay a 10 euro deposit for the channel changer, but the tv is so high on the wall that if you are reading as well you wont watch it. You can get room service if you want, I saw one pass by and it looked very good. The local cafes are mostly English, so if you want to listen to Rado Magic, watch football and have people light up next to you then it is there. If you wan't want to listen to people talking about what they do in England then go the Spanish cafes, the often don't speak one word of English but wave your hands and smile and you will get what you want to eat from such nice people who go out of their way for you. It never ceases to suprise me that English has been such a large part of this area for so many years yet some speak it so little. That is not a criticism, just a curiosity point to me. Some of the hotel reception do not speak English, some speak very good English. There were some English people there when I stayed, I don't know what other cultures normally stay there. There was no pool, but there are some places nearby in the back streets that look very simple from the outside yet are hiding pools behind the walls. There is no fitness centre, the exercise machine in Elche Park are more than adequate for any fitness you probably do at home and if not, they will suffice. There is a small beach opposite the port and some steps up to restaurants and some craft stalls, sunset is good from here. There are more steps down to Levante beach. Don't be put off by the steps. Do like the Spanish of all ages and fitness - one foot after the other and the body follows. Stop when you need to, it is not a race and no one is judging you. If you can only do two steps at a time then do so, there are never as many as it looks and the view is interesting at each step, so you benefit however many you take. I have to say there are some shops in Benidorm they could well do without and the same has to be said of some of the buildings, but stick to the promenade and you can stop off for ice creams or snacks along the way, if you use a wheel chair, ditch it for a buggy and off you go, some even use double buggies and that is the adults! No holds barred. There are McDonalds, but there are also fun little trains on wheels that take you all round Benidorm for 3 Euros and a thing that looks like a tram for 7 Euros, there are also buses that do the same and you buy tickets and get on or off when you want. There are little places where you can buy a slice of pizza and there are gay bars, so there is something for everyone, neither are out of place and everyone watches eveyone, it is a Spanish pastime, so enjoy. Clearly holidays are what you make of them and that seems to apply to this hotel from the other reveiws.
Front and rear are quiet, shops and cafes are close. You don't need to have any meals here or ev...
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