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Monday, 7 April 2008

Sunshine

I must admit that I have been so very cautious about taking my tiny poppets on a holiday abroad. There are (after all) so many strange and hostile people to be encountered in foreign lands. I am tortured by fears for my young family.

It snowed just yesterday (it is April!!!), so I decided to reconsider as it would be super to cheer us all up with a lovely sunshiny family holiday. I quickly nipped online in search of a break in the Maldives or Barbados for our next half term holiday. James immediately became rather alarmed and began to rant on about the current difficulties in the money markets. He insisted;

Don’t dare to book the Indian Ocean or the West Indies through Club Med or Mark Warner,” (I had no idea that times were so very hard). “Why don’t you try Thompson'sYou might find something reasonable in Greece.”

I pride myself on being open minded, but OHMYGOD, I shall find it difficult to articulate the horrors that I have experienced online this evening… The selection of holidays for sale through this high street holiday company simply took my breath away.

In their online brochure, Thompson offer “Premier” five star resorts that it claims are “stylish and luxurious,” but not so exclusive that they feel “unfriendly.”

"Mmm," I thought, "this sounds promising"…

They claim that one resort has “an outrageously posh marina” that is filled with sleek “my wallet is bigger than your’s yachts” – I was speechless… Other features are described as “knock your socks off.” All male guests under 14 are apparently "requested" to wear long trousers for dinner (OHMYGOD, do they compel their guests to use a knife and fork too?). In the “classy” Sani Beach Club Hotel (is it named after a chemical toilet?) there is a full programme of nightly "entertainment on offer, including a dart board, bingo and karaoke."

When describing the cuisine, they claim that one American buffet style restaurant (this is in Greece!!!) in the resort was mentioned in The Financial Times just four years ago, and “with reviews like these you know you’ve hit the jackpot”. They offer “unlimited locally produced alcoholic beverages – so fill your boots,” I almost expired. I wonder if this restaurant has a notice on the wall requesting that patrons refrain from sucking their teeth?

How frightfully coarse…

I don’t think that we can risk a holiday abroad this year, or at least until the stock market picks up or they invent some kind of common/low life filter for my computer. How can I ensure that we avoid encounters with larger louts and lottery winning toothless hags from Elsemere Port on our travels.

I really am an outragous snob you know... (sigh).

Shhh, I wonder if I could pick up a super offer with Mark Warner to The Ocean Club in Praia da Luz in Portugal. I have read that there is a nice tapas bar virtually in front of the apartments too! Anything would be better than Halkidiki with Thomas Cook, clearly…

13 comments:

zoe said...

Oh darling, I have just thought that I may be able to slum it out (quelle horreur!) at a friend's place in N. London, see the Alabama 3 and then nip up to Liverpewl for a couple of days before going up to Ambleside for a wedding.

What distresses me the most about all of this is that I won't be able to wear my new hat for the wedding as it's highly unlikely to be a posh do.

Perhaps elbow-length gloves?

Potty Mummy said...

DM, I suggest you order the 'Small Luxury Hotels of the World' brochure, and then leave it on his desk next to the Thompsons one. A bit of comparitive reading should soon sort him out...

dulwichmum said...

Darling Zoe,

I didn't realise that the people of Ambleside actually married! Wow, you learn something new everyday. How about a trendy new turban type of hat, with clip on earrings? Very Alexis Carrington Colby-Dexter!!!

Perfect Potty Mummy,

Thank you for your super advice, this kind of thing is simply NOCD!

Natural Blonde said...

Hello Dulwich Mummy,

Don't go to the Sani Beach Club hotel but go to Porto Sani Village - I stayed there last year and it was bliss (v nice Spa). It's five star and really good value (the Sani asterious suites are v v v expensive and also fice star)

NB

dulwichmum said...

Perfect Natural Blonde,

Are you quite sure that there was no dart board or bingo calling? I can't bear to think of these people - pining after their dangerous dogs, Hawian Tropic (factor 2) and Bicardi Breezers by their sun loungers. Are you really quite sure my munchkins would not be traumatised?

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

Forget about the time trawling through the travel brochures trying to find out what suits your needs.
Engage the services of The Travel Architect.

You'll be sorted out in no time without all the stress and time spent pondering if it's right or not.
www.travelarchitect.com

Good Luck

Retiredandcrazy said...

You are such an awesome and amazing person that I would like you to come over to my site to collect an award.

aims said...

Travelling certainly does force you to brush elbows with the rest of the world! It is such a hardship!

I mean really! What are they thinking?! Shouldn't it be a requirement that the four star people vacation on the other side of the world or something??

It constantly gives one the need to sniff and move on!

dulwichmum said...

Lovely Anonymous,

Why of course! I shall email them forthwith...

Sweet Retired and Crazy,

Thank you so very much indeed. I am honoured. I hope that I can work out how to cut and paste this award, I am the most dreadful technophobe...

Aims darling,

How about a house swap?

I Beatrice said...

Hotels everywhere are by their nature vulgar establishments, Dulwich-Mum-dear, so avoid them if you can.

Your best hope of a yob-and-beer-belly-free holiday is to hire a nice villa in the hills of Tuscany.....

Hoi Polloi never - but simply NEVER - flies BA to Pisa or Florence. Only the panama-hatted and very nicely blazered, just off, or en route to their very superior cruise-ships - truly, I can promise you it is so!

aims said...

Are you serious?

dulwichmum said...

Darling I Beatrice,

Perhaps we could hire an adjoining villa for our au pair and housekeeper and the children - I am sure that you are right.

Sweet Aims,

If you are sure you could bear my tiny mansionette?

aims said...

Well now - there's a thought to be considered...I'll certainly keep it in mind...You know you can retreat to any floor here and just be 'away' from the rest of the world in this big old barn...

Sorry it's an above ground pool only - but - it is still wet!

They are turning the original farmhouse next door into a B&B in case you tire of wandering - or shouting - from the third floor to the first over here...