I decided to book a last minute holiday in Club Med Agadir (Morocco) for my 15 year old son and I for £2,900 (including Easyjet flights). When I booked, I told the Club Med agent on the phone that we wanted tennis and my son needs to study in the room (he has GCSEs). We were told there were 2 hours of tennis clinics in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon. Perfect.
After a terrible greeting in the airport, shoddy transfer, half hearted greeting at the club (more on this later) we discovered that the Tennis wasn’t even on site. It was a 15 minute bus ride away. On a horse farm. I am violently allergic to horses (if someone I’m with goes near a horse, I break out in hives and my eyes itch). I was also told that there was only 45 minutes of tennis in the morning (instead of 2 hours) So far, so bad.
After waiting 15 minutes for them to photocopy a ‘welcome pack’ (there wasn’t one in my envelope) and being led to our room (by a GO who didn’t speak a word of English and was quite rude even when I spoke French to her), we arrived a spot that I can only describe as a ‘pit’. We walked down 8 stairs below ground into a smelly, mouldy, dingy, dark, tiny, unventilated room. The beds weren’t even full singles. The ceilings were low. There was mould in the toilet. The pillows were lumpy and damp. The TV had a loop of the activities for the week. Only it was for the previous week. And the only welcome was a single piece of paper with huge lettering on it ordering us not to reserve Pool Chairs and TOWELS WILL BE REMOVED. And then I started sneezing. I can only assume a horse rider stayed in our room. There was no way my son could spend hours every day in this dark pit of a room studying.
I went to the desk to speak to a manager. I waited half an hour and no one came. I was told to go back to my room and the manager would call. We waited, but no call. I called Club Med in London and they said the only thing to do was to talk to the front desk. If I wanted to check out I could get a declaration from the front desk. Still the manager hadn’t bothered to call or talk to me. At this point, I realized nothing is going to happen. The only wifi was in the ‘lounge’ which again, was another dark room where smokers hung out on the other side of the campus (which was big). I tried to find another hotel in the area as clearly Club Med didn’t care. My son was hungry, so we went to the dining area for lunch. The food was mediocre (I’m being generous here).
I went back to the room and still no call from the manager. So I went back to the dark lounge (and these distances weren’t close), found another hotel down the road and booked it. I then went to the front desk and told them I was leaving. Only then did someone slightly more senior come and speak to me. They said they could show me another room, but it was further away and I wouldn’t like it. I told them I was leaving regardless. I couldn’t stay in a room where I sneezed, that was a pit and uninhabitable and also I wasn’t going to be able to play tennis.
I must admit, the Dutch woman at the desk at this point was pleasant. There was still no manager around, so I filled out a declaration and left it there. I would have to pick it up from their gate house later in the week so I could get my refund.
I checked in down the road (to Sofitel –which was fab – and cheaper – and had tennis on site) and picked up my voucher later in the week. Just to be clear: My son and I had a buffet lunch, but I did not use the facilities or unpack. We did not even use the toilets.
When I returned to London, I called the office at 9am on Monday (April 14th 2014) morning to send my declaration in and get my refund. They said I had to email it to a customer complaints. I did so and didn’t hear anything back. Not even confirmation that they received my email. I emailed again. Nothing. And again. I called customer reservations. They said they had a month to respond. At this point, I just wanted to make sure they received my complaint, as I had no way of knowing. I called customer reservations again, kindly asking them to ask customer complaints just to please confirm they had received my complaint (there is no phone number for customer complaints obviously). By Thursday, I received an email saying, yes, they received my complaint and they had a month (by May 12th) to look into it and I would have an answer.
I emailed on Monday May 12th asking for my refund and I received a long email telling me I’m not to get anything. I hadn’t informed them of my allergies on the health form (WRONG: I never filled out a form because I booked last minute), that they showed me another room and I refused (WRONG: I was never shown another room), despite being that they were at 99% capacity (which is difficult to believe). As a gesture of goodwill, they offered me a £625 credit against a future Club Med holiday. I think it’s clear from this email that I will never step foot in another Club Med for the rest of my life (I’d been on 2 Club Med holidays before – one in Antigua and one in Mexico years ago) (both were fine).
So to sum up: in addition to my allergies which made it impossible for me to play tennis and stay in the room, all I can say is that this hotel was the grottiest one I’ve ever been to (and that’s saying something given I travelled around Europe on $30 a day for months!) I did not stay in their hotel. I did not use their facilities and they are keeping £2000 of my money (our flights were max £300 each, plus the transfer plus the lunch – I’m generously saying £900 for all that). I only received this news yesterday so am calling the credit card company, a lawyer and the travel ombudsman today, and of course, going on every consumer advisory site I can get my hands on to stop people from making the same mistake we did.
Other littler problems:
- When we arrived, the transfer person was chatting with his mates, and barely acknowledged us. He pointed at a driver, who led us outside without a word, put our suitcases in the van and locked the van and walked away. Didn’t say: wait here, or we’ll just be a minute. My son and I sat on a kerb for 25 minutes wondering what the heck was going on (just for the record, I speak French, so the language barrier wasn’t an issue)
- Our transfer was only about 25 minutes, so they could have easily dropped us at the hotel.
- I understand the hotel was built in the 60s. It obviously hasn’t been touched since
- The beds were disgusting. The rooms were pathetic. The whole place felt a little sad. That’s the only way to describe it.
- Some of the staff were rude. Not all, but enough to be notable.
If anyone has any suggestions on how to deal with this better or more effectively, I’d really appreciate it! I’m pulling my hair out here.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In the heart of Agadir, shielded from the noise of the town, another world thrives, quickened by the rhythm of the day's sports, lulled by the "art de vivre" of Morocco. A world that's brightened by oleanders and scented by eucalyptus, where parents and children meet around the infinity pool to share the day's adventures, their exploits on the tennis courts, the golf course, or just a ride along the beach. The Village's medina-style lead you down to Club Med Spa* for an invigorating treatment. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Club Med Agadir Hotel Agadir
- Agadir Club Med