128 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog

not bad

4
Good
by
Reviewed Wed 2nd of September 2009

"Just returned from the Hotel Orquidea having spent two weeks all inclusive. I have never written a review before but I found the reviews which I read before I booked very useful so here goes.
The Orquidea is a big hotel, in some respects possibly to big, comprising of 11 floors. It is situated in the small resort of Bahia feliz and is only 20 mins from the airport. This is excellent following a long flight with children as it is the first and last drop off / pick up.
The rooms are spacious and comfortable comprising of two single beds which are pushed together to make a double and a sofa bed with a pull out single bed. The room comes complete with a kettle and a refrigerator. The bathroom comprises of a bath and shower with good water pressure. Rooms are cleaned every day to a good standard and plentiful towels are replaced if placed in the bath after use. Rooms have a balcony which is enclosed by a glass and steel railing. However some balconies have a ledge which protrudes out and I was horrified to see my daughter use the balcony chair to climb up and retrieve a toy which had blown off, as this ledge can give a false impression of safety.
The corridors, walkways and lifts up to and on the floors and around the hotel are wide and wheelchair friendly and portray and open plan feel.
The food is excellent and offers a good variety of choice on a daily basis, although the deserts are fairly un-imaginative and monotonous. Fresh fish is usually cooked on hot plates in front of you which is very good and well recommended. Although, I agree with some reviews regarding the service in the dining rooms being a little slow. It must be remembered that this is a big hotel and as such it is understandable that at times the service regarding clearing of plates and ordering drinks can be a little slow. Nevertheless this never portrayed a problem and it certainly was not an issue.
The hotel staff were excellent, very friendly and always made you feel welcome, especially Carin the Swedish greeter when entering the dining room, always smiling, very pleasant and friendly, (Tack sa mycket , Carin) Carin occasionally plays guitar and sings in the evening shows which is recommended (sounds a little like Lisa Mitchell) very talented.
Pepe Cruz the smiling bar man offers drinks in the lobby area were the comfy chairs can be enjoyed with a baileys and a coffee, and also were football is shown daily. The lobby area also hosts a couple of shops were inflatables, sun creams, magazines and newspapers can be purchased.
The pool area offers 3 pools, from very shallow, through to deep. There are normally enough sun loungers to go around but if you want to get a good spot with a parasol you might have to get up about 6 am. Word of warning here the wind can be very strong here and on a few occasions I have seen the big heavy parasols lifted up and dragged right across the pool area. MAKE SURE YOU ARE NOT NEAR THESES THINGS WHEN IT’S WINDY. If you work within health and safety you should have an interesting holiday here.
Drinks and all inclusive – ok here I have some observations rather than issues. All inclusive, includes locally produced drinks which is ok... you simply flash your band and have as many drinks as you like. There is a fair choice of drinks and you can more often find an equivalent to popular drinks such as baileys, Bacardi, gin, etc. The beer is the brand “tropical” which for those of you who haven’t been to any of the Canary Islands before is a locally produced beer. (Which isn’t bad really). OK so here are my observations... you will be amazed at how much alcohol you can drink and still pass a sobriety test, especially as I am not a big drinker. No hangovers to worry about and no embarrassing
Drunks to contend with. That is until; you decide to have a night out of the hotel. We had two nights out of the hotel and had a fraction of the amount of alcohol consumed on other nights at the hotel and were plastered. The penny only dropped when we saw another couple arriving back from Garbos (an entertainment night just down the road) in a similar state. You can make your own assumptions to this!!!!
There is a pool bar (coco loco) which is open every day from 10 am to 5 pm. All inclusive guests can enjoy an unlimited supply of drinks and food. The chips are absolutely Moorish and it’s difficult to resist the temptation to pick up a scoop when passing through for ice creams and drinks. During the evening this is the venue for the Scandinavian entertainment. The presence of the Scandinavians enriches the hotel, and their entertainment is fantastic. We preferred to enjoy the evening entertainment here as we found the people friendly, the entertainment outstanding and the atmosphere relaxing with comfortable chairs, and subdued lighting. This is in stark contrast to the main entertainment area where the chairs are extremely uncomfortable, monotonous entertainment and the feeling that you are a battery hen crammed into and surrounded by a vastness of metal chairs and tables, (This is something the hotel really needs to address; the chairs are extremely uncomfortable in there). Imagine the old style Butlins / Pontins with a big entertainment area in the sun and you won’t be far off the mark.

