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“Out the way but nice in the Sun”

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Parkdean - Holywell Bay Holiday Park
Ranked #16 of 77 Specialty Lodging in Newquay
Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Out the way but nice in the Sun”
Reviewed June 22, 2012

I always use this site for reviews on places so its about time I give something back, so here is my review of Parkdean's Holywell Bay Holiday Park done in the style that helped me the most.

Checking In
We arrived at 3.05 in the afternoon after popping into Newquay town as we arrived just before dinnertime and we were told check in was at 4pm. When we went into reception we were greeted by a nice lady who was polite and pleasant and informed us that we could get into our van now but there might not be any linen yet. We were shown on a map where/how to get to our van. We were not told where anything else was I had to ask for the bar (after a 7 hour trip a pint was needed) but all in all it was a very god swift check in.

Accommodation
We stopped in a 6 berth caravan (No.86) it was out the way up a corner which was nice as you only had 2 vans around you, the parking was under a tree so I decided to park at the front of the van but beware of the potholes that seem to be around everywhere on this site.
The caravan was clean on first glance a few stains on cushions to be expected I guess, but there was a lovely cobweb above the toilet door and also a few dead flys in the windows! We also noticed that the windows had not been cleaned on the front of the van they had bird muck on the outside and on the inside someone had wrote something on the glass so this is something I thought they could have done better but all in all it was ok, The TV was about as big as my computer monitor "17 at best so from where it was to the sitting area was very hard to see especially when the footy was on!
We didn’t have the full amount of utensils that they say they provide but as we never had call to use them it didn’t cause a problem.

The Site
The site is very small, a young kids play area which for a toddler the bridge to the slide was tough for them my daughter is nearly 2 as she struggled to climb up off the bridge ! Apart from that there was not much else for youngsters, there is a kids play room which has a ball pit but if you have ever watched phoenix nights it’s exactly like the one Brian Potter made!
There is a bigger outdoor park for the older kids with swings, slide and climbing frames which my 9 year old enjoyed playing on but this is in-between a dozen or so vans who all over look you so you could be watched by other people.
As I have mentioned earlier the site is riddled with potholes where vehicles have struggled to get onto the grass verges and etc these can b tough for little kids and my daughter did become a cropper on one of them, in the rain it’s a nightmare!

Entertainment / Bar / Shop
We didn’t use the entertainment on the site so I could not comment on this.
As for the bar it’s expensive, as you would expect £3.35 a pint of Carling and its not a nice pint for what you pay.
The shop opens about 7:30 and has all you would need in there prices are ok a little expensive but that’s why it’s a convenience store I suppose.
There are 2 amusement rooms which are a little out of date with what they have to offer you to play, but my lad enjoyed the grabbers as we all do, they have 2 pool tables available to use but I play darts and was disappointed at no dart board but that’s just my little grimace.

Staff
They were all pleasant and helpful when info was required but over the week probably only interacted with about 3-4 of them.

Away from the Site
Holywell bay has one of the best beaches that I have ever been to, clean and beautiful the softest sand in the world and if you get chance on a sunny day do spend a day there you wont be disappointed we went on the Monday afternoon and again all morning on the Tuesday.
There are 2 pubs near to the campsite
St Pirans Inn, which has a lovely seating area outside in the sun and is about £3.70 a pint of Carlsberg, not much in side for kids but a little play area outside, food seemed to be on the expensive side but I only glanced at the menu.
Treguth Inn, this is where I will send you if you are looking for a pint in the evening great landlord made you feel proper welcome and was very knowledgeable on the local area, great locals in there as well a proper pub and it had a dart board for me which ticked the box well. It was £3.40 a pint of Carlsberg and was better than the other pub’s pint by far.
As for Newquay its about 5.5 miles away there is a bus service every hour which costs £2.30 but it takes in the back areas to get there so expect a time of about 30minutes and plenty of branches hitting the bus windows.
Chip Shop in Cubert is very nice fresh fish and not expensive so if ya looking for a chippy tea i recommend a pop in here on your way back.

