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LABRANDA Aqua Fun Marrakech
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Reviewed July 10, 2011

Below is an excerpt from an email I have just sent to the various travel companies involved. It pretty much sums up my experience.

Constant Stench From Gardens - I understand the need to water the gardens in the heat, but the stench that was created as the mud was continually watered (during the daytime) created an unbearable smell whilst trying to relax/sunbathe/enjoy a drink/eat etc

Room Not Cleaned Until After 5pm - Only on two days admittedly, but once was after this had been specifically mentioned to the manager as a concern. Not good when returning from a sticky day in the souks and you can't access your room to shower. Not until after 4 on another day.

Poor service from room attendants - No towels left on one occasion (grumpy response when asked for some after chasing across complex, turned up 30 mins later). No toilet roll left on two occasions (first time requested at reception and did not arrive until next day, second time I had to argue at reception to get me to bring some there and then)

Check In - Arrived (approx 11.45) and got in queue for check in. After approx 30 mins and getting to near front of the queue, was told to take a seat as they were obviously having problems. 30 mins later, reception start randomly checking people in. Manager states that they will get to us, even though new arrivals are being put in rooms whilst we sit. After 1 hour, we are told to go the the restaurant and have lunch (no further direction) and that we should leave our luggage unattended in reception. We are to come back in an hour. Return in one hour, rooms not ready. 30 mins later room made available (now 3pm). Discover that room (with balcony directly connected to service road) has no hot water and shower head that would work better as a garden sprinkler. Return to reception at 3.15pm. Told to go to room and wait to be contacted to be reallocated. No contact at 4pm, so go to reception and told room will be ready in 15 mins. Get in new room at 4.30pm. New room has leaking sink and patio door that does not lock, however it does have air con and hot water so we decide to give it a go for the time being.

Stagnant pool - The pool by the four poster sun loungers (clearly an old one when you look at Google Earth) had no working filters and stood stagnant. Each morning it was a cloudy green colour until chemicals were manually added by a man with a bucket, sometimes as late as 10am AFTER guests had swum in it.

Restaurant/Food/Bars Service - Clearly not enough crockery/glassware to serve all guests efficiently. Sometimes served beer in tea glasses, soft drinks in cocktail glasses etc. Had to search for plates in restaurant in order to eat. Restaurant staff too keen to clear plates away in order to wash them hence if you get up to get another drink, your food was gone. More on food hygiene later. On the Friday evening, the bar ran out of lager - how? The mid afternoon snack bar was a shambles. The staff had no idea how to control orders and it took 20 minutes to even acknowledge me, never mind deliver a simple cheese panini.

Aqua Park - Not complete, and work in progress via heavy machinery/welding while park open to public. EXTREMELY unsafe for guests. Loud music disrupted rest of resort. Witnessed worker holding electric drill whilst stood in OPEN children's pool.

Safety - The floor surfaces are completely unsafe when wet. One evening after a shower I sat in the bar and watched at least 5 people slip over due to the water. Also, a waitress fell over when trying to clear away chairs so they did not get wet - I then witnessed her getting a public dressing down from a member of management for daring to stop work for a moment whilst she recovered. The poor girl was in tears and I felt tremendously embarrassed.

Entertainment - Advertised as Theatre, Disco etc, but realistically, one woman doing six nights a week with the same dozen club style songs. Excruciating.

Manhole covers - Everywhere, and frequently left open for the constant watering of mud/footpaths with no regard to guests and particularly kids who were running around.

Sun beds - Clearly not enough for the amount of guests. More in the aqua park than the hotel - suspect that this is to draw in more paying day guests.

Food Hygiene - Consistently saw glasses being cleaned with dirty cloths, fresh foods being left out in the sun for hours etc. The fridge at the Afendena bar had the door hanging off. The place is a ticking time bomb. My wife and I spent the last day of our holiday in our room as we could not be more then 2 minutes away from the bathroom. Obviously I cannot confirm that it was food poisoning caused by the hotel, but I had not eaten or drunk anywhere else in the past 6 days and as a qualified CIEH professional i can assure you that most bacteria that cause food poisoning take between 24 and 72 hrs to incubate. As I write this, my wife and I are still in considerable pain.

Building works - I have previously mentioned the building works in the Aqua Park, but it was also evident that other works were being completed. A large portable drilling machine was ever present in the resort, and competed for noise with the music from the aqua park on a daily basis. I really feel for the people who were in rooms near to it.

