What to ask for from a beach hotel?

What can we or should we demand from a beach hotel?

Although for many the answer is obvious (or maybe the actual question seems to be), to know what to insist upon in a hotel for sun and beach holidays, is not so simple because the boundaries between the minimum required are, at times, diffuse.

The hotel industry in Spain has large hotels and apartment complexes in coastal areas such as Mallorca, Benidorm or Fuerteventura, to name a few destinations traditionally involved with sun and beach tourism in our country, but this is only the tip of the iceberg. At the base exists a network of hotels, hostels and other accommodations of questionable standards which undermine the efforts of the others when presenting a beach hotel in good condition at truly competitive prices.

Flintstones Hotels

Flintstones Hotels

To avoid choosing one of these places which could spoil your holiday, the best thing is to be demanding, not just with the price but with the services offered.

For example, that a hotel in this day and age, only offers rooms with Pay TV, this will give you a good idea of the standard of rest of the establishment.  You need to be careful with those that appear to offer a very low price because it could be that they charge for services which other more expensive hotels offer included in the final price.  Another example are the sun loungers and umbrellas by the swimming pool, contrary to what you may think, there are hotels which demand payment of a supplement to use them.

This is the old story of you get what you pay for.  Above all, especially in this day and age, in a very competitive market place, where the difference in price between an acceptable and unacceptable beach hotel, is much more reduced than years ago.

What are the basics that my beach hotel should have?

   *  Swimming pool with sun loungers and umbrellas.

*  Snack bar, for when you feel hungry while sunbathing.

*  Bedrooms with climate control, TV, and private bathroom.

*  24 hour Reception.

*  Daily cleaning.

Actually these are five essentials to guarantee a comfortable holiday where you can enjoy the sunshine at an affordable price.  From there onwards the rest of the services can be optional or at a supplementary cost: children’s pool, mini club, parking or transfers to the airport, restaurant, breakfast room, Internet connexion, safe deposit box……

Essential service or additional

To understand the difference that marks this fine line (that is very often a question of very personal ideas and conceptions), a good example are the hotels for children,

Hotel Intertur Hawaii Mallorca

Hotel Intertur Hawaii Mallorca

The hotels with services for children in Majorca which could be the well known Marina Skorpios, Marina Corfu, the Intertur Hawaii Mallorca or other establishments in the north of Majorca of the chain Garden Hotels, are among the most valued by users of Tripadvisor and Expedia year after year, due to the good relation between quality and price and their inclusion of animation for children which allows parents to relax knowing that their children are well looked after. It is true that this may result in a higher price than a hostel or apartments but the advantages are numerous.

However, in this case the animation or mini club cannot be considered chargeable services in the hotels for families, and also family hotels must have sufficient rooms large enough to easily accommodate a couple with one child.

So if this does not happen, then by this token, the only service a beach hotel must have is the beach….. The reality is that many of those that are sold as such, cannot presume to have this service.