Myself and my husband stayed here for 11 nights, mid-September. Based on previous reviews, we are a different “usual visitor” to this hotel as we are a couple with no children staying on a self-catering basis, using the hotel purely as a base.
On this basis, I can’t really comment about the food, or a lot of the family/kids based activities that were free through the hotel as we didn’t use these. This review is purely based on the accommodation and location. Both of which were very good.
We were up on the 3rd floor with a balcony overlooking the pool, complete with small table, 2 chairs and a fixed drying rack for wet swimwear attached to the wall. The room was large and spotlessly clean. Technically the room can sleep 4 via use of 2 sofa beds in the living room, but that might be a bit of a squeeze. For 2, however, it was one of the larger rooms we’ve stayed in. It was reasonably well equipped with a mid-sized flat screen TV, dining table/chairs, 2-ring hob, microwave (no conventional oven), fridge with freezer compartment, kettle, and more than enough plates/cups/glasses/cooking utensils etc. Room was cleaned every day, except for Tues & Sat.
Our only issue was that the air-con didn’t seem to be that effective. It was 32 degrees the day we arrived and, whilst the room was nowhere near that hot, adjusting the thermostat for the air-con really didn’t seem to make any difference one way or another! We reported it to the Thomson rep, who did get someone to come and look at it, but it didn’t seem to change. It did keep the room cool enough (just), but I have a sneaky suspicion that they turn the air-con down in September, which is fair enough. It was particularly hot our 1st few days, but then settled down to a more reasonable 24-28 degrees and the air-con was then not an issue.
Pool towels are free for anyone staying in the hotel, you just need to pay a €20 cash deposit at reception. You can exchange for fresh towels every 3 days. The pool itself is of a very good size and, in Sept, there were more than enough sunbeds and plenty of room in the pool itself. As others have mentioned, it is very deep – there is a separate shallow pool for the kids, and an area near the steps of the big pool that kids were using with their parents (at about 1.3m deep). The rest of the pool is all between 1.7 and 2.2m deep, so brilliant for adults actually wanting to swim!
We did use the pool bar for lunch one day, and found the standard/price of the food to be decent and comparable to everything else in Sa Coma. There is music playing around the bar most of the day, but it is not incredibly loud or intrusive – neither were the daytime activities that the entertainments team ran. I think they’ve got the balance of that just about right.
We didn’t book a transfer from the airport with Thomson as we elected to hire a car - £50 for coach transfers for both of us or £150 for 11 days car hire. Bit of a no-brainer that one, and if you want to get out and about to explore the island, I would highly recommend the car option. Roads are easy to navigate in general, and the hotel was easy to find with plenty of parking. Car parking spaces did tend to fill up by 7pm, but there was always room to park on the road 2mins walk away.
Reception area was large, and was always clean and well-staffed. Staff all spoke English (although German does seem to be the predominate language here) and were friendly. The nightly entertainment wasn’t particularly good – a lot of it involved the Ents team just miming/dancing along to tracks. There were a couple of live 3-piece bands that were passable, but they all seemed to be German singing English songs – which lead to some weird pronunciations! The best show that we saw, by far, was the Mamma Mia one – the few bits of acting in the show weren’t brilliant, but they did all sing live in 4-part harmony (as a singer myself, this was pretty impressive).
Sa Coma itself is more than big enough to just stay in the area if that’s the idea of your holiday. We were a bit confused by a couple of previous reviews that said Sa Coma was very small – it’s not a heaving town centre like Magaluf, sure, but then it doesn’t want to be! It’s a family-based resort, with enough shops/bars/facilities to do something different every night if you wished. The beach is large enough, and very clean – as with all beaches on Majorca, you have to pay to hire the sunbeds/umbrellas, but we did see a few people just take towels down to the beach and lie on those for free. From the Vista Badia, you can walk round the edge of the swimming pool and take the gate directly out onto the main street to save walking all the way round through reception.
Only disappointment really (and this goes for quite a lot of Majorca) was that it was virtually impossible to get an entirely “local” meal. Most restaurants have 1 or 2 ‘Spanish’ things on the menu and the rest is English (everything with chips) or Italian. And absolutely every café/restaurant we saw had a pizza menu, which was a bit strange! Main meals in most places will set you back €8-15, but there is also a Burger King right next to the beach and various small supermarkets selling snacks. A few of the restaurants put on the Majorcan speciality of suckling pig occasionally, which is well worth trying! A lot of restaurants that do paella do a sort of “ready-made” version, whereby they get the dishes, ingredients and oven to bake in from a company called ‘Paellador’ (there will be a Paellador poster up somewhere around the restaurant) – these are nowhere near as nice as those places making proper fresh paella. We went to the B.I.A. restaurant for this, and it was superb.
