Travelled on the 25th July for the first week of the school hols mum, dad , daughter 10 and son 6 on all inclusive basis. We booked late and were informed that there were no family rooms left so would be allocated two rooms (standard rooms sleep max 3). We didn,t mind this as were used to having two rooms as we usualy travel as a 5 but our oldest didnt want to come this time , so we booked requesting rooms close together as possible in a quiet location.
Arrived at hotel 1am ish after a half hour transfer. We were quickly checked in, as well as verbal directions we were given a map with room location marked on it . The reception area is modern bright and airy and all the staff speak excellent English as well as other languages. The hotel has a comprehensive selection of tours (cheaper than tour operaters) these can be booked at reception as well as car , bike hire etc and there also happy to book taxi,s (taxi rank outside hotel reception )
We found our rooms easily these were in the Tarra block No,s 210 and 218 three doors apart on same landing ok. The rooms are spacious and very clean.Theres a large double wardrobe with plenty of hangers and draws, the safe is in here also (2 euros a day to hire). The bathroom is also very spacious with the usual shower over bath arrangement and plenty of worktop space and shelving around sink but no hair dryer. Towels are changed whenever you like just leave them in the bath. I found the beds to be quite comfy i,ve certainly slept on alot worse. Theres a TV with limited channels but if you hire remote theres alot more British choice but didnt bother as only use room for sleeping. The maid service was daily exept Sunday. There is no AIr Con but the patio windows have a louvred section so you can leave these open while keeping patio doors locked, I found this to be adequate though Air Con would have been preferable this may be why the hotel is only rated 3 star.
The dining room is very large and again has no Air Con just ceiling fans.Dining is certainly not an intimate experience think Butlins rather than boutique but this is a large hotel and this was peak season, having said this we never struggled to get a table whenever we went for a meal. The food here is fantastic as good as any 4 star, good quality ,always hot and quickly replenished.Breakfast has a large continental selection (my little lad loved the pastries) and the chefs cook pancakes to order there tends to be queue for these. Then theres usualy two varieties of sausage ,eggs scrambled or fried to your liking ,beans and theres two lots of bacon one crispy one less so. No queues at the hot drinks or juice machines though toast machine can be slow.Lunch can be taken here or at the cafeteria area near the pools which is what we did. Lunchtme menu again has a large salad and cold meats selection as well as pizza burgers chicken and hot dogs . Drinks are self service so again no queueing. The ice cream available is Carte D,Or style rich and creamy with no lumps of ice in it flavours changed regularly. Evening meal is in the main restaurant again busy but no queueing , theres always a Chinese section consisting of stir frys and noodles with a selectin of different sauces (black bean, hoi sin etc). The main section always has fish and the chef cooks meat on the griddle this can be steak , chops or chicken and sometimes joints of various meat. Then theres a good selection of veg and salads. The selection of sweets is great lots of cake and pastries , fruit, ice cream, cheese and biscuits and sometimes even Thorntons style chocolates(these dont last long). All the food is tasty nothing bland.I,ve read a few reviews complaining about menu being repetetive but its up to you to vary your choice theres plenty of opportunity to do so.
As mentioned before drinks are self service exept for spirits and cocktails. Theres a small unattended bar poolside with a machine dispensing Pepsi,Fanta,soda and water this opens about 11ish. Beer is Amstel you have to get this from the cafe area above the pool (plastic half pint beakers as usual in AI hotels).Proper pint pots are available in restaurant in the evening but are in short supply.The cafe also has Sangria and you can get spirits if you want.Theres also slush for the kids as well as the other soft drinks everything is self service exept spirits and slush.The main bar is next door to the restaurant beer and soft drinks are still self service everything else you have to get from the bar.This is well organised and queuing is kept to a minimum didn,t try the cocktails but they do give you a good measure of spirits though they are local brands they taste ok.If you want a good brandy or whisky you,ll have to put your hand in your pocket.The evening entertainment is in this area and it does get very busy. As for the entertainment, well this is an international hotel so dont expect much. MR and MRS contests and people miming to Grease and We Will Rock You might be a good night out in Warsaw or Moscow but it just doesn,t do it for me (see my review of Delfin Azul, Alcudia).The entertainment team do put in alot of effort though and the daytime activities are good if you want to join in though you aren,t put under any pressure.
