WJ Tested: Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus Review

Guadalpin Banus Beach

Guadalpin Banus Beach

WJ Tested: Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus Review

Hotel Imperator Guadalpin Banus in Marbella, Spain

Atmosphere
Upon arrival at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus, we were greeted by a small regiment of doormen, bellmen and front desk personnel. This proved to be a harbinger of what to expect at this exclusive 5-star hotel tucked-in along the fabulous Costa del Sol in Puerto Banus, Spain. Service was exemplary with the staff demonstrating high standards of professionalism and attention to detail.

The property with a beachfront location on the Mediterranean Sea is handsomely decorated with lovely suites and to-die-for terraces. Our terrace overlooked the pool with views of the sea… simply outstanding. Many hours were spent either lounging on the terrace or lazing poolside and soaking up the sun.

An easy beach walk leads to the designer boutiques and the cosmopolitan flair of the city center. The marina harbors some fantastic yachts making for a sometimes jaw dropping stroll along these behemoths of the yachting world.

If the south of Spain is on your radar, Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus would make for a soft and luxurious landing. Wonderful staff, absolutely delicious gastronomical delights, decadent rooms, pools and The Med…. a sure bet for relaxation in style!

Note: The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus opened its doors in 2005 and is a 181-room beachfront resort within minutes of Puerto Banus, on Spain’s Costa del Sol.

This 5-star hotel is part of Hoteles Guadalpin group, which operates an additional two five-star properties on the Costa del Sol – Gran Hotel & Spa Guadalpin Marbella and Gran Hotel Guadalpin Bybos Spa 5* GL.

Location
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus is within a 5-minute drive, or 15-minute walk of Puerto Banus on Spain’s Costa del Sol. Puerto Banus was developed in 1970 as the marina of Marbella (6 km east of the old town), in the southern region of Andalucia. The marina, luxury shopping, cafes, restaurants, bars, nightclubs and grocery stores are all within quick and easy access of the hotel. The charming white-washed buildings around the marina, set against the deep-blue of the Mediterranean Sea and with the Sierra Nevada range in the background make an idyllic setting for business or pleasure travel.

Getting to Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus
Fly into Malaga then rent a car, or take a transfer, or use the airport bus shuttle service to Marbella, or take a taxi. By train from various parts of Spain to Malaga. From Malaga take local train to Fuengirola. Then either take a taxi from Fuengirola (35 km) to the hotel, or take a bus to Marbella bus station and then taxi (6km) to hotel.

Guadalpin Banus Guestroom Living Area

Guadalpin Banus Guestroom Living Area

Rooms and Suites
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus is a four-floor, 181-room beachfront resort within minutes of Puerto Banus, on Spain’s Costa del Sol. Rooms and suites are spacious and all feature a private terrace. Depending on personal needs and budget, guests can choose from a classic double room to the amazingly spacious top-floor Presidential Suite with sweeping Mediterranean Sea views. Rooms are decorated with high-quality materials and finishes. Art work is varied and tasteful.

Everything in the Superior Junior Suite WJ stayed in was impeccable –spotless bed linens; plush bathroom towels and robes; clean and dust-free surfaces; well-kept furniture, fixtures and fittings; fully-outfitted and functioning kitchen.

Guadalpin Banus Bedroom

Guadalpin Banus Bedroom

The beds were a good size for a twin and very comfy, with duvets covered with white cotton linens. In the bedroom area there was plenty of closet space to accommodate us both, along with a wall-mounted flatscreen TV and pant press.

Guadalpin Banus Covered Terrace

Guadalpin Banus Covered Terrace

The covered terrace was especially spacious and comfortable, providing for a pleasant sanctuary where we could enjoy the outdoors without being on the beach or pool-side.

Junior Suite Twin Beds

Junior Suite Twin Beds

Room Types

  • Classic Double Room – A spacious room with private terrace
  • Superior Double Room – Fabulous Mediterranean and/or pool views can be enjoyed from this spacious and comfortable room with a private terrace
  • Junior Suite – Complete with a fully-equipped kitchen, lounge and terrace
  • Superior Junior Suite – Featuring a fully-equipped kitchen, lounge, terrace and fabulous Mediterranean and/or pool views
  • Deluxe Junior Suite – Located on the top floor, these suites feature a fully-equipped kitchen, lounge, terrace and large private roof-top terrace with a jacuzzi and Mediterranean Sea views
  • Beachfront Banus Suite – Located on 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors, these suites feature a fully-equipped kitchen, lounge, terrace and amazing views of the beach and Mediterranean
  • Presidential Suite – Located on the top floor, fitted with fully-equipped kitchen, lounge, terrace, private roof terrrace with jacuzzi and fabulous views of the Mediterranean

One extra bed is allowed in suites free of charge for children under 12. There is an extra charge for children for half board (breakfast buffet & buffet dinner). Baby cots are available for free.

