Family devastated after ‘kids friendly’ hotel turns into a yoga retreat

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A family say their £2,600 holiday has been ruined after the hotel scrapped all its children’s facilities and became a yoga retreat weeks before they are due to travel.

The Luna Park in Spain‘s Costa Brava promised a kids’ club, playground and mini disco when Danielle Dutton booked last year for this August.

But with just 87 days to go, Thomas Cook informed Ms Dutton, 31, all the children’s facilities had been removed.

The family, who have two boys aged 10 and 18 months, now face holidaying in a retreat resort offering yoga, pilates and t’ai chi.

Anthony and Danielle Dutton and their two boys planned a family holiday in Spain for the summer, but, weeks before they are due to travel, they were told the hotel is now a yoga retreat

Anthony and Danielle Dutton and their two boys planned a family holiday in Spain for the summer, but, weeks before they are due to travel, they were told the hotel is now a yoga retreat

When they book, they were promised the hotel had a kids' club, playground and mini disco

When they book, they were promised the hotel had a kids’ club, playground and mini disco

But they've now been sent a letter tell them the hotel has been changed into a retreat

But they’ve now been sent a letter tell them the hotel has been changed into a retreat

The family has been offered a move to a child-friendly hotel but only if they pay an extra £800.

Had they been informed just three days earlier, they would have been able to cancel and only lose her deposit.

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Ms Dutton, from Rochdale, Greater Manchester, planned to travel with her husband Anthony, 40, Joe, 10, Frankie, 18 months, and their grandparents.

She said: ‘I don’t want my holiday to be ruined. It’s the first time we’ve taken my husband’s little boy away and it’s our first big family holiday, but it’s making me feel like I don’t want to go.

‘Everyone was happy with what we had booked. We were expecting a kids’ club, a mini disco and a playground play area. They were the main reasons we booked that hotel in the first place.’

The booking was made in October last year but it was not until this week they received a letter from Airtours, part of the Thomas Cook group, telling them of the changes.

A letter they were sent lists all the facilities which are no longer available, including the kids' club, playground and mini disco

A letter they were sent lists all the facilities which are no longer available, including the kids’ club, playground and mini disco

Ms Dutton fears she have to keep her children quiet so as not to interrupt others' meditation

Ms Dutton fears she have to keep her children quiet so as not to interrupt others’ meditation

They had planned to travel with the boys' grandparents, adding to the cost of the holiday

They had planned to travel with the boys’ grandparents, adding to the cost of the holiday

As well being told the children’s facilities had been scrapped, they learned that the indoor pool had been turned into a spa and that guests would now have to pay to use sun loungers.

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Ms Dutton says the hotel has rebranded itself as a retreat-style resort, offering yoga and pilates to guests.

She said: ‘How am I going to keep a baby quiet when there’s yoga going on?’

Cancellations made earlier than 90 days before the holiday start date only lose the deposit, but cancelling now will cost the family £800 as well as the hassle of trying to book another holiday.

Ms Dutton said: ‘We paid the holiday off three days off before they emailed me. They must have known about it in advance, it’s not like they could add all those facilities overnight. It seems like they’ve waited until the 90 days is up.

‘Maybe if they sorted it out and sorted us somewhere decent to go, I would consider booking with them again although I would be cautious, but at the moment there is no chance I would book with them again.’

Photos online show the hotel has now styled itself as a retreat, with Middle Eastern decor

Photos online show the hotel has now styled itself as a retreat, with Middle Eastern decor

Unlike the family-friendly environment they expected, it now has a 'vegetarian corner'

Unlike the family-friendly environment they expected, it now has a ‘vegetarian corner’

The website describes the hotel’s ‘calm and relaxing atmosphere’ as one of its main attractions. Photos display a tranquil lagoon-style pool and vegetarian buffet, informing guests ‘it’s all about relaxation here’.

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Another picture shows a man, dressed all in white, appearing to do yoga next to a Buddha statue.

The hotel’s Eastern-inspired décor reinforces its peaceful atmosphere, with  no mention of children at all within its description.

A Thomas Cook spokesman said: ‘Occasionally our hotel partners need to make changes to the facilities and we are working with Ms Dutton to find a suitable alternative. We’re sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.’



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