Have to say that our first experience of Spain wasn't a good one. We can only compare with our many trips to Greece, Turkey, Cyprus and Austria where we have stayed in 3 star accommodation that was better than this "4 star" hotel.
The positives were the size of the room and the cleanliness. The cleaning ladies were lovely and really friendly. We had a nice view towards a pool and tennis court to the rear of the hotel.
The pool is large and the area is clean. The lifeguard does a really good job of patrolling. The bar area and restaurant are attractive and again very clean.
We had to wait a couple of hours upon arrival as check out was 12.00 noon and our room was being prepared. We've never had this problem before as usually the previous occupants had left for the airport before we arrived. We were told by the rep to leave our luggage and go off and do something whilst the room was ready. Hardly easy when you have 2 pieces of hand luggage with you!! When we got in the room it had obviously been occupied by a smoker. A couple of days of spraying air freshener eventually freshened up the room. The room itself was tired but as I say very clean. So we could live with the rest.
The food was the worst we had ever eaten. A big selection but all cheap - chicken drumsticks, pizza, slivers of pork, burgers (not sure what they were made from!). Fruit in the morning just left in bowls rather than pre-prepared for guests to pick up. And everything was lukewarm and at times with flies around it. I know it's hard to control nature but you would expect an indoor air conditioned restaurant to have found a way to stop the flies - very off putting. There were very few English people in the hotel but of those we spoke to all were very disappointed with the hotel food. It’s the first time we've stayed half board as we usually like to eat out and sample the local fare. But friends told us that buffet style food was great and usually meat was cooked in front of you at your request. Not here, unless you call frying a pile of thin cardboard looking burgers and putting them in a warmer, show cooking. Our view was that this was more like a cafeteria rather than a restaurant.
The sun beds were dirty with stains on them and bird droppings. Unlike in other hot countries the sun beds didn't get washed down each morning to freshen them up. Nor for that matter were the sunbathing areas around the pool hosed down each day. We found the state of the sun beds very off-putting.
The hotel was very much geared up for the Spanish. We're happy to eat their food and try to speak their language, after all we’re visitors to their country, but the reception staff were very cold towards guests. We weren’t even asked if we'd had a good holiday when we took our keys back to reception.
I'm sad that our first trip to Spain has been tarnished by this experience. But Spain’s not a future destination for us.
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- Also Known As:
- Arena Hotel Roquetas De Mar
- Arena Center Hotel
- Arena Center Roquetas De Mar
- Arena Center Almeria/Roquetas De Mar, Spain