My biggest Moan
No mobile signal, anywhere in the area the moment you leave Cubert village at the top and head into Holywell bay its gone, no signal anywhere, so inform people you will become un contactable for your stay. The site does offer wifi but you have to pay the Treguth pub has a BT Open Zone so if your with BT you can connect to the net there but apart from that its wilderness and newspapers to keep you up to date

All in all we enjoyed our holiday and was pleased we had a great beach to go to but Holywell bay is out of the way from the main places if you are on a family holiday with kids. We travailed a fair bit over the week to Newquay (Nice place some good pubs and shops to visit), St Austell (Not much there), KidzZone @ St Austell (Expensive but a great day out if raining for the kids), Truro (worth the trip great little shopping town), Perranporth (very nice beach and small shops rained on us however)

I hope if you are going here you found my ramble useful.

Room Tip: Ask to be away from the main entrance and off the main walk ways.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
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5 Thank wayupna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Chard, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 15, 2012

Have just returned from a 5 day break at Holywell and left with very mixed feelings. Let's begin with the good points:

Excellent location with close proximity to a stunning beach - the best you'll ever find in Cornwall.
Peaceful and well kept site with a well stocked shop and efficient check in at reception.
Short 5 minute walk to a very good pub that serves superb food.
Rich with wildlife and set along a trickling stream.

Now for the bad news:

As a Housekeeper in a large hotel, part of my job is to check rooms for cleanliness and presentation. I know that there is a huge difference between caravans and hotels but a good basic standard of cleanliness is very important wherever you are staying and whatever your choice of accommodation, be it caravan, chalet, bungalow, b &b or hotel... and that's what we didn't get at Holywell Bay with our caravan, hence my review.

We booked a Delabole caravan and were so disappointed that our hearts sank when we saw it with dog ends and food remains around the front steps. It was also overhanging the little river so much so that the end bedroom was in the trees. On our last very windy night, the noise was dreadful as the branches scraped along the top and side of the caravan. The outside of the van had very large mud splats on the windows/door and it had large rust marks to one end. But, hey, I am not a negative person and have experience in my work with how guests, that start off their holiday on a negative vibe, carry on that vibe throughout their stay. I didn't want to do that because I knew it would spoil our holiday. So I carried on to see what the inside would offer.

I'm afraid it just got progressively worse. The smell was awful - it was musty and smelled damp. I used a whole can and more of fresh air spray during the course of four days to keep it down. It was very obvious that this was a tired, old and very well used van that hadn't been cleaned properly. I'm a camper and used to roughing it but I couldn't get my head around why there were still hairs on the toilet, dried-on cabbage on one of the glass bowls in the cupboard or why the frying pan and saucepan were wet all over. I also couldn't understand why the pans were in the same cupboard as the bin and dustpan and brush! On the shower door there was black mould and pink mould markings (the warning that black mould will occur) inside the shower.The shelf in the bathroom hadn't been wiped and was still showing the remnants of someone's shower gel/shampoo and toothpaste. The bathroom corners were black and left a lot to be desired and the floor behind the toilet definitely hadn't been cleaned. The vinyl floors could have done with a bit of elbow grease to remove the marks - especially in the corners.

As for the beds and pillows - they were awful. The mattresses were stained and worn and smelled damp. The duvets, blankets and pillows were stained and not clean and, even though the linen was clean and fresh, the duvet was around 18 inches to two feet too large all round for the cover. We spent the first night picking up the duvet from the floor as it was so bottom and side heavy it wouldn't stay put on the bed. We felt like the filling in a sandwich as the heavy duvet, wedged into the cover, just about covered the top of the bed .It sat proud with no overhang whatsoever. If one of us turned over, there was no hope for the one left uncovered.

The corners of the carpets definitely hadn't been hoovered and the small bedside 'cabinets' were full of dust and hairs in the corners. All wardrobes and drawers smelled musty and my clean clothes, now I have them home, have all needed washing because of the smell.

We felt very unsafe overhanging the river and decided to use the fold out bed in the lounge on the second night. On unfolding the bed, the smell was awful. The mattress was stained, the bed covered in black debris together with two dead moths. We turned the mattress over in desperation to have a good night's sleep and the other side was stained even worse. We then gave up. I'm interested to know when was the last time that this was checked or even unfolded!

