Review: The Hotel Kaktus Albir – The Only Beachfront Hotel in Albir

 

 

Situated in the small town of Albir, Spain just six miles from Benidorm, the Hotel Kaktus Albir is a four-star hotel that offers superb accommodation, incredible food, lovely staff and an amazing view out over the bay. I’m currently staying for a month at the Hotel Kaktus Albir and, after almost a week here, am so happy with the hotel I’d like to live here permanently.



Location of Hotel Kaktus Albir – The Hotel Kaktus Albir is the only beachfront hotel in the small town of Albir. A couple of minutes walk from the main town area with all its restaurants, cafes, supermarkets and shops, there are also cafes, bars and restaurants in the street right behind the Hotel Kaktus Albir, so you’re really spoiled for choice. The hotel has a gorgeous view out over the ocean and is right next to a wide promenade area. So from the Kaktus Albir you can walk by the ocean all the way down to the next town.

The Kaktus Albir is also just around the corner from a bus stop where you can catch a bus, every 15 minutes, to neighboring Benidorm or to the town of Calpe, just a few minutes down the coast. It’s so convenient to get around from the Hotel Kaktus Albir, even though we’ve rented a car, there’s really no need to.

Guest Rooms at Hotel Kaktus Albir – Rooms are spacious and extremely comfortable. I have a single room, my parents are in a double. Both rooms have a large en suite bath that comes with a tub and shower, a hairdryer, and a bidet. The room itself has plenty of cupboard space, an electric kettle so you can make hot drinks in your room, and TV with satellite (and there are many channels to watch in English, Spanish, German and French). There’s also a refrigerator and an in-room safe, which are available for an extra charge.

Each room has a balcony with a small table and chairs, and a side sea view. Some rooms, like mine, have a sea and a mountain view – lovely when you wake up first thing in a morning and sit outside on the balcony with a cup of coffee, ready to start your day.

 

Sitting on the Hotel Kaktus Albir’s gorgeous front deck, overlooking the promenade and ocean

 

The Food at Hotel Kaktus Albir – As a travel writer and avid traveler, I have traveled all over the world and eaten at hotel buffets in hundreds of different places. I can honestly say the buffet food at the Hotel Kaktus Albir, for breakfast, lunch and dinner, is some of the best food I’ve eaten at any hotel anywhere.

We’re currently on an all-inclusive package at the hotel, meaning all our meals, as well as all alcohol, coffee, tea, lattes etc is included in the price of the vacation. Each of our daily three meals includes a large buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner. My parents and I roll out of the dining room at every meal, so full we can barely move. Amazingly though, we manage to hobble back down five hours later for the next meal, raring to go, the food is that good.

Breakfast includes a cereal bar with lots of cereals and dried fruits, and a cooked breakfast bar with items like bacon, sausage, hash browns, and various styles of egg dishes. There’s also a separate bar with cheeses, meats, pates and other Spanish-style savory breakfast items.

If you like pastries, there are lots to choose from, and don’t forget the delicious Spanish bread – all available on its own separate bread bar, where you can get bread loaves, slices of wholewheat or white bread, French baguettes and more. Here, you can also make toast.

Lunch and dinner are similar to each other with a large salad bar, at least 15 cooked items to choose from, with everything from fish to chicken, beef to pork, seafood, lots of vegetables, potatoes cooked at least three ways every meal and much more. There’s also a dessert bar, with more than 10 desserts to choose from or, if you’re like me, just stack four of them on your plate then go back for seconds.

For dinner, they also often have a “theme dinner”. So far, we’ve eaten the British Dinner, with most items typically British, the Seafood Dinner, with amazing amounts of fresh seafood, and the Tapas Dinner, where everything you eat is a traditional Spanish tapas. All have been superb.

I’m presuming I’ll gain at least 10 lbs on this stay at the Hotel Kaktus Albir and really, I don’t care. I’m just loving the food.

 

The gorgeous promenade right outside the hotel

 

The Entertainment – Most of the guests at the Hotel Kaktus Albir during the winter months are retirees, mainly from Europe and from Spain. What’s nice about this though is the hotel puts on entertainment every evening – everything from a parrot show, to a band singing Spanish songs, to flamenco dancers and a magician.

What’s also lovely is the main bar area is so large, you can sit and enjoy the entertainment if you want, or go and sit further away near the front of the hotel, where you can still have a private conversation and enjoy a glass of wine or a cocktail. The drinks are great too.

The Staff at the Hotel Kaktus Albir – On my last trip to Spain, I stayed in a southern Spanish town and couldn’t get over how unfriendly most of the people were. That’s why, when we arrived at the Hotel Kaktus Albir, we were so thrilled with the welcome we received and by how lovely the staff was.

Everyone at the Albir, from the reception staff to the maids, are smiling, friendly and helpful. The dining room staff are absolutely superb with two maitre d’s, Paco and Juan, who cannot do enough for you they’re that lovely.

If you like staying in a hotel where you’re made to feel welcome and where, it’s obvious, the staff want you to have the best vacation ever, the Hotel Kaktus Albir is the place to stay.

Overall, our vacation at the Hotel Kaktus Albir is turning out to be one of the best we’ve had, simply because the hotel is superb in just about every way. My only minor annoyance is the hotel doesn’t have free Wi-Fi, which in this day and age is a little surprising.

Instead, as I didn’t want to pay the 12 Euros ($17) the hotel charges for eight hours of internet., I bought a Wi-Fi dongle in an internet shop in Albir and paid for unlimited internet service with a Spanish internet company. At over $100 for the month, it was expensive but, as a writer I need access to the internet at all times. I hope, in the future, the hotel decides to offer complimentary hotel-wide Wi-Fi. That’s the only thing this superb hotel is lacking.

You’ll find the Hotel Kaktus Albir at Paseo De Las Estrellas, 11, 03581 Alfas del P, Albir.

You can get the best deals at the hotel throughout the year on Booking.com.

 

Update – April 29th, 2012 – I’m currently staying at the Kaktus Albir for a second time and was happy this week to see them suddenly have free Wi-Fi internet installed.  It’s now available in the bar and lounge area, in the reception area and in the dining room. It’s fast and it’s free!

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