Charlotte and I have been very lucky to stay in some fabulous hotels recently and Hotel Juana in Juan-les-Pins certainly lived up to the high standards we had hoped for given its five star ranking.
We had almost a little impulsively booked this hotel without doing quite as much research as we normally would (we were a little sucked in by the fact that breakfast was included and there was a free night’s stay on offer).
After making our slightly rash decision, we went about properly researching the hotel and the town of Juan-les-Pins and decided that we probably had made the right call in making the booking, but the real proof as always would be in the staying!
I am a bit of a sucker for good service. If the service is good, I will typically be a bit more forgiving of any other issues that might crop up. Fortunately, Hotel Juana managed to combine excellent service and fantastic facilities, creating an accommodation option that I would be more than happy to visit again.
In fact, the service was so good that it actually started before we arrived, with the knowledgeable concierge Benjamin providing us with an excellent map of how to arrive at the hotel from the airport bus stop, and making us feel like very welcome in advance.
Upon arrival at the hotel (set in a lovely area of Juan-les-Pins and far enough away from the tourist traps to make you feel relaxed and isolated in a good way), we were greeted by the very courteous reception team. They advised us that as we were early our room was not ready but that we were more than welcome to use the pool while they stored our bags and prepared the room.
As a nice touch (although a text message may have been a better idea given the cost of receiving a call in Europe!) they even asked for our mobile number so they could call us when our room was ready.
The pool area at the hotel is of a decent size, with a reassuring child proof lock on the access door for families. The pool area has a really nice feel to it, almost reminiscent of a bygone era (in a pleasant way).
All of the loungers and seats were comfortable and there was the option to enjoy some al-fresco dining by the pool too. As well as this, the pool itself was heated, which was a bonus given that the weather was lovely but not quite at the summer peak that cold pools need to become bearable!
After lazing by the pool for a while, we were advised by the reception team that our room was ready. Having opted for the lowest room category, you always worry you might have been hung out to dry with the location of the room or end up with a shoddy room in general. At Hotel Juana, the classic room we stayed in was the reverse of this; the room was spotless and clean with excellent amenities and a super king sized bed.
The bathroom area contained both a nice marble style bath and shower and the room boasted a good size TV as well as a DVD player (and DVDs) on request.
Whilst all this was wonderful, there was one stand out feature about the hotel: the breakfast. The breakfast buffet tables were set up around different “zones”, the main ones being cooked elements e.g. scrambled eggs and crisp, smoky bacon, cold continental items e.g. cooked ham and cheese, baked items like croissants, cookies, bread, and the most divine homemade chocolate and walnut cookies, and an obligatory pancake station with nutella and maple syrup on offer!
The cooked breakfast options were fantastic; the eggs were creamy and satisfying and the bacon extremely moreish. However, it was the baked goods that really stood out from the pack in our opinion. The croissants were exactly how you’d expect a good French croissant to be and went extremely well with gorgeous butter and strawberry jam, and there were a few nice touches like homemade lemon bread made with lemons picked from the trees in the hotel garden.
We ate so much at breakfast that we didn’t need to eat lunch on any of the days we were there, which saved us a considerable amount of money!
Whilst there was the option to eat dinner and lunch in the restaurant and even a fabulous looking Sunday brunch, the breakfast was so good and so filling that we ended up choosing to keep our memories of eating at the hotel solely to the first meal of the day!
For any sun worshipers out there who might be wondering who would choose to stay in a hotel in a beach town set away from the front (especially when the majority of beaches at Juan-les-Pins are owned by hotels or restaurants) rest assured that the Hotel Juana has a sister hotel on the beach set only a few hundred meters away that you are allowed to enjoy. We didn’t make use of this option (neither did we use the on-site gym at Hotel Juana!) but it was a nice reassuring feeling to know it was there if we wanted it.
Overall, while the town of Juan-les-Pins may need a touch of modernisation about it to regenerate the fading beauty of the place (Antibes shows how this could be done and is only a short walk from Hotel Juana), the hotel itself is worth staying at and can be used as a fantastic base for seeing the beautiful Cote d’Azur.
We hope to go back again soon.
Categories: Hotel Reviews - Europe