The last time I'd been in Mallorca was back in my footloose, fancy-free pre-parent life, so it felt like the right time to return and check out what the island had to offer. We put our requirements into the On The Beach website search engine and came up with The Meliá Antillas Calviá Beach.
We added in flights (and transfers) to make the whole thing seamless and after years spent doing this all separately with flight and hotel websites it was actually a bit of a relief to be able to do it all in once place.
Our filghts there were with charter company Small Planet from Gatwick to Palma - our seats were pre-booked which is a bonus if you're travelling with kids. On arrival in Palma it was pretty easy to find the coach which was taking us to the hotel and transfers took about an hour.
Our four star hotel is part of a trio of hotels run by the same Spanish company, huddled together around the bay by Magaluf. But while the rest of the resort may be a bit TOWIE, this corner of the bay was anything but. Here it was all modern lines, sophisticated cuisine, lovely pools - oh and the odd Balearic beat drifting over from Nikki Beach next door.
Provision for families is excellent. There's a Kids&Co programme with all manner of fun on offer. Activities and care are split between the Mini club for children aged between 8 months and 4 years and the main one for kids aged between 5 and 12. We liked the fact that there was a good mixture of nationalities at the hotel, so your child is just as likely to be playing in the pool with a Spanish or Italian child as a British one.
If you can, spend the extra money to upgrade to The Level. It's like a hotel within a hotel, complete with its own pool (where we never had to fight for sunbeds), and restaurant/lounge area. There's a fridge with free soft drinks in it all day - and every night between 5 and 6pm they put out drinks and tapas for The Level guests. Level rooms are better appointed and - critically for teenagers - this includes free wifi.
Food-wise we were really impressed with the hotel's main restaurant. The buffet was extraordinary - chefs cooking red prawns or steaks to order, beautiful salads, a really wide ranging charcuterie section and a large terrace overlooking the bay. There's also a trendy coffee store off the main reception, serving up sandwiches and salads if you want lighter fare during the day. And -if you're down by the hotel's pool - there's another all day restaurant with everything from sushi to burgers on the menu (and some rather lethal frozen cocktails).
We loved this hotel's situation right on the beach. There's plenty to keep you happy at the hotel, but if the kids want to hurl themselves around the sea there are loads of watersports (you'll have to pay extra though) for them to try here. We went parasailing and had a great time. It's also a very easy 3 euro bus ride into Palma for shopping and sightseeing.
All in all, this comes highly recommended. It's a shiny, beautifully-designed modern, family-friendly hotel and the whole holiday was made seamless with On The Beach. We'd go back in an instant.