Do you have young children? Are you in search of a perfect family-friendly holiday? Then stop there, because I've found it for you. A stay at Martinhal Beach Resort and Hotel in Portugal is the nearest you'll get to your dream break: a completely child-oriented five-star hotel in a beautiful setting.
Something weird happens from the moment you arrive. You can't help it: you just start to unwind. Yes, even after a long flight with children at a silly time of day, you relax. You feel the breeze on your skin, the sun on your face, the sense of space. You take in the big skies, the sparkling bay, the comfy sofas....
What's to love?
The terrific Algarve location is just one of the many things that makes Martinhal so special. Nestled on a majestic sweeping crescent of sand on the edge of a protected natural park, this place is off the beaten track enough to lower your blood pressure nicely. It's all refreshingly simple and low-key here: staff are discreet and friendly, the decor is extremely tasteful and the atmosphere a delight. But the real secret to its success is that you get the feeling that Martinhal really, really cares about its visitors, whatever age they happen to be, and goes to great lengths to keep them happy.
So what will you find here? Soaring cliffs. Squashy bean bags. Jigsaw puzzles. Pink cocktails. Swimming pools (lots of them). Oh, and one the best beaches on the Algarve, which you get pretty much to yourself. There's a choice of accommodation styles and restaurants (all of them child friendly), lots and lots of space to run around in and a genuinely happy, laid-back atmosphere. You can do a lot here, or you can do absolutely nothing: either way, this is the place to do it.
And did I mention it was child-friendly? From teenage surfing dudes to tiny toddlers making their first splashes in the sea, kids of all ages have a ball. Activities range from board games to paddle boarding and windsurfing. There's a creche for children from six months, various childrens' clubs, a playground and a huge games room for socialising, playing pool or for watching films.
What's to love?
The atmosphere, the tranquil surroundings the natural environment, the chance to properly unwind even if you are with lots of very small people. The stylish interiors, the interesting artwork, the cosy rugs. Martinhal somehow manages to encourage relaxation and fun at the same time.
This place is perfect if you...
...have children and are in need of a beach holiday. We can honestly say we haven't been anywhere as child-friendly.
I want to go!
The wonderfully mild climate of the Algarve means that Martinhal is that it's pretty much an all-year-round destination. A winter break here is a great alternative to a ski holiday, as there are lots of outdoor activities to enjoy. The hotel runs lots of enticing packages out of season, including family surf events, free kids' clubs from November to March, great winter rates (83 Euros per night per person half board, children under 12 go free). Visit martinhal.com for more.