Hotel Amic Horizonte, Palma de Majorca
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Review of "Hotel Amic Horizonte, Palma de Majorca"
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>>We like to grab some last minute sun before the winter sets in. As we are no longer restricted to school holidays, we tend to head away when the prices drop at the end of the Autumn half term. So it was that we found ourselves looking for cheap flights leaving at the end of October. With the added incentive of Ryanair vouchers received as a birthday present, my husband found reasonably priced flights from Stansted to Palma, Mallorca. Whilst I accept that Ryanair is not everybody’s airline of choice, in our experience it serves its purpose and the are competitive. Having sorted the transport, my husband’s research turned to hotels and having decided that Hotel Amic Horizonte, Palma de Mallorca, within easy travelling distance of the airport, would do the job, he booked us in for a week half board.
Address: Hotel Amic Horizonte,
Carrer de Vista Alegre, 1,
Telephone : +34 902 40 06 61The Balearic Islands, consisting of Mallorca (the biggest), Menorca and Ibiza lie in the Mediterranean Sea to the east of the Spanish mainland. Palma is the capital on Mallorca. Palma is roughly 280 km south of Barcelona, 470km west of the coast of Sardinia, 290 km north of Algiers, Algeria and 300km east of Valencia.
Hotel Amic Horizonte, Palma is located on the other side of the capital, 13.3 km from the airport, around 20 minutes by taxi. The airport is further round the bay to the east and the hotel lies to the western end of Palma with views over the cruise terminal below the hotel.
There are five AMIC hotels in Mallorca. Amic being Catalan for friend. In turn these are linked to the City Hotels Hispania group, which was founded in 1996. The umbrella organisation over this since the 1980s appears to have been the Grup Bonanova. Coincidentally Hotel Amic Horizonte is located in the Bonanova district of Palma.Hotel Amic Horizonte Palma was built in 1963, as is evident from the somewhat dated concrete block appearance of its design. It had an extensive refurbishment in the winter of 2004 and since then there appears to have been a small scale continual process of improvement.
We booked a superior sea view room. As we entered the bathroom was to the right. The bedroom was a reasonable size, very adequate for a week’s stay. The appearance was slightly dated, but it was bright and airy and very clean. The floor was of white and grey marble effect tiles and the walls were white wood chip.
The wooden furniture was of a light mahogany colour. There were two upright chairs, one with arms, always useful for hanging clothes over, for those of us who never quite get round to putting them back in the wardrobe. The seats were of a grey padded material matching the runner on the bed.
Opposite the bed there was a dressing table/work desk with two small drawers and an alcove housing a mini fridge, which we found very useful for storing drinks, especially bottles of wine. I call it a work station (as the website used this term) but it wasn’t any use for working (not that I would want to when on holiday) as two thirds of it was taken up by a large free standing flat screen TV, leaving just enough room for my husband’s hat.The mini fridge was a bonus, but on the downside, in common with many other Spanish hotels, there were no tea/coffee making facilities. Not being ones to miss out on a cup of tea we had packed our trusty travel kettle and some tea bags and found the mini fridge useful for storing milk.
The TV was obviously a later addition to the room as it also obscured a chunk of the wooden framed mirror on the wall behind. There was a wall lamp with brass fittings and a cream lamp shade on the wall next to the mirror. A little further along beyond two useful plug sockets there was a wooden shelf unit ideally suited for suitcases.The focal point of the room was the outside view, with sliding patio doors set at an angle leading out onto a small almost triangular shaped balcony. There was just enough room for two grey steel framed chairs and a matching grey coffee table and glass ash tray. The balcony had a view down to the patio area near the restaurant and further down to the pool on the next level. There was a view towards the cruise terminal and the bay, which was enhanced because we were higher than the opposite block of rooms. It wasn’t a full sea view, but the designers had done a good job of trying to ensure that as many rooms as possible had sight of the bay.