When we stay away we always take our own pillows and a bottle of tea tree oil (it comes in useful for medicinal and cleaning emergencies) and I am so glad that I took these two vital items with me on this occasion. The tea tree was a life saver in basic cleaning and there was no way that I could sleep on the pillows provided. It was such a shame because the location of the park is so peaceful and in a stunning location.

I hear you asking why I didn't complain and get the problems sorted out when we first arrived. In my experience, as I said before, if you begin your holiday on a negative note, then you'll take that negativity with you all they way through your stay. I've seen it so many times before and the only way that we would have been happy was to be moved to a newer caravan or to go home. I couldn't see Parkdean moving us to a new van for the same price and we didn't want to go home... so I cleaned what needed cleaning - the cutlery, crockery, dishes and toilet, moved what needed moving, sprayed what needed spraying and didn't use the shower to wash in. I have taken up the problems with Parkdean, however, as I don't want others to experience what we experienced.

Whether you book a new or old holiday home, both should be cleaned to a basic standard. If you have somewhere clean to sleep, somewhere clean to wash and somewhere clean to cook, then you can surpass any other problem. With this holiday home this was not the case.

One of the reasons why we chose Holywell Bay was because of the clubhouse and eatery - especially as we'd be able to get a breakfast without much effort. However, the food that we was being served looked awful but I'll stand corrected if I'm wrong. Perhaps it looked awful but tasted good - we never took the opportunity to taste it and took our custom elsewhere. Also, we never got the chance to eat a breakfast either as there was a notice on the clubhouse door informing us that breakfast and lunch would not be served on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursdays... heigh-ho.

We would return to Holywell Bay without a second thought but we'd book a new caravan and that's what we'd advise anyone else to do. It doesn't guarantee a clean caravan but it will give you the best chance going that it will be easy to put right should the need arise.

Room Tip: Book a new caravan and don't give a second look to an older one. Phone the site personally and a...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
2 Thank MilliePeters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed May 28, 2012 via mobile

We have been staying at this holiday park every year for the last 15 years and have always had a great time.
If we have had any problems they have always been sorted out the same day.
Our kids have grown up loving this place
And know there way around the site and we are due to go again at the end of this week and we can't wait.
I can't understand all the negative comments posted

  • Stayed July 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Qqqqqqqqwebb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 27, 2012 via mobile

My wife, daughter and I recently spent a week at Holywell Bay Holiday Park - our first family holiday together and I have to say that it was one of the most enjoyable holidays I've ever been on. The Portreath caravan was very comfortable, clean and had all the amenities we needed as well as being located on the back end which meant we had place and quiet at night.
The site itself its immaculately kept and has a nice little shop, gorgeous Ellenglaze bar and grill which serves sumptuous food and there is a lovely play area for the kids. The five minute walk to the beach was easy and the beach itself beautiful.
The staff were eager to please and helped wherever needed and the entertainment staff had the kids enthralled.
A wonderful holiday Park which is value for money, perfectly situated in the most incredible surroundings.
We will definitely return in the future :-)

  • Stayed May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank richwilko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
swansea
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed May 9, 2012

Just come back from a 4 day break at Parkdean, Holywell Bay. Me, my husband and 16month daughter booked in to a 2 bedroom Cubert Caravan from the Monday to the friday. I'll break the review down into sections as I know from experience that I find this most helpful.

Checking in:
We got at the site just before 4pm and found reception easily as it is just next to the enterance. Was checked in efficiently and with a friendly smile, given our keys, information pack and shown on the map how to locate our caravan.

Accomodation: Had booked the Cubert Caravan as these were the new models for 2012 and we had managed in January to find a very reasonable price for our stay. The caravan it self was very nicely furnished with modern fittings and fixtures, 32" LCD TV, fridge/freezer, oven, Iorn/iorning board etc.also central heating! My only one negative is that it has a very compact feel to it with not alot of room between the Kitchen and living space. However once we were in and settled it was a very comfy base for the three of us.

