We visited Papillon Belvil in August. We travelled as a family with 2 adults and 2 children. We booked through Jet2; this is our 4th holiday package with them.
We arrived late in the evening, check in was quick, we had a form to fill in but it wasn't too long and our luggage was taken to our room by the time we had a drink and completed it.
Our room was in the main hotel, first impressions were great; the room was very clean, nicely decorated with a 2 single beds (one of them a sofa bed) and a comfortable double bed. The bathroom had a walk in shower with the option of a rain shower or normal showerhead. The mini bar (included) was stocked with a selection of drinks and some snack bars and the safe was also included. Between the 4 of us we had enough cupboard space.
At 23:00 late dinner began and we were able to get a delicious evening meal; much appreciated after our day of travelling.
In terms of Corona, we felt very safe. We each had our temperature checked upon arrival and further temperature checks were carried out daily; as we went to breakfast and when we went to the kids club. We were provided with a PPE kit in the room containing hand gel, masks etc and additonal masks were available at the main restaurant during every service. There were hand gel stations everywhere, you never struggled to find some if you needed it. In the restaurant the food was served from behind screens by staff in gloves, aprons and masks. And social distancing was even implemented during fitness classes and in the kids club. All the staff wore masks, but guests didn't have to, it felt more normal than life at home because of this and it was a welcome relief.
Kids club - currently younger children can't be dropped off in the kids club but older ones can. Our children enjoyed all the activities they took part in and the more they tried the more they wanted to go. The absolutely loved the Papy kids team and we had tears when it was time to leave - they miss every one of them already; Mohammed, Anna, Anna, Ayse and Juli - sorry if I missed anyone! But every one made the holiday so special for our children and were so caring. The programme for kids club is different each week (starting on a Monday). Something we hadn't realised; we turned up on a Sunday and the children chose their activities based on the programme (we thought) but got it wrong, but they weren't worried, they enjoyed the other activities that were running. One of their favourite activities was t shirt painting, for €8 each they chose a t shirt with a pre printed outline that they then painted. There were plenty of paints to choose from and the t shirts were available to collect the next day - once the paint dried. I have to say they wash well and are a nice quality top for the price. The other thing we hadn't realised was that the children's disco is in the Amphitheatre but the show is on the football pitch in the kids club area, so look for it there if you wish to see it. Our daughter loved the balloon and bubbles show - she laughed so much.
Animacion - there is a full timetable of activities every day. The team work incredibly hard and encourage people to join in without being pushy. I took part in the fitness classes; morning gym, aqua fit and aerobics. I found them quite hard, though I'm not especially fit, but the guys are really encouraging and I gained fitness during our stay. Pack your sports bra (ladies) and trainers, though you could manage without, they help if you've got them. There are lots of games in the programme too. I have to thank Lilie especially who always encouraged everyone to push themselves to do their best, Amin was hilarious and his classes fun and and Pierro was full of positive energy and enthusiasm.
Food - as a family we all loved the food we tried, I can't imagine anyone would struggle to find things they enjoy each day and the main restaurant offers so much variety on a daily basis. Food is available 24/7. There is also the food court area, the beach restaurant and the pool bar - all offer different options in addition to the main restaurant which are great if you don't want to stray too far from the pool at lunchtime. The baklava and selection of Turkish foods did not disappoint - baklava is available each evening in the main restaurant. Do have a good look around in there as things are served in different areas - for example in the morning the fresh cooked eggs/ omelettes are served outside whereas the rest of the buffet is inside, ice cream is inside the restaurant towards the large indoor seating area for example. Every member of staff in the restaurant works incredibly hard and is very friendly, from the lady that greets you at the entrance and checks your temperature to the whole team inside who do not stop, it is a little unfair to highlight a few but we did have our favourites; Aysun, she was always friendly and kept the restaurant area clean, the chef who worked on the cereal counter in the morning learnt our choices and would get them prepared for us each day (he didn't have a name badge), Nejla on the juice bar would also remember what we liked to have in the morning and was kind, Ibrahim, who often served our table, would remember our drink preferences and was quick to clear things away, the lady who made gozleme each evening was always quick to help, the smiley younger lady who worked in various stations during our stay was lovely and the man who worked on the fruit counter during the evening service was funny; our daughter liked to watch the melons being chopped up before she chose some fruit (they are enormous!).