T here is a gym, Sauna, Jacuzzi, etc which is part of the hotel, but not if you know what I mean... (You have to pay extra and it’s not cheap) there is a beech with this hotel however it’s not the best and is very stony. However there is a small grassed area here where you can sunbathe away from other guests and play ball games etc. There is also a nice walk along the beach front from here were you can visit the other hotel within the Blue village.
Entertainment – the Scandinavian reps were superb in coco loco’s ,the Thompson reps were good too although (sorry to say this guys) some were clearly being carried by the other reps. Baby freyer, princess Kerry, baby boo were excellent, although Princess Kerry was replaced part way through so is no longer there. One other rep was fairly rude and upset a couple of guests with some dodgy football comments to the children. On the whole though the entertainment was good albeit a little repetitive towards the latter stages of the Holiday. Big Daddy is the hotels entertainment manager and was outstanding. His drive commitment and enthusiasm to engage guests is infectious and you find yourself warming to him very quickly. (Nordotel, he’s a keeper).
Excursions – Puerto Morgan is worth a visit and is very pretty, (little Venice). The jeep safari is also very good and you get to see some of the spectacular scenery and mountains of the island. Aqua Park is alright if you are really bored, have a lot of money to burn and have never been to a water park in your life before.
Top tips – make sure you take flip flops if you go to Aqua land that you can take off and put over your hands for the rides. This is because it is impossible to walk around without footwear unless you want to have any skin left on your feet at the end of the day. It is important that you can place them over your hands so that you can still hold on as they will not allow you to ware footwear on the rides.
If you go on the jeep safari (and I cannot emphasise this more) make sure that you insist on either a land rover or Chrysler. This is because the Nissans they also use are old, do not have any padding in the seats and the seats are not facing forwards. You will be thrown around everywhere, will be in considerable discomfort and won’t enjoy the day as much.
Check out the prices from the Thompson reps for excursions. Then buy the entrance tickets from them (to save you queuing at the parks) but get a bus or a taxi. This will work out cheaper and will not go around the houses picking up from other hotels first, wasting precious park time).

On the whole it is an excellent, clean hotel with a good management team, food and facilities. The entertainment is good but there is room for improvement. The Scandinavians enrich the whole experience and the weather is hot and breezy. Book with confidence, it won’t be your best holiday but it certainly won’t be your worst either.

"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 1st of September 2009

Great Holiday but!!!!

4
Good
by
Reviewed Sat 29th of August 2009

"Just returned from hotel Orquidea, and like the review by "louch" I would give 10/10 for the hotel itself, the cleaning staff/ bedrooms and waitress in restaurant. The reception staff all spoke good English.

This is a hotel with guests from several countries, mainly scandanavian, so may put some people off. It was the Brits however that were reserving sunbeds as early as 6.30 in the morning - OK if you're an early riser!

I do feel that the Hotel is geared more for the all inclusive clients whereas we were half board. We thought the breakfasts and evening meals were very good and there was enough variety (and choice)over the two weeks. We did not really miss having a midday meal and bought in stuff from the local Supermarket - I do wonder why we should have to pay for the use of the fridge.

We decided not to waste our money on buying drinks from the bar (cheaper to buy from the Supermarket), and would agree that we were being penalised by having to pay for the same low quality and limited drinks on offer aimed at the all inclusive client. I thought the bars in the Hotel were very poor.

Two great pools and easy access to the small beach - it is pebbly and has black sand but that didn't put off our two kids. One part of the pool area was slippery so caution was needed.

We and the kids really enjoyed the entertainment crew efforts during the day but we were disappointed by the evening entertainment and the limited acts that were brought in. Sorry to say that the entertainment crews efforts at night were not our "cup of tea".

Bahia Feliz is limited in what it has to offer in terms of night life etc, but we didn't mind this. There is the hotel, a few bars/restaurants, two small supermarkets and a few gift shops. If you like an active night life you won't find it here.

The Hotel is geared for families with kids under the age of 12/13. It's not one for teenagers. Although there were 7 computers for internet access half were not working.

