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“food to enjoy”

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Occidental Isla Cristina
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Isla Cristina
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed 2 July 2012

Stopped here for 2 nights in june, its a perfectly acceptable 4 star hotel.
Exclusively spanish family guests, almost no english spoke or visible.
That said we managed and enjoyed our attempts at ordering drinks etc.
What I must commend this hotel for is its food.
In my many years of holidaying I can not remember food of this high quality in europe.
So if you like your omlettes cooked to order and steak prepared at the buffet station while you watch you will be in food heaven.
We ate like kings and queens, on the lovely terrace outside by the pool.
I can not over hype the meals they were super.
It is close to the beach but you will have a reasonable walk through the dunes to get to the sea which I will mark as a slight negative.
The resort is manufactured, so I found no centro storico, or splendid architecture.
I guess that was balanced by consistently low prices for any of my shopping.

Room Tip: Sea view advisable
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank 999guy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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56 - 62 of 2,036 reviews

Reviewed 25 June 2012

Fantastic place to spend time with the family. I allways felt confortable and welcome. Children played a lot, made some friends and were always busy. We just loved the food. The front beach is not very good, but we did some walks to the the main beach, near the sail school and there it was fine. I'll be back, no doubt!

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank Isabel M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 May 2012

Had a great time staying here last weekend! The rooms and hotel is very clean, staff was very helpful and friendly. Will recommend it to anyone :)

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank Lmi8510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 September 2011

We booked a special weekend break 3 days B/ B & E M for 300 euros in July seemed OK not knowing what to expect It says on the beach well the beach / sand hills are across the road what they do not say is the SEA is at least a good 20 minutes walk on a pathway of railway type sleepers through hilly dunes & once you get to the sea , no sunbeds ,umbrellas ,toilets etc Not a normal tourist type beach.
In regards to the hotel very big with all usual facilities ,we booked a superior room with a seperate lounge /kitchette /balcony clean well appointed OK limited TV channels but you are on holiday who needs to reminded of news back home?
Buffet breakfast & evening meal ,good standard ,well organised ,plenty of room to move around & the food was constantly replished
Large pool plenty of sun beds (even in July ) although shade was at premium
When we stopped the Hotel was virtually full & we did meet or hear any other voices but Spanish It is situated in a poor dirty .well built up area not a lot within walking distance ie shops or clean bars We enjoyed the rest for 3 days it was enough as we travelling through ,Its around one hour from faro airport & allow two hours to Seville (Parking is a difficult)
Overall not bad for what we paid . Ideal as base if you are that area

Room Tip: Superior / De-luxe definitely worth the extra for the space . Forget extra for a sea view not worth...
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank atw1946
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2011

Chain hotels are not our usual choice but we'd driven from Portugal, it was evening, we didn't know where to stay and the off-season rate was good so we went for it. Excellent choice! Good, helpful staff, clean rooms, decent and varied buffet meals but best of all, just 400m through the dunes to one of Spain's best beaches.
The fishing port of Isla Cristina, near the Portuguese border, is not that well known outside Spain (not the easiest of towns to get to for international air travellers), but what a delightful place. Not only was the town clean, colourful and full of fishy places to eat, but the long sandy beach and clean waters were a dream.
The Barcelò was the nearest big hotel to this beach and while families with kids tended to keep to the hotel's pool area, we walked to the beach daily and stayed till sunset or later.
The drawbacks of this hotel are the number of families with kids (noisy!), the few elevators for its 300-odd rooms (though we discovered the stairs), and a lack of parking in the vicinity. Oh, and no English language TV - if that is considered a drawback. Given the choice, I would go out of season. It is probably even more busy in August.
On the plus side, the staff were charming, the rooms were fine though not flashy (we liked the choice of a fan and/or AirCon), the pool area was beautifully cared for and the buffet breakfasts, wonderful.
Isla Cristina is a great little town and a good choice for a beach holiday for people who want the simple life the Spanish themselves look for in a holiday destination: sun, sea, sand, tapas, vino and, in this fishing port, local sardines!

Room Tip: Pool side noisy, but with sea views. Road side much quieter but less pretty. Go for a room on the up...
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Fiona N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 September 2011

We booked isla cristina via hotels4u.com to stay there in August 2011 on FB basis.

We looked for a nice, peaceful and relaxing hotel without English tourists ( I am sorry if it is offending). As a childless young couple, we generally dont mind children running around but what we were faced with was like a scene from a horror movie!!!

Imagine thousands and thousands children btw ages of 2mnths - 4 years x 500 rooms as it is a big hotel and I am pretty sure you ve got a clear picture. Also as you are probably aware young parents tend to lose the sense of what is appropriate in terms of nappy changing singing songs etc whilst next to the pool, so you can imagine enjoying a book by the pool when the sudden smell of poo hits you because parents change their childrens'nappies literally 25cm away from you because it is convenient . if you dont mind that - you ll be fine.

