Arrived to sunny beach as a family of 5 and were delighted to have our 2 apartments right next door to each other on the top floor! The views were amazing every morning with the balconies having the sun right through to the evening. The pool, reception and grounds were always clean and well kept, there were plenty of sunbeds set out for both residents and visitors. We had our sheets and towels changed and apartments cleaned every 2-3 days during our stay which we didn't expect. Staff is very friendly and helpful also. They also offer free WiFi which you can get the password from the notice at reception and can be used through out the building and grounds. I would HIGHLY recommend everyone from a family to couples and even small groups to book a stay here. I will definitely be back again for a future stay!
Fantastic place to stay lovely staff very clean close to beach and night life beautiful view from all rooms looking forward to returning in October for my 50th birthday stayed 28/5/2017 to 4/6/2017 taxi 20euros from airport plenty of bars restaurants all food excellent
we stayed here for a week self catering, we were given the ground floor apartments which was fantastic, right next to the pool and reception and our own terrace, the room very basic but for our needs very adequate, sooo close to everything bars, restaurants shops etc...we ate in the Rat Pack which was just below us and it was fantastic!! slight bad points the rooms didnt come with AC and what they were offering for a fee looked more like a dehumidifier, the bath enamel was coming away from the bottom of the bath, but thats it we WILL be staying again soon.....HAPPY HOLIDAYS
Aparthotel (a portmanteau of apartment-hotel). We took the train from the airport train station, which is in the airport grounds, easy to find. There are ticket depending machines with touchscreen. It displays in English etc at the touch of the flag icon, so buying the tickets were effortless. Cost €2.05 per person to Benalmàdena train station (Arroya de la Miel) and it took about 15 minutes. Trains seemed regular and provided you know the direction your line is traveling (Fuengirola in the case of Benalmàdena), there are clear signs towards what side you should be on. Train was clean, up to date and cool with air con.
I saved an offline map on Google maps so I knew how to get to Sunny Beach Aparthotel. We walked slowly and it took about 15 minutes, but there are buses and taxis that drive by. The taxis have meters so you won't get bumped :) like the old days. The Aparthotel is not exactly on the front, as the entrance is on the street which joins the main coastal street, which is at a big roundabout with a huge frame structure, which has lots and lots of colourful garden windmills (you cannot miss it).
On entering the Aparthotel, the gentleman at reception was very welcoming and seemed to speak and understand English to a high standard. He gave us a keyring with 2 keys. One is for the room, the other for the main entrance. You can come and go as you please 24/7, it's very relaxed. The pool was clean and there were plenty of sun loungers (we didn't spend any time at the pool, but looked good). There are lots of pamphlets for tourists in reception and the guy was really helpful if you ask questions about buses and transport. We were talking to a couple from Ayr in Scotland, who got a bus timetable from him and he told them where to get the bus/what bus to get. (I think that's the couple with the review just before ours :P hi again x).
On entering the room is the kitchenette area on the right and the toilet door on the left. Then the beds and the wardrobe came; and then the couch/sofabed, table & TV; then the sliding doors out to the private balcony which overlooked the Mediterranean Sea. There's a wee plastic table and chairs on the balcony, and a brush and mop if needed. There were also 3 wooden chairs with thin cushions inside, and the kitchenette featured:
•2 electric hobs
•A sink with hot and cold water
The only thing that spoiled it was that there was no air conditioning. But the Wifi was very fast and had a strong signal. The toilet was fairly spacious and there was seemingly unlimited hot water. It's not an electric shower though, it's inbuilt into the bath taps, but it was powerful and better than ours back home. The maids were very friendly and helpful, full of character and spoke limited English. The couple from Ayr taught them the Scottish farewell "Cheerio" haha.
There's literally a million restaurants along the whole Coast and lots of wee shops selling a range of products. Some specializing in touristy products, some offering a good range of practical items (etc fans, stationary, clothes, n lots of varied items).there's a McDonalds round the corner, but keep in mind the drinks are made with with local water, which isn't recommended for us Scots to drink (we're used to pristine water on tap, our tummies are weak). There are touch screen automated self service in English if you pay by card, which may incur a foreign charge of about 20 quid I'm told? I haven't looked into it so I don't know. If you pay by cash, they seemed to speak English well enough to put the correct food on your tray (unlike the MacDonalds in Greenock). There's also a Burger King a bit further too and it's a similar price to MacDonalds, and therefore better value. However, there's a range of restaurants to choose from. Nachos, steak, burgers, English breakfasts, spanish tapas, fresh fish on BBQ, Italian, Indian, Oriental... The list goes on. We liked most places we ate and the prices varied from €15 to €60 for a meal. I would highly recommend a wee English owned place near by called "Here at last". The mega breakfast is a true English breakfast too :) which isn't hard to find, but the couple that owned it seemed really nice, especially the lady.
