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“xmas break”

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Pontins Pakefield Holiday Park
Reviewed December 27, 2012

Just come back from a 4 day break to pakefield and the food was'nt too bad so we're not complaining about that Although we understood that it was a family centre and being xmas there was going to be a lot of children there and if we could have afforded it we would have gone to a adult only place.what we did object to was that there were activities thro the day for them and even till the early evening so i don't think it was to much to ask that by 9pm they should have either stayed with thier parents or gone back to their chalet so that grown ups can enjoy the rest of the evening of entertainment instead of listening to them running about and shouting.We came back a day early as we could'nt face another evening there.We certainly would not go again.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jean1946186356
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,217 - 1,223 of 1,452 reviews

Reviewed December 16, 2012

After deciding not to visit this site again we decided to give it another go. We went for the 4 night Turkey and Tinsel break.
The chalet was ok this time. Nice and warm and clean. We had paid for an upgrade.
The dining experience was a shambles. If you were not in the dining room at the start I think this would be 5.30pm it was difficult to get a seat. Then if you did manage to get one the meal was cold as there were no cutlery avaibable. The staff cleaned the tables quick enough but there were not enough staff.
Christmas evening meal time had to be seen to be believed. The tables had been layed with festive paper cloths and crackers etc but if you were not in first you had to sit at a table layed with a dirty cloth and nothing else. This again was lack of staff.
Now for the evening entertainment or lack of it. It was ok if you like bingo and more bingo.
The entertainments manage was useless. He laughed at his own jokes more than the guests did. I think he thought he was like Larry Grayson. We are a young at heart 71 and 75 couple and expect lively entertainment. I want a disco to be a disco not recordings from the 50s and 60s.otherwise why call it a disco. There is plenty of music to dance to without going down memory lane.
The bluecoats worked hard but there were not enough of them.
The seating in the entertainments hall was a disgrace filthy. The seats were stained with what I can only hazzad a guess.
The carpet in the dining room was so filthy, it had not been cleaned for years. Does anyone from head office ever visit Pakfield? i would suspect never.
Do they ever look at these reviews?
I would write to them direct but I was told that the letters would be returned to Pakefield and dealt with there.
I know some people do grumble about every little thing and I am not one of them but I do expect everything to be clean and value for money. I dont expect a works style canteen to dine in on holiday. I will not go again

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank greenaud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 10, 2012

Before I go on holiday I always look at Trip Advisor to see the reviews of the places I am to visit and to be fair I always treat the reviews with a pinch of salt and wait to make up my own mind….However Please Please take notice of my review as it will save you a lot of money. I have just returned from a Tinsel & Turkey midweek break here with friends..What a disaster. Our friends had been before and said on the other occasions it had been brilliant, so we were really looking forward to it.
We were told to collect our keys from reception but when we arrived were told to wait in the ballroom where the keys would be distributed, by the time this was done it was pitch black outside and we had to find our chalets and then get our luggage from the car, the car park was unlit and there were few lights down the chalet lines.
The chalets had not been cleaned although the beds had been changed and there were clean towels and a welcome pack of tea/coffee. We complained about the chalet and the next morning it had been “cleaned” in a fashion our friends chalet was, after it had been cleaned again, left with big black cobwebs all around the ceiling and they had to complain again before it was done.
The dining room was a shambles lack of cutlery, disorganisation etc. The food was mainly processed and most of it was overcooked, and the veg was frozen, not very appetising. Breakfast was the best but jam/marmalade was left uncovered in large metal containers. I have been in far better works canteens.
Entertainment was virtually non-existent unless you were into continuous Bingo or Ballroom/Sequence dancing. The Bluecoats did there best, but couldn’t work miracles. Unless you went for dinner at 5pm and then straight into the ballroom you had difficulty in getting a seat/table, we were told there was a full camp about 900 people and as our friends had been told earlier in the year that it was to be limited to 600 we were most annoyed about this.
Because of everything that had gone on and after a sleepless night on the Wednesday mainly because some one had left their bathroom fan going and the noise travelled along the row of chalets we felt enough was enough and decided to go home after breakfast forfeiting the final night.
After travelling over 300 miles round trip, we felt that it had been a complete and utter waste of money. My advice is to save yours.
In our opinion top management and the owners are at fault, it was disastrously understaffed however the staff, which were there, did their best under the circumstances

