When we went on our first portugal family holiday the day after our wedding, we flew with the kids and we stayed at the Be Live Family Palmeiras Village Hotel and booked all inclusive. We found this hotel ourselves just by searching around the internet when we were looking to book and we decided to book it based on 3 aspects...
-The reviews on trip advisor
-How kid friendly it seemed
It's always a little scary booking somewhere when you haven't had a first hand recommendation. We were hoping it would live up to the reviews and expectations but there's always that chance the photos make it look bigger and better than it actually it.
When we arrived at the hotel, we were pleasantly surprised, it looked just as good as the photos and we got that instant feeling this was going to be a brilliant family holiday for us all. As the days went on, we seemed to enjoy ourselves more and more and there wasn't really anything we weren't happy with. Before we left, we agreed we would definitely come back at some point with the girls.
Our 5 main reasons we'd recommend booking the BeLive hotel all inclusive..
Our holiday was very affordable for a family of 4 at the time of booking (under £1000 for 5 nights, including flights & private transfer). For a 4* hotel and all inclusive, we were extremely happy with this price!
We booked a 'Family lateral sea view room' and it was perfect. Enough room for everyone, a toddler bed for Sienna and a cot for our baby as well as things like air conditioning, TV and bathroom with bath and shower, 2 sinks, a toilet and a bidet. As well as the usual things, it had extra touches such as blackout curtains and sound proof windows which is amazing when you have kids and babies. The girls slept better than they would at home! We also had 2 terraces so we used one to dry washing on and one for playing/lounging on. All the staff were also really friendly and helpful and had very good english which is always a massive plus point for me when away from home with kids.
We were all impressed with the food, my girls aren't particularly fussy but having Aria at only 7 months old and doing baby led weaning, I was concerned there might not be much available for her but there was so much variety. It was also very clean and there were always highchairs already put at tables for families. For breakfast, there was fried eggs, (or scrambled, or poached or hard boiled...) baked beans, grilled tomatoes, mushrooms, pancakes, french toast, regular toast, croissants, cereal or fruits. At lunch, there was a choice of pasta, risotto, paella, pan friend chicken or steak, chips, and lots of veggies and then for dinner there was spaghetti and meatballs, lots of pasta and meat dishes, and then sometimes the same of what was served at lunch. There were also specific children buffet bars in the restaurants which did things like chicken nuggets or spaghetti and pasta sauce if you wanted those choices.
Lunch and dinner were quite similar which can get repetitive after a few days but for the price and how much variety there was, I don't think you can complain. We used to fill up on breakfast as that was our favourite meal! There were also snack bars open through the day that did croissants, burgers, chips, hot dogs, if you or the children wanted a snack. Drinks were available everywhere from the restaurants or the bar, coffee, cocktails & bottles of wine were included in the all inclusive for adults.
Facilities & activities
The girls favourite thing about this hotel was all the facilities and the pools. Both our girls love to be on the go all the time (even Aria at 7 months didn't like to sit still!), they are also both absolute water babes. There was a variety of pools. The first ones you got too by walking through the hotel seemed to be more for adults as it was generally quieter, although there was a smaller children's pool next to it with lots of sun loungers around the whole thing if you preferred the quieter area, maybe if you have teeny tiny babies.
The winner for us was a bit further on, out the back of the hotel. This was where we spent 80% of time. Again, there were two pools. A standard swimming pool (generally more for the adults again) with big water slides and then another kids pool but this one had kids slides, fountains, water guns and toys for the children to play with (we took the girls inflatable ring & car).
Other facilities included a gym, basketball court, mini club (4-7 years) and kids club (8-12 years), the kids club room had a role play area, dressing up area, you could do crafting and colouring... Sienna went for a little bit one day and made a mask, coloured in a picture and Aria loved playing with the toys. We stayed with them as Aria was so young and they didn't mind at all. There were also bouncy castles for the girls to go on and every hour (except a pause for lunch) there were different activities for everyone. There was also entertainment and shows in the evening but with two young children, we didn't make any of those as they didn't start until 9pm! There was also a massage room which I thought was nice and it gave a good balance between a kids holiday and a relaxing adults holiday too. Warren did pay for me to have a massage one day and I can honestly say it was one of the best massages I've had!
The location was fab, our transfer was only about 40 minutes from the airport which was good. We were also just a short walk to the little beach which we enjoyed one day and we were close to the Zoo marine which we also enjoyed as a day trip one day as it did rain a tiny bit (but we did go in October), we got there easily by taxi.
We really would highly recommend this hotel for a fun, family friendly holiday & hope you consider it after reading this review!