For the second year running, my family and I (2 adults in our 40’s and children aged 15 & 13) enjoyed an amazing 2 weeks at the Barut Lara, in the company of it’s fabulous staff, and pleasant guests.
The thing which sets this hotel apart from its competitors is the service from all the staff, and the focus on ensuring guests have a relaxing and fun stay. All staff we encountered from the front reception, guest relations, bar staff, waitresses, to the friendly and engaging animation team, were just brilliant. All deserve praise, but a special mention has to go out to Talip at the Turunc, Miray in the Lobby bar, trainee Sevgi, and animators Ezgi, Yalcin, Tan, Dodi, Ozzy, and of course Nuri. Thank you for making our holiday so special and we hope to see you all next year – please come back after the refurb!
Since our visit last year, it was pleasing to see an improvement with guest safety now that they have lifeguards at all the pools, however, health & safety regs are clearly still a long way behind UK standards with the beach party fire that is an accident waiting to happen with little children running around and 10 foot flames not cordoned off!
This year we again stayed in a Large Residence overlooking the ‘private’ pool, and although we have already booked and paid for the same room next year (with Tomas Cook) it is evident that the Large Residences are a victim of the refurbishment plans as on enquiring with the hotel we have been told that those rooms will no longer exist. Instead the Small Residences are being converted in to 2 bedrooms by turning the lounge area in to a second bedroom. The room we paid for is 85sqm compared to the new version which is around 60sqm and also now only has 1 bathroom. Disappointing news, but I’m sure this hotel will not let us down when we arrive next year, and will ensure our stay is not compromised by these planned changes. Only hope Thomas Cook do the decent thing and adjust the price for us…!
From a year before, there was not a lot different, although they have the right formula so I’m glad not a lot changed. We still loved our tranquil breakfasts in the Turunc – a delightful hide-away that not many people realised was an option for breakfast (and lunch!). Cooked to order omelettes to die for (and I remembered to bring my HP sauce this year!), freshly squeezed OJ, fizz, and croissants. Mmmmm! And we adored the snack area at lunchtime with its pizzas, burgers, steak sandwiches, fried chicken, gozleme, and baked potatoes. The melt in the mouth waffles were just as nice as ever too. We also discovered the beach-side restaurant did lovely mid-day meals in a pleasant setting with a sea breeze to cool you down slightly. Don’t forget the buggy ride to get you there, but watch out for the driver who thinks he’s Lewis Hamilton! We also enjoyed some great evening meals in the a-la-cartes, but especially the fajitas in the Turunc, and the BBQ on the beach.
Of course there is always room for improvement (even in the no 1 hotel on Trip Advisor!) and I know that the hotel management read these reviews and take great pride in their hotel being rated no 1, so hopefully they will take these comments on board and consider taking action on some of them.
~ as I said above, the Turunc is a lovely venue for breakfast and lunch, but the canopy does not provide adequate shade from the scorching sun
~ the pier area is looking very tired and could do with an overhaul as part of the refurb
~ same for the slides, they should be upgraded, perhaps at the expense of some of the grounds on the side of the hotel. But please ensure the Jasmine bar stays!
~ the main bedrooms have comfortable king size beds, yet are provided with 2 x single duvets – why???
~ the wi-fi was very hit and miss – great around the pool, but we only just got a signal on our balcony and nothing at all in our room. This really needs to be sorted out as whether we like it or not, gadgets are now a part of everyday life and essential for keeping in touch with the outside world
~ the mixers, whilst all branded names served straight from the bottle, were always flat? This often impaired the quality of the drink
~ too many wasps around the pool bar as attracted to the sweet drinks – perhaps invest in some of those devices that attract and drown(?) them. Also I noticed a huge wasps nest in the wall adjacent to the path leading down towards the cat house. This should have been treated to help reduce numbers.
~ one particular nationality of guest (I’ll let you work out which one!) were so arrogant and believed rules did not apply to them. I can forgive the constant rudeness to staff and fellow guests, but when they blatantly take glasses to the poolside rather than plastic cups, it really made me mad given the repercussions for all guests if one was to smash in or beside the pool. Unfortunately, hotel staff did nothing to curb this behaviour. Grrr!
~ the gala night was excellent, especially the Mongolian acrobats, however, even though we were 3 tables from the front we could hardly see anything as it was a floor-show. Those 20 tables back would not have seen a thing! Surely a temporary stage can be erected?
~ and finally, the evening entertainment around the pool bar was dire!!! The same bands bashing out the same old songs night after night. It did not appeal to the majority of guests there at peak season, although it did force us to have an early night most nights! Please get something more modern for next year, and a bit more variety.
Overall, these are not problems – just opportunities to make what is a superb hotel even better, and cement that coveted no 1 spot!
Can’t wait for Aug 2014 – 291 days to go…
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- Also Known As:
- Barut Lara Hotel Antalya
- Barut Lara Resort Spa And Suites
- Hotel Barut Lara
- Lara Resort Spa
- Barut Lara Turkey