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A Sunny Stay at The Ritz Carlton Abama, Tenerife

The Easter holidays are rather awkward… Europe is not quite hot enough for a holiday in the sun, and ski season is pretty much over but when my sister in law suggested Tenerife, we were given the answer to our problems! The weather is sunny all year round, the flight is around four hours and the time zone is the same! Ideal with two very small children.

What is The Ritz Carlton Abama, Tenerife?

The Ritz Carlton Abama is one of the most luxurious hotels on the island of Tenerife in the Canary Islands. The hotel stands out for its incredible Moorish architecture, making it seem like a pink palace surrounded by lush palm trees and right by the beach. The large hotel encompasses 462 rooms and suites and is divided into the Citadel (the main part of the hotel) and the more exclusive Villa section. As we were travelling with my elderly in-laws we opted for the Citadel to be nearer to the main action and lessen the need for them to walk. The hotel offers a great range of restaurants and leisure facilities many of which are designed around the needs for children and families. The hotel is located in the South of Tenerife and was only around a 20 minute drive from the airport which was great with two small children.

Hotel Design and our Room

The most eye catching and unique element of the hotel is the stunning design, quite honestly it’s a Wes Anderson-style Instagrammer’s dream! The architecture was just so stunning I was taking pictures everywhere so I’ll let these speak for themselves!

We loved having drinks on this beautiful balcony in the evening.

There was a stunning view of the Lagoon Pool and the sea beyond!

Most eye-catching of all are these staircases that wind down the hotel leading to each floor.
And then down to the ground…

We also found some beautiful views from the roof top.

As well as this gorgeous design, the grounds are beautiful too with perfect gardens and a carp pond. I will say though some areas (particularly around the pool) were in need of maintenance but the hotel is set for renovations next year.

Our  one bedroom suite was absolutely perfect for a family of four as it was extremely spacious with lots of storage

The simple design feel very fresh and airy and we were provided with a roll away bed and a cot.
We also had two balconies with a view over looking the resort.

Experiences and Activities 

There’s no shortage of things to do at Ritz Carlton Abama! Our kids are most keen on swimming and hanging out by the pool so that’s where we spent most of the day. There are four main pools at the hotel with two being great for families, we spent all our time at the Lagoon Pool and the Cascade Pool.
The Lagoon Pool is the hotel’s main pool and the largest in the resort. It’s right in the centre of the Citadel and is served by a bar with a pool menu of food and drinks. There’s also a kids food cart that’s open most of the day.

The Cascade Pool is a quieter option and has views of the hotel’s gardens and golf club, it also includes a cute baby pool.

There is also a more secluded smaller pool known as the Persian Garden Pool plus the Del Mar Infinity Pool, an adult’s only option for Villa Guests only. There are also a series of semi private pools serving the Villa guests.

The hotel also has an area on the public beach which is easily accessible from the hotel via a mini train or if you’re travelling with elderly family like us, the hotel are happy to give you a lift! There’s plenty of loungers with umbrellas to sit on in the beach or you can pop for lunch at the hotel’s Beach Club.
The Ritz Carlton Abama is also know for its golf course which is a five minute drive from the hotel. Abama Golf has a stunning view of the ocean and was designed by Ryder Cup player Dave Thomas.
The Abama is home to a parent-pleasing spa though I was surprised the it was 25 EUROS just to use the spa facilities.

There are both water and relaxation areas as well as deluxe couples and single treatment rooms. There’s lots of choice on the spa menu from massages to facials plus nails and waxing. If fitness is your thing (and I avoid it like the plague on holiday!) there’s a full gym plus tennis coaching is available for the whole family.

Note that there is no entertainment in the evenings for children.

Child Care

A hotel that prides itself on accommodating families, The Ritz Carlton Abama has an excellent Kid’s Club. I know Kid’s Clubs are not for everyone but Oscar loves them and after a few days of sun and swimming he needed a break and spent a couple of afternoons in Kids Club with his cousin. There is a dedicated programme for kids including kareoke, art and crafts and other workshops that revolve around the themes of Culture, Nature, Exploration and Responsibility. There is a well-trained and dedicated team of staff to look after kids from 4 – 12 years old and additionally the Ritz Kids Garden and The Planetarium welcome younger kids supervised by parents. Oscar loved playing in the playground that was near the Kids Club too!


While the hotel doesn’t provide babysitting they can connect you with well regarded external companies who you can contact directly. Mr S and I ate in the hotel’s Michelin starred restaurants on two nights where they don’t allow children under 6. We were very happy with the babysitter on these evenings.

Food

Food and restaurants is another place where the Ritz Carlton Abama excels and you will be absolutely spoilt for choice here! Let’s start at the top with the very best! The hotel is home to M.B, a two Michelin-starred restaurant from chef Martín Berasategui – the only two star restaurant on the island of Tenerife. In that sense, M.B. is a much more formal experience than the other restaurants, think crisp white table clothes and silver service. You can opt for a la carte or do as we did and choose one of the restaurant’s tasting menus that highlight distinct Spanish cuisine. Our experience here is too long to go into detail in this post but is was incredible and up there with one of my top dining experiences.

Next there’s Akira Back, a restaurant serving Modern Japanese cuisine from the Michelin-starred eponymous chef. This restaurant is a little separate from the main hotel and near the golf course so we were given a lift there. We started with a drink on the restaurant’s terrace before enjoying the tasting menu inside.
Note that these two restaurants do not allow children under six so we got babysitters on these nights. If staying of a full board basis you have a credit towards the Michelin-starred restaurants.

Next is Txoko, located by the Lagoon Pool. The restaurant  offers contemporary dining inspired by traditional Basque cuisine and is over seen by Michelin-starred chef Martín Berasategui. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and the proximity to the pool meant we had lunch here a few times as well as a few dinners with steak being the speciality.
El Mirador was another restaurant where we dined frequently, we loved it there especially given the cliff top location and amazing view. The restaurant specialises in seafood, fish & rices with a Mediterranean twist.

Next was Verona, the hotel’s fabulous Italian restaurants.

The Beach Club was a gorgeous location for lunch on one of the days of our holiday.
All of these restaurants provided a high chair for Noah and a kids menu which varied slightly between restaurants.
And breakfast is served in the Veranda restaurant as a large scale buffet but we had it in the room most days so the boys could sleep in!
The one restaurant that we didn’t try was Verde Mar which had a ‘vegetable-forward approach’ and meat and fish appear on the menu as side dishes.

One bug bear with the food was that while we stayed full board at the hotel, lots of the dishes came with a supplement. Many of which were just silly with a couple of extra EUROs for many dishes. I don’t quite understand why full board wasn’t just full board!

Conclusion 

While The Ritz Carlton ticks the boxes for an easy family holiday with plenty of sun and fun we did have a few niggles regarding the food price supplements, the wear and tear and poor maintenance especially around the pool and very slow service at some of the meals. While the hotel is luxurious it’s not the level of Ikos or Sani but it is cheaper than those to be fair!

Great For Kids

Fun ‘Ritz Kids’ Club and varied programme.

Large rooms for families.

Fun swimming pools and beach.

Great For Parents

Lots of restaurant choice including Michelin-star dining.

Extensive facilities including spa, golf, gym, tennis.

Beautiful boutiques for shopping