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“Worst service lets down good location”

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Hotel Fuerte Marbella
Ranked #6 of 70 Hotels in Marbella
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 21 July 2012

Firstly, I rarely complain. I work in the travel accommodation sector and I know some people have unreasonably high expectations etc. This is not the case with my review. This is a pleasant, 4 star hotel in a wonderful location. What let's it down is something which costs nothing to correct... Appalling service; even from management
We booked a family suite and two additional twin rooms. Our confirmation stated check in was from 2pm. We set off from home at 4am with two young children. When we arrived in Spain we had lunch before arriving at the hotel at 4pm. We were then told ( with no apology) our rooms wouldn't be ready for 45 minutes. This is ridiculous that it is nearly 3 hours after the original time. They gave us a ticket to have a free drink, but our children were desperate to get in the pool. So we waited and waited and waited in Reception.... We told the General Manager who was enjoying a coffee. He gave us another ticket and we waited and waited and waited, sitting on the entrance steps so they wouldn't forget us. Eventually my husband asked again and then they gave us the key cards to the family suite. Then, we had to ask if anyone could help with a trolley for our bags as we had a lot of luggage & 2 children. Why no offer of help in a 4 star hotel??? 10 minutes later our luggage arrived and we could get changed & go to the pool. It was about 5.30pm now. Every sun lounged had old towels on them and there was no way of knowing which was free or not. Someone should be clearing the pool area of old towels and used drinks cups etc but they don't.
So, we enjoyed a swim & some sun anyway. That evening we decided to book a Balinese bed by the pool so we could guarantee a place and the kids could sleep if necessary. The general manager at reception said booking.for the 20 euro beds were from 7.30 am.. First come first served. Personally, given our arrival problems I would have given us one free & reserved it for us then as a gesture of apology but they didn't... So, my husband set the alarm for 7 am to make sure he was down at reception following morning first to book a bed. Next morning he gets there 7.30 am on the dot to be told.. Bookings for the beds are from 8.30! Very irritating again. What adds to it is that the staff seem blasé about guests.. As if we're cattle and there are no smiles, no care, just we're all one & the same... Just irritants to their day. I know it's a hard job running a hotel, it's hard to please everyone etc and guests can be difficult...but this is absolutely no excuse for poor service.
The family suite was fine for a 4 star. A bit small and two glass top coffee tables probably not the best choice for childrens rooms but it was clean and adequate. There was no information book in the room telling us about breakfast times etc etc.
It's a shame because we are regular visitors to Marbella as we have family here but we will definitely not be coming back to this hotel because of the service. It could be amazing because it enjoys a great location & is a classic, attractive building. Treat your guests as guests! Look after them. Show kindness after their journey. Have their room ready.. Not more than 3 hours after they've paid for. Smile. Keep the pool area clean.. It's the most important area in the summer. Give correct information at reception. All easy to do and would have meant a 5 star review.

  • Stayed: July 2012
    • Value
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4  Thank Michelle D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FMARBELLA, Manager at Hotel Fuerte Marbella, responded to this reviewResponded 31 July 2012

Thank you very much for choosing Fuerte Marbella. I am really sorry about the hassle. We know in the high season it can take some time until the rooms are ready as the date of departure a number of guests wish to stay for longer, and although check-out time is 12.00, we often have to look for guests who are by the pool or on the beach while they should have vacated their rooms. That is why in such cases we invite to a drink. One good thing we have learnt from your comment is to take the guest mobile number and call them when their room are ready. We have also learnt from you comment about the Balinese beds, so thank for that too: new systems to book them and have no hassle.

