I believe it's a tad early to share my recent vacation experience, but if I find a moment, I thought I'd stop postponing it. After all, it's vacation time, and perhaps my account might be useful to someone contemplating a trip to Antalya.
I hope you'll bear with me as I recount our journey.
Upon our arrival at the airport, we were warmly greeted by a representative of the agency who handed us our plane tickets and wished us a "pleasant vacation." Our chosen airline for this trip was "Sky Airlines," and the flight was almost at full capacity. It turned out to be a pleasant journey, with breathtaking views as we descended upon Antalya. I'll include some pictures taken from the plane as well. Approximately two hours later, around noon, we touched down at the Turkish airport in Antalya.
The moment we disembarked, we were greeted by a wave of intense heat! After completing the necessary formalities, we left the airport terminal and were heartily welcomed by the Agency representatives.
Following our warm reception and after a quick check-in, we were ushered into a minibus owned by the same travel agency. We waited a few minutes for other passengers who, like us, were headed to Belek, our destination!
I couldn't help but notice the smart uniforms worn by the drivers and guides—grey trousers and white long-sleeved shirts, creating a striking contrast against their sun-kissed faces. They were very friendly right from the start as we engaged in conversation.
The Maritim Pine Beach resort is located 45 km from Antalya, only 3 km away, and was inaugurated in 2003. Maritim Hotels is a prestigious hotel chain with a global presence.
During our journey between Antalya and Belek, Aytaci shared some essential tips for a successful holiday in Turkey. He was a talkative and jovial character who even wanted to "click" on the part of my T-shirt where it said "Click here for a successful vacation"!
Upon arrival at our hotel, it appeared that we were the only ones from the flight who would be staying there, at least on that day.
The hotel was immense! I was grateful that they provided us with a map at the reception because, on the first day, I thought I might get lost and spend the entire stay trying to find my way around!
The guide led us to the reception, where Mustafa took our passports and affixed a blue plastic bracelet to our wrists, bearing the hotel's name and "ultra all-inclusive." He also handed us two cards for use when exchanging towels for the sunbeds on the beach and three other cards of a different design for our room doors. We parted ways with the guide, but we knew he'd return on the second day to check if everything was satisfactory and discuss any optional excursions.
We ascended to the second floor, courtesy of a delightful, somewhat circular elevator, and our luggage was delivered to our room by a hotel staff member.
The hallways were quite lengthy and adorned with burgundy carpets and intriguing paintings on the walls.
Our room was just as spacious and inviting as it appeared in the agency's advertisements and on the website. To provide a rough estimate, it was about the size of two large living rooms!
Upon entering the room, we were welcomed by a fruit basket and a bottle of wine, a thoughtful gesture that we truly appreciated!
I immediately stepped out onto the balcony and caught sight of the sea in the distance. Just beneath our balcony was a splendid garden adorned with orange trees and cascading purple bougainvillea, climbing the tall southern pines. The remainder of the area was covered in lush green lawns. Over the following days, I observed with admiration how meticulously the garden was maintained by the landscaping team. A leisurely walk through it during the cooler hours of the day was truly a blessing!
To the left of our room, I spotted the tennis court, and to the right, one of the indoor swimming pools. Our balcony, somewhat triangular in shape, was generously sized and furnished with two chairs and a table.
The bedroom featured spacious windows adorned with charming, thick curtains. These curtains proved incredibly effective in the morning, as they shielded the room from the direct rays of the rising sun.
A large lamp adorned one corner of the room, with two additional lamps placed on either side of the spacious and comfortable matrimonial bed. The bedding was crisp white and inviting, with a silk blanket and a row of equally plush pillows. An in-room safe provided a secure place to store valuables, ensuring peace of mind during beach outings. A telephone was also within easy reach.
A sizable LCD TV occupied a prominent spot, offering programs in Turkish, Polish, and more, though it didn't see much use during the stay.
The room's modern and tasteful furnishings included a substantial wardrobe with mirrored doors and ample hangers, a generously sized chest of drawers hosting the TV, a shelf unit with useful compartments, a table and an armchair, a chair, and a dressing table complete with a large mirror at its center.
A fourth lamp graced the table, and a folder containing writing paper, a pen, and various hotel-related documentation was provided. Additionally, amenities such as a needle and thread kit, shoeshine supplies, a matchbox, and personalized items like branded nets carried the "Maritim Pine Beach" label.
The room featured soft and plush brown carpeting, complementing the curtains and overall decor. Multiple electrical outlets dotted the room, offering convenience. Plates, glasses, and cutlery were thoughtfully provided for each guest.
Air conditioning ensured comfort, and a well-stocked minibar offered still water, lemon-infused water, approximately 4-5 types of juice, and 2 beers.
The bathroom boasted a generous size, featuring a bathtub and offering white towels that were replaced daily. Hot water was readily available throughout the stay, and the bathroom remained impeccably clean. Liquid soap was provided for both the sink and the bathtub. An array of bathroom products, including a nail file and comb, were neatly arranged in a tray. A plastic curtain separated the bathtub area. The bathroom was elegantly adorned with marble, tiles, and beautiful mirrors, and a hairdryer was available.