A la carte - we found trying to book an a la carte restaurant a little frustrating. You have to call between 9 and 10 but we tried for several days in a row (we wanted to visit the Italian restaurant) and by the time we got through at around 9.15, as the phone was engaged, it was full, every time. If you are staying for more than 7 nights you are entitled to 1 meal in 1 of the a la carte restaurants, if you stay for 2 weeks, 2 meals.
We gave up trying and booked the fish restaurant for 2 of us as that was the only thing available and we didn't have many evenings left. My husband and son went and thoroughly enjoyed it, it was a welcome change from the busyness of the main buffet restaurant and the staff were very attentive. Such a shame we didn't all get the opportunity to enjoy the experience. I did try and sort this at the customer relations desk twice but the first time the man explained they can't book the restaurants there and the 2nd time the lady was waiting on a response but we never heard anything more.
Drinks - most of the drinks were branded, Efes was the beer being served, we enjoyed trying the cocktail of the day; these are in the lobby bar in the evenings in line with the meal service. There is always plenty of water available in addition to the bottles the mini bar team refresh daily. The lobby bar is a lovely calm environment, often with a live pianist, if you fancy an evening away from the shows.
The pools - there are 3 main pools, one is for over 15's only, we tended to stay near 'the world pool', we called it that as that is what the mosaic tiles show, but that was a good position between kids club, the slides and a bar so we could see our children when they were playing. The pools are a little deep 1.4m so if our children couldn't swim we would have needed to stay with them more. There are 2 kids splash pools - a big one in Papy kids with lots of slides and water jets and another by the biggest pool - they are both very shallow. The slides were great, we especially loved going down the ones with the double inflatable rings. The splash pool there is 1.2m and has a strong lifeguard presence.
2 of the poolside ladies were absolutely brilliant, Hatice and Duru, they are lovely ladies and always made me laugh while keeping everything clean and tidy.
The poolside music needs more consideration; there was often music being played with explicit lyrics (swear words) which isn't appropriate at a family resort with a lot of young child visitors.
The beach is glorious with beautifully soft sand. The water can be choppy on windy days but otherwise it's a great place to swim. It starts shallow but can get deep quite quickly for smaller swimmers. It is a little gravelly in places but not uncomfortably so. There is a floating jetty you can swim out to and if you sit still on the edge for a while you will see some amazing fish. It's worth the swim out. The beach areas are also kept clean and there are showers there for rinsing off after.
Entertainment - the evening entertainment programme offers a variety of shows, often with further options afterwards. There were a few shows that we found inappropriate for children, the music included explicit lyrics, and at times the costumes and dance moves were very sexual. There wasn't any indication of of this in the show poster otherwise we would have chosen not to attend with our children on those evenings. Thay said we did enjoy the magic, circus and bmx/ skater shows. Otherwise the amount of bum cheeks our children had shaken in front of them became a standing joke between us. The lighting for the show was uncomfortable at times, a few are turned onto the audience and are dazzling, we took to taking a hat to wear to reduce the glare as otherwise we sat with a hand over our eyes.
As others have said the staff team as a whole create a family like ambiance; they all get on well and many have worked there for some time. We met a few families that visit every year and we can understand why. There weren't many British families but from what others said that is more to do with covid normally there would be more. We didn't find it to be an issue, our children still made friends in the kids club - a game is a game regardless of the language you speak. And I found people in the exercise classes were friendly, the first few times I went they helped me figure out what I needed etc.
As we found on a previous trip to Turkey there is lots of single use plastic; straws, water bottles, but there are some recycling points spaced around the resort so you are able to dispose of them responsibility.
On the whole our holiday gave us a much needed break and we returned to the UK feeling refreshed. Thank you Belvil!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC