my review......

Accommodation & Restaurant info for the Arenal d'en Castell, Na Macaret, Coves Noves and Port Addaya resort area.
debg
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my review......

Post by debg » August 13th, 2009, 9:22 pm

Apartment good, the pool at its fullest for about 30 mins with 13 people in it, so it was more like our private pool!!! Pool bar expensive, and not used much by anybody, good job the man serving had a good book or 2!!!!

Beach was strange, I have never in 10 years seen waves as often as we did this year. Usually its as flat as a pancake except for the odd day.

Could get a table in any restaurant even at 9pm!!! Good bridge was always busy, but sa gavina strangely quiet, but thier menu was nothing special, great to see fernando and kate though. Pirates in coves noves was busy ish, Alcadia looked busy most nights. Smithys, the tables outside were always full, and we can recommend the roast pork on sundays. The only edible chinese at coves noves has closed.

Very very hot weather, a couple of days the sun didnt come out till lunch time so we were able to have a slow start!!!

Kanes has closed, such a shame as it would be a very good business for somebody.

The resort is changing still, not so many families with young children, more teens and upwards. Even our 14 year old 5'8 was struggling to amuse himself!!!! But he did get a few msn/facebook details from some young girls, so that cheered him up!!!!

I honestly think we have now outgrown Arenal :sad: :sad: :sad: It has taken 10 years tho to come to this decision, and we will always look back at some fantastic times here.

scottyboy
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Re: my review......

Post by scottyboy » August 13th, 2009, 11:04 pm

I have holidayed in arenal since i was 6 , i lived in arenal for 5 years.Met my wife there and married her there 9 years later and i still have alot of friends there also ,but i sadly am beggining to feel the same way.Don't get me wrong , i would move back tomorrow if my wife agreed but through the years it has lost its way.The prices for both holiday and when you are there have gotten high compared to the rest of spain.The downturn in tourism has effected the resort greatly.
I used to help with resort maintenance in the winter , fixing the pavements , painting the walls etc , everything had to be right but the standard now seems to have slipped slightly.My first couple of years working there were incredibly busy in regards to the volume of people visiting but this is now dwindling year by year.I will always visit menorca for what it means to me personally infact i am going to a wedding there next may , but i feel the resort is a shadow of its former self

jthkgwood
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Re: my review......

Post by jthkgwood » August 14th, 2009, 9:15 am

We returned from Arenal on Tuesday. We have travelled to Menorca every year since 2002 for our family holiday and every year, bar one, we have visited Arenal. We love the place and having seen our children grow up there into older children/young adults means that it will always be special to us. We like the fact that it is safe which means that the kids have enjoyed more independence than perhaps other places would warramt. We love the beach also and the overall journey to the resort via B'ham Airport means that it is all very convenient. We also have great friends who go there and to not share time with them there would be hard to imagine.

We also had holidays in Cala Blanes and Cala n'Bosc and combined with day trips elsewhere we think that we have a good appreciation of Menorca overall.

However, in the last 7 years it has become noticeably more expensive which may be true of other places I guess.

Arenal itself has also changed. It is hard to say how but compared to our previous visits, the resort has seemed less busy. There are good things that come from this eg not queing so much. However, one or two places felt deserted this year. The lack of choices for eating out compared to other Menorcan resorts has always been a concern for us. Also the lack of entertainment shows is something that has changed for the worse.

Half finished buildings and closed restaurants like Kanes don't help the look of the resort and probably represent a sign of the times.

Therefore where we go next year is subject to consideration I think. As one of our kids mentioned this year, we have only ever been abroad with our family to Menorca. Maybe we need to broaden their horizons.

Regardless Arenal will always be close to our hearts and I am sure some or all of us will return one day although that may not be next year.

debg
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Re: my review......

Post by debg » August 14th, 2009, 9:27 am

I think of it as a cheap holiday, when in fact it isnt. The whole 2 weeks has easily cost 5k!!! :shock: :shock:

Towards the end I could not face another chip or potatoe and had rice!!!

The up keep round and about has also slipped, broken paving, over grown gardens etc.

It is easily the best resort on the island, but does need a kick up the butt to restore itself to what it was.

I feel safe and very at home, and would not hesitate going on my own, but after this year, the costs would put me off. Since coming back I have looked at all inclusive for next year with an extra teenager and have found lovely places for 5 of us at the same price we have paid this year.

It is a special place and we will always thing of it fondly, and recommend it highly to others, but we need a break, perhaps we have become too used to it????

jthkgwood
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Re: my review......