Bar prices are similar to the UK, but do vary from €2.20 to €3 a pint for draught lager. Cocktails/sangria were around the €5 mark, and house wine about €3 a glass/€11-15 bottle. What was refreshing is that the main bar in the Vista Badia was as good, if not cheaper, than a lot of the pubs in Sa Coma. A lot of the bars show English sports (as well as stuff like X-Factor, bizarrely!) and some have pool tables etc. We used the King's Head most often - a lot of that was the fact it was pretty much next to the Vista Badia, but also because the food was basic but good, there were a lot of TVs if you wanted to watch the football, and there was a great atmosphere in there for things like karaoke nights.
As most people have said, if you’re going self-catering, use the big Eroski supermarket and not the local Spars – prices are about the same as UK for most things, although some of the local fare is a lot cheaper and they do a good range of cured meats/cheeses etc. Cans of ‘local’ beer (San Miguel etc.) and sangria are very cheap, so we stocked up our fridge with these as it was lovely to go back to the room and sit on the balcony with a nice cold drink.
If you enjoy walking, a more interesting way to visit nearby Cala Millor is by walking through the Punta de N’Amer nature reserve area (accessed from right next to the beach at Sa Coma, opposite Burger King). It takes a good hour or so to walk, but there is a good stopping point about 2/3 along - a small castle you can climb up for great views, with a café. Once we got into Cala Millor we then got the road train back (€2 each), as it stops right outside the Vista Badia.
If you are planning on travelling further afield, there are loads of places/attractions worth visiting. Caves of Drach are very good (near Portocristo, only 15-20mins by car) and most of the little towns along the east coast south of Sa Coma are very pretty with some good beaches etc.
The Cap de Formentor mountain drive is fab fun – but you do need to be confident on driving along the narrow/steep/twisty mountain roads (bear in mind, you often encounter a coach coming the other way which can be a bit hairy!). You also need to allow yourself plenty of time as Majorca is a big island, and the mountain roads take a lot longer to drive. As a guideline, it will take about 1.5 hours to get to Soller and then it takes another good hour to drive to Formentor (longer with stops at the amazing viewpoints). Soller is well worth visiting as well – although we didn’t like Port de Soller that much (very busy, overpriced and crap service). The best port town we found was Port d’Andratx – had a much more exclusive feel, yet was no pricier. Really lovely place – go on a Wed, and go to the amazing market in Andratx first.
Sa Colobra is a beautiful place – you can get boat trips from Port de Soller (although we thought these were quite pricey) or can drive it if you have a car. And the nerve! It’s an amazing road (one of Top Gear’s “Top 100 driving roads”) down the very steep mountain-side, and brings you into a lovely bay where you can stop for a meal or walk through the pathways built into the rocks to access the more secluded bay further back in the rocks. Here you can sit and sunbathe/swim, or walk back into valley carved into the rocks for about a mile.
In Palma, the cathedral is very good, as is the old electric train ride through the mountains to Soller. This costs €10 one-way or €17 return. I’d recommend doing it one way, from Palma (as the first 15mins out of Palma is mainly travelling through built-up areas, the journey is more exciting this way as it builds going up into the mountains near the end) and then getting a bus back. Details/timetables can be got from the Tourist Information office outside Soller station when you arrive. Buses don’t really take any longer than the train, and it’ll cost you about €2-3 each.
We enjoyed staying here but, if I went back, I’d probably try and stay nearer the west coast. Not because there is anything wrong with this area at all, it’s just that the things we enjoyed most happened to be more in the mountain areas (as we’re not really “beach” people), and it took quite a long time to drive across the island. If you’re after an area that’s all about chilling out around a pool or on the beach (without too much 18-30 nightclubbing/noise), than you probably can’t go wrong here.
- Also Known As:
- Protur Vista Badia Aparthotel Hotel Sa Coma
- Vista Badia
- Protur Vista Badia Aparthotel Hotel
- Protur Vista Badia Aparthotel Sa Coma, Majorca
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