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“Room for improvement”

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Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Alcala
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
London, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Room for improvement”
Reviewed June 21, 2013

We echo the sentiments of another reviewer that the infrastructure is breathtaking (fountains that change colour) in a courtyard setting, leading out to well tended gardens with fish in the lake. Unfortunately this hotel seems not to have heard of older/semi-disabled people who, in a 5* hotel, expect a little assistance. There is a lot of walking involved to collect self service breakfast and dinner, without the added complication/irritation of not being able to locate a table near to the food counters. A system of hanging a notice on the door declining room cleaning service in exchange for 20 euros to spend at the hotel (on the one day of declining the service) did not work on two occasions. The grounds become crowded and although you will eventually find a vacant sun lounger no assistance is available to position them. An inadequate number of sunshades are soon snapped up by those who are quick enough to "bag" one. There are no sunshades on room balconies which do, at certain times of day, become very hot as the sun moves round. Although the food selection seemed varied, it was not hot enough in the self service containers so lukewarm when back at one's table. Best to stick with salads which does become boring after a few days. The puddings/ desserts although attractively displayed consisted of rich creamy things. An ice cream carousel with about 10 different flavours was the same every day, and no coffee flavour, the favourite of many. The staff appeared to be unevenly distributed with sometimes half a dozen at the main entrance, only necessary when several clients arrive together. Not enough room cleaners nor poolside attendants. These failings detract from the enjoyment of the overall ambience, with room for improvement.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Doreen G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pablo Q, eGuestexperience at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 27, 2013
Dear Doreen G;

We would like to express, on behalf of the whole team of the hotel, our gratitude for choosing Gran Meliá Palacio de Isora for your recent stay and for taking the time to post your feedback on TripAdvisor.

We always try to please all our guests and adapt to their preferences; we sincerely apologize if this was not the case.

Do not hesitate that we will take into account your constructive remarks, which always help us in our daily work.

Please contact me directly for anything you may need in future, we all remain at your disposal,

Kind regards,

Guest Experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Location
  • Rooms
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Madrid, Spain
Level 5 Contributor
57 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2013

My family and I spent almost a week at this beautiful hotel and we chose it since it is supposed to be one of the best hotels in the area. I previously read some reviews, and most of them were fairly good so I was confident I was choosing right.

Pros
The grounds are very beautiful and it has several pools, one being the largest in Europe (so they say) and I must say it is very nice. It also has a great pool for children with a pirate ship with slides, etc. At night, beautiful fountains together with music, make it a nice spectacle.

Cons
Honestly, I don’t know where to start, since there are soooooooo many.

1. People are nice but they are VERY disorganized. I booked half board and every time I went to dinner, they told me I did not have half board, so they called each single nigh to reception to check if what I was saying was true.
On checkout date, they wanted to charge me twice for the half board and the room upgrade I chose, but everything was already prepaid.
2. We wanted to book for the Japanese restaurant on a Wednesday for Saturday night (4 days in advance), and they told me it was not possible since they had to wait until Friday night to see if there were any vacancies. ????? I finally managed to book the table after giving them a hard time.
3. I travelled with a small baby so I needed a baby seat every morning for breakfast and at night. Tom Cruise would call it Mission Impossible 5, since it was almost impossible to find a baby seat. A 5 star hotel, cannot allow this taking into account the hotel was at 60% occupancy.
4. Our rooms were not cleaned up nor made in two days in a row. Obviously, I complained twice, and they asked me if I did put the “Please clean the room” outside the door (which I did).
5. There are some nice Balinese beds which you can reserve (paying of course). One day, we stayed up late at the pool, and 20 minutes before they closed, my wife arrived with my little girls and I put some towels on top of the Balinese bed so that my baby could crawl around. Immediately, the pool man showed up and ask me if I made a reservation. I told him that obviously not, that we were leaving in 10 min, if he wouldn’t mind. He said I would have to talk to his manager about it because we were not allowed to use them. Again, this is not the service I was expecting for a 5 star hotel.

And there are many more issues which I will not bore you more about them but made my stay a bit uncomfortable and in some cases, very annoyed.

Conclusion: It is a 5 star hotel based on the infrastructure. It is a 2 star hotel based on the service given.

My rating: 3/5

Room Tip: 5th floor has the best view of the sea, though if you want a clear view of the ocean, you have to bo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CooperSJCW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pablo Q, eGuestexperience at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 28, 2013
Dear CooperSJCW

Thank you very much for sending your feedback and opinions regarding your experience at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora.