Junior Suite Bathroom

Junior Suite Bathroom

All rooms and suites offer at a minimum:

  • Direct line telephones in room and bathroom
  • Free WIFI throughout
  • Individual air conditioning and central heating
  • Private terrace
  • Hairdryer
  • Toiletries basket
  • Piped music
  • Free safe
  • Full bathroom
  • Minibar
  • TV
  • Free use of Fitness Center and sauna
  • Included buffet breakfast
  • Free pool towel use

Observations
Daily maid service is included – We found the suite we occupied to be very clean and well-kept. The terrace furniture had a few small stains on the white upholstered cushions and the planters were in need of tidying. Other than a loose faucet in one of the bathroom sinks we did not have any other maintenance issues. Overall we were very pleased with the general cleanliness of everything.

Kitchen
The kitchen has dishes and cutlery for three settings (maximum guest occupancy is three), plenty of pans. Our kitchen lacked a corkscrew. Upon calling housekeeping a cork screw was delivered within minutes by a very apologetic and friendly member of staff. A variety of wine and drink glasses were supplied to suit your beverage of choice.

Turn-down service is available upon request. We requested turn-down service once and our bed sheets were turned back. Disappointed that wet towels placed on the floor were not replaced.

In-room safe
Although free to use a credit card is required to open and close the safe. We found this very inconvenient as we then needed to take a credit card with us when we went to the pool or the beach.

Guest-floor hallway
Generally very clean and quiet, other than the presence of a linen/laundry cart pushed into a corner near the guest elevators.

Terrace Dining at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

Terrace Dining at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

Restaurants and Bars
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus offers plenty of dining options to suit guests, including two restaurants (Lorea and Rincon Guadalpin), lobby bar (Sofia), pool bar and beach club. Room service is available 24 hours, and if you book a suite with a kitchen you can go grocery shopping and prepare some of your own meals. Although, isn’t part of the fun of being on vacation to let someone else do the cooking?

Buffet breakfast is included in the room rate and served in Lorea from 8:00 A.M. until 11.00 A.M. WJ was delighted by the extensive selection on the breakfast buffet. Everything was nicely presented and the food was of excellent quality. Hot food items included: bacon; sausage; eggs made to order; pancakes; baked beans; grilled tomato. Beverages: tea; coffee; cocoa. Cold food items included: cereals; fresh fruit; cheese; deli meats; pastries; breads. Beverages: juices; bottled water.

Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus Dining Options
Restaurant Lorea
This restaurant specializes in Basque and Mediterranean cuisine and diners can enjoy their meal indoors or on the terrace overlooking the beach and sea. The included breakfast buffet, as well as, Buffetmania are served here. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.

Restaurant El Rincon de Guadalpin
Sophisticated dining in an art deco ambience. Diners can choose from the A La Carte Menu, Menu Degustacion, Set Three-Course Menu or Sunday Lunch Menu. Serving dinner Tuesday to Saturday and Sunday lunch. To view menus – click here.

Sofia Cocktails
Elegant lobby bar with terrace at front of hotel. You name the cocktail or drink and the barman is sure to be able to make it.

Pool Bar
Swim up or walk up, the choice is yours. Enjoy your beverage of choice poolside. Snacks also available.

Beach Club
Satisfy all your food and beverage needs while lazing under a parasole on the beach. Open seasonally.

BuffetMania at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

Buffet at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

WJ enjoyed a great evening meal at Restaurant Lorea’s Buffet. We enjoyed a huge variety of hot and cold food items including:

  • assorted breads
  • 2 types of soup
  • assortment of cheeses
  • 6+ types of olives
  • variety of roasted nuts
  • sliced meats (ham, salami, etc.)
  • assortment of hot and cold vegetables
  • marinated vegetables – red peppers
  • pickled white asparagus spears
  • pickles and cornichons
  • smoked salmon
  • grilled vegetables
  • rice dishes (paella, pilaf)
  • marinated octopus
  • chopped turkey salad
  • salads – 4 types of lettuce, shredded beet/carrot salad
  • chicken – grilled to order
  • fish – grilled to order
  • steak – grilled to order
  • roast pork
  • pasta dishes – spaghetti with marinara
  • seasonal fruit selection
  • selection of cakes
BuffetMania at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

Buffet at Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus

Our waiter recommended a reasonably priced bottle of Spanish red wine for us to compliment the meal – Gran Feudo Crianza 2005 (blend of Tempranillo and Garnacha).