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822 - 826 of 1,603 reviews

Reviewed 19 July 2012

We have just returned from our fourth visit to this hotel in the last five years. This is definately a lovely hotel but since our last visit in 2011 standards have slipped. It is just simple things but these are the things that used to set this hotel above the standard of others we have stayed in. We had dinner in the hotel one evening and there was no one to meet us we arrived, the dress code is not being upheld and there was a girl roller blading around the dining room without being asked to stop, the service at the chefs grill was slow and we had to queue around 10 minutes to get served, whereas previously there were two chefs, there is now only one. Do not look for many toiletries in the room, these have been drastically cut back. The areas around the pools are not being power washed daily and in fact the steps from the garden down to the tunnel to the beach had a dirty tissue sitting on it for 4 days. The waiters at the garden terrace seem to be low in numbers and there were always dirty dishes sitting on the tables and they no longer provide a waiter service around the pool. Don't get me wriong this hotel is still lovely and we will be going back but If they do not watch and standards slip further this may become a lovely 3 star hotel.

Room Tip: If you wish a sea view ask for a higher level floor as the lower level rooms have large trees in fro...
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Lynne S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2012

If location is important, this is the place to stay. Only a few steps away from the beach, the old city with its numerous shopping opportunities and restaurants, and a kiosk with international newspapers just outside the hotel gate. If you bring a car, you make one turn of the wheel, and you are on the Marbella downtown thoroughfare leading to A7.

Personel is courteous and helpful, and the breakfast is only second to none. A large airconditioned foyer is there for a relaxation indoors, while the outside pool area offers a great view over the Mediterranean and even the Atlas mountains in Morocco when the skies are clear.

On the negative side is that you have to pay 12 euros per day to park on the hotel premises, and you have to pay 7 euros to use the sunbeds on the beach (not in the pool area). For the price the hotel charges for the rooms, one would expect these items would be free of charge for customers.

Also, double check the bill when you pay - we were charged 330 Euros for services we had not used.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with friends
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3  Thank LeGu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2012

Booked a twin room with side sea view a month or so in advance via Expedia. Very warm welcome on arrival, providing helpful advice on the local area and the workings of the hotel. Very impressed with the room, very clean and comfortable. Breakfast was excellent, plenty of choice and all very nice. Good service from the waiters and all very hospitable. Two swimming pools, one with lanes set up and the other not. Neither are massive but if you want space the sea is 2mins away! Sunbeds are a bit of a struggle to get but that is the same in any hotel where there is sun. Hotel grounds are really nice. Easy access down to the beach. For some reason sunbeds near hotel are couple Euros more expensive than other a few yards away.
Hotel is located near some great restaurants and bars, a hotel receptionist recommened some great local restaurants off the tourist road which were excellent.
All in all very accomdating staff, great breakfast, clean and comfortable room. Would definately recommend this hotel for people looking for a week in the sun with in a good 4* hotel.

Room Tip: Room with a sea view was good, full sea view maybe slightly better but a lot more money and when spe...
  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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3  Thank David W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2012

Position of this hotel is it's greatest asset, but the service let it down. Some reception staff seemed poorly trained and unhelpful. Bar staff were appalling, the worst we have ever experienced. There did not appear to be a hands on manager to oversee the smooth running of the hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank michael m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Fuerte Marbella

Address: Calle El Fuerte s/n, 29602, Marbella, Spain
Phone Number:
Region: Spain > Andalucia > Province of Malaga > Costa del Sol > Marbella
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Marbella
#3 Luxury Hotel in Marbella
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Marbella
#9 Family Hotel in Marbella
#11 Romantic Hotel in Marbella
Price Range: ₹ 7,405 - ₹ 24,596 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Fuerte Marbella 4*
Number of rooms: 263
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Fuerte Marbella, the most emblematic hotel in the centre of Marbella, combines tradition and innovation. On the beach front and surrounded by 4000 sq. Meters of garden, Fuerte Marbella Hotel is an oasis walking distance to the Marbella old town, with restaurant and shops. Most of the rooms have magnificent views of the Mediterranean sea. A 7 km long beach promenade allows gentle walking to the famous Puerto Banus, with international shopping and restaurants. Fuerte Marbella offers a complete sports centre with covered heated pool (winter only) and a beach restaurant with sun beds (extra charge, summer only). Easy access from Malaga International airport (60 km) by rental car, shuttle bus or private transfer (book through the hotel). Public direct bus to Marbella bus station is also available. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Fuerte Resort
El Fuerte Marbella
El Fuerte Hotel Marbella

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