First thing to say is......... it amazes me the number of people who complain about hotels when they state they have read reviews before they travelled. Really??
The Royal Costa hotel has all the potential to suit most people - if you accept that the official rating is 3 star in Spain and will be happy with that, then you'll have a good stay (this is not the same as 3 star in the UK - it's probably about a 2/2.5 star in the UK). It is not UK 3, 4 or 5 star by any means - and doesn't claim to be.
Having said all that, it is a good Spanish 3 star. If, like us, what you are looking for is a base in a quiet residential area for a break or short holiday it is ideal. The hotel is close to a few local bars, brilliant for the cheap, clean, punctual and air conditioned local train service (access to anywhere from Malaga Centro Alameda to Fuengirola with regular stops in between, including the airport), 15 minutes stroll to the beach (access to several chiringuitos along the beach and the bus service along the paseo/promenade towards Torremolinos).
We took the all inclusive option (it was only £30 per person per night) and dipped in and out for meals and drinks when we felt like it, although a lot of our time was spent out/away from the hotel.
I can hear the ''why pay for everything and then not use it'' comments already!
To answer: because we've paid more at home and abroad for B & B or room only so we didn't feel we'd be losing out if we didn't have every single meal, snack and drink that we'd ''paid for''!! It suited us to do that and it's what we wanted to do. We looked on this as a wee bargain break - no more.
It would suit those on a tight budget as it does offer all inclusive. However, it's on the outskirts of Torremolinos near the airport - there is no nightlife so you will need to be happy to travel by train, bus or taxi to find it if that is what you are looking for.
The food is as per every other ''holiday hotel'' buffet style all inclusive in Europe. There is a lot of chicken, pork, fish and rice - it's local, available and what the Spanish eat........ soups, stews, grills. There is a selection at every meal with loads of fresh salad and bread (again very Spanish). There is something for everyone - the food at this hotel is not a negative.
Where these hotels let themselves down is in trying to cater to the ''Brit Pack'' and try to do and provide food for the ''egg and chips brigade'' and the ''I want my full cooked breakfast like I have back home'' mob. They don't do that well mostly. If that is the kind of food you prefer on holiday then go to Blackpool and book half board in a nice B & B. Similarly with the themed nights - the hotel should stick to the traditional Spanish dishes and don't try Asian, Italian etc - it just doesn't work when it's not authentic. We thought the food provided was fine.
Personally, I applaud the hotels like this one who do cater more to their Spanish guests - I love to try different things, that's the beauty of buffet. It is Spain after all and why should the Brits expect to be treated differently from the Nationals? We visit Spain to sample Spanish life, culture, language, way of life and get a bit of sun, don't we??
Cannot fault the hotel re cleanliness. Rooms though small are cleaned daily and linen changed as needed. One thing....... take your own pool towel the hotel does not supply them. There were people using the room towels by the pool - I wouldn't fancy trying to use those after a nice refreshing shower when the towel is all sun cream.
The balconies are small and not great for spending time on. Most have pool/partial sea views though.
Staff were great, really friendly, pleasant and keen to help. Some punters were just pure rude though in the manner in which they would ask for drinks at the bar. There's no need for that.
The beer is probably the best option for drinks or the ''sangria'' isn't bad. I really didn't enjoy the wines (personal taste only - others did), and the spirits were ok (just ok).
There were children at the hotel and there is a small kids pool for toddlers. Other than that and the mini disco for half an hour at night I wouldn't say there's much to do for kids.....
The 'entertainment/animation' is not our scene ever (not just here - never has been), but what we saw of it she did pretty fantastic to speak in Spanish, French and English all the time so give her a break. There is only entertainment 5 days out of 7. That means that she gets her two days off on a Monday and Tuesday as she needs to cover the weekend. In other words there will be two days of your stay/holiday when there won't be entertainment (certainly this did apply in June - maybe different in July/August?).
The pool, like the hotel, is kept clean. A lifeguard is there from late morning to early evening too. The sunbeds however are not the comfiest......... although there seemed to be plenty as we never were stuck when we visited the pool. There are toilets outside by the pool with changing facilities.
The only absolute negative for us was the comfort of the beds - the mattress in our room just didn't suit us at all so we slept quite fitfully/poorly. We didn't let this spoil our enjoyment of the stay though - we managed for the 4 nights we were there.
If you have an evening flight it's worth asking for late checkout. The hotel are more than happy to help if they have the availability. The make a very reasonable small charge of 30 euros which for us worked out at 5 euros per extra hour after checkout time - well worth it to have the comfort and convenience of using your own room to shower and change after a last day down the beach/ in the sun.
In summary. we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the hotel. We had a lovely break. The hotel, staff and food were good, suited our needs perfectly (as a base to go out and about from) and for us the location was ideal (we enjoy using local public transport). Batteries totally recharged.
Roll on next time........ thank you Royal Costa........ hasta luego.
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Royal Costa
- Royal Costa Hotel Torremolinos, Costa Del Sol, Spain