Now for the pool area .This is 5 star and the best thing about this hotel. There are three pools set in lovely well tended lawned gardens with plenty of shady trees and 4 or 5 lifeguards on duty all day. Theres a good sized paddling pool with a fountain and small toddler sized slide, with a shady pergola running along one side. The middle pool is circular with an island for sunbathing in the middle.Your not allowed in here with inflatables or balls and the life guards or strict on this.Then theres the largest pool.This has three good water chutes( the adults enjoy them as much as the kids),You can use lilos etc and there are three jacuzzi,s just above the pools near the water chute entrance,I wouldn,t say the water is warm but it didn,t give you a shock when getting in, certainly warmer than a lot i,ve tried.As for sunbeds, well there are plenty for everyone but you do still get the usual morons getting up at the crack of dawn to reserve beds with towels (usualy Brits disappointingly).Theres a stage near the middle pool where the daytime entertainment takes place, the music might be a bit loud for some but it shuts down between one and four.The only improvement I could suggest for the pool area is that it could do with some mobile parasols as the shade is limited close to the two large pools and the ones that there are, are fixed into position.
The hotel is located on a quiet service road so theres not much traffic to negotiate when venturing out. To get to the beach turn left outside reception walk about 30 yds, cross the road
then its down the steps didn,t count em but they are steep and will be tricky for the elderly and families with toddlers,But if you,ve been to Scarborough or Whitby you wont give a second thought. The beach itself is the usual dark brown Canarian sand with some good waves for body boarding(not big enough for surfing).Thers also a rocky area which is great for crabbing and rockpooling.There are also life guards on duty and toilet facilities.The promenade runs right down to the Maspalomas dunes(about an hours walk).San Agustin has joined up with Maspalomas and Del Ingles so you dont know when your leaving one and entering the other.These resorts are purpose built so dont expect cobbled street fishing villages they are just holiday accomodation and commercial centres containing shops, bars and restaurants.If like me you came here in the 80s/90s well it,s all looking a bit sad now the rise of the All Inclusive has destroyed the nightlife.The bars are nearly all empty and a lot of the shops have closed down.A few people do go out after midnight (probably because A I usualy stops by then) but its nothing like it used to be.
To sum up this is fantastic value accomodation and if it had air conditioning would be pushing for a four star rating as the food and pools are certainly worth that.
Now for the BUT.....
As mentioned at the start of this review we booked late and asked for two quiet rooms close together as ther were no family rooms left. We got rooms210 and218 in the Tarra block. On arrival we found these rooms were above the hotels disco which is open 12 till 2 Fridays and Saturdays.They also look out of the back of the hotel where the hotel laundry, workshop and staff parking were located but wost of all there was a hydraulic trash compacter and bottle skips in the far corner of the yard.The first morning we woke to the sound of loud voices (6:30am) it was the laundry staff having a fag outside.That evening the music from the disco wasn,t too bad but at 2am we were woken by the bottles drunk in the disco being skipped, then at 5am the kitchen staff started cleaning out the bins ,then when the trash compacter started up at 6 this drowned out all the other noise.We thought we,d put up with it for one more night as the disco is only open Friday and Saturday. But Sunday night Monday morning the noise of the trash compacter and bin cleaning as well as the refuse lorry arriving under our rooms was the last straw. We were offered (after more than one complaint) a room change but the rooms weren,t together so this was no good so as we were half way through our stay we decided to accept cash compensation instead.This was after a lot of trips to see the rep and hotel staff(once at 5am).Thomsons resort manager sorted it out to our satisfaction in the end but it has to be said that we requested to see the hotel manager twice and he refused to see us.We kept getting told nobody else had ever complained which I find hard to believe.So if you get allocated rooms in the Tarra block overlooking the back 210 to 220 and also rooms above and below (even numbers only) DONT accept them. N.B All the family rooms are away from this area overlooking the pool, gardens or road at the front of the hotel so wont have this problem.
I,ve think i,ve wrote a fair review despite the problems on our trip. Despite this I,ve still rated this hotel highly as 99.9% of people will have a fantastic holiday ,book it you wont be dissapointed.
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Ifa Interclub Atlantic
- Ifa Interclub Atlantic San Agustin
- IFA Interclub Atlantic Hotel San Agustin, Gran Canaria