miércoles, 27 de enero de 2016

What are we up to?

Call us crazy, but we love renovations!  We love taking something old, out-of-date and re-creating a brand new look and feel.  Even though the hotel has contracted a construction company to do the dirty work, it is our employees that play a fundamental role in making this major makeover a success!

A handful of employees have stayed at the hotel through the construction period and we thought we would let them give you the inside info on what a couple of them are up to and their thoughts on the refurb up to now.


Esperanza Corrales (Architect, Hotel Don Pancho)

What do you think the hotel guests will enjoy most once the Don Pancho re-opens?

Esperanza:  I think the pool area because it will experience the biggest change;  as most of our guests come for the sun, I am sure they will take advantage of the improvements in this area the most. The pool bar area will be larger than it used to be; it will look up-to-date and fresh.

Also, guests were used to seeing two smaller pools, but they will now enjoy one big pool, which will have a built-in seating bench facing the sun so they can take a seat in the actual pool, relax and stay cool.    The deep section of the pool will now be accessed through steps instead of a vertical ladder, so access will be much easier and pleasant!     Guests can also use those stairs to sit on, face the sun and stay cool.

Being in charge of such a huge project must be stressful. Have you run into any major bumps in the road yet?
Esperanza:  The hotel hired me a year and a half before the refurbishment started;  we therefore had plenty of time to plan, which always greatly reduces the issues during the execution of the project.  Everything is going according to plan and at this point, we are very confident that everything will come together perfectly and on time.

What part of the refurbishment, in your opinion, will create the greatest “wow-factor” when repeat guests return to the hotel this spring?
Esperanza:  The façade of the hotel is going to wow everyone as it is so fresh and modern.  It will create the feeling that is that it is a brand new hotel!
The façade uses a material that is state-of-the -art for constructing facades called Krion (from the company Porcelanosa).  In fact, The Hotel Don Pancho Hotel will be the first hotel in the entire Spanish Mediterranean coast with a Krion facade and also the tallest hotel in Spain which uses this material.

Alejandro  (Reception, Hotel Don Pancho) 

Someone had to stay behind to answer the phones and take care of new reservations… do you get bored as there are no clients?

Alejandro:  I miss having the guests here and I am very much looking forward to them coming back but I have been very busy since we closed.  Not only am I answering the phones and taking new reservations but I am also training our newest receptionist, Laura, as well as dealing with agencies. .  Nonetheless, I miss having face-to-face contact with our guests and am really looking forward to the re-opening.

What do you think the guests of the Don Pancho will like best?
Alejandro:  I think the quality of the rooms will be enjoyed most; they’ve been done up to a very high standard.    All of the rooms are being refurbished and this will make a huge difference, especially to our repeat guests who usually stayed in our Standard Rooms.
I think the transparent glass in the balconies will give guests a better view of the Sea and allow plenty of natural light into the rooms.

Ana Laborde (Guest Relations Manager, Hotel Don Pancho)

If there are no guests, what is your role at the hotel during the refurbishment?

Ana:  Keeping our guests informed on social media, our website and via our newsletter is one of my responsibilities… even though we do not want to tell too much before we re-open to keep the surprise factor element alive.
I also help with the development of new sales and marketing materials, research and ordering of new supplies (for example: dishes, amenities, uniforms, etc.) and getting together the entertainment for 2016 are also how I spend my time… but I must admit I really miss spending time with our guests  and I cannot wait till we re-open so I can see their familiar faces and show them around the new installations.

Hotel Don Pancho

Which room type to book in 2016?

Staying at the Hotel Don Pancho offers a true Benidorm experience. We have taken special care to create the following room types to match the needs of our guests.

Standard Rooms

Bright and cosy, the refurbished Standard Rooms have been thoughtfully furnished to create a relaxing environment for one or two guests after a long day of sun or exploration.  Enjoy high-definition entertainment on the LCD TV where you can enjoy Satellite TV with plenty of British channels or stay in touch with family and friends with our free wireless high-speed internet.  Keep a few of your favourite beverages cool in the mini-fridge and quench your thirst while you unwind on your spacious and sunny terrace.

Superior Rooms

Relax your body and soul with added space and enjoy the added amenities included in our newly refurbished Superior Rooms.   These rooms (corner and center rooms) are about 20% larger than our Standard Rooms.  This relaxing retreat is an ideal choice for up to 3 travellers who desire the ultimate balance of comfort and convenience.   Superior Rooms offer plenty of extras:  enjoy a free tea or coffee in your provided bathrobe and slippers while you take in the sea view from your spacious and sunny terrace.  Sip a glass of the complimentary wine offered in the Premium Welcome Pack while you enjoy high-definition entertainment on the LCD TV with plenty of British Channels, or connect to our free wireless high-speed internet.  After a long day of sun, quench your thirst with the complimentary water delivered daily or freshen-up with the extra bathroom amenities offered in the Superior Rooms.