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Vera S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2012

Having read some reviews, was really dreading our weekend, but it was great apart from our chalet which was small and basic but we weren't in it that much. We thought the food was quite adequate, especially the Christmas Dinner on the sunday evening which was really nice. We enjoyed all the entertainment, evening and daytime and we are not in our eighties, 51 and 60, and young at heart. All the staff did their best and were very pleasant and friendly, not easy with all the moans and groans they must get. It was cheap and cheerful and we have booked to go back in March as we had a great weekend.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank david c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 8, 2012

What a let down our Chalet stunk of smoke ,carpets filthy only had 2 hand towels and 2 bath towels for 4 adults and when asked for more we were given them , but was told that the amount given was correct !!!!! .The food was mostly very good but some meals were cold. There was a shortage of cutlery and plates .The entertainment wasn't the best unless you like Bingo ,Dancing and Annie on the organ.We were looking forward to this break but left a day early and,will never be going back,it was the worst place we had ever stayed

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Cazz94
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2012

Just read some reviews, I really do not undersatand what people expect, my chalet was clean, warm and we had no problem pushing a shower button, 2 bedrooms with just 2 of us staying, clean towels, to the food again no problems, excellent service and a great choice, friendly staff and always helpfull, if people made the effort to give their used trays and empty dishes to the adequate staff they would have found no problems, and if the table needed cleaning this was done straight away, we travelled with 2 of our friends and found the food more than excellent, to the entertainment, again excellent, really good performers and personalitys, all good shows and all day entertainment, a credit to the Blue Coats who did a first class performance, and yes there was bingo, and line dancing and ballroom dancing but a great mixture for all at what ever standard or ability enjoyed the dancing and mixture of music. Darts bowling table tennis and quizes during the day, I just wish trip advisors would look at what they paid, stop moaning, and if they don't like it stop writing rubbish and picking faults, Good grief this not a 5 star hotel, but a friendly Pontins with hardworking kind staff, the 4 of us send our thanks. Tony, Ann, Geoff and Yve.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank tony4711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2012

First of all, I have been to this holiday park several times. I have been in a crowd of 10 including 6 children in the summer holidays of 2010, I came on an over 50's in 2010 (yes I was 40). Both times were fantastic. The entertainment for the children was good, the fun and games for the adults was good! On the over 50’s we had good comedians, several acts, all of which were good. I booked up a couple of months ago on an adult break (Pontins Select) for September 21st – 24th. After taking 3 hours to drive there, we booked into our apartments with no problems. You have to go to the ballroom to get your apartment keys but it’s no problem as they are so quick at doing it.
FRIDAY EVENING DINNER – We went into our evening meal. They had scampi but very dry and overcooked. Jacket potatoes plenty but those watery potatoes so no good and the cheese was so mild you couldn’t taste it. The cold pasta dishes were terrible and it was all frozen mixed cheap vegetables. There was a chicken type stew, again with the mixed frozen cheap vegetables in it but it was just like chicken in a tinned chicken soup. There was vegetable lasagne, if that’s what you would like to call it, again, it was the same mixed frozen veg with a load of slop and I cannot understand why they would serve this to adults, I wouldn’t give it to a child!
ITINARY GIVEN TO ME AT RECEPTION FOR THE WEEKEND
Friday
10.30am – Start the morning with our card game
11.30am – Prize Bingo Fun Game
12.00pm – Quiz
6.45pm – Bingo – Call in 45 numbers or less and you’ll win 5000
6.45pm – Main bingo session
6.45pm – Early Evening Dance Session
7.30pm – Bingo
8.30pm – Guest cabaret presenting Victoria Yellop followed by late night dance date with Annie and disco
(I won’t bore you with Saturday’s and Sunday’s because it’s much the same)