Although there are some negatives which there always will be, we had a fantastic holiday here.
"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Fri 28th of August 2009

dont go half board

3
Average
by
Reviewed Tue 25th of August 2009

"hi just back from hotel orquidea, can say 10/10 for the hotel itself the cleaning staff/ bedrooms and waitress in restraunt.
however as we were half board (and not all inclusive) we had great breakfasts and evening meals, but had to pay for all our watered down pepsi and beer in paper/plastic cups only 3/4 full ok we could have gone all inclusive but we did not so dont see why we should get penalised with low quality food and drinks when we are paying.
sorry to say i have been to thomson hotels with better entertainment crews
yes they did their bit aquarobics/waterpolo etc etc but never on time never with joy and real happiness just as "its my job" except big daddy.
they never did anything that was not preplanned eg lilo racing or letting the adult football run on for more than 7mins a half just when your having fun
they never let the under 16yrs olds have a go at waterpolo etc
all the thomsons staff never smiled or spoke to you when they walked around inside or out the hotel, transfer to hotel we sat 45 mins on a coach when we did set off no info on the island / area or hotel was given
transfer home was worse we all stood outside like lost sheep no rep to board no rep on coach no rep at airport no info at all total DIY
the area of bahia feliz is basically this hotel its surrounding bungalows and a couple of bars and one shop two supermarkets you can not walk to anywhere and you need a local bus or taxi to get anywhere
IF YOU WANT A GOOD FAMILY HOLIDAY IN THE CANARIES WITH AN ATTENTIVE THOMSON CREW AND GOOD SURROUNDINGS GO TO LANZAROTE PLAYA BLANCA HOTEL FLAMINGO"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 25th of August 2009

If you are a family book now!

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Thu 6th of August 2009

"Arrived at the hotel around 11pm receptionist spoke very good english and was given a room on the third floor.

Room was fine and good view of the sea and complex.

Hotel was really clean all the time and the room was cleaned on a daily basis.

Food was good and you coudl have something to eat anytime beween 7.30am and 9pm (although I didn't trust the burgers in the snack bar as they looked very under cooked)

Sometimes there was a queue for the drinks during the day but most of teh time these moved very quickly and you were left to serve yourself.

Dinner was often themed i.e. chinese night, spanish night etc but there was always a childrens selection.

The only thing I woudl suggest is that they try and have a differant desert evry night as cake and ice cream can get a bit boring!

One tip is to go into the resturnat at lunch time as it is really cool and has a good selection of food - well better than the undercooked burgers!

The hotel is situated on its own and you need a taxi to get anywhere, howvever the taxi rank is next to teh hotel or the reception will call you one. There is also a shopping centre next to teh hotel with a few bars and shops but not many.

Hotel staff were very friendly and the staff in the resturant always spent time talking to my children and giving them sweets (after they had checked it was okay with me) One Tip - Don't go bear foot into the coco loco bar or you will be shouted at LOL

The entertainment was good with bot Thompson staff and hotel staff doing differant things.

The Thompson staff were the best we had come across and really made you feel you wanted to get involved.

The beach was slightly disapointing - sand was very very hot and teh tide was only out in the morning.

The only down side was the old sunbed issue - to secure a sunbed under a sun brolley you had to be at the pool between 6.15am and 7am or you had to boil in the sun - There are lots of signs saying that any towls left before 9am would be removed but this didn't ever happen!

Oh and some of the children thought is was fun to make teh lifts visit all 11 floors all teh time so it sometimes took a while to get a lift.

All in all a great holiday - The hotel is just a Thompson hotel for English holiday guests but there is a lot of norwegen and scandanavian people there too.

If you are after a clubbing holiday or an older couple wanting a quiet time - STAY AWAY, however if you have a family we haven't you booked yet??"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Thu 6th of August 2009

3rd year running

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Tue 4th of August 2009

"ive just sat and read the reviews of some people who have holidayed at the orquidea and all i can say anybody who gave it low marks have not done their research before they have booked it.
i will bite my lip, but all i can say is how the hotel is described is how it is and we love it. we have two boys 7 and 3, they loved it and so did myself and my husband. its our 3rd year there and just booked a fourth.
kids are entertained,food good,all inclusive,clean rooms,chilled round pool during day,night entertainment if you want it, no need too leave the hotel really just chill.
would highly recommend"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 2nd of August 2009

Just great!