As with many sea views it was constantly changing, as we watched cruise liners and ferries coming and going in the terminal below. The cruise traffic dropped off considerably in early November, but the ferries linking Mallorca with mainland Spain and the other islands were regular callers. We got used to hearing the hoot of the ships’ horns as they prepared to set sail. Fortunately this tended to happen before we slept.As well as a full length grey curtain matching the bed runner, there were also net curtains at the patio doors.
The room was described as a “double”, but in common with many other Spanish hotels I have visited “double” meant two separately made up single beds. Why they don’t describe the rooms as “twin” beats me. It makes me wonder how the Spanish population increases if these sleeping arrangements are widespread in the country. But that’s probably a subject for another day! The beds were reasonably comfortable.To get back on track. The bed (beds) had a large curved wooden headboard and a bedside cabinet with a drawer on each side. There was one long thin pillow on each, white sheets and a thin white cover. There was a quilt in the wardrobe, but we didn’t have need of it while we were there. In hindsight and given the issue of snoring I regret not requesting more pillows from reception, as we later found other guests had done. Somehow in England I can be reasonably assertive in getting what I want in a hotel, but put me in a foreign country with a different language and I become a little more reticent.
Above the bed there were two lamps with brass fittings matching the one on the opposite wall near the mirror. There were also plug sockets with the light switches above the bed, which required a reasonable length lead for them to be of use.
The wardrobe was built into the wall on the other side of the bed. It had a brass coloured frame and mirrored sliding doors. There was a full length hanging space on one side and a shorter hanging space on the other above shelves. There was a safe inside the wardrobe, which required a small plastic key to activate it, available for a fee from reception. A 15 euro deposit was required and it cost 4 euros per day or 16 euros for a week. In my view, if there’s a safe in the room its cost should be included in the room rate, but sadly many hotels abroad see this as a nice little earner, especially as many insurance policies won’t pay out if cash has been taken from a room and the safe has not been used.
The bathroom was a generous size and a slightly unusual shape with the wall to the corridor at an angle to redress the balance of the angled wall by the balcony. It was light and bright and fully tiled with white and grey marble effect tiles on the floor and walls. The sink was housed in a marble effect surround and located to the left in an alcove behind the door. There was a selection of toiletries as well as hand soap by the sink. In common with many other French, Spanish and Portuguese hotels, the hairdryer was mounted on the wall by the sink, handy for the large rectangular mirror above the sink, but surely a health and safety hazard.Another peculiar feature of the bathroom was the location of the light switch and a plug socket near the sink, rather than in the bedroom. As well as posing safety questions, the fact that the door blocked the sink area when open made locating the light switch in the middle of the night well-nigh impossible. As a result and feeling slightly guilty on an environmental basis, we left the light on overnight.
Beyond the sink in the corner was the evidence of the superior room status, a curved Jacuzzi bath. It wasn’t the most modern, but it worked well. The bath was a generous size and had a moulded seat in the corner beneath a shower head holder and also a grab rail on the wall. The shower came off the taps. Although there was no shower curtain, the shape and size of the bath meant that even I managed to ensure hardly any water hit the floor when using the shower. There was a shower gel dispenser by the bath.There was a wall mounted radiator in another corner near the bath with a towel rail above. The towels were not the largest or thickest I have ever had and bore more resemblance to the fabric of our tea towels at home than our bath towels. The toilet was wedged into another corner. Due to the unusual shape of the bathroom there were several (corners I mean, not toilets). Opposite it, in another corner was the obligatory bidet. The bathroom suite was not the most modern, but it was clean, which counts highly for me.
Hotel Amic Horizonte Palma was built on the side of a hill. From reception, at street level, on the inland side, there were stairs down to a function room on the left with views out over the bay. This room was put to good use. The weekend we arrived there seemed to be a chess tournament going on and mention is made on the internet of upcoming chess events at the hotel. Later on during our stay we noticed Christian songs being sung loudly mainly in English. Wondering if an enterprising church had come away for a church weekend to Palma and being a little nosey, my husband went to investigate on the way down to the evening meal. It turned out to be a Chinese church using the room for its meetings. Other guests didn’t seem bothered by the musical background, with one fellow English guest declaring that she was happy to “Hallelujah” with the rest of them.