ACCOMMODATION – Nothing wrong with the accommodation, new carpets and curtains but think the carpet will be ruined by next year as it’s not very durable. Accommodation was clean and welcoming, kettle, tea, cups and saucers. I hired out a fridge and the man who sorted us out with that was really lovely, nothing was any trouble to him.
FRIDAY NIGHT ENTERTAINMENT – A complete and utter joke. We got into the ballroom about 8.45pm. We got a drink and on came this violinist who decided to play Vera Lynn and basically songs from the 2nd world war. Then we had “Annie” and her organ, it was all so dreary. It was a total insult. We went to see the “entertainments manager” and he was such a lovely man. I interpreted that his acts are given to him by head office and has no control over budgets which makes me wonder what is the point of an entertainments manager. I felt ever so bad for him, he was embarrassed. He was so nice to us and suggested we see reception the next morning. We also explained that we thought we were coming to an adult weekend and hadn’t realised most people would be over 75.
BREAKFAST – No problems as such but they put a great big silver tray of jam which is not covered. Honestly, 200 people couldn’t get through that amount of jam so it’s coming out every morning and sitting in the dining room, no cover on it, being exposed to the air, anyway, the rest of the breakfast is fine, you can’t really go wrong with a cooked breakfast, at least, can you?
COMPLAINT 1 – After breakfast we went to see the on duty manager and she was fantastic. She offered to put us on another weekend that was “themed” and we decided to accept this. I felt we were not the first to complain.
We decided to pack up and head back home so we did this and decided whilst we were there to have a walk along the beach for a few hours. We got back by 12 and thought we may as well have a bit of lunch there.
SATURDAY LUNCH – Same food as Friday night, mixed cooked veg with minced beef suet pudding. So I had the watery jacket potato and cheese and cucumber so it was pretty awful. My 3 friends decided to have an omelette and was first in the queue, they waited around 20 minutes and when they got back to the table with it, it was like a load of rubber and was inedible. So they ended up having a watery jacket potato with baked beans, hardly food for half board is it.
COMPLAINT 2 – At this point I said to my friend I didn’t even want to come back for the themed night because it would end up costing a fortune, time we paid again for all the petrol, we would end up eating out, the entertainment was awful, what’s the point? I took the omelette my friends had been given to see the manager and spoke to the on duty male manager. He was appalled about the quality of the food and I was given the impression we were not the first to complain. He was fantastic and understanding.
OVERALL – The entertainment was an unsult, yes, there were lots of very old people there, but that doesn’t mean to say they don’t have a sense of humour and can’t listen to a comedian and some decent music. Why on earth would people want to listen to 80 year old music??? We did speak to other people in their 50’s and they felt the same about it all, the food, the entertainment.
It’s such a shame because my friends who I went with have been to Pakefield at least 6 times over the last 7 years but we won’t be going back unless something drastically changes there and how will we know that it has changed. I cannot see Pakefield open for many years to come if you expect people to eat this kind of food and put up with this awful entertainment. I think you should also be very clear that the majority of people on Select Breaks are very senior. Also as you can see by the itinery, you have too much bingo and not enough laughs, to me there is no sense in head office taking reigns because it clearly is not working, Pakefield was so great and it is a real shame the cuts have come from the quality of the food and quality of the entertainment.

On this break was myself, my friend Charmaine, her daughter Charlene and her daugher’s boyfriend John ready my friends and I have spent 70 pounds of petrol, there are 6 children within the family and you can imagine the juggling the Charlene and John had to do to get this weekend away. They also had to pay for someone to look after their animals so already this was a very expensive weekend for them.

Since September we have been promised our money back from them but as usual they have STOLEN our money, they don't return our calls, we have written letters to Pakefield and they haven't even had the decency to reply to us or call any of us back and I think between us we have made at least 18 phone calls and several letters now, this place is an absolute DISGRACE, they don't deserve any custom, customer service is ZERO

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Jacquie O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pontins Pakefield Holiday Park

Address: London Road Pakefield, Lowestoft NR33 7PF, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Suffolk > Lowestoft
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Lowestoft
Price Range: $62 - $97 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Pontins Pakefield Holiday Park 2*
Number of rooms: 513
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Long established, friendly holiday park with many amenities for both young and young at heart. please note all rooms are non smoking for our guests' comfort. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pontins Pakefield Hotel Lowestoft
Pontins Pakefield Holiday Park Lowestoft, Suffolk

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