We always consider all your comments in order to get the best service and our main goal is to provide the superior customer service and we deeply regret that during your stay, due to the reasons you detail, we did not meet our objective this time.

If you wish to obtain a detailed explanation about all the points that you comment on your review, do not hesitate to contact personally with us. As you can check on Tripadvisor, these kind of situations are not really common in our hotel.

Kind regards.

Guest experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leicestershire, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed June 18, 2013

We have just returned from a 10 day stay. We stayed for a week in October last year and couldn't wait to return. It was without a doubt the most relaxing 10 days I have had this year. Just the thing to recharge our batteries. We loved the food - our favourite being the Oasis Grill although the others were fine too and we tried them all. We spent most of our days around the infinity pool just relaxing. We enjoyed the evening entertainment. We found the staff helpful and friendly - I had to get the doctor out (nothing to do with the hotel!) and the staff arranged it all and he was at my room within 30mins. Only thing to watch out for is that the Green day credits can only be used for certain treatments in the Spa. We thought that massages were covered only to find out (at time of departure) that they were not and that we had E80 credit that we were too late to use. But apart from this - which was our own fault for not attending the welcome meeting - we had a fantastic time and would not hesitate to return.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LizMc29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
Reviewed June 17, 2013

We had a fantastic stay at the Gran Melia. Rooms were huge and very clean and well serviced. We paid slightly more for a partial sea view, which guaranteed we were facing into the centre of the complex. Would definitely do that again since the exterior facing rooms just didn't seem to have as great a view.

If you are brave enough to book separately (and not through Thomson) you can find some great deals on the Melia website. We were given 20 euro per person per day in "room credit", which could be put towards drinks, hire of Bali beds, spa entry (but not treatments) and even the late check out we had booked. This combined with the credit we got from not getting the room serviced a couple of days meant that we paid nothing extra on top of the room rate for all the extras we had during our stay. The downside of this was that we were the last stop on the non-Thomson shuttle bus and it took Well over an hour to get to the hotel. Still this worked out way cheaper for us in the long run so worth consideration. Also, be sure to use the garage across the road to stock up if you're not all inclusive!

Food was generally very good but that depends on your standards. On the one hand it was some of the best "resort food" I've ever had, but just don't expect this to be like a five star restaurant at home! The poolside grill was pretty poor so I'd avoid it, but the Italian and market grill were both excellent, particularly the meat dishes such as the steak, and the BBQ night in the market grill was very good.

The only real negative is that there isn't much to see or do in the surrounding area. We went to the market in Alcala one day but there was not much to see. You are a short taxi away from other resorts so its not that big a deal, but it would be nice if there was a little more to do in the local area. It didn't bother us too much as we were only there for a week and were there to relax first and foremost. It does mean that we're in the position of saying that we absolutely loved it but probably wouldn't rush back. It does mean that we are now looking for other places that will live up to see high standards for future holidays-not an easy task!

Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank davidjod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pablo Q, eGuestexperience at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 19, 2013
Dear davidjod;

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience on TripAdvisor, in relation to your recent stay with us at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora.

Your positive feedback is very much appreciated. We can assure you that we always try to do everything possible to create enjoyable experiences for our guests, thus we will consider all your comments like a great value that help us to improve.

It would be a pleasure for all of us to welcome you back in the near future.

Kind regards,

Guest Experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surrey UK
Level 4 Contributor
44 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2013

Stayed for 4 nights and the red level is highly recomonded but a bit overpriced. First room offered had just a tree for a view. Second room turned into an " upgrade @ €80 per night extra" for a view of a tree and a mountain! Room did have an outside jacuzzi .. Well it's a bubble bath really.

Staff are really nice but so lazy.. Red level offers loads of service on paper but little in practice. Staff strut past the pool area all day but never stop to see if you want anything
We were on B& B rate and took dinner in the main hotel restaurants most nights. Top tip.. Avoid Resturant called DUO its pretentious and over priced. Average meal with loads of unnecessary show cooking @ approx €100 per head. More if you want a decent wine.
My advice .. Venture out of the hotel at the coastal entrance facing the sea and turn left. Walk along the cliff top path for about 200m and there's a really great bistro bar with good food and wine for 1/3 of the price

  • Stayed June 2013
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BrianJSurreyUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pablo Q, eGuestexperience at Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 19, 2013
Dear BrianJSurreyUK;

We would like to express, on behalf of the whole team, our gratitude for choosing our Hotel for your recent stay. We really appreciate your comment and the time that you have taking to share your experience on TripAdvisor.

