Four star Butlins A review of La Palma Princess & Teneguia Princess
The La Palma Princess & Teneguia Princess is a large (625 unit) resort type hotel complex comprising a number of multi story blocks built around about a dozen swimming pools. It's relatively new (opened 2004, I think). The rooms are spacious and well serviced. It has all the facilities expected of a self contained resort (entertainment, sport, bars etc.)
It occupies a remote location amongst banana plantations in the south west of the island. The nearest small town (and supermarket) is a few miles away up a steep switchback hill, so a hire car is essential if you want to do anything other than go on organised tours or eat at the hotel. Although it's right on the coast there is no beach or immediate access to the cliffs.
The quality, quantity and variety of the food is very good, though we found the mass self-service catering rather noisy and crowded (hence the title to this review). Though there are mountains of high quality food, given the overall standard of the hotel it seemed a little penny pinching that even water and soft drinks with dinner were charged to the bill (though there was plenty of coffee and juice at breakfast).
Beach towels (for use around the pools) were issued against a rather steep deposit of €30 (£20), which was forfeited if they were not returned. Exchanging a beach towel for a clean one cost €0.5 - even though room towels were changed every day if wanted.
About one third of the rooms have some sort of sea view. Most of the rest face into pleasant courtyards. However, there are a few rooms that are significantly less good than others - particularly those at ground level where there are pedestrian walkways close by. We were allocated one of these on arrival, and found that we had to keep the curtains closed if we wanted any sort of privacy. We also had a rather large cockroach for company. We politely asked to be moved but the immediate reaction was not helpful. We politely persisted and the next day a better room was found, though rather reluctantly.
The complex is generally neat and tidy. Some areas of gardens seemed to be being renovated. One of the toilet blocks serving the pool area was rather smelly; we were pleased that our room was not too close by.
Though this is a high class resort with (mostly) excellent, spacious rooms and good facilities, I would not return, for the reasons given above. The fact that you cannot reserve a room with a sea view or above ground level makes it something of a lottery whether you end up in one of the (few) poor locations. If you do, you will need to be persistent to get the staff to do anything about it. The noisy mass catering isn't what I expected from a four star hotel. But by all means, do visit La Palma - it is a beautiful, very dramatic island - especially attractive to those interested in the outdoors.