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“Be realistic and you will not be disappointed”
Review of Yaramar Hotel

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Yaramar Hotel
Ranked #3 of 37 Hotels in Fuengirola
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed November 24, 2010

My wife and I have just spent 2 weeks (9-23 November) at the Yaramar. It is, of course, a Thomson Gold hotel. Because of this, and the time of the year we stayed there, it was occupied almost exclusively by British pensioners. You should also note that some of the things reported here might not apply during the Summer season (May to October).

I must say that we were a little disappointed when we first arrived. On reflection, I think this was because our expectations had been raised too high by the hotel’s 4 star rating, the Thomson Gold branding and the ‘rave’ reviews and ranking (2nd of 34 hotels in Fuengirola) on Trip Advisor. But the hotel grew on us. Our view now is that the hotel has far more positives than negatives and we have no hesitation recommending it.

Location - 8 out of 10. The hotel is not in the centre of Fuengirola. It is in Los Boliches - one of the town’s better ‘suburbs’. So if you want to be in the centre of things then the hotel may not be for you. Having said that, it is on the seafront, it is a flat walk to the town centre (1500m), to a bus stop (200m), to the little red train stop (200m) and to a real train station (400m) where you can get trains to the town centre and to Torremolinos, Benalmadena and Malaga. There are two large supermarkets (Mercadona and El Corte Ingles) about 400m away and a range of smaller shops, restaurants and cafes in between. If you like walking you can walk for miles on the wide flat promenade in front of the hotel, but mind the dog’s mess which seems very prevalent in Fuengirola.

Reception - 9 out of 10. We found the reception staff to be helpful and efficient. We particularly liked being able to get into our room on arrival around Noon. In some hotels they make you wait until (say) 2pm even though they obviously have rooms available earlier. Similarly, when we reported a problem with a bedside light it was sorted out within half an hour. Reception also seemed to be pretty receptive to room requests made before arrival (e.g. by email). As a starter for 10 the following may be helpful. If you don’t mind heights (the hotel has 15 floors) the higher the room the better the views and the less noise you will get from the road, the pool and the evening entertainment that takes place in the atrium. If you have a room on the front of the hotel (rooms ending in even numbers 20-36) you will get the best views (sea front) and early morning sun, but the sun will be gone by noon and you will get most road noise. If you have a room on the side overlooking the pool (rooms ending in even numbers 02-20) you will get poorer views (sea/town) and some noise from the road and pool area but sun from late morning to sunset. Whatever floor you are on, if you have a room by the lifts (rooms ending in even numbers 06-14) you will get noise from people chattering as they wait for and leave the lifts and from the ‘ping pong’ sound as lifts arrive. One minor gripe. The Yaramar charges one euro to weigh a suitcase. I know lots of hotels charge but it’s petty. What’s happened to good old fashioned service!

Room 6 out of 10. We had room 608 (i.e. on the 6th floor overlooking the pool - see pictures). It was a standard room - there were some superior rooms on the front corner (rooms ending in number 20) which were larger. The room, bathroom and balcony were reasonably spacious and kept superficially clean by the housemaids. Sound insulation between rooms was reasonable – you could hear people above and in adjacent rooms but it was not too bad. There was decent storage for clothes and plenty of surfaces to put things on. Parts of the room were a bit knocked about and most of the door hinges could do with some oil. The beds were hard and creaked and groaned when you moved. They provided two large pool towels. The safe was free but small, and some of its push buttons were worn limiting the range of codes you could use. There was a small fridge (basically an empty minibar) but they charged for use of this (2.5 euros a day, 16 euros a week and 30 euros for 2 weeks). There was a small old fashioned CRT type TV on which you could get the main UK channels but reception was not always good. The room had tea and coffee making facilities. The plumbing was good. In the bathroom there was a hair dryer, a shaver point and they provided a good range of toiletries, but some of the towels we were given had seen better days. They did not provide a clothes dryer for the balcony, and discouraged you from hanging wet clothes from the balcony rail, but there was a pullout line in the bathroom. There were no spare electrical sockets in the room. If you wanted to plug something in you would have to pull the kettle plug out. Basically, we think it’s about time this 4 star hotel upgraded its rooms a little as they are beginning to look and feel a bit tired.

