Myself and my partner have just returned from a week's break at the Arenas del Mar with positives and negatives to report. We arrived on the Sunday evening and were checked in quickly and efficiently by the reception staff. Despite being on an all inclusive package, I was asked to provide a debit card, in case any extra charges were incurred during our stay. We were allocated a room with a mountain view (or car park view, depending on how generous you are) which was tastefully decorated and perfectly clean. There was a bathroom, sleeping area with wardrobes and a separate living room area with sofas and a tv(all main British terrestrial channels available). There was also a balcony with tables and chairs. We did enquire about upgrading to a sea view room, but were informed that this would cost us an extra £100 for the week. We decided against this as on the whole we wouldn't be in the room during the day. A couple of things to note were that the bed consisted of two single beds pushed together rather than a proper double bed and you have to pay extra for the key to operate the safe in the room.
The food is served in a canteen style restaurant on the ground floor. Food was plentiful and fairly varied throughout the week and is served in a self service, buffet style. Breakfast consists of the usual cereals, toast and full breakfast foods, while a full hot meal service is provided at lunch and dinner times. There is also a full selection of soups, salads, breads, plus meats and fish cooked by the chef in front of you. There were a lot of fish dishes, pasta dishes and for those who can't live without them, chips every day. Dessert consisted of fresh fruits, cakes and ice creams. You can eat as much as you like and help yourself to unlimited soft drinks, water, beer or wine. My thoughts were that the food was often very rich and a bit oily, but this is more down to my personal taste and I had the option to eat soup or salad instead, which I did. The restaurant itself is a little bit bland and there isn't much atmosphere there, but if you treat it as somewhere to just grab a bite to eat, it's not half bad.
The hotel bar is located on the ground floor just along from the restaurant. It's a fairly small room with a tv, usually showing sports of some kind. There is also a spacious outdoor area, inhabited by the smokers or those escaping the awful entertainment. We sat out there most nights, but it did get a bit chilly and windy on a couple of evenings, so we had to venture inside. The entertainment consisted of poor quizzes, karaoke, live singers, dancers, an eagle show and a live snake show. None of these things are really our cup of tea anyway, but these acts were particularly poor in our opinion. This may be due to the fact that most of the the guests in the hotel were a lot older than us and so prefer a different type of show. The Bar man, Jesus, was perfectly pleasant, but rarely smiled and don't even bother to try and get more than one drink each at a time. The bar is only open until midnight and after 23:00, the all inclusive deal ends, so drinks have to to be paid for. In addition, the all inclusive deal only includes local spirits, beer, wine, sangria, soft drinks plus tea and coffee. Cocktails, decent wine and premium spirits all have to be paid for which defies the "all inclusive" label of the package.
The pool area is pleasant but not very large; we didn't struggle to acquire a sun bed, but there were days when the weather wasn't all that great. You may struggle to find one during high season when the weather is more settled. The pool is filled with salt water, but is lovely and warm. There is also a small bar serving drinks as part of the all inclusive package. There is a spa here which was not cheap; my boyfriend paid €39 for a back, shoulder and neck massage but he did say it was worth the money. The hotel is located over looking the beach and sea which is a pleasant location and it is about a 10minute walk into El Medano, which is worth a look- there are some nice bars and restaurants. The hotel, however, stands completely alone and there are no other food or drink establishments in its vicinity, other than a small supermarket next door which shuts at 8pm. Another thing to note is that the hotel is situated 9km from the airport, which means a very quick transfer time. However, it also means that the hotel is directly in the flight path of the airport and they fly over all day which can be noisy.
All in all, if you are looking for a relaxing holiday in a well maintained hotel with a bit of winter sun, you can't go too far wrong with this hotel. However, if you are looking to meet other young people in a lively 24/7 resort then this is probably not the place for you. Likewise, if you are looking for a gourmet food and drink experience, then you should look elsewhere.
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Arenas Del Mar Beach
- Hotel Arenas Del Mar El Medano, Tenerife