After reading some of the reviews after we booked it at the start of the year, we were actually beginning to wonder whether we had done the right thing. As a result we were very nervous about our 1st holiday abroad with our very young family right up until we got off the coach at the hotel - especially with a young child and infant.
Accomodation - in the annex facing the pool. Air conditioned. 2 double beds and a cot for the littleun. We all just ended up sleeping in the beds together. Not as comfy as our own beds obviously but we never had an uncomfortable night's sleep. Television was a little bit temperamental (wouldn't always accept our euros for the pay channels - 1euro for an hours worth of SKY news, ITV channles and CBeebies - there are some channels for each country that are free e.g. BBC news worldwide, CNN) but we didn't spend much time in the room anyway. Bathroom was clean and powershower was lovely. Safety deposit was 35 euros with 20 euros back at the end.
Pool area - Pool areas are very well maintained. My little uns are now much more confident in water as the pools were designed for all ages. I expected the loungers to be hard to come by but I had never experienced situations like this - people start putting chairs and towels out under the shelters at 7am in the morning which are all taken by about 7:30am. Come 9am when the chains are released on the loungers, it's like a feeding frenzy for lions feasting on an antelope. No queues for the loungers, just a case of whoever is the biggest and has the most presence gets what they want first (all gone within 20 seconds of being released). We didn't bother going through this process. For a hotel this size, they need more loungers (when we went four our after breakfast walk along the promenade to the shops, the other hotels seemed to have many loungers that hadn't been occupied yet and so it seems like a charcteristic of Puente Real).
Breakfast - A good range from fruit to cereals to cooked breakfast.
Evening - I enjoyed my evening meal every night with a good range each night. Some nights the hot foods were a bit cold but my experience wasn't spoiled. Some nights are country specific for the hot meals e.g. the 'Inglesa' night was a choice sunday roast foods.
We were told by our holiday rep that it was a mostly European hotel i.e. mostly central europeans and Spanish with a few brits and irish. This probably explains the differences in how some of the foods are prepared/cooked to cater for the more dominant Europeans.
The staff in the dining areas are very friendly and helpful. The dining area does get pretty full half an hour after the doors open but I never once saw anybody struggling to find a table or queuing.
Evening entertainment - can't really comment on this as after long days on trips and shopping, we wanted to get the kids to bed earlyish but we weren't disturbed by any noises from the entertainment from Puente Real or Beach Club Torremelinos which was very close to our room.
Staff - most spoke good english but at times you got the feeling that reception staff and the pool side bar staff just wanted to serve you then move you along. They did a lot of frowning if they didn't understand you.
Location - it is virtually the last hotel along from Torremelinos and so isn't that close to the shops. However, if you want to walk to Torremelinos - it would take you about 30-35 minutes if you didn't visit the shops on the way (the walk is very pleasant too - our 4 year old didn't really have a problem with the distance as she enjoyed popping into the jewellery and souvenir shops with mummy on the way) but don't walk it mid afternoon as the temperatures (35 to 40 degress) make it unbareable. There is a bus stop at the end of the drive with buses running every 40 minutes to Torremolinos. You can also ask the reception staff to book you a taxi - we did this 4 times and the taxi never took more than 5 minutes to arrive at the hotel steps.
Beach - there are many cafes with loungers and shelters along the beach front. The beach is literally across the road from the hotel. Very clean. The kids loved it.
Excursions and tickets for parks - we went to Fuengirola Zoo, Selwo Marina (Dolphins) and went on a trip to Gibraltar. The park tickets and trip to Gibraltar were all booked through the Holiday reps. All 3 were great for our family.
We don't regret staying at Puente Real one bit as it gave us everything we wanted for our holiday.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Puente Real 4 **** is ideally located on the beach front in Torremolinos and is awarded with the Q for Quality Tourism. It offers you the posibility to take a rest and enjoy the fabulous climate of the "sunny coast" as well as the Andalousian customs. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Puente Real Hotel Torremolinos
- Puente Real Torremolinos
- Hotel Puente Real Torremolinos, Costa Del Sol, Spain