Even though this was a self-serve buffet, service was exceptionally friendly and very attentive as we spent a couple of hours dining on the terrace listening to the sound of waves crashing on the beach.

Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus Pool Bar

Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus Pool Bar

Pool & Beach
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus enjoys a beachfront location facing the Mediterranean Sea along Spain’s Costa del Sol. It is possible to walk from the hotel along the beach to Puerto Banus shopping area where there are designer boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, department stores and entertainment options. However, it is recommended that guests drive or take a taxi at night to Puerto Banus and not walk the beach.

There are a number of small jetties that were created to maintain calm water along the stretch of beach in this area. Directly in front of the hotel is a little cove that is perfect for playing in the sea and the fine grey sand that is typical to this area of the Mediterranean.

Sun loungers and parasoles on the beach adjacent to the hotel are only for hotel guest use; however, it is a public beach that is shared with locals and tourists alike. The views along the beach are spectacular with the contrasting landscape of the sea at your toes and Sierra Nevada mountain range in the distance. For those in the mood for total relaxation while lazing on the beach, massages are available.

Guests have the Guadalpin Beach Club available for their use and along the entire stretch of beach there are beach clubs, restaurants, bars and nightclubs.

Guadalpin Banus Pool

Guadalpin Banus Pool

The outdoor pool area has an adult pool, small wading pool that is adequate for babies and toddlers, pool bar, sun loungers and parasols. Pool towels are provided complimentary for guest use with the exchange of a towel key – explained at check-in. Although the pools are supposed to be heated, we found them to be uncomfortably chilly during our stay. The pool bar is open seasonally and swimmers can enjoy swim-up access.

Kids
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus welcomes families and makes it easy for parents to keep an eye on their kids, while still being able to relax.

The children’s play area is situated next to the Restaurant Lorea terrace, so when the kids are finished eating they can play within close proximity and visibility of parents.

There is a seasonal kid’s club, children’s menus and babysitting service available. The outdoor pool area has a small wading pool that is adequate for babies and toddlers.

Beach time is a favorite family pastime. The sea is a fun place to wade and swim and we noticed some families playing frisbee, bocce ball and fishing from the end of the man-made jetty near the hotel. Around Puerto Banus and Marbella there are many attractions and activities to suit kids of all ages.

Mediterranean Sea at Puerto Banus

Mediterranean Sea at Puerto Banus

Things To Do
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus is within footsteps of the Mediterranean Sea, so water-babies will be able to enjoy water sports galore just outside their hotel door. For guests that want more from their vacation than lazing by the pool or sifting sand through their toes on the beach, the hotel is ideally situated along Spain’s Costa del Sol for exploring all the Andalucian region has to offer.

Puerto Banus Main Marina

Puerto Banus Main Marina

Activities
You name it, you can do it in and around Puerto Banus — boat rental, climbing, cricket, cycling, hiking, horse riding, paintball, paragliding, scuba diving, skiing & snowboarding, spa visits, surfing, tennis, windsurfing, kite-surfing, yoga.

Marina – Luxury yachts and boats line this exclusive harbour where royalty and the rich and famous hang out. Rental boats are available.

Shopping – Experience a wide range of shops to satisfy even the most sophisticated of tastes. Wander the tiny streets around the marina and take in the boutique and eclectic shopping choices or visit Puerto Banus Shopping Center — five stories of goods and services including, El Corte Ingles and HiperCor food supermarket.

Golf – Golfers will have a ball with the number (30+/-) and variety of top-class courses within driving distance of Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus.

Sightseeing – Day trips from Puerto Banus can include Marbella, Ronda, Casares, Malaga and Gibraltar.

Spa Treatments – Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus guests are invited to enjoy spa treatments at Guadalpin Spa at the Gran Hotel Guadalpin Marbella, a sister hotel only 6 km away. Guests can easily spend a couple of hours or the entire day enjoying spa treatments at Guadalpin Spa, a new concept health, beauty and well-being center. Appointments are required.

Massage By The Pool – Guests at the hotel can enjoy a relaxing pool-side massage.

Fitness Facilities – The hotel has a well-equipped fitness center that even the most ardent gym-goer will enjoy. Use of this modern facility is included in the room-rate.

Visiting Puerto Banus along Spain's Costa del Sol

Visiting Puerto Banus along Spain’s Costa del Sol

If You Go:

 

Note: WAVEJourney were guests of Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus, but all reviews are based on our own firsthand guest experience. Read our full disclosure statement to see that this has no effect on our reviews.

 

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