Location: Very picturesque and out of the way, 10 minute walk to Portinatx beaches/village.
Hotel: A bit rough and ready but perfectly acceptable as long as you don't set your expectations too high. Untidy in places and some of the tiled walkways could do with more frequent cleaning. We did see staff sweeping up every day but at no point did the walkways look like they had been properly cleaned/mopped. Pools all clean and clear, no detritus etc. Many sun loungers a bit worn out and stretched. Not too much of a problem with litter, despite the behaviour of many guests in this regard. Flies quite bad around the sun loungers - if you're planning to spend any time by the pool and get annoyed by flies then I would definitely recommend taking decent repellent otherwise you'll go mad swatting them away. (NB: I don't think the flies are a consequence of any cleanliness issues, as the pool area was very clean in general with no overflowing bins etc.)
Room: Spacious, clean, comfortable, ceiling fan very quiet, good aircon (noisy but not annoyingly so - good for drowning out any night time disturbance from other guests, although this was never a serious problem while we were there). Bathroom a bit tatty, but clean. Shower good and powerful. We had almost no pressure in the basin tap which we reported but it was not fixed during our stay. Didn't see or hear any mozzies in the room but always woke up to a couple of fresh bites.
Staff: All very friendly and helpful.
Food (the bad): We're not moaners and happily eat any old rubbish, but the breakfast "bacon" and "sausages" we wouldn't feed to a stray dog. Not a word of a lie, they were like the "meat" you get in a tinned all-day breakfast, but way less edible. One sniff gave me the dry boak. The fruit juice from the dispensers needed to be watered down about 3x to make it palatable - straight from the dispenser it was like a cup of brightly coloured, off-flavour, concentrated sugar. Couldn't believe people were letting their kids guzzle the stuff. Limited options for veggies (which we're not thankfully). Not much choice and zero variety in the salads - lettuce, cucumber, tomato, beetroot and carrot every lunch and dinner. There were prepared salads set out beside the pickles, but these were invariably just some combination of the above plus rice/potatoes/mayo. The chips were soggy more often than not. Cold meats were available only at breakfast time. Paella almost completely tasteless. Some breakfast cereals (esp. corn flakes) frequently stale. Many of the main dishes were bland, which in the context of a family resort is understandable. There were plenty seasonings/condiments/pickles (including bottles of Tabasco) provided to give a bit of flavour/kick to the food for those who wanted it.
Food (the good): Fresh bread and real butter always available (pan bread and crusty rolls at breakfast, crusty rolls only at lunch/dinner), good selection of cold meats at breakfast, the yoghurt (freshly made I think) every morning was very nice, lots of fresh fruit (watermelon at lunch always lovely), pickles and olives very nice, fairly good selection of dressings, some surprisingly tasty main meals (usually of the simple roasted meat variety), fresh fish frequently on the menu and usually good quality.
In summary with the food, unless you have unreasonably high expectations, are a picky eater or are vegetarian then you'll be okay. The main problem for us was the lack of choice/variety for what is at the end of the day a fairly large hotel. We've been to smaller all-inclusive places, even off-season, where we've had much better food. Simple things like putting the cold meats out again at lunch time would go a long way towards fixing this. Also if you're an early riser and want to get up and away for the day or just out and about for a wander before it gets too hot, the breakfast start time of 8am is a bit limiting.
Oh, and watch out for that breakfast bacon turning up in the carbonara sauce at dinner time. Personally I've no problems with uneaten food being re-served/reused in sauces etc., but that carbonara was a nasty surprise!
The two drinks/one snack policy at the pool bar was still very much in operation during our visit (June/July 2012). Some staff follow the rule more doggedly than others, but usually if you speak nicely, remember your por favors and gracias, and have a "regular" order that doesn't go too far over the limit you're generally ok. I can only assume they've had problems with guests wasting food and drink around the pool in the past, however I can't help but think the two drinks/one snack rule is possibly the least logical solution they could have come up with. All cups except the morning tea/coffee cups are of the flimsy disposable variety, yuck, but it seems to be the norm these days. Big cups were only allowed for water or beer (San Miguel). Queuing wasn't a problem; the longest we had to wait to be served was a couple of minutes and the hotel seemed fairly well booked up when we were there so it's not like we lucked out and visited during a quiet spell. I suppose if you're really impatient you might have a problem with the service.
Three stars mainly because of the food. It's a subjective thing, but it is a huge part of any all-inclusive holiday. We're not choosy in the slightest but for us they didn't get it quite right. If the food was better I'd have no problem giving it four stars overall, as everything else was very good.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Club vista Bahia is the ideal hotel to enjoy pleasant and relaxing holidays. We underline its location by the sea on the beautiful steep. This environment allows guests to enjoy the sounds of nature, impressive sunsent and pleasant walking. Located in the beach Cala Xarraca de Portinatx at 29 km from Ibiza city centre, the ideal place to enjoy the tranquility of the island. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Club Vista Bahia Hotel Portinatx
- Hotel Vista Bahia
- Vista Bahia Hotel
- Club Vista Bahia Ibiza
- Club Vista Bahia Portinatx, Ibiza