And to the main issue - the hotel was advertised on the Broadway Travel website as a "Luxury 5 Star" which was "a short distance from the vibrant centre of Marrakech" (15km - not exactly short enough to wander in). It also stated that amenities included "hair dryer and mini bar" (hair dryer appeared on day 3, mini bars not in rooms) and advertised "FREE Snacks" (not true - the Food Court required payment for snacks), "EXCLUSIVE 15% Off All Excursions" (when we asked for our discount the rep laughed, and then had to begrudgingly ask his boss if he was allowed), that there were "three main restaurants and a Food Court" (Food Court not available in the AI as above. The three restaurants are actually one self service buffet divided into three parts, serving the same food night after night, lunch after lunch), "many places to spend your evenings including the Piano Bar (not open), le cafe Arabe (not open), Khima Oriental Tent (not open - sign in car park), the shisha bar (not open), a theatre (not open and never to be according to the manager) and a lively discotheque (not open and again, no plans)". It goes on to offer " Ten outdoor swimming pools (I counted 6 at most including the water park) with a crazy river (started working on day 5, for 20 minutes, 4 times a day), 2 wave pool (where?), fully equipped gym (one machine), mini golf (nice course, only one club and one ball available to share between the whole site though), gift shop, tobacco shop (both appeared on day 3, but only if you had cash) and banking services (?)".

The hotel is clearly NOT 5 star, and I doubt ever will be.

I tried to resolve these issues initially with the hotel manager. He reassured me that most issues would be sorted "by tomorrow". I then consulted the MedHotel rep after this did not happen and further issues, who could do nothing but tell me that he was "only an employee" and would have to refer my complaint to his office. When I brought the two of them together (manager and rep) there appeared to be a heated debate as to what should be advertised on the web, however, they did not have the courtesy to speak in English so I could not follow the conversation.

The hotel experience has been completely oversold and misrepresented on many levels. The photographs that are shown on the MedHotels website, and that were used on the Broadway Travel website are NOT the Aqua Fun Club hotel. The facilities advertised at the time that I booked the holiday are NOT available. The Errata data on the MedHotels website is not complete with the list of unopened facilities. The place is a health hazard with untrained staff and terrible standards. Even the hotels own Facebook page has official photographs that are over-staged (the only time you would see tables dressed in the manner that they are portrayed is when they were reserved for higher management visiting/polo shirts are the uniform, not shirts and ties).

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
9  Thank gingawarri0r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2011

Never been so pleased to get on a plane home!!

Me and my boyfriend went for a week on 2nd July - 9th July. We went with an open mind and aren't naïve in thinking a 5* in Morroco is going to be the same as in Spain or Greece.

Transfer from the airport was good considering it took over an hour to get through passport control - they waited till everyone was through. We met our rep Badr, who took us back to the hotel. Arrived at hotel around 21:30 and after filling in some forms we were able to check in and were given our room key (4242). A very friendly porter took us and our luggage to our room. Ours was an upstairs room overlooking the pool, and we were fortunate to have air con, hot water, fridge, working safety deposit box, and no bug infestation. Many others weren't so lucky! Our water did cut out on a number of occasions, and the lights were a challenge. The bathroom light wouldn't work unless you put the main bedroom light on. If the lights were on outside our room in would shine through our air con vent making it hard to sleep.

Health and Safety inspectors would have a field day! They have no health and safety what so ever! The place is still a construction site and very dangerous in my opinion. The paths aren't lit and one of the paths leading back to our room had a huge pipe running across it with no warning sign or barriers. Took me tripping over it before I saw it! The staff are constantly cleaning the floors, chucking water down regardless if you're walking by, making it very slippy. Never did I see any wet floor signs or anything. Manhole covers weren't covered. The list is endless!

Food : says there are 3 different restaurants but they all seem to just serve the same food. There never seemed to be a great deal of choice, or it had simply ran out. Nothing is labelled so its impossible to know what's in anything, and as a vegetarian it was quite tricky. So if you've any allergies GOOD LUCK!! The staff didn't speak English so couldn't even ask them. The food isn't covered properly. Salad bar or desserts aren't refrigerated, its just on the side, including the dressings and cold meats which can't be good! The hot food wasn't kept hot and was left out for hours on end and there were loads of flys everywhere. After the second night of eating the food, both me and my boyfriend were ill and it wasn't the travellers trots! We had upset stomachs for the duration of the holiday and its still not right now. All I could stomach after the second night was a bread roll and banana every day and nothing else! At least I've lost weight though! :)

Entertainment : there is a bar with 5 pool tables which sounds great (and we played a lot with little else to do), but the tables are very wonky - some with holes in, only two of the cues had tips, and not all the tables had all their balls. They have giant chess which looks good. Crazy golf was good, but they didn't have a ball until 4 days in to our holiday. Swimming pools were lovely, although you need to get up early if you want a bed. People would leave towels on beds first thing and not use the beds till lunch time which is out of order. I say if they're not there in an hour from when you checked just move there towels. What they gonna do?! The evening entertainment was a singer who sang the same songs and kept getting the giggles half way through songs so had to stop! I'm sure all these things will improve over time.

