Back in April we spent 11 days at the Hotel Be Grand Resort in Antalya Turkey. I had booked the hotel direct a few months before for £1,557 for an all-inclusive family room for five people. I couldn’t believe my luck. £1,557 for five of us. I found the hotel whilst searching Jet2 Holidays and it was advertised at more than £1,800 for the week. Anyone who has tried to find a four star or above family holiday for five people will know that anything below £3,000 on a holiday sight is like gold dust. It seemed too good to be true when the price was even less and for longer, simply by booking direct.
I then booked our flights with Jet2 from Birmingham to Antalya. With airport parking and a transfer the holiday worked out at £2,300 for five people for eleven nights. What was the catch? There wasn’t really a catch, more just some small niggles due to the time of year. Below I have outlined all the key information for anyone interested in a visit the Hotel Delphin Be Grand.
This was the main niggle with the holiday. Our trip was in the first two weeks in April which we now know to be a little early in the season for a visit to Antalya. We had some absolutely gorgeous days where the wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the temperature was around 26c, we also had some drizzly days where the wind blew so strong we weren’t allowed on the beach. It was a little hit and miss which was a shame. We weren’t expecting scorching temperatures and we didn’t want them, we aren’t a family who can handle the summer temperatures in Turkey, the wind and clouds were a shame though.
We had several sets of friends who coincidentally visited Antalya at the end of April and they had nothing but pure sun. I think the weather must really pick up from mid-April onwards which is important to bear in mind and something I think is reflected in the price.
The hotel was amazing. We kept saying to the boys that mummy and daddy had never stayed anywhere so posh before and that they were very lucky. It was a huge complex with a grand reception, long glossy tiled corridors filled with large pieces of art and sculptures, several pools, tennis courts, beautiful a la carte restaurants and several bars.
The hotel also featured a spa (I didn’t get to go), arcade with bowling alley, large gym, indoor pool and shops however these were very expensive. There was also an onsite funfair which had been one of the things we were most looking forward to, this was a big disappointment. It was unkept and extremely dated, the rides looked rusty and I wouldn’t have been comfortable with the boys going on them even if it had been open. As it was out of season the fun fair was only open for two hours a day in the afternoon, this wasn’t the illuminated night time entertainment we had seen on the website and it was a real shame.
The grounds of the hotel were really well kept with lots of greenery and the pools were all pristine. There was a large fairy tale style kids club which we had also been looking forward to using. The boys hadn’t been to a kids club on holiday before and this one had looked great on the website, the boys were even excited to go and we were looking forward to an hour spent in silence. Imagine how disappointed we were when it was closed. Again because we were staying out of season the club was shut and instead there was a small one being run in a meeting room near the spa. We went to have a look but it was soulless so we never used it.
There was only one outdoor pool which was heated and this was a deep pool that was partially covered by an overhanging mezzanine. The twins decided it was too deep for them and they refused to go in so we braved the none heated pools instead. The kids splash pool, again something we had really been looking forward to, wasn’t open for the first dew days of our stay. This was a big issue for us and our boys and I did complain to guest services along with many of the other brits at the hotel. The guest services team were quite rude and said “it’s too cold, things are closed and that’s why you get cheap stay.” It wasn’t however disclosed on the hotel website that the pool and kids club were not open in the winter season which I didn’t think was right. After a few days of people complaining the kids splash pool was opened and full of kids.
The splash pool was brilliant and when it opened it really did make the holiday. In the run up to that we had used a pool next to it which had a gradual incline, this was perfect for the kids to run around in and play with their inflatable toys. We also utilised the indoor pool on a rainy day and that was warm and a really good size.
I cannot fault the room, the word room doesn’t really do it justice, it was huge. We had a duplex suite with a n entrance area, bathroom, double and single bed, seating area and balcony. Upstairs was accessed from the entrance and this contained another bathroom and the master bedroom which had a large glass wall overlooking the downstairs seating area. It was perfect for a family who need to be together but in their own spaces.
There was a mini bar in the room which was included in our all-inclusive package, this was restocked daily with soft drinks, wine, beer and snacks. The room was cleaned daily with the maids making towel animals on the beds for the kids. There was so much space and to the kids delight, the Disney channel, something they don’t have at home. The only disappointment was the view from the balcony. We overlooked the bins and hotel storage area, not exactly a nice evening view to look at whilst unwinding.
A la carte
We ate in two of the a la Carte restaurants and the food was amazing. We tried the Italian and the Chinese and both delivered a fantastic experience and ample delicious cuisine. We had intended to mainly eat in the a la Carte restaurants in the evenings as unlike most all-inclusive hotels the amount of visits was not capped per week. The kids however had different plans. Sitting and waiting nicely for three courses wore thin after our first two visits and so we spent the rest of the holiday eating in the buffet.
The buffet was also brilliant. The amount of choice was next level and every evening there were different dishes. This was a real relief as there’s nothing worse than being served up the same selection night after night. I don’t think I ate the same meal twice during the nine nights we ate in the buffet. The selection for fussy children though was limited with no chicken nuggets or beans. I’d love to be able to say my kids eat whatever I tell them to but they don’t, they are fussy so feeding them was a challenge. Most evenings they had a mix of chips, sweetcorn, cucumber, cheese and pasta.
During the day we didn’t visit the buffet restaurant as there was so much choice throughout the complex. There was an outside buffet restaurant and kebab counter close to the outdoor pools and on the walk from the pools down towards the beach there were small kiosks where you could take your own fruit, coffee, cakes and even where you could make toasties and sandwiches. To the kids delight there was a kiosk which had chips, hot dogs and nuggets and at the bar next the kids splash pool there was a pizza kiosk which made the most delicious pizzas.
Drinks were available at every pool with waiters bringing you whatever you needed throughout the day. I had some gorgeous fresh mint teas whilst watching the kids play in the pool. We gave a small tip most days for the pool side service but this wasn’t expected.
Another drawback to visiting out of season was the lack of entertainment. For the first eight days the basic ‘entertainment’ programme was held in a conference room with all the light on. There was no atmosphere and the quality of what was being put on was dire so we spent every night in the bar playing top trumps and Super Zings. We had a lovely time and it was nice to spend quality time as a family but after a while it wore thin for the kids and some entertainment would have been greatly received.
On the last couple of nights the entertainment moved up to a room off of the main bar area which was better but the quality was still poor. It was a real shame as I can see from following the hotel on Instagram that their summer daytime and evening entertainment is great, I think this gets going from the end of April.
The hotel was right on the beach, you really didn’t need to leave the complex and the beach was clean with good sun beds and a beach side bar. The pier which looked great on the website was also shut which was a shame. The hotel was around a fifteen minute drive from the airport which was perfect. Many of the flights home from Turkey are really late night flights so being close to the airport and not having to do a two-three hour transfer was brilliant.
Would we go back?
We definitely would go back to Antalya, the quality of the hotels was brilliant as was the service and hospitality, we just wouldn’t go back out of season. I think we got such a great deal because of the time of year we went so I know it would cost a lot more to visit in a more peak time. This would have been an unreal holiday had the entertainment been on, the kids club open, the splash pool open for the duration and the weather more consistent. I think May would be an ideal time to visit and I would definitely consider the Hotel Delphin Be Grand again.