• The Holiday Bug

Medina Del Zoco, Calahonda, Costa del Sol, Spain

Sadly, our stay started badly and got worse from there. We arrived early, check in was 4pm so we decided to see if we could gain access early at reception, or if we could use the facilities whilst waiting. We were informed to go to the reception in block four to collect our keys, after wandering around looking for it, we finally spotted a note stuck to a board telling us the office had moved and to go to the shopping centre. We asked for directions to the office and when we got there found it was closed. Two telephone calls later we were informed to come back at 4pm to collect the keys. After signing the documents and paying twenty euros for electricity, we were given the keys and was shown to the apartment. To start with the positives, the apartment is close to the A7 with good access to the coastal road and local areas. There is a shopping complex opposite with a supermarket where you can buy most of your food supplies. There's also some souvenir shops and nice little restaurants, with the Irish bar being one of our favourites (Bar Boru, upstairs in the complex at the far end, good prices, great staff). There is a LIDL store 5 mins drive away.

Now for the not so good stuff... The size of the apartment is fair, bedroom one, double bed (old and uncomfortable), bedside tables, wardrobe, chest of drawers (all furniture smelt musty), patio doors into garden, security shutters, ensuite bathroom with bath and shower (over bath). Bedroom two, smaller twin room, wardrobe, patio doors into garden, security shutter). Second toilet room has a toilet, sink and shower which is very small, but would be ok for young children.

The lounge/dining room has a patio doors to garden and nice little patio hardstanding with table and chairs, a nice area to sit in during the evenings.

The kitchen was a very small area, small amount of cupboards, a fridge with tiny freezer, which is unsuitable for a family of four. Microwave, hob and oven. Washing machine which was rusty and had no door! Kitchen utensils were dirty and needed washing, with many of them rusty. Toaster looked like it hadn't been cleaned in ages and was rusty. Coffee perculator...didn't touch it. There was a small amount of chinaware and cutlery, small galsses with some chipped. Frankly not a nice room to cook in and you can only just fit two people in there with lots of bumping into each other.

This apartment was in poor condition, dirty, smelt musty, no air con, plug sockets which were not connected to electrics just the façade in place. Advert states there is a cd player, there was no evidence of this. No cleaning items were available, you need to buy your own, although there was one tea towel! Air conditioning was actually a broken fan, we were promised more fans after complaining but they took three days to arrive. There is no safe to store your passports or travel documents and security was a concern.

Housekeeping turned up on day four, very pleasant lady but due to us leaving the next day we asked her to return the following day.

I have read many comments about the door locks, all of these look old and are difficult to open. Upon arrival you are give four keys, two are for the front door, with the bottom lock very difficult to open, one is for the security shutters, which again are very fiddly but manageable, the other is for the entrance gate. Took a while to get used to which key to use for what but all locks were working. Garden is quite big so if you have children who like to play football or run around it is a fair size. There is an old clothes horse to dry your clothes and as mentioned before a patio area with table and four chairs (one is broken), there is also a sun lounger which is unusable. It an be quite noisy, there is a roundabout just across the road with lots of traffic going past into the early hours. You can hear noise from the restaurants nearby but this wasn't so bad.

The swimming pool is a couple of minutes away from the apartment, again the sun loungers are disgraceful, most uncomfortable with few available. The apartments appear to be mostly Spanish occupants with lots of children using the childrens pool area. The main pool was quieter but due to lack of seating and uncomfortable sun loungers we decided not to use it. Parking is limited and we ended up parking on the road most evenings. The beach is not the best, it's small and rocky, you would be better off getting in the car and going to Mijas Cala if you want a nice area to relax and watch the children play. Wifi was non existent, make sure you bring your own if you want to get online, or go to the local bars who mostly have it in their bars.

Overall our impression of this apartment was that it was very poor and need a good clean with replacement of white goods. The cleaners can only do so much! Yes it would be nice to have air con installed but if you are going to provide fans, then make sure they are working properly and one broken one is not good enough. we are well travelled and have stayed in basic accommodation previously but this was a very disappointing stay.

Not recommended as there are far nicer places to stay.

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