Best thing first: Outstanding location with unobstructed view at one of the nicest beaches (if not the best) in Europe. The location makes a great base to explore nearby cities and places such as Vejer, Jerez, Cadiz or Chiclana.
The Hotel however was a disapointment.
Travelling as a family with a toddler (2.5 years old), we admit that family hotels are not our favorites - too often we feel they compromise on quality. This one failed to meet our expectations completely, we found the concept not thought through, lacking attention to detail in so many parts and compromising on quality in so many areas:
- Pools not heated, freezing (!) cold, even for the brave ones. Completely empty therefore. BUT: Asking to use the heated pool i in the Spa zone, we were told it is 15 EUR per person and for children only between 1-3 p.m.
So now, this is where it starts: being a family hotel they are well aware children either sleep or eat between 1-3 p.m. This is such a non-family-friendly practice, is is unreasonalbe and not thought through.
Totally understandable if they wish to separate adults and children, but then why not think of a more reflected way of doing so? And by the way, the pool was empty every day, at all times. Good customer service would also have meant to let Junior Suite guests enter for free for one day or at a discounted rate, especially when the pool has no visitors.
- We had a Junior Suite. The Junior suite looked not like on the pictures advertised at their Iberostar Royal Andalus website - our fault, we saw later that is was a model picture, as the picture shown under "Junior Suite" has a huge balcony overlooking the dunes. Having worked in the tourism industry for over 7 years, I should have been aware - however, it is the first time I feel cheated.
Our balcony was small and had the size of the other ordinary rooms, overlooking the pool, with a side sea view. The shower cabin was smaller then the shower cabins on cruise ships. in fact, the smallest we ever had. There are only 2 electrical outlets, of which only one is in the bathroom. The bathroom itself has no storage place.
The room had only 2 mini baskets for garbage. Not enough with a toddler.
And the baby cot was completely empty - not a little gift or extra or even a pillow or anything. Just very basic, mass accomodation.
- Their understanding of customer friendliness: Welcome was rather frosty (or shall we say "crisp"?). We were told first to pay the deposit for the towels, so 30 EUR for 3 towels. Not a problem, but unusual for us (first time actually). Later I went down to reception as there was no kettle in the room - I had asked for it beforehand, they forgot to put it in the room (as there is no coffee machine in a Junior Suite...another Novum for us!); ..fine, we are handed out a kettle, and are immediately asked to pay another deposit of 10 EUR.
So we pay for a Junior Suite - let me tell you it does feel welcoming if you have to pay deposits for all sorts of small things.
The Minibar was empty - you could ask for it to be filled, but for a deposit, of course.
And the late check out was of course also at extra cost and so on...
I admit we have mostly stayed at 5 star hotels, but also had 3 star boutique hotels, B&B's and small inns, which all had a more advanced understanding of customer service. This one is 3* at best.
- The restaurant: As mentioned in many reviews it is terribly loud. The atmosphere in fact is so terrible that we decided to eat elsewhere, although we were on full board. But screaming to your partner every night is not our idea of a nice family vacation.
It is not understandable why management keeps resonding that nothing can be done against it.
Apart from the level of noise, which is already bad enough, the seating is narrow, it feels crowded, children are running around, waiters with dirty dishes move around, big groups of 20 or more people are sitting on large tables - we have never seen anything comparable, and this is certainly the biggest downside for this hotel. I would not know to whom we could possibly recommend this place, as it must be equally uncomfortable for elderly people as it is for couples or families. As a family, we did not feel comfortable in the dining room - not once.
- Evening entertainment: Listended to a band singing 5 Elvis songs in bad English and left for no return..Classy enternatinment definitely looks different.
On a good note: Most staff were friendly, room cleaning and service was efficient, food was okay for the times we ate there. So 3 stars. But we will not return to Iberostar as we did not feel as valued customers.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Relaxing days next to the sea await you at the IBEROSTAR Royal Andalus hotel. It's a hotel on the seafront with direct access to the beach at La Barrosa, Cadiz, where couples, groups of friends, sports lovers and families with children alike have all kinds of options at their disposal in an idyllic setting. At the Royal Andalus hotel, you can discover the meaning of true rest in rooms packed with details like a terrace, satellite TV, air conditioning, minibar and Wi-Fi. The hotel also offers the best of local and international cuisine at its three restaurants and three bars, including its lively Sea Soul Beach Club. Whoever wants to forget about the world can do so by just visiting the spa that features a sauna, heated pool, Turkish bath, and treatments. Meanwhile, if you're in the mood for exercise, the hotel has a fitness centre, bicycles and its famous Club de Golf Real Novo Sancti Petri, designed by Severiano Ballesteros. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Royal Andalus Hotel Chiclana De La Frontera
- Iberostar Hotel Royal Andalus
- Royal Andalus Iberostar