Post by jthkgwood » August 14th, 2009, 9:39 am

Hi Deb, I share your views.

Coincidentally I was talking to a friend yesterday who has just returned from an all inclusive holiday to a top resort in the Dominican Republic. It cost £1000 per person. We also spent a similar figure eg 4K on this holiday. I think Arenal does need to get itself sorted generally and maybe we need some variety.

regards

Jeff

Jesse
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Re: my review......

Post by Jesse » August 14th, 2009, 10:25 am

Came back end of July from Arenal. Have been there every year since 2006 so not as long as some of you. However, we go to the Aguamarina and that time of the year just as busy as the years before. The hotel was full when we left. They say it was very quiet earlier in the season though.

We go half board and we spent maybe £320 on top of the hotel and flights so say £3000 for five of us for two weeks which I don't think is bad. We still love it there. Spain has been badly hit by the economic downturn and to judge any tourist resort after this year is probably a bit unfair. I have heard that some of the main land resorts have been even worse off.
It is never too late to give up.

debg
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Re: my review......

Post by debg » August 14th, 2009, 11:36 am

We spent our first 3 years at the aguamarina, each year the food went steadily downhill, ie cold brussel sprouts for breakfast, and battling for a table at meal times.

We always had the best rooms in the red block and a walled off terrace. The staff were great and even remember us now, due to the fact that my hubby had a serious accident in another resort and spent time in hospital then coming out with his arm in plaster, they always ribbed him about this.

Yes there is a bad recession in spain, but there were still loads of spanish people in our apartments.

The sa mirada this year apparently has only opened in July due to the lack of bookings.

Even smithy came back to the uk for 4 months in the winter due to the financial climate.

Fernando at sa gavina, has 3 jobs!!!

jthkgwood
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Re: my review......

Post by jthkgwood » August 14th, 2009, 11:36 am

Jesse,

the Agua did indeed seem to be as busy as ever, although at our end of the beach, things seemed much quieter than I remember before.

I appreciate that the recession has bitten Spain although that will not stop the millions of Brits that travel between our countries. In doing so, and bearing in mind that we won't have more than one family holiday (and yes we appreciate that others don't have that even that one opportunity), it is reasonable to seek best value for money. That along with natural curioisity to try other places, may lead us elsewhere next year,

regards

Jeff

Jesse
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Re: my review......

Post by Jesse » August 14th, 2009, 1:15 pm

debg wrote:That along with natural curioisity to try other places, may lead us elsewhere next year,

Yes, I fully understand that. We traveled a lot all over the world before having children and I love it. Now when they still are fairly small we prefer to stay put :grin: . It makes life easier. However at some point I am sure we will start all over again if we can afford it. Tried Gran Canaria and Fuerteventura with children but we all prefer Menorca.
It is never too late to give up.

HilarE
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Re: my review......

Post by HilarE » August 19th, 2009, 10:09 am

We bought our villa in Dec 1983 so have watched Arenal grow and change. In 1984, our first season, there was only the Japi, Escorpion and S'Arenal Bars in the resort but there were also 4 beach bars which were fantastic and we had some fantastic nights down on the beach at Octaviano and Manolo's Bar[s]. Eventually the powers that be decided these bars were unsuitable and two new bars were built, Bar Copas and La Paella, with toilet and shower facilities and a Red Cross centre. Octi and Manolo took over the Red Bar [Bar Copas] and they now have both. This year though, the La Paella kitchen is closed and the Red Bar kitchen is servicing both restaurants. Manolo has the sunbed franchise in several resorts, so they ae all doing what they can to survive the recession. We've watched all the new buildings going up, but like everyone else we now feel the resort is looking scruffy, the bin areas have been improved this year but the area near us is not swept daily as it used to be. We used to watch Marcelino sweep the road and pavements so thoroughly, but when he was propmoted his replacements have been virtually invisible and I pick up litter from the street on my way to the bins. They also stink to high heaven [the bins that is!!]and I often wonder if people contract upset tummies from disposing of their rubbish on their way out for a meal rather than something they have eaten in a restaurant. I am hopig Arenal will have a facelift similar to Fornells, it deserves it, it is looking neglected and if the island is going to continue losing it's tourists as has been happeing over the past years, the whole economy will continue to decline. Having said all that we have spent 26 glorious summers here and will continue to do so till we drop!! Our son is 36 yrs old and is here with us at the moment with his family. He has been coming out since he was 11 and has made so many friends over the years and they try and holiday the same time each year so they can all be here together. They have all been to other places but they and we all agee Arenal is something special.

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