On arrival I noticed that we had no clean linen and that the dirty linen had not been taken away. Also I was slightly concerned as to where I was going to put my little girls travel cot. However this problem was quickly resolved with a trip to reception, within 5mins of complaining housekeeping came round with fresh linen and showed my husband how the beds fold away to accomodate the travel cot in the second bedroom, great.

Entertainment:
The site offers a well stocked bar and restaurant, which is situated next to the entertainment/dance floor. It also has a lovely decked area which I would imagine would be nice to have a drink on in the warmer months. The decking area over looks the toddler play area which looked clean and safe. There is also a small indoor soft play area for the little ones which again looked nice however my little girl never got in there as we ran out of time.
On the first night we did have a few drinks in the bar and my husband was more than pleased that they had sky sports on the tv's for the football. The drinks were average price and what you would expect to pay when out, pint £3.50, bottle of wine £8.95. I cannot comment of the food as we didn't eat there, we preferred to visit the nearby Morrisons and cook our own food. I will say however that what I saw coming out of the Kitchen looked lovely and they had a good menu.

There is also a shop, laundrette and small arcade on site, as well as a larger adventure playground and outdoor swimming pool, which looked lovely but sadly we didn't have the weather to use it. My daughter however did enjoy the swings in the playground.

Surrounding area:
The site itself is situated in a lovely valley, which would explain the lack of phone signal, and is a 10 mins gentle walk away from the beach. This is great for nature lovers as there is plenty too see. The beach itself is accessed through sand dunes so prepare for a little climb but it is well worth it as the beach is beautiful and clean, my little girl loved running around on it.

You are about 5 mins drive away from the centre of Newquay which offers a variety of things to do and see, the town centre has a variety of shops and pubs as well as the stunning beaches on the front. There is also Newquay zoo and the blue reef aquarium. We wanted to take our daughter swimming while we were there so we visited the Oasis pool situated on Hendra holiday park, it is a bit pricey but the pools are lovely with nice splash pools for the toddlers and a couple of flume rides for the older kids.

We also visited Looe/Polperro while we were there, Padstow and St Ives all are with 45mins of the Caravan site and were well worth the visit.

Staff:
All staff who I encountered during my stay at Holywell were friendly and very helpful, esspecially the ladies on reception who were able to give me information on the surrounding area and solve any problems I had. The bar and shop staff were also very friendly and always had a smile for my daughter.

All in all it was a good stay which as a family we really enjoyed. We didn't use the entertainment every night as we like to relax in the comfort of our caravan with a bottle of wine. I understand that some people are put off with the lack of mobile signal but you only have to drive 2 mins out of the valley to get a signal again, so you would be able to contact home if needed. I will agree that there wi-fi does need to be looked at as it is painfully slow or non exsistent but this is a minor detail. I would definitley book with parkdean again!! I would also like to add that a couple of days after our stay we received a postcard from one of the reception memebers at parkdean thanking us for our stay this was a really nice touch.

Room Tip: Newer caravan models have central heating and upgraded furnishins so book one of these if possible.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank eightpercent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Haworth, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed April 20, 2012

Just had a week down at Hollywell Bay and loved it. The weather was something else though, from hail storms to brilliant sunshine within the same hour, oh; and the wind was up. But the site is truly family freindly. The caravan we had (155) was a short walk away from everything you needed, shop, bar, entertainments and reception. A good welcome from the reception when we arrived and nothing was too much trouble. The beach is about 10 minutes away and it is STUNNING! One afternoon I had it all to myself as the girls were taking a nap. Raw nature at it's best. The site has plenty to offer and is a handy base from which to explore north Cornwall. (Visit Port Isaac where they film Doc Marten Absolutley grand.) Would we go to Parkdeans Hollywell Bay again? Certainly, but as it is an 750 mile round trip I would want to stay longer. Downsides? The sat nav will take you to the bottom gate and you cannot get in there. Take the first gate you come to on the left hand side half way down the hill. Also there are public phone boxes on site with quite good reason, you can't get a signal down there. Yippee!!! There is however wifi in the bar area so don't despair. I was well pleased, as I hate mobile phones anyway. We stayed with Parkdean in Cornwall last year over at Mullion, and although it too was also good, Hollwell Bay is nicer. PS the bar prices are reasonable too.

