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MS Alay Apartments 3.0

Benalmadena, Costa del Sol, Andalucia

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Off the bustling marina, near shops, restaurants, and bars
  • Less than a five-minute walk to the beach
  • Large apartment-style units, all with kitchenettes
  • Outdoor pool and kids' pool with plenty of lounge chairs
  • Poolside bar, terrace, and sunbathing lawn
  • Lounge with a pool table and foosball 

Cons

  • Some areas of the property feel shabby and/or dated
  • Housekeeping is only available three times a week 
  • Features are limited -- no restaurant or breakfast
  • Fees for Wi-Fi and using safes

Bottom Line

The MS Alay Apartments is a two-and-a-half-pearl apartment hotel that caters to couples and families looking to be near all the dining and shopping action in Benalmadena. The hotel offers 58 pleasant Studios and One-Bedroom Apartments, all of which feature kitchenettes and balconies with either views of the sea or out over the outdoor pool and sunbathing lawn. It's a simple property near the busy marina with its 24-hour bars, and a three-minute walk from the nearest beach. However, other than its location and pools, there isn't much that makes this hotel stand out. For more conventional hotel services, compare rates at the nearby Hotel Ibersol Alay.

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Scene

Older apartment hotel with limited facilities that appeals to budget travelers looking for nearby nightlife

The MS Alay Apartments won't win any design awards, though that doesn't stop this from being a modestly popular crash pad for those looking to be near Benalmadena's party scene. The lobby has that mash-up of dated, and timeless, elements so common to budget properties in the region. Worn red chairs and a visibly dirty wall inset with a long narrow mirror are joined by polished stone and marble accents. Facilities have an overall aging look to them, though the outdoor pools have plenty of space for guests to spread out in the sun (and possibly nurse their hangovers from the 24-hour bars that are nearby in season). Most guests here are families or couples who want self-catering facilities and easy marina access, with a majority of guests coming from the U.K.

Location

A three-minute walk to the beach, just off of the bustling Benalmadena Marina

The MS Alay Apartments' location is perhaps its biggest draw, as it's on a busy block just down the street from the Benalmadena Marina. There are a large number of bars and restaurants lining the marina making the area lively. Plenty of restaurants serving cuisine ranging from seafood to steakhouses are also within a minute or two away on foot. Of course, the beach is important in this part of Spain, and is only a three-minute walk down the road. It’s a five-minute walk to the stores in the Puerto Marina shopping mall, and the Sea Life Benalmadena center. Malaga International Airport is a 20-minute drive from the hotel.

Rooms

Studio and one-bedroom units with kitchenettes and balconies

The apartment hotel building houses 48 Studios and 10 One-Bedroom Apartments, all decorated in cheap light-wood furniture with patio doors that open to private balconies. The balconies are furnished with blue and white plastic tables and chairs that leave a lot of extra room. It's a pleasant enough look, but a bit downmarket, with parquet floors in some rooms plus sagging couches and a gold-tan-and-blue color scheme that's uninspired. Standard features include flat-screen TVs and air-conditioning, but Wi-Fi and safes come with fees. Kitchenettes have microwaves, two-burner stovetops, and mini-fridges, along with small appliances including toasters and kettles. Studios have small, two-person dining tables and sitting areas with sofa beds and flat-screen TVs. One-Bedroom Apartments have separate living rooms with dining tables for four guests. Bathrooms have glass sinks, bidets, and shower/tub combos. Keep in mind that housekeeping is only offered three times per week.

Features

 Outdoor pool and kiddy pool, poolside bar, lounge with pool table

Facilities are slim here, and the reception isn't staffed 24 hours a day in the off-season. There is, however, a large outdoor pool area that's popular with previous guests. The main pool has a small water feature and there's a kids' pool next to it, both of which are surrounded by a large sunbathing lawn with lounge chairs and thatched umbrellas. A small poolside bar has a counter with stools and covered terrace with a few plastic tables. More seating is spread out on the lawn, with plenty of shade umbrellas. There's also an indoor common lounge with foosball and a pool table. Wi-Fi is available for a fee.

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Address

Avenida Alay 3, Benalmadena 29630, Spain

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