After our 7th time in Turkey we have stayed at some lovely hotels we decided to choose another different hotel. Last year we stayed at Sensatori Turkey which is a also a BARUT chain hotel. Our friends mentioned the BARUT LARA as it was the same chain so we booked for end may into June 2014, but were not disappointed by any stretch!
Initially when you see the pictures (we booked online with first choice) the hotel looks small and don't really do it justice in my opinion. It is far from small and the grounds to surrounding area within it are so long and you have so many places to pitch up and chill out!
We chose a sea view and pool view room. We were in the main hotel building as the hotel has 3-4 high blocks within the grounds too which have different views over Antalya.
Having heard about the renovation, we chose the hotel initially on that basis as it would be seemingly new and it is. All new in opinion but I have not stayed previously but cannot easily spot this.
Overall the hotel is well laid out, very clean and always ship shape! our room had a very large walk in power shower (not quite wet room but as big), nice bed although not as big as some 5 star hotels and the only thing was you had 2 separate single bed covers instead of 1 large one. perhaps you can have this changed with the hotel guest relations. Air con was excellent, always cold when you needed it although I think in the middle of the night (approx 4-5 hours) they turn it to a fan and knock off the air con which can be a bit of a problem in the middle of summer I suspect! good mini bar too and well stocked every day with beer, coca cola and diet cola, sprite, Fanta, water (you need this!), fresh juice and sparkling water (although no wine)
As a comparison we went to the Titanic a few hotels down as we had head so much about it. On arrival, it was wow this is impressive i.e. in reception, main bar but going outside the pool area it looked very tired and not as clean or well laid out at the Barut Lara. we didn't stay long an quickly walked back to the Barut!
nearby there is not much to do but we like that. especially as the hotel has so much going on through the day and evening. This is a massively helped by the excellent entertainment / animation team. I don't normally get dragged up to do activities on my holiday but these guys made it so much fun and not a holiday chore of disruption. Key people were Tubu (so lovely, really wanted to talk to you and do whatever she could and had such a nice personality oh and funny laugh.. her favourite words... "Chris Don't touch me!! " note Chris was my friend on holiday not me! :-) ) other key guys were Nemo, Sait, Altan, Ezgi and Yalcin (although the latter two are not there anymore at the hotel I believe as they were heading to Canada at some point)
Bar staff very nice, pool bar was perhaps the best pool bar we have been to. great atmosphere and excellent waiter (or should I say waitress, namely Bengul she was our little Turkish Delight) service.
Tips, we tended to tip quite often for the good service and the staff really appreciated that too. on a return visit you would know the difference of appreciation although not just because you gave them a tip. they truly appreciated it.
Retaurants, well these are probably the best we have eaten in. The main restaurant (buffet self service) is good although we like to choose from a menu with service rather than the hustle and bustle. In fact we booked the a la carte throughout the majority of our stay and I must add having no issues at all booking in. The best restaurants were Asia and Turunc the latter has an excellent steak!
Drinks... wine (white was excellent) along with Rose although Red I wasn't too keen on as I normally drink red. international spirits and beers (becks/Miller) was excellent to have the variety. Although when you do get waiter service I did think I could tell that you received the local variant of spirit even if you did ask the international although I never could confirm this as I wasn't too precious about it. so if you want the specific drink go to the bar yourself to be safe. oh and the beer is EFES on tap which is very nice. we stayed previously at a hotel in turkey and it was terrible like a dark wheat beer, even I couldn't face it!
Beach, was excellent and nice and breezy (you need it in that heat!), not service on the beach but a well positioned beach bar although the beer there was a little gassy but went down well in the heat and sun! :-) they had a jetty although it was small and not many chairs but we didn't have an issue getting a sunbed.. no sunbeds.. around the pool key spots were taken quickly and very early but we could easily find one or move a bed to a secluded grass area which we liked to do. My opinion was that sunbeds were too close to one another but you could move them. Oh they also had comfortable sponge covers on too which I think is key for your back! That said there were new pool "rules" issued a few days before we left whereby if you were not sat on your sunbed within 1 hour of your towel on it then it would be removed! which is a good thing I think as some beds were left most of the day!
now a few very "minor" niggles...
lifts.. difficult to get sometimes as there were only 3 for the main hotel and so many rooms/guests. we took the stairs quite often. ok if you haven't just done 3 miles on the treadmill which we did each day.
Cocktails.. few and far between and not too good really. you can ask for your own just give them the mixture and they will try their best to do it.
Beach is a long way from the main hotel but we liked that as we like to walk around the grounds.
Towel hut.. a bit "jobsworth" and wouldn't let you change towels that often and were strict the rules! we had a couple of moments with them should we say!
Entertainment, the shows were very good although we didn't get to many as we like it around the pool bar so much and there was music every night there outside under the stars dancing like idiots with the animation team. Who always managed to get you up but in a nice way to the dance floor! :-) There we some "special shows" they did and one was an all seasons party where it was placed near the beach with a quality stage, top class professional club DJ and amazing drinks layout/service. The best bit was the four seasons dropped from the stage water, foam (snow), sun etc... amazing had so much fun!
Diving... I am a keen diver and there is a trip with the hotel but takes 1.5-2 hours to get there! so I didn't take them up on it and it was flagged as a beginners dive. That said they did do some diving at the Titanic and I am sure you can book there but from memory it is the waterfall dive (close the airport) and I did that last time I went to Turkey. The sea as usual has nothing to see in it and is invariably choppy sometimes so you cant see anything anyway.
Lovely 2 week holiday and would definitely go back again and recommend for families, friends and couples! for families it is excellent for kids, and little ones although the best ages would be 5-12. we would certainly take ours but they are all older now.
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- Also Known As:
- Barut Lara Resort Spa And Suites
- Barut Lara Hotel Antalya
- Hotel Barut Lara
- Lara Resort Spa
- Barut Lara Turkey