We went to 2 supermarkets called Mercanado and SuperSol. This is our equivalent to a Spar or CO-OP or a Tesco Metro. Prices are much cheaper here and show how much the wee shops are a rip off. Price examples:
•500ml bottle of water is €0.32
•Bottle of Coca Cola €0.79
•Can of Fanta €0.38
•Can of Monster €1.25
•Pack of ham €1.00 and up
•Pack of sliced Cheese €1.50
•Big bag of Lays crisps €1.00 I think
Milk is an odd one. They have their own Spanish brand. It tastes creamy or like UHT milk. We couldn't put our finger on it. It's cheap, but there is also Cravendale or Muller in some of the supermarkets (not all) which have heavily inflated prices. €3.79 for 2 litres of Muller. €2.20 for a litre of Cravendale. I'd recommend buying from these supermarkets if you're looking to save money, and don't want to pay about 2 or 3 times the money for the same products.
You can pay cash on the bus and the drivers seemed helpful to me. However, you can also get a travel card for bus and train at any "Tobacco" shops. They charge you €1.85 for the card, and it works like a top up card. For instance, we got a card and the lady asked how much money we wanted on the card. I said €20, and she topped up the card with €20. You then only have to use the card like contactless on the bus and train. There seems to be one fixed cost of €1.07 per person per journey, no matter where you go. It's very cheap and the air con is top notch. There is info on bus timetables on each bus stop. We found them difficult to understand with regards to times, but it looks easy to know which bus number you need. Buses are awesome in Benalmàdena!
All in all we loved the holiday. 1 week and it was beautiful weather. 24 Celsius at night lowest temperature, and it climbed to 34 Celsius at about 3pm. The beach is fantastic. You can hire 2 sun loungers with mattresses and a big fixed thatched parasol for €10. Those wee guys seem to own these sun loungers, and the price seems to be the same on all parts of the beach. Of course you can take your own parasol or whatever and find your own spot on the beach. But we found that the wee guys provide a security for your belongings, as they are very friendly, attentive and are there all morning/afternoon, every single day. It's their business, so I feel like they came across trustworthy. We recommend Beach Josè. Josè was very nice and it was sandy in the waters he had reign over, rather than stony. Get there early though, it's first come first serve, and there are reservations for those who pay earlier. He opens at 10am. And OMG get a full body massage on the beach for €25 or a top half for €15!!! The best money I spent we spent on holiday. Masseuses travel the beaches asking you if you want a massage. We said no a lot, until we decided to give Lili a try. They are all oriental, and possibly specialise in Asian Massage. She was so nice too and worked at your knots. We loved her and have to give her the credit she deserves. Lots of people selling fake brands of sunglasses, bags, purses, trainers, watches are all over the sea front area. They will pressure sell you as soon as you show interest. Mainly black guys, they seem friendly and have some dynamite banter by the sounds of it. They kept calling the girls Shakira or Beyoncè or Rihanna etc :P and if a witty tourist starts to banter back it makes for a good show. Word to the wise though, they are shody knock offs, even though they look really nice. We bought a good few things from them.
No jellyfish, no sharks, no sea life by the looks of it. I got one mosquito bite I think and that's all. Saw a couple of tiny ants, a couple cockroaches and a few BIG ants on the street up towards the town centre. No spiders to be seen.
There's a public park just up behind the hotel like 3 minutes walk. It's beautiful and has lots of roosters, bunny rabbits, ducks, chickens and peacocks running about freely. It's an odd experience. Local dogs didn't bat an eyelid. There are a few cat lounging around too all over Benalmàdena. Kids were petting them, and they seemed friendly.
BIG recommendation. There's a paper at reception that gives info on outdoor markets and where they on each day. Also gives basic spanish words and converts UK sizes to European sizes for clothes and shoes. There are no ladies shoes above a size 7 ANYWHERE. We looked :( and came back with a big feet complex haha.
We travelled to Màlaga and Fuengirola. Get to Màlaga early though. Everything closed early. Benalmàdena is open til the early hours by comparison. 24hour square is Benalmàdena's main nightlife and is open til about 4 in the morning as far as I'm told. I don't know that's just on the weekend, but I suspect not. We didn't go, so it's just hearsay. 24 hour square is on the main road next to the Marina. The whole place is always bustling with activity, we loved it.
Hope this review was useful ;)
Just returned from a week here and the location was excellent we spent every morning eating breakfast looking out to sea as all rooms have a sea view. Although the studios were basic you had all you needed and they were clean. Staff were also helpful when my tv wouldn't work I got a new one straight out the box within 5 mins. Also helped with transport advice etc. Pool area lovely as well and what you save on the cost of accommodation we were able to eat at different restaurants every day and night. There is no air con but I took a small electric fan and it was ample. Well worth a visit and I will certainly return.