This beautiful hotel has a bar mural and garden designed by the Island's famous artis Manrique. As a result the public spaces are extraordinarily pleasing to the eye - with little details like pictures of the plans in the central atrium decorating the walls of the walkways.
The hotel promotes itself as a five star and it may be that the service beyond the locked doors that lead to the bungalows is five star, but for mere mortals in the main hotel it is not.
The front of house staff are very good, but as soon as you get into the bar of the buffet restaurant things are different.
The bar staff do not all speak english, not even well enough to specify a brand of whisky or brandy and we were surprised, given the steep prices and the 'five star' rating to be given cold five star cognac (no warmed glass) and ice dumped into an expensive single malt whiskey without anyone asking if it was wanted Both are a first for five stars.
We are not yet used to the idea of a five star having a buffet dinner - though this is our second experience of a five star offering this. Whilst the dining area is pretty, the whole thing doesn't really work. The food on the hot plates is left all evening and no-one checks the temperature, the areas where you can have your food cooked provide good quality fresh fish, some reasonably quality meats to grill but they are quickly overwhelmed if more than three people turn up at once - in a restaurant that can seat serious numbers in high season. The pasta bar was a great find, but this too couldnt handle a queue of more than three people and I am glad we were there when the hotel was really quiet.
The 'flow' of people round the islands to collect your own food was very disjointed. To get toast you had to go to one side (put the toast through 3 times or more) then walk right round to get butter and jam. It never occured to anyone to put any near the toaster! This created long walks, cold toast and people drifting about. Similarly if you wanted yoghurt on your fresh fruit you had to walk from one end of the room to the other since fresh fruit was only displayed with the strange spray on cream that passes for cream in Lanzarote.
The evening restaurant service was patchy. Again ordering in spanish was a help (one of us speaks spanish or we would have had trouble). No refills of wine most nights. Some days we had piles of dirty plates on our table as we went through three courses without anyone clearing for us. Not quite what even a buffet style four star might offer! Never mind this.
The outside pool area is lovely but you should avoid this hotel at all costs if you are allergic to cats. They sit on the sun loungers at night, use the gravel in the gardens as a latrine, and one night we sat near the glass wall in the restaurant and dined to the dinstinct scent of tom cat urine. The cats wander into the central garden atrium at night and have free range of the hotel. They are not ragged, but they are not spayed - kittens abound - so anyone with asthma problems should consider a hotel less cat friendly! My partner has asthma, but fortunately it is not triggered by cats or our holiday would have been dangerous.
Despite the morning sun we never managed to breakfast outside since the outside eating areas are for the smokers - there is no non smoking outside eating place! Fine if you can handle the smoke but a shame if you can't.
The room (basic executive not a suite) was pleasant but again not really five star. Not enough clothes storeage space for two of us for a week - three thin drawers, one double wardrobe into which our suitcase had to fit as well.
Anyone over a UK size 12 or more than 5ft 5 would have serious difficulty fittiing into our bath. The lack of anywhere to hang bathrobes or towells in our bathroom was a problem (two weird hooks over the toilet were not adequate for two peoples robes and towels). There was no storeage space in the bathroom which meant everything had to be left out, and the replenishment of hotel stuff was random - we got a shower cap on the third day for the first time!. The shower itself had no thermostat, which meant the temperature fluctuated as other guests turned on and off their water. Its a long time since I checked into a hotel with bathroom fixtures to this standard - obviously state of the art in the 1970s but we were there last week.
The bar area was almost completely empty most nights and after a night or two we worked out why. The entertainment was pedestrian, not good enough to keep anyone in drinking very expensively in the bar, when next door was a little trio of bars and restaurants serving drinks at London prices (cheap after the hotel bar believe me) and some local entertainers - saxophonists, drag artists and more. Obviously they figured out the way to get the guests out of the hotel and it worked. The hotel had no real strategy to keep anyone in. One night a reasonably good magician played and the bar staff talked so loudly in spanish through parts of his act that it was hard to follow it! A responsive DJ made an attempt to get people dancing, but the fact the entertainers left their stuff on the small (and only) dance floor made it hard to get on the floor before 10pm by which time the hotel bar was dead anyway - everyone having gone to bed.
The hotel is in a good location since you can walk out to the bars in the bay and yet enjoy the quiet of the grounds and pool area.
The free wifi in reception and not in rooms is probably a sign of the age of the building or the fact they cant organise a techie who understands how to get a router to repeat the signal!!
I am glad we went, had a quiet week, almost convalescent, but have stayed in five stars that would put this one to shame.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This adults-recommended hotel (min. 16 years) is surrounded by 2 white sandy beaches. Dive into the lagoon swimming pools or enjoy the lush gardens. Dine inside or out at your choice of 4 on-site restaurants. There is an evening bar and lounge, a pool bar and a beach bar. Other hotel facilities include a professional water sports centre, 3 floodlit tennis courts, beauty centre, and a wellness area with sauna and whirlpool.The hotel offers direct access to the beach. The property also offers The Level services in some rooms, including access to the exclusive The Level Pool, a private check-in area, rooms with Nespresso machine, pillow menu, and personalised concierge services. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gran Melia Salinas Hotel Costa Teguise
- Gran Melia Costa Teguise
- Gran Melia Hotel Salinas
- Melia Salinas - Adults Recommended Costa Teguise, Lanzarote