The bars often ran out of drinks and glasses. We got a sex on the beach cocktail in the charlott bar and the barmen made it in the same cocktail shaker he had just made a pina colada in without washing it out. We didn't drink it!! Or you could be waiting at a bar to be served, there would be 5 staff standing around chatting and only one actually serving. The good thing is they never ran out off bottled water which you will need plenty of.

The hotel and facilities all look great on the outside, but up close it is very clear to see that a lot is not finished properly, looks rushed and the hotel should not be open. You cannot come here and have a relaxing holiday with the constant banging of the building machinery, which we had right outside our room. This would start very early (6.30 one morning) until very late at night. And they play very loud music all day, which I can only assume is their attempt to disguise the noise of the building works. They clearly have a problem with their sewage as well because there was an awful stench.

Our rep Badr said he would be in the hotel everyday. We saw him the first day and then never saw him again!! When you ask the staff in reception they say he will be here, but we could never find him.

I've no doubt that the hotel will be a lot better in a few months when its finished, but it should never have been opened until then. Regardless of what you've paid, you're not getting what you've been sold. We were told the hotel was finished and all facilities open, and this is not what we got.

I now need another holiday just to get over this one - but I definitely won't be going back there.

  • Stayed: July 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Beckers85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2011

just got back from here, seven of us after a week, the place is a joke, not finished, building all the time, no hot water, no mini bar, no free ice cream, no disco, no coffee bar, when do i stop,broadway travel should not of sent us here, its not finished, its dangerous, with all the building work going on, while youre trying to enjoy the aqua park, our friends room had to be rewired while they were still there, no bath, or shower working, hairdryer not working, the place is a joke and not 5 star, lucky to get a 3 if you ask me,running out of, towels, beer, spirits, ice, glasses, oh and one day had no water at all in room, and no hot water for the week, also had water leak in room for 5 days and was told they couldnt finf the problem, if you ring reception, all they say is hot water in 2 hours, or yes maintenance will be there in 15 minutes, but no one turns up, so you walk to reception and they tell you the same thing, the manager is useless, kept us waiting for hour and half on first night,because they couldnt allocate us our rooms, we have been abroad for the last 12 years, ranging from 3 star to 5, self catering to all inclusive, from spain, to the caribean, so we have an idea what to expect, and it certainly wasnt what we got, far short im affraid, broadway travel should never be sending people here, its not finished, we were sold the holiday being told it was a lovely 5 star hotel, with all building works complete, and all facilities open, WHAT A JOKE,and yes a letter is on its way to broadway and abta

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank freddyjones
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2011

it is nice hotel ,and is going be more excellent .just some rude people try tpcomlain about everything, and looking for refund. it is an old story . apart from of what they paid.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank coventry2006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2011

We booked independently to stay at the Aqua Fun for 4 nights from 1st July and left as soon as possible after 1 night.

The hotel may be newly built an indeed it still is something of a construction sit, .the fixtures and furnishings are obviously from ex sock or old hotel auctioned furnishings.

The level of furnishing and finish is really poor, the walkways, public areas and bedrooms are in many respects dangerous especially for children. For example open manhole covers, wooden bins with six inch nails protruding from them, construction of water slides in public areas, welding, use of heavy equipment all in the closest proximity to sunbathing tourists.

The food and drink lack totally in choice and quality or even quantity.

The staff attitudes are poor and unprofessional.

There had also been several power failures on the night of arrival and when a fire alarm went off there were no staff on hand ,no fire extinguisher or evacuation information and the only fire escape doors were locked, which may be because they led to unfinished work sites on the roof.

We got moved from the fist room as the shower ,toilet and bidet were dirty with standing black water. Amazingly the second "much better" room was also dirty and we had to get staff to clean this.There was no toiletries and no toilet roll provided until after 2 hours and repeated requests.

This is not in any respect a 5 star hotel nor will it ever be.

Be very careful about booking this hotel ,we also met many guests who like us moved to the Albatros Garden and hated the Aqua Fun.

The Albatros Garden in contrast is a reasonable and well located 4 star which beggars belief that is part of the same company given the lack of professionalism and atrocious standards/condition of the Aqua fun club hotel.

Colin Gracey
Leicestershire

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank coling4u
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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