Restaurant and food 7 out of 10. The hotel has one restaurant. Breakfast is available there from 7.30 to 10.30am and dinner from 5.30 to 9.30pm. They have a gala dinner every Wednesday (candles on tables and a lady playing music but no discernible difference in the food) and a theme dinner (e.g. Chinese) once a week but, again, you would struggle to notice much difference in the food if they had not told you what the theme was. Overall, the food was pretty good, but mass catering buffet style does get a bit ‘sameish’ after a while even though they changed the dinner menu daily. Incidentally, the ‘a la carte’ option mentioned by a few reviewers is not available in the Winter. Our main gripe is about the queueing. Both at breakfast and dinner you often had to queue to get a table. It may be they did not have enough staff to turn tables round quickly. But they also obviously made a decision not to use certain tables at all after a certain time. At breakfast one section of the restaurant was fenced off after about 9.30am. At dinner they started laying tables for breakfast from about 8.30pm. You could be eating while staff set up breakfast tables around you. We also noticed that if you went early you got a better choice of food as things were not always replaced when they had run out. One evening they started removing the hot food at 8.30pm. Maybe they knew everyone had been to dinner. We also found the temperature of the food to be variable. So depending on what ‘hot’ food you chose, you could have food on your plate that ranged from piping hot to lukewarm. The stealing of food from the restaurant at breakfast time was rife. Although they asked you not to do it, it was so obvious that they appear to choose to ignore it.

Bars 9 out of 10. There were loads of bars – in the basement (evenings only), on the ground floor, on the mezzanine floor, by the pool on the 1st floor and over the road on the beach. Drinks were 2 for 1 at the beach bar from 11am to 1pm and between 8 and 10pm in the two main bars. You could also get 2 for 1 cold drinks between 3 and 4pm in the hotel’s ice cream and coffee shop. The bar staff seemed a bit bemused during happy ‘hour’ if you chose to buy drinks at half price rather than drink twice as much for the same price!

Entertainment 8 out of 10. There was a programme of typical Thomson Gold daytime entertainment (bean bag throwing, beach boules, a quiz etc etc) and evening entertainment provided by a resident duo (the guitarist was really good) and a 4 person entertainment team. I don’t know whether Thomson have changed their policy, but when we stayed at a Thomson Gold hotel in Lanzarote 21 months ago we got professional headline acts for 11 of the 14 nights. This time we got professional entertainment for only 3 of the 14 nights. The entertainment team worked really hard, and some of the shows they put on were great, but we could not help feeling a bit short changed. It was also clear, from the attendances, that the guests preferred the professional shows.

Lounge areas 10 out of 10. These were plentiful and really comfortable.

We have not commented on the pool, spa, gymnasium, Jacuzzi, games room or beauty parlour as we did not use them but, from observation, the reservation of sunbeds around the pool is alive and well (even with no Germans present) at the Yaramar!

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank hallyboy1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 21, 2010

just returned from spain staying at the Yaramar ,really nice friendly hotel,more suited to elder clients,we had a superior room overlooking the beach,location was excellent very central,the restaurant was buffet style which caters for all types,staff very friendly and we had a very pleasant stay,this hotel boasts lots of returning guests which i can understand,all in all well worth a visit ,one final thing as it is a thomson Gold hotel no children are allowed.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank davemufc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2010

Visited first time early November. Weather was lovely as the hotel. Food excellent. Varied and really nice salad selection. Room cleaned daily.. Thomson reps on hand at all times if needed. All in all we enjoyed our stay., but if you want it to be perfect.....take your own pillows!!!!

On a downside, and no fault of the hotel. There were 2 incidents that I heard of where pickpockets were active and successful. It did cause havoc to those who were the victims. So beware regarding this problem.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank redlandrover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 12, 2010

Just had 2 weeks at this hotel, and from minute we checked in at reception (Alicia) to ther rooms /food (Paco does a great job) all the staffin restaurant and bars are most attentive & helpful and we are looking forward to our next visit
Bette & Peter Cheltenham

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Elizabeth1928
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2010

We stayed at the Yaramar for one week, the hotel location is perfect, and we had a nice 14th floor ocean front room. The hotel crowd was mainly GB folks, 75 y/o +

The good:
Location
Clean room
Breakfast ok

Not so good:
Front desk staff, efficient, but not friendly

The bad:
Quirky elevators
Low pressure shower

At the beach:

Nice but smelly, there is constant sour smell.
Sea water temperature was freezing (Sept 24 to Oct 4).
At the beach restaurant the food is very bad.
Lots of small annoying flies.
5 Euros for 2 chairs and one umbrella

