We were the lucky winners of the Micro Scooters blogging competition after directing the most traffic to their site. Our prize was a lavish five-night stay at the Martinhal Beach Resort in Portugal in one of the Ocean Houses. Last week we headed off on holiday, very excited after having heard lots of good things about where we would be staying.
The transfer to the hotel was wonderful, we were offered complimentary water and the code to use the wi-fi and our driver was very knowledgeable about the area, giving us lots of useful tips for our stay during the hour and 10 minute drive from Faro airport. You can book this service direct with Martinhal.
From the moment of our arrival at the resort I was impressed, after checking in you have a short golf buggy ride to your accommodation by a courteous member of staff, so no need to drag your bags around the site, just sit back and start to relax letting Martinhal take care of you. This ride is still one of the main highlights for my boys; because it’s not something you do everyday (unless you’re a golf enthusiast of course!).
Once at our accommodation we were given a brief tour of the rooms and told how to use the different appliances along with other helpful information. It was lovely seeing a welcome pack waiting for us, so we could give the boys much needed refreshments before unpacking and exploring. These well thought out little touches help Martinhal stand out as a place to stay and are very appreciated by mums of frazzled over tired children! Especially when you can then sit them in front of the multi-channel TV (so no missing there favourite shows) for a short moment whilst you get yourself in order and start to unwind into holiday mode.
The accommodation was very modern and spacious.
Plenty of room to put away your clothes and everything else the children deem necessary to bring along with them on holidays… you feel you can settle in quickly because you are made to feel very comfortable here.
I have not stayed somewhere with a washing machine/dryer before but it proved invaluable – we were back and fourth to the beach and everything was wet and sandy, but we soon had nice clean clothes again! The air conditioning was very much appreciated, the boys slept well as they did not get clammy and hot during the night. I can imagine in the height of summer it is a godsend having the cooling air as an escape from the heat! The bedrooms came equipped with black out blinds as well as curtains so no light waking up your little lovelies at the crack of dawn! A considerate feature for us tired out parents in need of rest and recuperation!
The bathrooms are all stocked with fancy VOYA products (made with 100% organic seaweed), so although we brought shampoo, conditioner and body wash with us, you can just make the most of these and back lighter instead.
I loved having both a balcony and a patio. We had beautiful views from our Ocean House.
I could have happily sat out there for hours in a state of blissful relaxation but as it was I was busy keeping my two monkeys tired! Beach, pool and park routine with a few walks into Sagres meant they were worn out come bedtime!
A lot of thought has been put into ensuring this is a family friendly resort. Around each of the pools there was an assortment of inflatable toys and floats. I had ordered a selection of pool toys to keep my boys entertained and there really was no need as there was quite a choice available. The rooms had things like a stair gate at the top of the stairs for safety, a step for little ones to reach the sink to wash their hands and a children's toilet seat and on arrival children are giving a welcome gift (my boys had baseball hats and bats and balls, which they were very pleased with!).
The resort is very clean and well maintained. I like how they have placed the playhouses in the village square so you can eat at the restaurants whilst keeping a close eye on your children playing (or you can do a tag team and one eat and one parent supervises if you have particularly young children). Likewise they put on some circus entertainment and that was well placed and highly entertaining.
One day we had a short spell of rain, but fortunately with the Blue Room available for shelter and plenty to keep my boys occupied we did not mind in the slightest. You can borrow games and controllers for the Wii/PS3, use the computers, and play table football, pool or table tennis. My boys especially enjoyed the family film session with a projector and liked the added treat of the complimentary popcorn being handed out!
The weather was warm it can be a little windy but I think we would come back one day, I overheard plenty of people discussing this being there second or third visit. It has a certain appeal because it makes being a parent on holiday a lot less stressful! Now I can back home, I miss Martinhal very much. If you are booking do so well in advance as unlike many resorts this one actually gets more expensive closer to your travelling date, that’s how popular it is! Booking the same accommodation for next year would cost around 330 euro’s a night, but it is money well spent.
Head to the website to see more of what they offer. We did not take advantage of all of the activities for children, there is childcare available at an additional charge and the children who had left it seemed happy with faces painted and big smiles, so if you want complete relaxation then you could take advantage of that too (and enjoy some swimming or romantic walks in peace!).