There is no doubt that the Atlantic Palace is one of only a handful of hotels in Agadir to be truly of an international standard. Of an impressive scale, the hotel boasts smart, spacious rooms and suites, well kept and pleasant public spaces, a wellness centre worthy of the name and a good choice of quality eating concessions. The décor and design is head and shoulders above most other properties as is the staff and of course the location, being situated just across the road from the beachfront. Whether travelling as a couple, family or group of friends, if it is quality you are after then few places can top the Atlantic Palace - it should definitely be in your short list.
One of the hotels occupying a front row position along the beach, the Atlantic Palace has a prime position with good access to the water. Some will be pleased to hear that it is a little outside the main tourist zone/drag meaning less fuss and commotion right outside hotel. That said, should you want some animation and activity then it is not too far to walk to the restaurants, bars and shops. The ride to and from the airport is only thirty minutes by taxi and costs about 200MAD.
The hotel was opened just after the turn of the millennium after eight years of work. The vision was to create a property of international quality that showcased the best of Arab-Moroccan architecture in the style of a medina. It would be going too far to say that this is a true masterpiece, but one cannot deny that it is certainly an impressive complex and there are few other properties in Agadir where one feels this relaxed and at ease. The entire hotel is a smoking zone.
There is a real sense of arrival to the Atlantic Palace with a long drive up to the striking main entrance with a set of stairs leading to an arched front door flanked by palms. The immense lobby, which stretches for tens of metres, features a shiny marble floor with Moroccan motifs, plenty of comfortable seating in the form of plush emerald green armchairs and, most arresting of all, an intricate carved ceiling from which hang beautiful Moroccan lamps. The reception desk to the left of the entrance as you walk in is manned by several members of staff, each one professional, friendly and well-informed.
In terms of the hotel's public spaces, which are all kept beautifully, the largest has to be the swimming pool area. In the form of a flower, it measures a massive 2,000m² and is surrounded by lush greenery and plenty of sun loungers and parasols. There is ample space for all guests and the exposure to the sun is excellent for the majority of the day. Free towels are on offer to all guests and there is a separate kid's pool adjacent to the main one. In winter, the pool is heated to allow bathing all year round.
There are a whole host of other sporting activities available to clients from pétanque to ping pong or guided jogging routes to aquagym. The hotel boasts a tennis academy for people of all ages and also rents out bicycles for rides in the city centre or the Bensergao forest. But the major pull for guests here is the proximity of the golf course, just fifteen minutes from the town centre. The Gold de l'Océan has an academy and club house and offers several packages for the most avid of golfers. Guests at the Atlantic Palace have preferential rates at the course. For any other activities that you may want to do, such as horse riding, you can ask the concierge for advice.
While there is no big evening show or spectacle, the hotel does have an animation team, mainly for the kids, that provides soft animation throughout the day. There is both a baby and kids club on the premises where a qualified staff looks after young guests up to the age of twelve, although there is no full programme to keep the occupied all day long.
The hotel also has its own casino with all the traditional games, including roulette, poker, slot machines and more as well as a separate bar and restaurant. There is a free shuttle running between the hotel and the casino between 10pm and 4am.
With one of the best and most complete wellness centres in Agadir, the Atlantic Palace is one of the only hotels that can speak of a destination spa. The Thalasso centre and spa is spread over 2,700m² and possesses a fine range of equipment with eight massage rooms (of which one is for couples), a hammam (one for each sex), a sauna, a relaxation area, tea room and zen garden. It offers a broad range of treatments including hydrotherapy and electrotherapy as well as some exclusive treatments such as the Berber massage or the green tea massage. The amiable staff use the recognised quality brand Thalgo for its treatments and has a good training background. For those looking to make the most of their time at the centre packages are available. If you are not one for massages and the like but do fancy a session in the sauna or hammam then you can come and go freely as there is no charge for these services.
There are a total of 329 rooms at the Atlantic Palace, making it one of the largest hotels in Agadir. The vast majority of these are standard guestrooms while the rest are various types of suite. The rooms are spread throughout seven buildings each one named after a town in Morocco. Some of the rooms in the Taroudant block have sea views although most rooms give onto to the swimming pool or gardens. The standard rooms are spacious and bright and far more contemporary than most other rooms in the city. The floors are tiled and the furniture (desk, bedside tables, occasional table and chair, butler) is solid, in good taste and in fine condition. The king size beds are dressed in good quality linens and have matching plaids and cushions. Amenities in the room include a flatscreen television, telephone, safe, minibar with soft drinks, bathrobe and slippers. The bathrooms are pretty standard affairs with the usual marble vanity and bathtub/shower combo but they are in excellent condition and have Dove soap dispensers as well as a hairdryer and half separate loos. All rooms have either a balcony or a terrace (not much privacy with people walking past).
If you are in need of more space during your stay then you should opt for one of the suites: junior, senior or royal. The first of these has a living corner within the bedroom while the senior suite has separate living and dining spaces. The royal suite boasts two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living space and a dining room as well as ocean views. All the suites have larger balconies.
There is a quite a choice when it comes to food and drink at the Atlantic Palace. The main restaurant, Le Pacha, is one of the most formal eateries of any buffet affair we saw in Agadir. The high ceilinged room with its grandly dressed windows and smartly laid tables is the venue for both breakfast and dinner (for those staying on a half- or full board basis) in the form of a buffet. If you fancy a change from the buffet formula then you have other choices in the form of the Taj Mahal (strange name for a Moroccan restaurant), L'Escale, the Libanais and Mamounia. The first of these is currently housed a temporary home but is just as comfortable as its usual setting and serves traditional Moroccan fare with live music and oriental dancing. L'Escale, situated just off of the lobby, is a good option for a lighter meal and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Described as a sports bar, it does not have that air at all and it actually quite smart with white seating, a copper-topped bar and contemporary art on the walls. Tapas are served here throughout he day as well as pizzas, pastas, salads and sandwiches. The Libanais is an alternative for dinner, but it will be a late one as this is a cabaret venue and does not open until 11pm. Here one can sample Lebanese specialities while enjoying the musical performances on stage. Finally, Mamounia is a fine dining restaurant whose à la carte menu changes daily and requires reservations.
Further options for food and drink include the Oasis à la carte grill by the swimming pool open at lunch time, the Belvedere Bar which has a lose Cuban theme with cigars, cocktails and a magnificent sunset view and the Palace nightclub which is open from 11pm.
Guests at the hotel have just the main road to cross to reach the beach in Agadir. Once there, they will find a private section just for them with sun loungers, parasols and a complimentary towel service. The water is both calm and safe, the sand fine and the wind never really strong. If you fancy doing some watersports ask the concierge for a brochure with a full list of activities available.
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