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Fri 10th of July 2009

"What a great holiday we had at this hotel.My wife and I went on our own with no kids. OK,so it was busy but if your not too fussy everybody can have fun. Food was great,full English breakfast or continental (proper sausages).Also a huge choice for evening meal. once again the restaurant gets busy at times,but if you eat around 8 in the evening it w
as never a problem as the kids had gone off to their shows. There was never a problem with sunbeds unless you want the best positions by the pool. We would go down about 10 am and never had a problem. The activities and entertainment were also really good. Big Daddy organizes his team brilliantly.Id love to have his energy at 50! From 11am till midnight theres allways something going on.So to finish dont go on holiday and be a victor meldew,just get on with it and have a great time."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Fri 10th of July 2009

All Inclusive

3
Average
by
Reviewed Thu 25th of June 2009

"We have just returned from a 2 week holiday at this resort. The kids (7 + 2) were occupied all day every day. The Thomson reps were fabulous, Bid Daddy and Princess Kerry were our highlights. Kerry has the energy of a teenager with amazing skills with the holiday makers.
When we arrived we had a problem with the All Inclusive: in fact it was the worst I had ever been in. With having the grandchildren we had late morning lay ins and missed breakfast most days: the only option was to eat in the 'Coco Loco'10am - 12pm. After that time you had to get the kids dressed and go into the restaurant for anything to eat before evening meal was served in the restaurant. Quite a few of us got together and complained and then the Coco Loco was opened until 5pm every day.
The drinks were a sham, no end of folk were complaining: you are only allowed to get 2 drinks at a time when you go to the bar: there was 7 of us and it caused no end of complications.
There was only one cocktails available, flat beer and juice for the kids. In the daytime there is only one bar open to get refreshments which serves the whole hotel, queues were long and the staff looked more than fed up most of the time. I thinks its important that the staff are aware the we pay alot more for AI therefore expect the same service as those on Half board buying there drinks.
Now thats my moaning out of the way: the hotel is friendly, inviting and Thomson Reps all over in case of a problem: Kevin sorted out the problem with the availability of the food in the daytime very well, he dealt with it in a very mature manner so well done.
The grandchildren loved the holiday and so did we. Would I go back: no, Did I like the Thomson Extra: YES.
Princess Kerry is a star, entertainment every night: rooms were big, friendly people. Mustafa in the Coco Loco bar was fab, he was a trooper, smiley and warm character.
The weather was beautiful, missed the beach, missed a courtesy bus to the nearest beach.
Jill
"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Thu 25th of June 2009

Brilliant Holiday

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 24th of June 2009

"We stayed at the Orquidea for 2 weeks with our three boys aged 7, 3 and 1. The hotel is immaculate and our room was cleaned and tided every day. We upgraded to All Inclusive when we got there and it worked out slightly cheaper than doing it before we went. The meals are very varied and there is plenty of choice. Snacks were limited and only on for 2 hours per day (this is the only reason we didn't give 10/10). The 3 pools are excellent and there are also 2 kids play areas/slides. The Kids clubs and entertainment was the best things about the hotel. Our 7 & 3 years olds joined on the 2nd day and they had such good fun that they went everyday and a couple of evening sessions too! The evening entertainment was fine too, I don't know what some people who have commented think they are going to get when they go to a 'Thomson Family' Hotel, you get just that family entertainment that the kids can get involved with.
As for the resort it was small, but we were made aware of that before we went and we didn't really need to leave the hotel anyway.
We would go back again and had a brilliant time. "

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 23rd of June 2009

The barlows holiday

4
Good
by
Reviewed Wed 24th of June 2009

"The barlows 2wks in the may school hols who our sons ben6 & aidan9 really enjoyed
,we have been to gran canaria a few times but stayed in puerto rico.The hotel attracted us aswell as the price of going half board,the hotel in general was quite nice but the food was highly seasoned with salt.The cooks could be seen cooking the food but some times rushed with supply and demand and on occasions noticed fish and meats not cooked through properly.In the restraunt all drinks you had to pay for and they didnt like it if you brought your own in because it was quite expensive.The variety of food in the morning and evening was plentyful and it was quite plesant to see many different nationalities, especially popular with scandanavians.The resort was at times breezy but it was a nice breeze to keep you cool,still you had to keep that sun cream going on the kids because you forget how hot it really was.The small beach was of dark sands which made the sea dark aswell and it was never calm.We went on 3 excursions aqualand & hardrock cafe 7/10,camel capers 5/10 and sioux city 10/10.Through the day there was non stop entertainment by big daddy(great 50th party),the reps princess kerry, baby freir and our favorite beckaboo.The crew carried on there antics in the evening which was fantastic for all, the evenings were divided to give them a break (which they needed)by out side talents comedians,reptile show,birds of prey shows and accrabatics etc.This made up for nothing else going on outside the hotel, but never the less a great family holiday. Entertainment was second to none.3 pools,rooms are clean and maids come round 5 times a week, so there ok you have a small fridge, sleep there, shower and goto the toilet its all you need. 8/10 rooms,6/10 resort,entertainment 10/10,food 7/10."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 23rd of June 2009

Holiday

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 24th of June 2009

"I Went with my other half and out two young granchildren (4 & 18mths). There was loads to do for the kiddies, but like some of these reviews there is not much to do in Bahia Feliz.

