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“WARNING THIS HOTEL IS A FERRY RIDE AWAY FROM CADIZ!”

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Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf & Spa
Ranked #3 of 10 Hotels in Rota
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 26, 2011

Expedia listed this hotel in Cadiz, Spain not in the province of Cadiz. Imagine our surprise when we discovered that we had to take a ferry 20 minutes to Rota, that the last ferry left Cadiz in the early evening - so we couldn't return to the city until the morning, and that then we had to find a taxi for another 20 minute ride to the hotel. We felt like Expedia had organized our kidnapping.

Thus blinded by anger we saw virtually nothing of this mostly clean, but not entirely, resort hotel. Oh yeah, the food was good if you have a lot of money with which you wish to be parted and its near a beach. BUT ITS NOT NEAR CADIZ.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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5  Thank ketajeon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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84 - 90 of 1,386 reviews

Reviewed May 26, 2011

We went out of season in May, so the beautifully mainrained apartment blocks nearby were all empty. Staff excellent and a problem with the air conditioning was resolved within minutes! Food was excellent and with a good choice for saying there were only a few guests at this time of year. Sorry I can't comment on the golf as we don't play, but the course is certainly well maintained. Staff very polite and helpful. Spa looks good but we didnt get around to using it. Lovely relaxing break.

  • Stayed: May 2011
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Thank Sanbria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2011

We were pleasantly surprised wheh we arrived at the hotel. Very nice resort type hotel with the accommodation scattered around nearby blocks with very much a timeshare feel.

We booked the hotel as we were on a very attractive rate. A room for two with dinner and breakfast for two (half board terms) was only 84 euros.

A few rooms do not have a balcony and we quickly went back to reception to get our room changed when we found we had no balcony. The bathroom door does not give enough privacy and the wash hand basins are outside the bathroom. The rooms do not have a refrigerator but we obtained free ice from the bar. The views from the room are very nice as you can sit on the balcony and watch golf going on. In the distance there is the extremely beautiful Costa Ballena beach which has wonderful sand.

Our included buffet dinner had plenty of food on offer but was decidely average. The choco calamares tasted of rubber with the estafado being easily the best choice on offer. Wine prices for a four star hotel were quite reasonable with house wines at less than 10 euros a bottle and Campo Viejo Rioja at 11.5 euros a bottle. Breakfast was again pretty average but plenty of food available. Service was pretty good though and the staff worked hard at keeping tables cleared when the hotel was pretty busy.

We particularly liked the bar where a round for four expertly served provided us with three very good coffees (much better than the restaurant coffee) and a liquer for a very
reasonable 8 euros.

Parking is a rip-off at 10 euros or 15 euros if you use the garage but parking on the street outside is ample, free and looked safe enough. Internet is free and easy to acess via WIFI.

Television was disappointing - plenty of channels but none in English. Quite a few German channels and I think that the resort is popular with visitors from Germany as indeed the golf appeared to be. Resort also extremely popular with Spanish visitors.

A negative was that the outside swimming pools were not in use. A spa is available indoors at an extra charge.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Grant D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 18, 2011

Golfing was good, practice facilities exclusive. Rooms were ok but food was a disaster.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank Rasto_A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 17, 2009

My family and I checked out this hotel as a potential future stay as we were staying in the resort nearby.We regretably ate in the snack bar on a sunday afternoon.All I can say is that this is probably the worse meal I have had in my life.My wife,sister (who lives in Spain-Rota) and I ordered lasagne whilst my 14 year old son ordered spare ribs and chips and my 12 year old daughter ordered Chicken nuggets and Chips.They are usually very adventurous eaters but it was the last day of our holiday and I think they fancied some junk food.After about half an hour the nuggets arrived followed by the ribs,but it was then at least another 20-25 minutes before our lasagnes arrived, and only after questioning the waiter as to the delay.The chips with the ribs were not cooked thoroughly, and the ribs were luke warm.Presentation of the lasagne was poor, being what I can only describe as being 'plonked' in the middle of a plate with one piece of lettuce on top as garnish.The portion was small and contained a sickly concoction of what appeared to be carrots and processed chease with hardly a hint of meat.Mine was so bad that I only ate a mouthful and as a result felt physically sick afterwards.My sister who is fluent in Spanish complained to the waiter whos only response was that her comments would be passed on to the chef.We paid the bill (50 Euros) and left.I can only say that this put me off the Barcelo completely.There is no excuse for poor service and food in a hotel of this type and it spolied the last day of our holiday.Asisde from that I found the hotel and staff to be welcoming and courteous but I felt badly let down and that may influence my decision not to stay in future