The stay was off to a splendid start, with a feeling of luxury and comfort all around. The traveler shared their experiences, emphasizing the wonderful room amenities and the attentive staff who provided excellent service.
The Aquapark was conveniently located nearby, offering a fun aquatic attraction for guests. Furthermore, the resort provided a plethora of activities and amenities to cater to various interests. These included table tennis, a well-equipped fitness room, two saunas, two Turkish baths, one with steam, massage services, a hairdresser, internet access, and billiards. While there was also mention of a nearby golf course, the traveler did not explore this option.
In essence, the resort offered everything a discerning tourist could desire for a fulfilling vacation experience.
For these services, some were subject to additional charges, which were settled not on the spot but rather upon departure at the reception. Payment notes detailing charges, room numbers, and signatures were used to facilitate this process. The "ultra all-inclusive" package entitled the traveler to certain privileges, such as complimentary room service between midnight and 8 in the morning, daily replenishment of the minibar with soft drinks and beer, and the freedom to choose from a wider range of imported drinks at the bar, though some drinks incurred extra charges. It was customary to sign payment notes at the bar, but these charges were reconciled correctly at the reception.
The lobby of the resort was a grand and beautifully decorated space adorned with intriguing paintings and ornate Oriental motifs on the ceiling, where marble took pride of place. Souvenir shops, clothing boutiques, a photo shop, and a gold jewelry store were also situated within the lobby.
The central area of the lobby featured a daily fixture: Emel, the bar attendant, who freshly prepared juices from apples, carrots, lemons, and oranges. Additionally, there were two conventional elevators in this section, distinct from the round ones near the reception.
Two exits on either side of the resort, adjacent to the elevators, invited guests to explore the picturesque gardens adorned with flowers, orange trees, and pine trees.
Entertainment options abounded at the resort, both at the pool and on the beach. Evening performances, suitable for both children and adults, took place in a specially designed natural setting. Television crews were also observed filming at the hotel and performance venue for approximately two days.
The traveler couldn't provide extensive information about nighttime entertainment, as they were often tired from their daytime adventures. They kept themselves busy exploring the area and were typically ready for rest in the evenings.
The main restaurant was located on the first floor, with a vast terrace overlooking the garden, children's area, and the sea. It offered a Swedish buffet for breakfast, late breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late dinner, with additional snacks available at the Nautilus bar on the ground floor. At 4:00 p.m., delightful homemade pies and pancakes were served downstairs, accompanied by a happy hour featuring ice cream cones in various flavors.
The bars' staff members were courteous and efficient, demonstrating remarkable skills in their craft. They delighted guests with their adept handling of glasses, bottles, and ice cubes, choreographed to the rhythm of music. The waitstaff upstairs were mainly young men, approximately 90% of the staff. Their duties primarily revolved around maintaining clean and set tables with glassware, cutlery, and water bottles. They also offered wine, coffee, tea, and promptly cleared used glasses and plates.
Meals were typically enjoyed on the terrace, offering stunning sea views, ensuring a delightful dining experience.
The resort's kitchen was spacious, clean, and well-appointed. It featured two beverage dispensers for juice, tea, coffee, and milk. The lemon juice from the dispenser was particularly noteworthy. A variety of bread, including white and black bread in various sizes and buns, were readily available. Additionally, fried bread and egg-fried options were offered. Queues were relatively short, with only 3-4 people in line at any given time, depending on the mealtime and individual plate selections.
The breakfast spread was a veritable feast, featuring an extensive array of dishes to cater to every palate. It boasted a cornucopia of options, including:
- An assortment of cereals.
- A diverse selection of dried and fresh fruits.
- A delightful variety of warm pastries, with 4-5 different kinds.
- A wide array of cheeses, including cheese, scrambled eggs, and boiled eggs.
- A selection of salami and sausages, with options like turkey and beef, as pork was not part of the menu.
- An assortment of fresh vegetables and salads.
- A tantalizing range of compotes, olives, and jams.
- A multitude of butter varieties.
- An especially delectable olive paste.
The lunch menu was equally impressive and offered a well-rounded meal experience. It typically included:
- A choice of two soups, often creamy varieties featuring ingredients like mushrooms and tomatoes.
- A mandatory fish dish, accompanied by options like chicken, turkey, and lamb.
- These meat selections were expertly prepared, either steamed or pan-fried on electric stoves.
- Various vegetable side dishes, showcasing the unparalleled quality of Turkish produce.
- Alternatives to vegetables, such as spaghetti or rice.
- An assortment of seasonal fruits and dried fruits.
- A tempting selection of cakes adorned with cream and whipped cream, as well as original baklava creations.
Dinner at the resort was a culinary adventure, with dishes that left a lasting impression. One notable dish stood out:
- A unique culinary creation, the name of which eluded the traveler. It bore similarities to kebabs, featuring meat skewered on a wide stick, reminiscent of an ice cream cone. These savory treats were cooked to perfection on electric stoves.
The dinner offerings also included:
- Exceptional trout dishes.
- A particularly flavorful turkey steak.
