We’ve just returned from a wonderful two week, all-inclusive holiday to Turkey which we booked through First Choice. This was our first family package holiday we’ve ever had just the 4 of us, so it was to be a very special one. Not only for that reason but also because we had planned to see Tye’s dad, who we invited from his home in Istanbul to Antalya and have a long weekend at our hotel. It’s been an incredible 7 years since we last saw him, so this vacation meant so much to us all.
We booked to stay at the 5* resort in Antalya ‘Liberty Lara Hotel’. Having spent the weeks running up to it prepping, showing the boys the photo’s on the website and building all the excitement, we couldn’t WAIT to get there.
As always the holiday began as soon as we set off for the Airport!!! Our TUI flight was BRILLIANT: Three rows of seats and televisions on the back of each headrest…the boys were in their element! The whole aeroplane was filled with families and the atmosphere was buzzing with everyone’s spirits high for their half term break. Upon arrival we had a private taxi booked to transport us to the hotel. When we arrived at Liberty Lara, Stanley’s face was PRICELESS! It was like walking into some kind of palace, with magical lights, vast open space and champagne on arrival! This was only our first day/ our travel day and there was so much more to come!
First Choice Holiday’s have exclusivity of this hotel and it was brimming with families. The facilities were second to none. Outside was a generous sized children’s pool, a larger deeper pool, water slides, an adults only pool with jacuzzi, beautiful landscaped gardens, tennis courts, football pitch, children’s playground, 2x pool restaurants and bars, a pizza cabana, a waffle and ice-cream hut, a stunning outdoor amphitheatre, beach shop, kids club house, giant chess board and long footbridge covering the span of the pool area. Palm trees everywhere you look and pretty open grass banks provide a barrier between the resort and Antalya’s sandy Lara Beach. On the beach there are a large number of sun loungers under a canopy and the piece de resistance has to be the stunning Pavillion Pier heading directly out to sea and home to 8 pretty VIP cabanas for hire.
Inside of the Liberty Lara Hotel there are a number of restaurants catering for EVERYONE’s culinary preferences with tons of variety, including plenty of children’s food options. Cuisines on offer range from Turkish, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, English, Middle Eastern and many more. There is a Spa with indoor swimming pool, hair salon, shops, adult nightclub and games room. The vast lobby is home to the reception and cashier desks as well as the 3 impressive dome glassed lifts with awesome views!
Being all-inclusive quite literally means you don’t need to spend a penny! Tye and I once went on an all-inclusive holiday when Harry was a toddler and we vowed to never turn back. We’ve always found that when you have children, it’s never a guarantee that they will finish their food at mealtimes and subsequently get peckish between meals, so having the additional options available at various times of the day to get snacks and drinks is essential! All meals, beverages, snacks, pool towels, room mini bar, the Hammam (traditional Turkish bath), sauna, fitness centre and daytime and evening entertainment is included. The beach cabanas are for hire so we did treat ourselves and hire one for the day just to experience the luxury!
We spent most days relaxing by the pools, soaking up the glorious Turkish weather, absorbing the atmosphere and enjoying the pool time activities hosted by the enthusiastic entertainment team. The children’s pool was a PERFECT size for little swimmers like Stanley. Having done a lot of holiday resort research before finding this hotel, it was apparent that ‘good sized’ kids pools were hard to come by, so this one served it’s purpose 100%. The depth of the water, the small play slides and the overall size provide a relaxing and safe environment for the youngest holiday makers. Stan LOVED this pool and by the end of the holiday had gained so much confidence in the water and was independently accessing it under our watch.
After long sun drenched days together, hot, sweaty and flagging, we had a routine of heading back up to our family room, giant inflatables under arms, for showers and lazy chill out time with the air-con for a couple of hours before dinner. Every night there was an entertainment itinerary offering something for everyone; live music, family shows, outdoor movie screenings and large themed parties. Plenty of FUN to enjoy!
Our experience at Liberty Lara was thoroughly enjoyable and the service we received from every member of staff was impeccable. There was nothing we could want for. One thing Tye and I would regularly comment on was that there was always someone around and available for you if ever you needed anything. Customer service was PARAMOUNT and we certainly felt it. It was visibly apparent how hard the staff were working around the clock, day in and day out, night in and night out- whether they were catering, housekeeping, maintenance, entertainment, front of house etc. We particularly loved seeing the head chef’s making themselves available at meal times, mingling with guests and likewise the senior hotel staff who would occasionally stroll around meeting and greeting. Each of us felt cared for and looked after, so much so that it has certainly set the standard going forward for our future family holidays.
Have a look for yourself at this First Choice holiday via the link HERE.
by Laura xx