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with family
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2  Thank DCC1963
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 25, 2008

This is our second visit to this hotel and we were disappointed on the first night with the selection of buffet food in the restaurant. The hotel was quiet but for a four star hotel the standard of food was poor - the hot selection was salmon or beefburgers with no vegetables. Towards the weekend the food improved dramatically both in quality and choice. The rooms are excellent, big, clean and airy with good views and lovely bathrooms. The facilities are good too with lovely swimming pools and there was entertainment on one night when we were there. The staff are friendly and efficient although again during the day you had to wait at the bar until someone came along. Would we stay there again - yes we would.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled on business
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1  Thank bernipops
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 22, 2006

We spent a weekend at this hotel & overall found it quite disappointing.
The main reason for booking was the fact that they have a spa & we fancied some pampering. We didn't use the pool facilities, so can't comment on them.
When we arrived for our treatments, we were asked to pay in advance. We did joke among ourselves that maybe they were so bad that we wouldn't want to pay afterwards! How true.
The treatment room was very cold, the lady doing my facial didn't wash her hands before hand, the treatments felt rushed & the standards were poor.
Other observations about the hotel in general:
You have to pay to park outside the hotel, although street parking is free - hence the hotel car park was virtually empty & the street was very busy!
The bar meals were less than satisfactory - one meal was cold, the other wasn't worth serving.
Our shower, although powerful, alternates between freezing, boiling & warm.
On the plus, the staff were very helpful & most spoke very good English.
The breakfast buffet was good & there was plenty of choice for everyone.
The rooms were very nice.
As the reason for our visit was to use the spa, it really let things down for us. If you're looking for a pampered break, we definitely wouldn't recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed: October 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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5  Thank MHBR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf & Spa

Address: Urb Costa Ballena - Avda Reina Sofia s/n, 11520 Rota, Spain
Phone Number:
Location: Spain > Andalucia > Province of Cadiz > Rota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Rota
#3 Luxury Hotel in Rota
#4 Family Hotel in Rota
#5 Romantic Hotel in Rota
Price Range: $65 - $199 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 228
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf & Spa**** hotel, built in typical Andalusian style architecture, is located on Costa Ballena, between Rota and Chipiona, in the province of Cadiz. It is located opposite a golf course with 27 holes and close to the white sand beaches of Costa de Cadiz, and offers a free shuttle service to the beach during the summer season. The rooms at this cosy hotel boast spaciousness and light; they are fully equipped and have lovely terraces with direct views of the swimming pool and golf course. Relaxation seekers will love the U-Spa which offers all the latest health and beauty treatments as well the super relaxing water therapy circuit. Sports enthusiasts can enjoy the privileged environment and enjoy the wonderful horse riding routes, bike rides, paddle tennis, football pitches.... During the holidays, the youngest members of the family can enjoy themselves with the fun-packed programme of water, sports and leisure activities that take place daily under the supervision of our entertainment team, both in the hotel gardens and in the miniclub. The hotel also has a buffet restaurant where you can savour the typical Andalusian cuisine and an exquisite selection of national and international dishes. Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf & Spa offers you the possibility to perfectly combine work and pleasure. The hotel offers 5 fully equipped meeting and convention rooms, the rooms also have a large outdoor area which is the ideal location for hosting cocktail receptions, sunset dinners, etc. Come and discover this paradise of beaches and dunes in Cadiz and enjoy an unforgettable holiday with your partner or family in a hotel that has recently been awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2013. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf Hotel Rota
Barcelo Costa Ballena Golf And Spa
Barcelo Costa Ballena Hotel
Barcelo Costa Ballena Spa

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