*** This trip was taken in February 2020, shortly before the coronavirus outbreak
in Europe and the UK ***
Even as someone who spends a lot of time (read: borderline obsessive) on travel blogs, websites and TripAdvisor, it's very rare I'll come across a flawless, 5-star review. So, when I came across Lani's Suites de Luxe in Lanzarote which had unanimous 5-star ratings, endless positive reviews and numerous awards, I was dubious that this boutique hotel could live up to the lofty heights it promised to deliver.
However, I can honestly say that I've never been so impressed by a hotel and would even go as far as to say that it exceeded my expectations. From the moment we booked with Lani's Suites when they emailed to ask if we have any specific requirements or anything they could prepare ahead of our stay, to the beautiful personalised parting gift they gave us upon departure, it was an absolutely faultless and fabulous experience that we will remember for years to come. It is very much of the pricier end of hotels, even for boutique establishments, but it was worth every penny and was a real treat.
Here are five things that make Lani's Suite de Luxe stand out from the crowd and how staying there makes for a very special and outstanding experience...
1. The Amazingly Generous & Friendly Staff
First and foremost, the thing that makes Lani's Suites so incredibly special is the staff who go above and beyond to make your time at the hotel such a unique and luxurious experience.
From the moment you arrive, they are so welcoming and friendly, offering a glass of chilled Cava (or non-alcoholic alternative) whilst your suite is prepared, and taking a genuine and enthusiastic interest in you as a guest. The same member of staff then personally takes you to your suite to talk through all aspects of the hotel, room and stay, answering any questions you may have and making it clear that they are on-hand throughout for anything you may need or want.
The staff in the restaurant and around the site are just as attentive and amenable too, always available to help, offering a smile and asking how you are in a non-invasive way which makes you feel so at ease. It really is a home away from home without any of the stresses! You're left to your own devices and given all the privacy you'd like, but with the knowledge that they are around (with a smile!) if you need them, to offer advice on places to visit, restaurants to dine at or assistance in any excursion bookings.
2. All The Complimentary Gifts & Personalised Service
Though Lani's Suites is one of the more expensive hotels we've ever stayed at, you certainly feel you get your money's worth with all of the wonderful complimentary touches and the personalised service they offer. I've never been somewhere so keen to give you freebies throughout your stay!
To start with, they offer complimentary private transfers from and to the airport meaning you're met by a driver as soon as you leave the airport and taken straight to the hotel, instilling a feeling of relaxation and being in 'holiday mode' as soon as you arrive in Lanzarote. You're then offered, as mentioned, a glass of fizz whilst you check in along with some light snacks, before being taken to your room for - you've guessed it! - even more free treats!
Waiting for us in our room was a chilled bottle of Cava along with luxury chocolates and a free sun hat and sunglasses each which was a lovely touch. As I wasn't drinking during our trip, they also very kindly - and very speedily - brought me a second bottle of non-alcoholic sparkling wine free of charge to enjoy which was extremely generous. All non-alcoholic drinks (which included beer!) from the mini bar were also free of charge throughout the stay, and refilled daily with any personal preferences or requests taken into account. These were all in addition to the luxurious fluffy robe, slippers and The White Company toiletries which came with the suite.
And the freebies don't end in the suite. By the pool, there was a cabinet with complimentary suncream (in factors 15, 30 and 50), board games, books and more non-alcoholic drinks to use whilst you relax. In addition, each day at around 4pm, staff come around with (another!) cold glass of fizz to each guest to enjoy by the pool - automatically remembering my preference and bringing me a non-alcoholic version. Essentially, we barely needed to lift a finger or spend a penny during our time at Lani's Suites!
3. The Suite Itself & Pool
The suites at Lani's have the space of a self-catered apartment with the creature comforts of a hotel. Our room had a bedroom, large living area, bathroom and balcony, whilst others also have further outdoor space and hot tubs.
They all include mod-cons including Netflix on the two TV screens (one in the living room, one in the bedroom) and a personalised tablet for making bookings within the hotel, as well as general amenities such as cutlery, glasses, a bottle opener etc. It's all immaculately designed in crisp, clean whites and splashes of colour and the bathroom is spacious with a powerful, large shower and lovely toiletries. It was so peaceful and quiet, we felt so at home from the minute we arrived, but with the added luxury of a daily housekeeping and turn-down service!
The pool was also idyllic. Though quite small, it was the perfect size for the number of guests at the hotel (it was rare to have more than one guest in it at any one time) and it was heated to 28 degrees which made it incredibly like a warm bath and easy to get in and out of.
4. Flexible, All-Day Breakfasts & On-Site Restaurant
Whilst it is wonderful to have your breakfast prepared for you whilst on holiday, one (minor!) downside of most hotels is that their morning meal is often only served during certain hours, meaning that the laziest of us still need to set an alarm to be up and ensure we're at the table before it lapses. To me, one of the greatest things about being on holiday is not having to worry about what time it is or setting alarms, so at Lani's, they serve breakfast all day so you can have it whenever is most convenient for you - whether that's at the crack of dawn or mid afternoon! It's such a simple thing but so effective in reinforcing the feeling of being completely relaxed on your break away.
Breakfast itself it also a brilliant experience. You're given a menu and can order as many items as you like during your sitting, all of which is freshly made for you, just the way you like it. From pancakes and waffles to a full fry-up; eggs Benedict to fresh fruit and yoghurt, the menu is extensive and in theory, you could sample one of everything on it - assuming you didn't explode first! You can even pre-order to have your breakfast delivered to your suite to enjoy in bed or on the balcony if you'd prefer.
The restaurant, which has space both inside and outside, is a stunning spot, overlooking the beach and coastline and serves food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We actually ended up eating in the restaurant on all three of the nights we were staying as, having been there on the first night, we didn't think anything in the area would be able to beat it. It is expensive, but the food and atmosphere of the restaurant is superb and once again, a really special experience.
5. Stunning Ocean Views & Beach
Finally, credit must be given to the beautiful views and direct access to the sandy beach from the hotel. There's a small gate at the back of the hotel which leads straight onto the beach so you're never more than a stone's throw from dipping your toes in the ocean, and the restaurant overlooks the shore, offering magical views throughout the day right up until sunset.
We walked along the beach as the sun went down all three evenings we were staying at Lani's and it was incredibly romantic and tranquil - it felt a millions miles from the bustle of the town centre, but easy enough walking distance to explore.
All in all, it was the most wonderful, relaxing stay and I can't wait to return one day!