Last visit with friends and family in September 2016
Rating by the 5D Sensograph of placescases.com:
5D score: 4.2 out of 5.
…. Interior design – mainly with wood materials and carved wood;
…. Wonderful huge fire place in the lobby bar, making the place cozy and splendid, in the background you see the view to the forest and the town- it just calls for ordering a drink, having some quite book reading or sweet chit-chatting with friends;
…. The forest, around the hotel which offers pure air and view;
…. The aquariums with colorful fish, in the relax zone at the SPA;
…. Leftovers from previous visitors in the room, make-up cleaning pads, a cap from a bottle- they were covered with dust- housekeeping needs improvement;
…. Tiny strawberries in the forest around- a cute surprise in the early autumn.
…. The efforts of the reception personnel to service well and courteously the customers;
…. The pleasant warmth of the mineral water in the pools, the relaxing bubbles in the jacuzzies, the strong spout of the massaging shower, the warm mineral water in the outdoor pool especially in cold weather!
…. Several phone calls and an ultimatum to cancel the reservation a few days before our arrival, just because I could not pick up the phone right away. I talked to the reservations staff and they apologized for not conveying properly info among them;
…. Empty mineral water dispenser in the relax zone of the SPA, just when you need to have a nice rest and you feel thirsty after the hot baths and saunas you discover the mineral water machine …… but it is empty- pity and annoying!
…. Too much crowd at breakfast, with people standing upright around, waiting for a free table, all due to lack of capacity- very annoying! They could think of shift meals at least.
…. Live music in the lobby bar in the evening– pleasant and tender, very well played. I posted live video in the Facebook page of placescases.com
…. The pine trees fragrance – the hotel is in a forest and that is a great asset.
…. Nice and assorted breakfast, with high quality products but there was not enough fruit;
…. Very good traditional Bulgarian BBQ in the tavern, but they did not have any freshly cooked traditional meal.
In general I am satisfied with Maxi Velingrad Park Hotel and SPA, in short Maxi hotel. The high prices meet the quality of the interior and the spacious rooms, however the housekeeping and breakfast service needs improvement. The quality of food in the tavern can be improved too. I expected better diversity of drinks in the lobby bar, as well as interesting cocktails.
There was a degustation of Portugal wines, which was a very good idea, but we could not order them by glass in the restaurant.
Housekeeping needs to put more efforts and take a look at less visible places under the night tables, since the artefacts of previous visitors are not welcome.
The mineral water pools are a great asset, however some steam baths were not working.
There was a nice children playground outside and a very small and open kids club in the hotel. I saw that there is a conference hall and a hair dressers.
Besides having full relax in the SPA of Maxi hotel, you can also have a walk or a drive around. You can take the eco path to Ostrets peak, starting just at the hotel fence.
Also, you can drive to Dorkovo village, 14 km away from Velingrad, and visit the Pliocene park. There you will see bones from ancient animals like mastodon and hipparion. The sculptors Ivaylo Avramov and Theodor Nanev, together with the animalist painter Velizar Simeonovski from Field Museum in Chicago, restored a mastodon in real size. The exposition is hosted by a specially built for the purpose minimalist building by architect Yavor Jordanov. It is an interesting architectural work, deserving special attention. The materials used are wood and glass and it represents a natural bee hive.
Being already in Dorkovo, you should visit the medieval fortress of Tsepina. It was built before 9th century and the excavations revealed that there was an ancient Thracian settlement from the Iron age. Have a hike to the top, not only to see the ruins but also to take a look and pics of the beautiful landscape around.
Another option is to drive 12 km from Velingrad to Rakitovo, where you can climb a rope garden, named Bardolandia Park which is not as good as Kokolandia in Sofia. There is also an old clock tower, which is a landmark for the region.
If you still have spare time, you can walk or drive to the karst lake of Kleptuza. Take a walk on the path upwards above the lake and you will reach a small chapel and remnants from an ancient Thracian sanctuary.
I would visit again hotel Maxi in Velingrad, even only for the nice walks around and the beautiful nature of Rhodope mountains.
Address: Velingrad, Ladgene district, 30 Nikolay Haytov str.
Tel: +359 2 492 1888
Mobile: +359 878 21 88 88
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