We travelled out, going to Maspolomas (Dunes) and went on a Dolphin / Whale sight seeing tour in Puerto Rico, that was a great experience.

The food at the hotel was nice, entertainment was ok and by the end of the week i was singing to Thompson the Dog.

The service from the staff at the Hotel was great

I would go back again

Thanks Thompson, I actually booked this holiday blind, rang a number from teletext, got through to Michelle, told her what i was looking for and she actually recommended this holiday, Hotel and resort. Bit nervous, not knowing what to expect, but need'nt have been.

Thanks again

Zippy and Family x"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 23rd of June 2009

A great place

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 17th of June 2009

"We stayed at the Orquidea during the school half term week at the end of May so the hotel appeared fairly full. Only 20 mins on the coach from the airport so no stress with being stuck on a coach for hours delivering to other hotels first.

A fantastic place to stay if you want your children to have a great pool holiday during the day followed by varied entertainment every evening. there are a number of negative comments about Swedish and norwegens at the hotel.....I really can not understand this mentality and their holiday reps put on some excellent shows during our stay. As for the Thomson reps....well they work like trojans and will ensure that your holiday is an enjoyable one.

We went on one trip out on the 4x4 safari which was a great day out and well worth going on. Our children (8 & 4) had a great day but not so keen on the off road section. The dust is ok but the vehicles really rattle over the tracks and a couple of the drivers need their health & safty training updated! All in all a good trip but think twice about buying the photo and DVD....do you own as it will be money well saved.

The restaurant food was excellent with a good variety at all meals and despite the number of guests there was never a problem with food running out or having to wait ages for a table. The all inclusive food outside main meal times is limited but we found we didn't need anymore as ate sufficient at meal times. The all inclusive ice cream available during the day is noting special but adequate.

The only reason why we didn't give the holiday 10/10 was because there was no beach but the pools certainly satisfied the children. Thanks to these reports though we were aware about the lack of a beach before we booked. I must say that when I read some of the reports I was almost put off going here. I'm glad there were positive reports as well because from our first hand experience now I would recommend this hotel to anyone with children up to about 12 years old. It is true that there's not much in Bahia Feliz although there are a number of restaurants over the road that you could use for a change, but then why would you as the restaurant food was very good. There are some shops for the children to spend their holiday money and tacky gifts to you all to take home to family & friends!

Enjoy your holiday in the sun.

"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Wed 17th of June 2009

What is "All Inclusive"?

4
Good
by
Reviewed Fri 12th of June 2009

"I concur with yowser. Having been on several AI holidays in the past the All Inclusive element of a holiday at this hotel is very limited. The food is acceptable apart from the deserts which never changed throughout the week that we were there (small cake squares, ice cream, melon, and cold custard/mousse. There are insufficient bars to cater for all the guests who were there and the hotel was only half full. Thomson advertise this hotel as exclusive to the UK but there were russians/poles/swedes etc either staying in the hotel or who had upgraded from the TUI Blue village complexes to AI and made use of all the facilities.

That being said we went for this hotel as it was an extra family holiday and we made use of the excellent crech facilitie, many thanks to Becks, Emma and Sarah for engaging our little man. As said by yowser, if you want a more lively hotel/area Bahia Feliz is not for you but if you want to relax and have kids that are happy to spend there time swimming etc this is the hotel to come to. The Thomson crew try their best to make the experience a good one and it was nice to see them all waving us away as we departed for the airport.

If you go on a half board basis it will only cost you approx 100 euros per week to upgrade with the hotel rather than with Thomsons ignore the posters in the lift which are aimed at those staying on a Self Catering basis at the Blue Village. I would also recommend some adult time out to use the Spa facilitie, the back massage was excellent."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Thu 11th of June 2009

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