Seaside Los Jameos, Lanzarote – Review
By Richard Jones
Sitting in the hot sun, sipping on a refreshing piña colada, watching the kids happily splashing in the palm-strewn pool. Like millions of Brits, I’ve desperately missed foreign summer holidays.
Although some restrictions have lifted and it’s now okay to jet off to many popular short-haul holiday destinations, the question remains – just how practical and safe is it to go abroad?
Last week, during the current window of travel opportunity, my wife Rachel and I, along with our two daughters Isla and Evelyn, took the plunge and packed our bags for a week in the Spanish sun.
Our destination was Lanzarote, a long-time mecca for Brits targeting guaranteed sunshine, cheap prices, spectacular scenery and top-notch accommodation.
Like most popular European destinations, the island has been hit hard by the pandemic. However, slowly but surely, guests are now returning to the fourth largest of the Canary Islands, and there is a buzz around the whitewashed villas, idyllic beaches and reopened shops and bars.
Before we set off, we had a few things – additional to the usual packing, currency exchange, travel insurance and airport parking – to sort out. Yes, those pesky Covid tests and unnecessarily long passenger locator forms which are causing so much confusion and anger among UK travellers.
Although it all sounds a bit daunting and complicated, thankfully, help was on hand from a friendly source.
We flew to the Canaries with Jet2, and their website features a handy ‘Travel Requirements’ section which lists all the green and amber destinations and the procedures travellers need to consider before, during and after their well-earned breaks.
After arriving at the UK departure airport and passing through the checkpoints, the process was a breeze, and Jet2 had a small army of red-jacketed helpers at the terminal to advise confused holidaymakers.
The so-called ‘Friendly’ airline is just that and proved again that it is currently head and shoulders above its aviation competitors.
Once we’d landed in Arrecife, it was just a short 10-minute, €10 taxi ride to what would be our home for the next few days – Seaside’s Los Jameos Playa resort.
An elegant collection of charming Spanish haciendas surrounding a palm tree-laden pool complex, the 530-room resort is perfect for families and couples of all ages, and I was immediately in no doubt the four of us were going to have a holiday to remember.
An extensive refurbishment has recently taken place under the watchful eye of award-winning London design agency Muza Lab, and the results are astounding.
Following a welcome glass of Cava in the spectacular timber-beamed foyer, we checked into our family room on the third floor of the Tenerife block – each of the six areas is named after a different Canary Island.
Extremely clean (the maid called in twice a day) and incredibly comfortable, our room was a haven from the Canaries heat.
We sank into the king sized wooden-framed beds, enjoyed sprucing up with the exclusive toiletries in the pristine and colourfully tiled bathrooms, and started each day with teas and coffees on the balcony overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and hotel grounds.
And it’s these pools and sub-tropical gardens that contain over 80 categorised trees which form the centrepiece. Carefully maintained, swept and manicured each morning and evening, they are understandably Los Jameos Playa’s pride and joy.
Away from the four sizeable pools, there is a whole host of entertainment, suitable for all ages, including fitness classes like water spinning, Zumba and Pilates for adults, and crafts, games, volleyball and water polo for kids.
On a couple of the mornings, we picked up putters and balls from the Club House and headed for a game of mini golf among the volcanic rocks and palm trees, while other families knocked tennis balls around the four courts.
Indeed, there is a lot to see and do in Los Jameos Playa, but there is even more to taste – the food and drink is as good as any all-inclusive I have ever visited.
Breakfast was a tremendous mix of continental fare and other freshly prepared hot selections, while lunch offered us a break from the blazing sun with a choice of salads, meats, seafood and ice cream.
However, it’s the evening’s Iberian feasts which really elevate Los Jameos Playa’s culinary output.
As well as the literally hundreds of dishes of inventive cuisine, including made-to-order meat and fish grills and a roasting counter, there were also Mexican, Italian and Chinese-themed evenings, as well as a Friday night gala feast.
Isla and Evelyn both have a sweet tooth and the spectacular offerings at the dessert counters blew their minds.
“Curve of sandy beach”
Although there is more than enough to keep you entertained at the hotel, key card access allows you to stroll out onto the delightful Playa Matagorda – a long curve of sandy beach fringed by volcanic black rock.
From there, the paved promenade takes you along the seafront to the bustling resort of Puerto del Carmen in one direction, and the island capital Arrecife in the other.
However, apart from the odd evening stroll, we didn’t really feel the desire to leave the haven of Los Jameos Playa during the duration of our holiday.
And just like the scene sipping cocktails in the sun by the pool, our last-minute trip to the ‘Lanz of opportunity’ was picture-perfect.
Jet2holidays offers seven nights all-inclusive at the four-star Seaside Los Jameos Playa in Lanzarote, from £940 per person based on two people sharing and departing from Leeds Bradford on September 19. Price includes a 22kg baggage allowance and return transfers.
Alternatively, leading leisure airline Jet2.com offers friendly low fares, great flight times, and a generous 22kg baggage allowance to Lanzarote from Leeds Bradford from £39 per person one way including taxes.
For more information, visit www.jet2.com or call 0800 408 5599
To learn more about Seaside Los Jameos Playa and Seaside Resort Hotels, go to: www.seaside-hotels.com