As always, I'm basing my review on the price we paid. This isn't a five-star resort - nor does it pretend to be. And given how cheap it is, there are bound to be niggles and imperfections. However, I think it was a bargain - the negative points were unimportant, and outweighed by the positives. Firstly, the location is pretty good. Albir is just 5-10 minutes' drive from Benidorm - close enough if you want some action but far enough away if you'd like something more peaceful. There is a bus stop just outside the hotel, although we had a hire car so didn't use it. There is a decent-sized supermarket just opposite, and lots of shops, bars and restaurants in the area. It's about a fifteen minute walk down to the beach at Albir - shingle and far smaller than Benidorm, but very pleasant. The reception staff were extremely friendly and helpful. We found most of the bar and restaurant staff the same - a smile and 'gracias' goes a long way! When the light in our bedroom wasn't working, we reported it to reception and someone was along to fix it within an hour - similarly with a problem with one of the pool tables. The room itself was basic but fine, the apartments are laid out in three-storey blocks of (I think) 9 apartments altogether. The layout is such that we didn't have any neighbours, which was brilliant - on the downside, you could hear everything from the stairwell, which was a problem halfway through the holiday, when some very inconsiderate and noisy people moved into the block. We had a one-bedroom apartment, which meant we could put the kids to bed and still have somewhere to sit ourselves - I think we drew the short straw though, as the sofa bed was not particularly comfy. The maids came and cleaned every day, and we had plenty of linen and towels (although they were rather small and rough). We initially had 2 blankets in the wardrobe but when they saw we were using them, more appeared in case the children needed them too (although they had bedspreads already). It was a bit lacking on space for clothes - the wardrobe was big enough, but there was a serious lack of drawers! There were cupboards in the lounge and the kitchen though, as well as a shelf, a dining table (4 chairs) and a coffee table, so there was ample opportunity for storage in general. There was a wide-screen TV but it didn't have any English channels - you could buy a TV card from reception (not sure how much) but we didn't bother. The kitchen was small, with 2 hobs, a microwave and a fridge. Not sure what there was in the way of equipment, as we were all-inclusive, but the fridge came in handy! The balcony was a reasonable size with a table and four chairs. No washing line but plenty of rail space. No cover though, which meant it wasn't sheltered from wind or rain. The bathroom was basic but adequate - no bath, but a big shower. A very small sink with hardly any space to put your bits and pieces, but it served our needs. The food was fine - the usual buffet affair really. We have eaten better food in all-inclusives, but we've also eaten far worse! There was a good choice, and I could always find something I liked - there's always chips and pasta for the fussier eaters! We stayed for eight days, and the food on the 8th day was the same as our first, so it looks like everything is repeated after a week - would get rather samey if you were there for a fortnight. They have Italian and Mexican evenings once a week, and we particularly enjoyed the Mexican food. The restaurant experience is a little chaotic - you have to find your own table and get your own drinks from the bar or the juice dispensers. You usually had to get your own cutlery too! The daytime entertainment had pretty much stopped, as we were out of season, but there was always something on in the evening. A team of one lady and two men seemed to run all the entertainment - they did a mini-disco and games for the children after dinner, which my children loved, and which catered for all nationalities. We did not stay for the entertainment after that, so can't really comment, but it seemed to be the same people in various guises - one of them men as an Elvis tribute, for example. The one time we stayed for an hour, we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of their singing. The pool was nice with no problem getting a sunbed in October (although they weren't adjustable!). There was a good children's playground next to what I assume is the kids club in season. There is also an indoor pool, although we didn't use this - partly because it was warm enough to swim outside, and partly because swimming caps are compulsory! The only real problem we encountered was with other guests. When we first arrived, they had around ten national Tai Kwando teams staying there - while they were not at all disruptive, it meant that the restaurant was extremely crowded for the first couple of days, and we ended up eating in a gazebo area for the first night. They regularly have sports teams staying there - once the Tai Kwando teams had left, there were football and gymnastics teams. None of them caused any problems other than overcrowding! For our last weekend, it was a Spanish bank holiday, and there was a sudden huge influx of Spanish families. The hotel coped with this by implementing a timing restriction for the restaurant - it didn't affect us much other than to ensure the restaurant was quiet and calm, while the new Spanish families always ate afterwards. However, we found a lot of them to be very noisy and disrespectful, shouting up the stairs to their apartments at 12am, and leaving the area outside the bar in a filthy state. We also had a lot of problems with various nationalities pushing in the queues at dinner, with one lady being very rude to me. It did put a bit of a damper on things, but was hardly the hotel's fault. Overall, we were very happy with our stay here - it was not luxury, but we didn't pay for it. I'm more worried about our room being clean that a damp patch in the bathroom. I'm more worried about the food being good than having my drink brought to me. I'm more worried about the staff being friendly than well-known entertainers. If they could just changed some of their clientele, it would be brilliant!
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- Also Known As:
- Albir Garden Apartments Hotel l`Alfas Del Pi
- Albir Garden Resort Spain/Province Of Alicante - Costa Blanca