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank AMLAP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 29, 2010

Have just returned from a great stay at this hotel. The service was excellent and just what you'd expect from a 4-star hotel, nothing was ever too big an ask for the staff.
All of the rooms have a sea view, and were very clean and also quite spacious.
The food at the hotel was very good, lots of choice and lovely presentation.
There was entertainment on in the evening in the patio bar, which was quite relaxed, and in the downstairs bar the Thomson Gold reps put on a different show every night, which we enjoyed.
The hotel is right on the sea-front, and the surrounding area has lots of bars and restaurants to choose from, and is only a few minutes away from the train station if you want to explore further afield.
Overall, enjoyed our stay very much and can't wait to go back!

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
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Thank 123cdon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 9, 2010

The Yaramar is situated in a great location. Directly across the road from the beach. Next to loads of cafe's and bars and restaurants. 5 min walk to the train station which easily gives you access to benelmadena, fuengirola, malaga, the airport and various other places of interest.
The hotel itself is very nice. well maintained and very clean. Rooms streach over 15 floors with 4 glass elavators. We were on floor 12 which gave us a great view of the beach and the sea.
The restaurant operates on a first come first served basis and is open from 5.30 until 9 for dinner. Dinner is buffet style and you would have to be really really fussy not to find something to eat. Plenty of fruit and vegetables various meats such as chicken, beef, pork and lamb. Various desserts and different soups each evening. Breakfast was also pretty amazing and you can choose from the usual fry up items as well as fruit, yogurts, cerial, breads and pastrys.
The hotel has a main bar which normally has a singer at night and in the downstairs bar there is a free show every night hosted by the thomson holidays team. these shows normally last from 8pm until midnight and range from comedy to musicals and are all very professional. its worth noting that happy hour lasts from 8pm - 10pm a beer was approx 1 euro 60. Which is by far the cheepest in resort. pretty impressive from a 4 star hotel!
The bedrooms are nice. Basic but nice. You have tea and coffee facilities and a free mini safe as well as free english tv which as various channels including BBC1, ITV, ITV2 AND SKY News. The only disappointing thing was that you had to hire the mini fridge if you wanted to use it. Maid service was daily and complementary items include beach towels, toothbrushes and paste, soap and shampoo etc.
Theres a sauna and gym available to use free of charge although gym equitment was dated and basic.
The hotel has its on terrace pool which is on floor 1. its a nice pool area with a rather nice snack bar/restaurant. the coffee is to dye for and there were plenty of sun loungers the only negative is the pool is not heated and is freezing cold even at 5pm when the sun has been beating all day long.
The reps in the hotel were fantastic and really couldn't do enough for you. infact in some of the converstaions i over heard them having with other guests i really did feel that they went over and above the call of duty.
The only negative i had was with one of the reception staff who weas dismissive and at times rude. If you require any assistance at all I 'd advise against speaking with the female on the desk as she was rude and unhelpful. I wont embarass her by naming her.
At night you can walk from the hotel to neighbouring resorts. the promenade is very flat and its a safe and enjoyable walk. I'd also recommend booking the trip to Gibralter with the rep at the hotel. There are 2 trips. one is a basic shopping trip while the more expensive one includes a mini bus tour of the rock and also a tour of the caves. we did this and thought it was amazing. you even get to see the gibralter apes up close and personal! This tour is roughly 55 euros per person, but like i said, well worth it.
If you are booking you own flights and accommodation like i did then it worth knowing that you can get the train from airport to hotel for 2euros 25 per person one way. this compares to 40 euros each way for a taxi. So if you are able bodied and dont mind a 5 min walk from the station to the hotel then this is best option. the train takes 25 mins and is direct. Hope this review helps.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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6  Thank Cosmiclad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Yaramar Hotel

Address: Paseo Maritimo Rey de Espana 64 | Los Boliches, 29640 Fuengirola, Spain
Phone Number:
Location: Spain > Andalucia > Province of Malaga > Costa del Sol > Fuengirola
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Fuengirola
#3 Luxury Hotel in Fuengirola
#3 Green Hotel in Fuengirola
Price Range: $89 - $142 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Yaramar Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 243
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Also Known As:
Hotel Yaramar
Yaramar Hotel Fuengirola, Costa Del Sol, Spain

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