To comment on the overall standard of the hotel-well.... 4 star it is not!!! In fact we later found out that it is 4 suns (Ratings for resorts) rather than 4 stars lol !! The room was alright - no balcony though, no english channels available. We asked for english channels which were apparently available. After 4 phone calls to reception, eventually sb brought a new tv with BBC and Eurosport available.

I can complement cleaning services, as the ladies were very discrete and rooms well cleaned and toileteriess restocked on daily basis. In terms of food - well it was not too bad- though very repetitive! Staff well!! Most of them were very obnoxious and didnt even care for 1 smile! That might have had something to do with the fact that the staff hotel spoke very little english but still a smile wouldnt kill considering that we always orderd in spanish and tried to speak in spanish as much as possible.

Reception staff Dorota has misinformed us about red bracelets which we were offered to buy for 6euro per day a head in order to match all inclusive option. It turned out that we could only have water, beer and wine with dinner and lunch- no water available by the pool and I was even refused sangria during the dinner when neighbouring table had 4 glasses. I was told that they were on all inclusive option.

The gym was old, tiny and closed daily btw 1pm - 4pm, also closed on sundays as though hotel staff was on holiday themselves!!!

The public beach was a 15 minute walk, unfortunately quite dirty with shells poking your feet :) and definitely not cleaned in ages. Isla cristina itself is not worth the effoert- there is absolutely nothing to see or to do.

If you are a couple with children you may appreciate the evening entertainment for children only but then again when I get my own bunch - I will not go

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank kedzierskaster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2011

Hotel was very good and staff very efficient. Stayed on the half board option, it seemed like most people stayed on all inclusive which includes some drinks but not all. Food was excellent at breakfast and dinner, with a huge amount of choice and good quality and something different every day. The rooms were also great, cleaned every day and despite it being busy in the hotel it was very quiet in the rooms.

Entertainment in the hotel was orientated towards children and finished early (around 11pm each night). There were also activities in the pool every day but a few hours each day at lunchtime when the pool was empty. It did at times get very busy round the pool in the late afternoon but there were some gardens at the edge with sun loungers where it was a lot quieter. People are also stopped from reserving loungers which was followed quite strictly and a great idea.

Having arrived at Seville airport and travelled back from Faro I would recommend car hire if you are flying there and want to get around. It is a train and bus journey/40 minute taxi ride from Huelva and around 70euros in a taxi (45 mins) to Faro which we didn't expect.

The local town is only 10 mins walk away. It is a very small town but there are quite a few bars and great seafood restaurants. Don't expect any big shops/ department stores but there are little supermarkets and it was not full of tourists which was a nice change. The beaches are fantastic and mostly sandy. There is one around 10 mins walk from the hotel over a wooden walkway and through a small nature reserve which goes on for miles east along the coast. The beaches further along the coast are accessible by car and bus.

All in all it was an excellent, albeit different holiday which put a different perspective on the southern Spain break.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank holidaylovinghan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Occidental Isla Cristina

Address: C/ Doctor Delgado Carrasco s/n, 21410 Isla Cristina, Spain (Formerly Barcelo Isla Cristina)
Phone Number:
Region: Spain > Andalucia > Costa de la Luz > Isla Cristina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Isla Cristina
Price Range: £41 - £237 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Occidental Isla Cristina 4*
Number of rooms: 343
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Occidental Isla Cristina**** hotel (belonging to the Barcelo Hotel Group and formerly the Barcelo Isla Cristina) is located on the seafront at the wonderful Isla Cristina beach in the province of Huelva, which is surrounded by a protected natural area. Its proximity to the airports of Faro (Portugal) and Seville, and the most interesting places in the area, make this holiday hotel a perfect spot. The 233 rooms and 110 apartments boast spaciousness and quality features, and include all the facilities and services you could need for a pleasant stay and an unforgettable holiday. The Occidental Isla Cristina has a buffet restaurant and bars with the All Inclusive option, some of which feature poolside terraces. The facilities include a massage room, fitness studio, sauna and meeting room, as well as golf clubs and paddle tennis courts in the vicinity, hiking, cycle track and a long list of other activities to make sure you won't get bored this holiday. A professional entertainment team provides guests with a complete range of sports and leisure activities for all ages. Youngsters will experience a real adventure in the Barcy camp, sleeping in a large tent in the hotel gardens, as well as enjoying numerous fun activities especially thought out for children of all ages. The Occidental Isla Cristina is a fantastic hotel for a dream family holiday on the Costa de la Luz. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Isla Cristina Hotel Isla Cristina
Isla Cristina Barcelo
Occidental Isla Cristina Costa De La Luz

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