- An assortment of other delectable options.
To round off these delectable meals, guests could enjoy red grapefruit slices, providing a healthy dose of vitamins. A glass of rose wine complemented these culinary delights perfectly. Following dinner, a leisurely stroll through the resort's gardens or along the seaside was a delightful way to cap off the evening, especially as the nightly entertainment, including a children's show, began, adding to the vacation's enjoyment.
The beach was undoubtedly my favorite feature of this getaway—it's why I'm drawn to the seaside!
This was a private beach, meticulously guarded round the clock by vigilant security personnel stationed at the end of each beach section.
Reaching the beach was a breeze, just a stone's throw away from the pool and the lush garden. A beautifully paved path meandered through banana trees and dwarf palm trees, leading directly to the shore. At the heart of the beach, VIP tents awaited guests, available through reservations at the reception for a fee (I'm guessing, because they were often unoccupied).
These VIP tents exuded a distinct Turkish charm, their pristine white exteriors adorned with sheer white curtains, plush beds, and an abundance of fluffy white pillows. Exiting the VIP area, conveniently located cabins provided spaces for changing, showers, and even taps to wash away beach sand. Access to the sea was via a sturdy boardwalk, diligently maintained by the Beach Boys.
The beach itself was a stunning expanse of pristine sand, impeccably clean and inviting. To secure a prime sunbed spot, it was advisable to rise early, around 6-6.30 am, and make a dash to reserve your spot with a towel—it's the key to securing your preferred location. If you were a little later, you'd still find a spot, but perhaps not the best one!
Four rows of umbrellas, each accompanied by deckchairs and tables, adorned the beach. These colossal umbrellas, approximately 3 meters in diameter, were securely fastened to robust concrete bases, ensuring they could withstand any unexpected storms. Each table had a conveniently located trash bin, resembling a clay jug. And the sunbeds came complete with comfortable mattresses.
For beach towels, we exchanged our blue cards at the reception and replaced them daily, if necessary, at a designated location near the tower where evening discotheque music reverberated.
In the morning, we typically graced the beach with our presence by 7:30 am, as daylight arrives about an hour earlier there than at home. We usually departed by 11 am to avoid the intense midday sun, especially for those with fairer skin. The beach was impressively broad, featuring exceptionally fine sand that could scorch the soles of your feet by 10 am.
The sea offered inviting warmth, perfect for morning swims. It was shallow near the shore but exceptionally clear. At noon, it displayed an enchanting array of colors, transitioning from a lush green to a deep blue. I even experienced a day of sizable waves, a fantastic opportunity for some wave-jumping fun. You know, it's a bit like life—timing is everything; if you don't leap in time, the wave will sweep you away!
A plethora of water sports options were available, including beachside basketball and volleyball. The resort's entertainers took charge of the younger guests, organizing a variety of entertaining activities like face painting and mustache-drawing, resulting in a cheerful procession along the beach.
The beach featured a convenient pontoon on the side facing Papilon Aisha Hotel, which stood adjacent to it on the west side. To the east, the Limak Atlantis Hotel completed the coastal panorama. Guests could take their glasses filled with their preferred beverages from the bar to a designated stand after use, where the attentive waitstaff would collect them.
Now, when it comes to the weather, it was truly splendid. Here on the Turkish coast, the sun seemed to blaze even brighter than in other destinations. Despite spending no more than four hours on the beach each day, my tan deepened considerably—far more than it would have during two weeks elsewhere.
One thing I lamented was that the sun rose from the left and set on the right side of the sea, which meant I missed out on those enchanting sunrises and sunsets that grace other locales!
About the Tourists:
By and large, the majority of visitors were Russian—around 98% of them. They weren't particularly noisy; in fact, they demonstrated a commendable level of common sense.
During our stay at the hotel, we met a French family, and approximately two or three Germans and English tourists. It's worth noting that, generally, I hadn't held a particularly favorable impression of Russians before this trip. However, during my stay there, my perception of them underwent a complete transformation for the better.
I didn't witness any unruly behavior, loud arguments, or people seeking out conflicts—quite the contrary. Over the course of seven days, I had ample opportunity to observe them from the sidelines, and it was evident that the crowd comprised a certain kind of people, not just anyone. In general, many families with young children were present, with the majority of the kids being girls—seven to eight out of every ten. I would estimate that the average age of the tourists was around 35 years old.
Russian women stood out for their tall stature and striking beauty. They dressed elegantly for the evening dinners, leaving me genuinely impressed!
I experienced a delightful and tranquil vacation, free from too many unexpected adventures, during which I was pampered like never before!
Maritim Pine Beach Resort will forever hold a special place in my heart as a haven where I found profound happiness and relaxation. It's truly an ideal destination for recharging one's batteries!
As our days in paradise drew to a close, it was time to make our way back to Antalya Airport. The return flight was just as enjoyable as our arrival, with no delays or issues of any kind.
Regrettably, the ominous predictions of a fellow traveler on the site, who had playfully teased me about a looming black cloud that might strand me in Antalya due to flight cancellations, did not come to pass!
I sincerely hope you had the patience to read through everything until the end. Thank you!