Room Tip: It would depend on what your'e after. If you want 5 star accom then go somewhere else, otherwise...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Frank B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glastonbury, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
114 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2012

We've just come back from a week here and will not be returning. The shame is that there is a lot to like about the place, and if you are the sort who either stays in the club until they throw everyone out or returns to the site after midnight then I can recommend the place. But if you'd like to get your kids and yourself to sleep before midnight avoid this place like the plague.

To be balanced, here's a bit more detail:

We booked into a bottom of the line caravan. Check in was swift with a very friendly reception crew - who maintained such through the week whenever we contracted them. Unfortunately it closed early in the evening so if you had to report anything then, it involved going to the noisy club, and making your way through a crowded bar populated with people who, to put it mildly, were not in a fit state to legally get behind the wheel of a car.

The caravan was small. but plenty room for up to four, though storage is lacking - no drawers for your smalls.

It was an old van, but apart from some missed salad leaves in the sink was clean throughout and had new carpets. Linen is supplied, but you have to make up your own bed. The mattresses had a worn surface but still had plenty of support and comfort in them. Unlike some other caravans they also supplied a good sized fridge freezer. Could have done with a reading light in the bedroom.

If you have a mobile phone addict in the group, be aware that there no network reception anywhere. Also, the free wi-fi is reminiscent of the old dial up days, but with added multiple "unable to connect" messages. It's only available in the club and as has been established it gets very noisy in there.

There were a number of issues we brought up during the week - all those concerning the caravan were dealt with very promptly by maintenance:
Gaps in windows
Broken bin
Sticking front door
Missing door knob in the loo
Missing pillowcase
Overgrown brambles at the back which squeaked against the main bedroom wall in the wind.
Unable to turn the fire on as the instructions were for a different model.
Nothing above is enough to damn the place and the fact that maintenance were quick to resolve them is a credit to them.

Whilst our child did not want to take part in the kid's club (after let downs at another brand's kids club) we did not use the club, but caught the start of a couple of sessions and I have to say the two blokes we saw at work were terrific with the kids, very engaging (unlike the previously mentioned competitors). All of which makes it such a shame that the site ruins it all by making sure every caravan can hear every note that is blared out in the evening.

The restaurant is in the same room as the club, so if you want a relaxing meal after about 7:00m forget it. Again, a huge shame as the grub was nice, fairly priced and the staff good. Nice breakfasts, but it does not open until 9:00am.

We did point out to reception more than once that not everyone wants to listen to the Macarena at 11:45 pm, and they passed the message on to the Entertainment division who either stuck two fingers up at the complaint or could not interpret the multi-syllabic words they had been presented with.

It's such a shame that the late night noise ruined the hard work of everyone else on the camp-site. But if noisy night's are your thing then head over there, otherwise search for calmer waters elsewhere.

One non-site related gripe, but pointed at Park Dean. For some reason they don't like people booking on-line. I did so, then sent a request for a non-smoking caravan. They replied saying it would be another £10, claiming I'd been given a £10 discount for booking on-line. I had not. I'd been given a £10 discount for paying everything up-front. So, if you want to specify a caravan you need to book over the phone - which sadly is a non-geographic kick-back number.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank barnum42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Parkdean - Holywell Bay Holiday Park

Property: Parkdean - Holywell Bay Holiday Park
Address: Near Newquay | Cornwall, Newquay, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cornwall > Newquay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 77 Specialty Lodging in Newquay
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tucked away in the gorgeous Ellenglaze Valley, and surrounded by sand dunes, it's the perfect summer retreat.Just a ten minute stroll from a beautiful beach, a short drive away from Newquay's exciting attractions, and a million miles from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. * Direct access to the coastal path from the park * Only 7 miles from Newquay's superb attractions * Heated outdoor pool with 300ft slide * Kids' club fun with Sid & Lizzie ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Holywell Bay Holiday Park Hotel Newquay
Parkdean - Holywell Bay Holiday Park Newquay, Cornwall

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