So sorry I’ve been MIA lately. I just got back from my fabulous holiday in Gran Canaria, where I stayed for 8 days completely cut-off from my beloved internet. Talk about some serious rehabilitation! But I didn’t have the time to be bored since there were many things to do on what at first appeared to be a small island. Today I want to show you were I stayed; the Riu Palace Resort hotel in Meloneras, one of the newest touristic areas in the South of the island.
The touristic South is divided into 3 main areas; Playa del Inglés, Maspalomas and Meloneras. Meloneras is the latest addition to the touristic areas and it’s also the most quiet. The hotel’s 40.000m2 garden stretches until the boulevard of ‘El Faro’, which cuts it off from the ocean. There’s no private beach, because the shores are full of pebbles. You’ll either have to follow the Faro bld to the left (500m) until you reach the playa de Maspalomas, OR go to the right and follow the boulevard until you reach -my personal favorite- the beach of Meloneras. It’s bigger and less crowded, you can rent a beach chair for 2,5€ / day and you won’t be covered in sand because of the dunes (more about that later).
I’m sure shopping fanatics will be pleased when I say there are a couple of stores around the hotel like Douglas perfumery, Mango, Stradivarius, Guess, Esprit and the Verdadero (?) shopping centre, which holds many other brand and souvenir shops. Furthermore, you’ll also find several dining facilities, a supermarket (drinks at 1 €), a casino and Europe’s biggest outdoor movie theatre, just 2 minutes away from the hotel.
The food was a self-service buffet and I can’t remember the time I ate so much at any other hotel I’ve ever been to in my life. There were so many things to choose from and it was just so good! At breakfast you can go whenever you want and you can sit wherever you want. In the evenings however, dinner is served in 2 shifts and you have a fixed table number. You can change shifts if you like, but only when discussed with the head waiter. Our shift -the 2nd one- was at 20h30, which made it easier to go on trips during the afternoon.
The mornings were filled with dozens types of bread, sandwiches and all types of baked goods (croissants, cakes etc), American pancakes, English breakfast with eggs, beans and sausages, Spanish Chorizo and fruits. The evening buffet offered 8 types of vegetables, home made salads, typical Canarian food, pizza, all kinds of fish, vegetarian, fried food, show-cooked food etc. The only course I wasn’t a fan of was the dessert table. Not that it mattered, because by that time I was already so full I had to practically roll myself back to my room.
During the afternoons we either grabbed lunch at a restaurant on bld El Faro or we stayed by the pool to have a quick snack. We didn’t even have to bother to go sit at the pool bar because the waiters would bring it to wherever you had found a spot. We so lazy 😉 Again, the menu had many things to choose from; all kinds of seafood, but we only went for the tosti sandwiches #hashtag YUM.
TIP: also have a go at one of their cocktails!
With its 305 rooms and 144 suites, the RIU can be considered as a big hotel. Was this a nuisance? Not at all. Even though the hotel was fully booked, we never experienced any noise or other problems. The only time we really noticed there were a lot of guests was when you wanted to eat your breakfast outside, you had to wait in line and to conquer a deckchair by one of the 2 pools. You either have to wake up early or come back around 4 to find some empty spots. We didn’t lay by the pool that much before 4 o’clock anyways, because we were out half the time so that wasn’t really a problem.
To be honest, I thought the interior was a bit outdated. I constantly thought I had wound up aboard of the Titanic (you know, like in that movie with Kate & Leo). Especially at the reception and in the restaurant. This wasn’t the case with the room, which was quite spacious. Our room had a small corridor with a full-body mirror (perfect for outfit checking), which separated the bath room and the bedroom. And fear not fashionista’s! The bedroom has more closet space than your suitcase can hold clothes; 2 big closets with several shelves and hangers, 2 bedside tables a suitcase stand with drawers and a desk. Needless to say I wore 2-3 outfits a day.
The bathroom was quite spacious as well, so I was able to expose all of my beauty stuff. There was only 1 sink though, so we had to split our bathroom time.
+: quiet location, spacious rooms, friendly staff, great food, very clean, no animation around the pool
–: dessert, slow wifi connection (and only at the reception), not enough chairs around the pool, only 1 socket worked to charge our cellphones
I had a great time at this hotel and I would definitely recommend it when you’re considering to pay GC a visit. Stay tuned for more updates on my GC holiday 🙂