We regret not having fulfilled his expectations and sharing your opinion you will help us to continue working to improve our services, as our top priority is to provide the best experience our guest.

We are at your complete disposal.

Sincerely,

Guest Experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed June 15, 2013

Just had the most fantastic week at this resort, the staff are so friendly and nothing is too much.
Felt like I'd won the lottery walking into this hotel.
The food was amazing , as were the pools and the ambience.
Fantastic that it is child friendly, but being a nan away with no children it was great to dine and relax in adult friendly zones .
I CANNOT wait to come back , truely fantastic location and luxury break away :-)

Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
Helpful?
2 Thank Pam C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 15, 2013

Just returned from a week in the Sensatori Tenerife and was slightly nervous after reading some bad reviews. We went with an open mind and didn't read anything on trip advisor for a couple of months before we left as we didn't want to be put off. I had looked at the hotel for quite a while and really wanted to go. We travelled with our 18 month old toddler.

CHECK-IN

We didn't arrive at the hotel until about 1am and we were given forms to complete by the Sensatori Rep at the airport - although this wasn't a massive issue I felt that this information could have been pre-populated before our arrival so that all we had to do was sign and then check into our room. It was just personal info, passport details etc - all info Thomson already had. After a long flight and 45 minute transfer, we were not even offered so much as a welcome glass of water at the hotel. We were, however, given a room-service menu which had been laid on especially for guests arriving late and the prices were discounted (i.e 10 euros for a cheese and ham toastie). Check-in at the desk was fast and we were escorted to our room where our cases were already waiting.

ROOM

We stayed in a Standard Deluxe Room and our initial impression was excellent. There was a Super Kingsize Bed which was very comfortable and the bathroom was very luxurious with a great power shower. The décor was exactly as described and photographed in the Thomson brochure. I suppose on reflection we could have done with a separate sleeping space for our toddler and I think you can book a suite which has this. The big let down for us was the very small balcony which overlooked a banana plantation and a building site. There were also a few cob webs hanging from the balcony as well. Our room was also at the opposite side of the hotel from the kids splash pool and it was quite a walk to get to especially if you had left something in the room. It is a big resort though so we didn't mind this too much. We had thought about paying the extra for a Garden room before we arrived and I am so glad we didn't - the Garden rooms below us were all totally overlooked with no privacy at all. We noticed that some of the rooms have Sensatori symbols on the door and the rest don't - maybe a coincidence but every room which had the same awful outlook as us was a Sensatori room. The green choice card is a great idea - we used this a couple of times as you don't need the room cleaned every day.

HOTEL

The hotel itself is stunning as are the grounds. The entrance and reception areas are beautifully decorated and furnished and the chandeliers are spectacular. Visually, the hotel is one of the nicest I have ever stayed in. The downside to this is the lack of beach, however, I believe they are in the middle of building one. All the plants and grassed areas are immaculate and the fish pond outside Pangea is beautiful.

POOLS

The infinity pool is probably the most impressive pool I've ever seen and definitely for me this was the prettiest part of the hotel. The family pool is also nice and the Kids Splash pool is okay. I feel that the Splash pool was maybe a bit of an afterthought though as it's in a very small area. Another thing I don't understand is why they didn't think about people with buggies considering it's a kids splash pool? You barely had room to wheel your buggy past the sunloungers without it being very close to the edge of the pool. We never had a problem getting a sun lounger at any of the pools at any time of day. Apart from the Kids Splash pool the other pools are really cold so I'm not sure if they only heat them in the winter. I think the rule about no balls in the family pool is quite pointless. The service for drinks around the pool is non-existent - if you wanted a drink you had to go to the bar to order and wait then carry your drinks back. I've stayed in 3 star hotels were you are served drinks by the pool so I cannot understand why this is not the case in a so-called 5 star plus hotel? The hotel provides you with cards to get your pool towels which was good as it saved having to take your own towels.

