This trip took us to the Club La Costa World resort called San Diego Suites on the outskirts of Fuengirola, which is a town on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain. The resort is one part of a much larger complex, ranging from the luxurious to the basic. Fortunately for us San Diego Suites, along with its sister resort Santa Cruz Suites, is the top end of that scale in terms of accommodation, swimming pools and bars/restaurants. We had visited the complex previously, albeit staying in the Santa Cruz Suites resort on that occasion.
Club La Costa World is Europe’s largest independent resort operator according to its web site, but to most people the word ‘time share’ springs to mind. We have been members for a few years now and, to be fair, it’s not as bad as some ‘holiday clubs’ or ‘time share’ schemes you may have heard about.
If we could turn back the clock, we wouldn’t have signed up and if we could sell it now we would. However, that’s not because we feel ripped off; it just doesn’t suit our holiday requirements, as it ties us down to specific holiday destinations and therefore is not value for money for us. If we exploited it more, used it to only ever holiday in their locations and planned our trips well ahead of when we wanted to travel, then it would make much more sense.
After the expense of the road trip around America earlier in the year, this was a cheap and cheerful week away with the family. The aim was simply to relax, catch up on sleep, top up the sun tan and generally chill. When that’s the objective, all you really need is a comfy clean bed, pleasant surroundings, decent food and drink close by and, of course, lots of sun. The Club La Costa World resorts tick every one of these boxes no matter which location we select.
Unfortunately, the week away was not one of our best, especially as far as Amanda was concerned. We still aren’t clear on what caused it, but Amanda picked up a stomach bug of some sort that progressively got worse throughout the week. It didn’t prevent us doing the things we’d planned, but it’s never nice feeling queasy and needing to be within a 100 yards of a toilet at all times, especially whilst on holiday. The issue got worse each day and eventually led to a 2am visit to a local 24-hour clinic, followed by a longer trip to Hospital Costa del Sol, in nearby Marbella, a few hours later.
The most worrying thing, apart from Amanda’s well-being, was the fact that we were scheduled to fly home later that day and, at one point, that looked extremely unlikely. You have to smile through adversity and the most comical part was me trying to explain Amanda’s symptoms to medical staff that couldn’t speak much English. A massive thank you is in order for both Google, for their translation services, and Three, for providing a mobile subscription plan that provides data roaming at no extra cost in Spain. Without these two factors I would have been totally screwed!
Well that’s enough about that part of the trip as I’m pretty sure Amanda wouldn’t want me to share all the gory details! Suffice to say that after multiple bags of IV fluids, various tests and bags of medication, Amanda was declared fit to travel and we made it home without further incident.
We continued our theme of taking to public transport to get from the airport to our ultimate destination and, once again, it was a breeze. The train from Málaga Airport to Fuengirola was easy to figure out and extremely cheap, then it was a short taxi drive to the resort. Coach transfers are officially history for us these days. We used the train again to visit Torremolinos for a day out when Amanda wasn’t feeling too ill. Although we were not there long, Torremolinos seemed a nice tourist destination. It had plenty to do and see apart from simply enjoying the lengthy stretch of sandy beach. We grabbed a late breakfast, had a look around a rather fancy looking Town Hall building, played some crazy golf and had a beer before heading back to the train station. To be totally honest, it was far too hot for much else, as even walking was hard work.
Around the resort, the facilities were great. The various restaurants served up tasty food, with good beer and cocktails. The prices were obviously higher than in downtown Fuengirola, but that was mainly down to the lack of competition rather than outstanding quality. We made use of the apartment kitchen for breakfast most days and bought cans of beer from the on-site supermarket at a fraction of the cost of the prices from the bars. The apartment was huge inside, with two bedrooms, three bathrooms, separate lounge and dining areas, plus a large well stocked kitchen. Outside, the apartment provided us with a very impressive and private L-shaped patio area. Part of this was shaded by the balcony above and the rest was open to the sun’s rays for most of the day. There was a small Jacuzzi pool, a BBQ, outside table and chairs, a pair of sun loungers and a double size day bed to relax on. All-in-all, it was pretty sweet and spending the day around the apartment was no hardship when Amanda just wanted to sleep.
Although not the best break we’ve ever had, it was good to be away from work and feel the sun on your back. However, with Amanda not feeling too great for most of the week, we have another trip already booked for October…this time to one of the two Club La Costa World resorts in Orlando, Florida.