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Avenue 20 Aout, Agadir, Morocco
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A beautiful hotel but nothing to do!
London, England, United Kingdom
August 10, 2011
Best of IgoUgo
Last month my partner and I spent a week in Morocco. We wanted a week of poolside relaxation after a busy period at work so even though we knew we would be breaking the week up with a trip to Marrakech, we decided to go all inclusive. We booked the ...
Last month my partner and I spent a week in Morocco. We wanted a week of poolside relaxation after a busy period at work so even though we knew we would be breaking the week up with a trip to Marrakech, we decided to go all inclusive. We booked the Royal Atlas in Agadir as we knew it was right on the beach and had some of the best ratings on TripAdvisor!
= The bedroom =
My immediate impression of our room that evening was excellent. Huge bed, dressing table, a couple of wardrobes and lots of space for moving round which is something I find really important. It was all tastefully decorated in brown and cream with some beautiful Moroccan art on the walls and a huge mirror which is always a bonus! I was delighted to see that we had a balcony, but it wasn’t until the morning that I realised that it was overlooking the street, which was luckily very quiet! Still, it would have been a lot nicer to have a sea or pool view! For me the most important thing about a bathroom is that it is clean and modern and this one certainly ticked the boxes. The large marble sink was rectangular with lots of space around it to keep all of my toiletries. The bath was a good size with a powerful shower over it and plenty of towels and bath mats were provided.
= The facilities =
The best thing about the resort for me was the swimming pools. It was photographs of them that sold the hotel to me in the first place and I wasn’t disappointed as I made my way down on our first day. The complex is made up of three large pools which are all entwined and ‘curvy’ for want of a better word. They are odd circular shapes which all interlink with a lovely pool bar in the middle. In hot weather I find it really difficult to sit or walk around in the sun so I used the pool bar with its tables and chairs both in the sun and shade regularly. The largest pool was good for swimming in as there was plenty of room, although it was the busiest of the pools. The second was another deep pool but a small oval shape which I assumed would be used for the aqua aerobic classes but never saw these classes taking place! I didn’t actually go in this pool the whole time I was there. My favourite was the shallow children’s pool but with very few kids in the resort I got the whole thing to myself most days!
= What did we eat? =
There were three restaurants at the Royal Atlas Hotel, the main one of which was L’Ocean which served the three main meals of the day, all buffet style. Breakfast was served from 7.00 – 10.00 a.m. and included all the usual including croissants, pastries, cereal and hot items such as bacon, beans and sausages. Omelettes were made fresh by the cooks and individuals could choose from many toppings. Next to the omelette station were the crepes which were made quickly and there was never a queue. This was my favourite breakfast item and while crepes with chocolate sauce isn’t the healthiest start to the day, it was definitely the tastiest! Lunch was served from 12.30 – 2.30 p.m. and included a range of meats in sauce with a type of potato, rice and pasta each day. . Dinner was served in L’Ocean from 7.00 – 9.30 p.m. and was a wonderful range of traditional Moroccan food and other dishes from around the world. There was a large selection of soups and different breads for starter and a huge salad table with every variety possible. Lamb, chicken or fish tagine served with cous cous was a regular favourite for main course but there were plenty of other options including many other meat dishes and types of potato.
On the second night of the holiday we went to the hotel’s Italian restaurant, Ambiano, which not only served wonderful food but also had great service. The starters included goose liver and apple salad, tomato soup and a selection of cold meats. Alex loved his soup but the goose liver I chose was a little too adventurous for me! I opted for the prosciutto pizza which was a decent size and delicious. Alex’s fillet steak was served beautifully but I was happy I went for the pizza as the steak was a much smaller portion and was served with FOUR homemade chips! Hilarious! We both opted for the mixed ice cream option for dessert but the other options including fruit salad and panna cotta looked great.
We decided to visit the Moroccan restaurant El Zahab on our penultimate night at the hotel. The décor was fantastic with a dark setting by candlelight and with bright coloured silk curtains and huge comfy chairs to sit on. The excellent food and accompanying dancers made a welcome change from the previous evenings and we had a great night!
=== ALL–inclusive? ===
As I’ve already mentioned, the food was very good without being spectacular, but it was great to know that there was a constant supply of food as and when I needed it. I have a huge appetite and the idea of ‘free’ food was very appealing, and well used! There was a late breakfast served at the pool bar which was nice after a morning swim. This was a very basic continental breakfast with various croissants and other pastries served with jam. The mid-afternoon snacks again were very simple, with guests offered the choice of four different sandwiches, served with chips and salad. There were other meals and snacks on the menu available but only the sandwiches were included in the all-inclusive package.
The main advantage of going all-inclusive was the unlimited drinks. In 40 degrees we needed constant refreshment by the pool and could just go up and grab a couple of bottles of water at a time. Small bottles of beer were served from 10.00 a.m. which to me seemed quite early but a lot of people were drinking them! Glass bottles of Fanta, Sprite and other soft drinks were also included but in the heat they didn’t stay cold long and I never managed to finish a whole bottle! Drinks in the evening were served with dinner in the restaurants or in the main bar until 11.00 p.m. I’m not a big alcohol drinker myself but it would have been nice to have the option of a soft drink before bed.
=== Entertainment ===
Hmmm. Entertainment-wise, Royal Atlas was average. They had an excellent singer in the main bar every evening for a few hours and he was happy for guests to come up and sing which was nice when we were just sitting relaxing with a drink. However after the second night we noticed that we were hearing the same songs and it became a little more boring. As I mentioned there were dancers in the Moroccan restaurant which was a nice touch, and one of the evenings there were a group of male dancers\gymnasts in the bar performing which was rather impressive. They were good break-dancers and also did lots of exciting things like standing on each other’s heads and shoulders!
I was also very disappointed with the pool activities. On my first day by the pool I saw a sign up which said there was aqua-aerobics that morning, pilates after lunch and volleyball in the afternoon. I’m not suggesting that I would have gone to any of these and certainly not more than once, but I never saw any of these activities taking place! It’s my fault that I didn’t ask the whole time I was there, but it’s a little strange that we never heard anything about them or saw the classes taking place.
=== Overall ===
I had a fantastic time at the Royal Atlas and it was exactly what I was looking for in a week off work. If you’re looking for relaxation in a hot country and are happy to chill out by a pool for a week then this could be the place for you. However, if you need something with a bit more action and more entertainment and things to see you would probably be better off in another hotel in another city like Marrakech.
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