We stayed here 28th May 2012 all inclusive. The weather was lovely and sunny every day. The hotel is just a 2 min walk to the beach (unfortunately the beach is shingle so tough on the feet and not good for sandcastles). There are plenty of shops, bars, restaurants surrounding and the railway station is a 10 min stroll away. Callela pavements tend to be full of dog mess and my husband stood in it a few times so be careful were you walk! The actual hotel is lovely. The staff are extremely friendly and helpful and are happy to give out maps and point out directions. We requested a low floor, 2 adjoining rooms, pool views with balconies. We got 2 adjoining 1st floor rooms with pool views and large balconies. The balconies were that big there was a table and chairs and 2 sun loungers on them with plenty of space left - great if you want to sunbathe in peace. The pool was a bit on the small side and there is a kiddies pool separate. The 'shallow' end of the main pool is 6ft deep and the deep end was 10ft. Worryingly there are no depth markers on the pool so people got in the 'shallow' end only to find they couldnt stand up. There is NO LIFEGUARD at the pools. There is a guy who comes out and strolls round the pool once in a while. There are signs near the pool stating 'no inflatables, no jumping or diving in, no goggles and, strangely, no swimming with your head below water! There were plently of clean sun loungers around the pool. The rooms were small, there were 6 of us so each room had 3 single beds in. They are not finished to a high standard but are cleaned daily with fresh towels put in. The beds are rock hard and creak loudly. There is only one electric socket in the room. There are 2 lifts for those with walking difficulties and heavy suitcases. The restaurant is big and has a buffet style facility with a wide selection of options. The waiters are very keen and will whip your knife and fork away the minute you put them down! This resulted in us constantly having to get fresh cutlery and drinks. I got a meal and cup of coffee but couldn't carry both so went and put the coffee on the table and went back to collect my plate only to get back to the table less than minute later to find the waiter had took the coffee! The chefs cook some of the food at the servery which is nice. The poolside snack bar has a wide selection of drinks, both alcoholic and juices but the snacks are limited to a cheeseburger, hotdog, chip barm or ham toastie. The unlimited ice cream is in small yoghurt type pots. My 4 children are really good swimmers but I did cringe when younger ones got in the shallow end not knowing it was actually quite deep. We went on the train to Barcelona (30 min journey). The trains are lovely and clean and could teach our rail network a thing or two. They are on time, no graffiti or rubbish and each carriage has an electronic map with a flashing dot showing your location at all times. On the way back from Barcelona there was standing room only for the first few stops. The spanish are a very arrogant lot and even though I was standing with a child in my arms, when a seat became available 2 young spanish guys pushed me out of the way and literally fought eachother for the seat! Whilst standing on the train back I caught a woman trying to get the zip on my handbag open. She received a shock when I realised what she was doing and discreetly slipped my hand in next to hers in the side pocket (which incidentally was empty) and dug my sharp nails right into the back of her hand - a loud yelp followed by her scuttling away down the train sorted that one out. She had a cardigan over her arm to disguise what she was doing so beware when in crowds. The checkout on the last day wasn't until 12 noon and there is a basement (accessed by pressing -1 in the lift using the key from reception) and suitcases can be stored down there. Next to the luggage store are male and female changing rooms with showers, toilets etc. which was very helpful as our pick up for the airport wasn't until 5.15pm and the children could play in the pool and get showered and changed in the afternoon. The lady on reception cut off our all inclusive wristbands at 12 noon but there were plenty of people around the pool who offered to get drinks and snacks for us all until we were picked up. I went to Salou last year and must admit I did prefer it there but this wasn't a bad holiday all round - the actual hotel was great (apart from the potential dangers of the pool) - take away all the dog mess, arrogant locals and novice pickpockets and it would be a definite contender for a return holiday.
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- Also Known As:
- Santa Monica Hotel
- Santa Monica Calella