RESTAURANTS & FOOD

I would say the food is what I found to be the most disappointing thing about this hotel. The booking system was fine and we never had a problem booking any of the restaurants except for the Club Ocean Italian - we did, however, manage to get up early enough to book this twice. The system lets you book the day before but if it was 9am you still couldn't book the Club Ocean for the following day. Obviously people work out pretty quickly that this is the best restaurant.

Pangea is the main buffet restaurant and the breakfast choice was fantastic and of good quality. I enjoyed sitting outside in the mornings and the coffee was lovely. The cooked breakfasts were never that hot but I have always found this to be the case with buffet food. The pastry selection is really nice and you can have sparkling wine if you want to. We also ate in Pangea for lunch which was also nice and we ate here once for our evening meal which was not a great experience. It was quite busy and I felt some of the food was not even warm. The choice was good and you could have fresh fish and pasta cooked for you every evening. I didn't think there was great choice at the kids station but there was always soup and pasta at the other stations which my little one would eat. I waited for 15 minutes one night at the ice cream counter and nobody came to serve me so I didn't bother with it in the end. I felt that the service in Pangea was slow when it came to clearing away finished plates and also replenishing drinks. I don't know if they are told not to fill drinks as much for the full board plus guests but it did feel this way at times. The main thing that put me off this restaurant were the sparrows flying around. This was a bit of a novelty at first but when it got to the stage where they were eating off your plate if you got up to get something at the buffet it was a bit much. I saw this happen a lot when the staff hadn't cleared tables quickly enough.

The a la carte restaurants were not great and certainly not gourmet dining as advertised by Thomson. Club Ocean was good but still not fantastic. The Market Grill was good for lunch but I didn't like eating here in the evenings - I ordered Grilled Chicken one night and it came with chips. Chicken and chips? Hardly gourmet dining. It is a nice setting though, as is the Oasis Pool Grill. The Oasis Pool Grill food was okay and I must say that the service in here was fab compared to the service in other eateries within the hotel. The drinks would flow and they were great with our little one. The Japanese was lovely but not worth the 90 euro cost.

I can't comment too much on the bars and entertainment as our evening were quite quiet. The chill-out area is lovely and there were a few good acts that we seen. My little one spilled a drink one night and the waiter was less than impressed when I told him - so much so that it hadn't been mopped up for an hour after it happened and when we left it still hadn't been cleaned up. In a family hotel these things happen and the night before a waiter spilled and smashed a whole tray of drinks in front of our table and there was no eye-rolling or sighing from us so this did annoy me.

CHECK OUT

Had a late flight at midnight and were not able to get a late check-out despite having requested this direct with the hotel when booking so we had a 12 hour wait before we boarded our flight. We were given access to a courtesy shower room for half an hour but only just. Sensatori were not great at explaining this and by the time we asked about it there was hardly a slot left. We were told we could book a bedroom for an hour for 15 euros but as Sensatori hadn't told us about this by the time we asked there was no availability.

All in all, we did enjoy the holiday and the hotel was beautiful, however, I don't buy the whole Sensatori concept and felt that the Thomson reps were pretty useless as the hotel had the final say in everything. It is not five star plus at all. I would say the grounds and pool are 5 star with 3 star food and service which is why I've rated it a 4. Also, the hotel is not as secluded as people make out there are quite a few shops nearby and bus stops to take you wherever you like - we were pleasantly surprised. Some people said Alcala was 20 minutes away but it's only over the road!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Amandag1711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa

Property: Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa
Address: Avenida Los Oceanos s/n, 38686 Alcala, Guia de Isora, Tenerife, Spain
Phone Number:
Location: Spain > Canary Islands > Tenerife > Guia de Isora > Alcala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Alcala
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Gran Melia Palacio de Isora Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 578
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The natural beauty of Tenerife combines with an intense passion for service in the most superior luxury hotel on the island. With the Atlantic Ocean at its feet and the majestic Teide as a backdrop, the stunning scenery and eternal spring climate allows the Gran Meliá Palacio de Isora to provide guests with endless magical moments. The hotel has taken care of everything down to the very finest detail in each of its rooms, creating a personalised setting to ensure your total satisfaction. Imagine the experience of viewing the sun setting over the ocean from one of the magnificent rooms in this fantastic resort, the best 5 star hotel in Tenerife. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Melia Palacio De Isora Hotel Alcala
Gran Melia Guia De Isora
Palacio De Isora Gran Melia
Gran Melia Palacio De Isora Resort & Spa Guia De Isora, Tenerife

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