>On the next level, below the function room and at the base of the main accommodation block was the buffet dining room. There was a small seating area with comfortable chairs outside it and also a bar. There was another bar to the right as we went into the dining room. On the left and curving round into the back corner of the room there was a large servery with some basic dishes being cooked in front of guests.
The dining area was L shaped with several supporting pillars around the room. Tables and chairs were not the plushest, but did the job. The tiled floor meant that the room could be noisy, as the noise echoed around. We soon realised that, although there were large windows opening towards the bay, the view for those further along was obscured by neighbouring buildings in front of the hotel. Getting down for when the doors opened, which wasn’t hard as we were starving by 8.00pm, proved to be a good move if we wanted a table with a view.Breakfast was served in the same place as the evening meal. After a day or two we noticed other diners taking their breakfast out to the tables on the patio area by the dining room. Although it was late October/early November we got into the habit of doing this as well, taking care to select a table in the sun and avoid the smokers if possible. This made for a very pleasant breakfast experience, although it was a slightly longer walk back to the buffet.
On the other side of the patio there was a large function room with a bar, which was put to good use at Halloween (of which more later).
There was a lunchtime buffet available in the hotel for 15 euros. Most days we didn’t bother, but, as our flight back was later in the day we took the hotel lunch on the last day we were there. There was slightly less choice than in the evening, but enough to make us feel that it was reasonable value for money. It also saved us the hassle of finding somewhere else nearby.Staff in the restaurant were always very pleasant and polite. One lady, who seemed to be ever present, remembered us and other guests and soon had our drinks ready for us before we even asked
>Despite all the review sites and pictures online, the only way to find out what a hotel is really like is to try it yourself and there’s still an element of risk as to what it will be like when you get there. First impressions of Hotel Amic Horizonte were of a hotel a little dated, but I soon warmed to it and saw past this to appreciate the ever changing view from our balcony, the helpfulness of the staff and the good value offered by a stay here.
As well as the changing scenery afforded by the cruise liners in the port below, we appreciated some great sunrises as well.I wondered if the location of Hotel Amic Horizonte would be a little too far out from Palma de Mallorca, as it was 4.6km from the centre. But we didn’t find this a problem. At the bottom of the hill and within easy walking distance from the hotel was the Porto Pi shopping centre with a large supermarket in the basement (ideal for stocking up on wine and gifts to take home). From here, as directed by the helpful hotel receptionist, we were able to take a bus heading away from Palma to Ses Illetes, where we found a pleasant beach and several coves.
Another day we set off to walk along by the port towards the cathedral. Part way along, as we were starting to tire, we came across boat trips offering tours of the harbour. Our intention was to take the tour as a break and then continue our walk, but when, towards the end of the trip, the boat pulled in near the cathedral, we decided to get off and save the walk. The cathedral was worth seeing and we enjoyed wandering around the old part of Palma. We eventually found a bus that took us back to a stop near the front of the hotel.Having seen the Castell de Belver from windows along our corridor and, as it looked within reasonable walking distance we decided to give it ago, eventually reaching it via a long and circuitous route and thanks to a young dog walker who took it upon himself to be our guide. Once we got there it was well worth it for views towards Palma and our hotel with the bay beyond. I’m not sure how far we walked that day, but we were grateful for a dip in the pool afterwards.
Another day we took the bus into Palma and caught the wooden tourist train through the hills to Soller, which I would thoroughly recommend. After a wander around Soller and a drink we took the tram down to Port Soller, which was a hidden gem, with its sheltered bay and beautiful scenery. The warmest sea swimming in the Med that I have ever experienced in early November and well worth a visit.
Product Information : Hotel Amic Horizonte, Palma de Majorca
Manufacturer's product description
Rating: 3 Stars
Address: Calle Vista Alegre 1, La Bonanova, 07015 Palma de Mallorca, Majorca
City: Palma de Majorca
Listed on Ciao since: 22/02/2017