Palma City Break Review


Dear Olatz, Thank you so much for your kind message and for all your help! We had a wonderful time and the hotel was terrific. Here are a few comments which you’re very welcome to pass on to other customers:

On TripAdvisor or similar, we read one or two comments expressing nervousness about the hotel’s location after dark. Both Ginny and I think this is nonsense! The promenade along the sea front is a lovely walk and feels completely safe. In a good way, we were unprepared for the more or less universal friendliness and relaxed tolerance of resident Mallorcans towards tourists. Palma feels a very happy city, and two or three times people who saw us studying a street map stopped to ask if we needed any help. At no time was there even the slightest sense of threat to our safety, anywhere.

The Hotel Victoria Gran Melia is next door to some extensive new building works, and you may have noticed one or two online complaints about that. Our ownexperience was that our room balcony and window were screened from any view of the building site and the double glazing did a good job – we slept well (in the widest bed we’d ever seen – a football team could have slept in it!) and used the air con. when necessary, keeping the window shut at night. (One thing I will say is that Mallorcan mosquitoes have a savage bite! Worth investing in some Eurax or similar once through airport security.) N.B: Apparently the hotel is about to close for a major refurbishment; it’s expected to last 4 months but that strikes me as optimistic…. We couldn’t see why the refurb. was needed, to be honest.

One tiny point is that tea and coffee facilities in the hotel room were basic. If you’re happy with instant Nescafé and a kettle, fine, but for 5 stars one might expect a coffee machine and some milk in the fridge. This was the only mini-grumble we can come up with! Excellent ensuite, spacious room, comfortable bed, television, minibar, safe, ample storage space, etc., etc., plus sea view. Breakfast limitless and excellent, with stunning harbour views from the outdoor terrace. Staff all really lovely, in keeping with the wider population. Nothing was too much trouble and their friendliness was sincere and genuine.

The walk into town wouldn’t suit everybody, but is rewarding for anybody happy on foot. We walked miles each day and really enjoyed it. For others, the no. 4 bus goes from just uphill outside the hotel main entrance, and crosses the city very conveniently.

There are limits to what you can do without a hired car. For a first visit to a limited area of the island it was fine without wheels and we caught buses. (Warning: the longer-distance buses are under heavy tourist demand, and if the bus seats are full the driver won’t stop for new passengers!)

We took the 1912 narrow-gauge electric railway up to Soller, but couldn’t have done it if I hadn’t booked online before leaving England.

Deia and Valldemossa are both highly recommended, although both were fairly crowded. We walked from Soller to Fornalutx one day – very hot but the views were absolutely stunning. Fornalutx also crowded, but beautiful and atmospheric. We didn’t use the train lines and kept to the Tramuntana region. The mountains are spectacular.

That’s about all I can think of. We managed to book a taxi to and from Heathrow with Andrey from Winchester Executive Hire, whom you recommended. He and his colleague were professional, reliable and good company. I wouldn’t hesitate to endorse your recommendation.

Thank you again for all your help, friendliness and patience. We were in the very best of hands and hugely appreciated it! Please quote anything in this email if you wish to.

All very best wishes, Francis and Ginny

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