Pampering your senses from the moment you enter, our two Suites are exclusively located on the hotel’s top floors allowing you to admire the best view of the Mediterranean Sea from the comfy sofa bed or from the enormous terrace.   These luxurious Suites are the best two rooms in the entire hotel; they are a tranquil haven for guests, and include a bedroom, separate private living area, both a large soaking tub and separate shower where you can relax and unwind after a day of sun or exploration.  A King-size bed with custom designed pillow-top mattress and the separate living room with pullout queen-sofa bed accommodate a total of up to 4 guests.  Custom lighting at the touch of a button, separate toilet/bidet area, make-up/dressing table, Premium Welcome Pack, kettle with tea and coffee service and upgraded amenities surely give this room the “Wow Factor”.

Attic Room

This one-of-a-kind room is not a refurbished room… it’s a brand new room!     It’s only one of only two rooms in the hotel located on the attic level of the hotel, so it’s great for those guests who appreciate privacy.     The size of the room is similar to that of a standard room, but has a huge terrace that is 5 times larger than the rest of the terraces !   The terrace houses two ultra-comfortable sunbeds overlooking the Sea.     The bathroom in this room is the only one in the entire hotel that allows you to view the sea while you shower!    Quite an experience!    Plus, you receive all the same extras as those in our Superior Rooms:  tea and coffee facilities, bathrobe and slippers, water replenished daily, a Premium welcome pack with wine and fruit, and more.
Please note that this room requires guests to walk up one floor, since it’s located on the attic level.

Attic Junior Suite

This one-of-a-kind room is not a refurbished room either… it’s a brand new room!     Only this Junior Suite and the Attic room are located on the attic level, so again, it’s great for those guests who appreciate privacy.     This room has a separate living area with a double sofa-bed, so it can host a total of four guests (a fifth guest fits since an extra bed can be added as needed).  
The Attic Junior Suite has a huge terrace that is 5 times larger than the rest of the terraces !   The terrace houses two ultra-comfortable sunbeds overlooking the Sea.     Its spacious bathroom lets natural light in and contains both a shower and a soaking tub.    Plus, guests in this room receive all the same extras as those in our Superior Rooms:  tea and coffee facilities, bathrobe and slippers, water changed daily, a Premium welcome pack with wine and fruit, and more.
The Attic Room and the Attic Junior Suite can be joined for large groups of up to seven people who want exclusive and private access to the attic level (a key is required to access the attic level).
Please note that since the Junior Suite is located on the attic level, it requires guests to walk up one floor.

Hotel Don Pancho

Easy Recipe for Paella for 4 people


2 cups of rice – (use a round smaller rice kernel if possible)
200 grams Red shrimp
200 grams Crawfish
200 grams of chicken (trim fat and cut in small bite-size pieces)
1 peeled tomato cut in small pieces
2 garlic cloves - peeled
4 cups of store bought fish broth
1 teaspoon yellow powdered food coloring or 5 or 6 strands of saffron
Olive oil


Put a little bit of olive oil in a large pan over low/medium heat (just enough so the ingredients do not stick). Second, fry the garlic, tomato and chicken.

When everything is done (soft), remove the garlic and tomato and set aside.  Add the saffron or yellow food coloring.  Crush and grind into a paste. Leave aside for now.

When the chicken is almost done add the rice to the large pan and mix it with chicken for a few minutes.  Then add the tomato/garlic/saffron mix.

Mix all the ingredients in the pan well and then add the fish broth (the rice will not stick together if you warm up the fish broth before adding to the pan).  Cook on high for 15 minutes.

Next, add the shrimp and the crawfish and cook on low heat for 5 minutes.
Let the paella sit for 15 minutes before serving.

All done!

Hotel Don Pancho

lunes, 18 de enero de 2016

New Year, New Look!

Happy New Year!

We at the Hotel Don Pancho want to share with you, our loyal guests, the progress of our refurbishment to date.

As you know, on November 1st 2015 we began the process of renovating of the Hotel Don Pancho.
The main objective of the refurbishment is to update the look and enhance the functionality of the following areas:


Pool and Terrace

Rooms and bathrooms

Dining area

Dancing Lounge

Once the renovation is done, our hotel will become a contemporary space where the light plays a very important role, preserving the essence and character of the hotel with its famous Aztec style.
Why did we decide to refurbish?

This important project was born out of the initiative by the ownership and management of the Hotel Don Pancho to remain the leader among hotels in Benidorm in terms of quality, aesthetics, facilities and service.

You, the customer, have also been an active part of this project by filling out our surveys and by attending the many tours we have organized in the different room pilots built in the last year.
You have tried out the different chair prototypes in the pilot rooms, the mattresses and pillows, the armchairs in the ballroom, the sun beds by the pool… you saw different wallpapers, tiles, carpets we were trying out ... and gave us your opinion on all of these.   We have taken all those opinions into account: every choice we have made for the refurbishment is, in part, yours.   And for that, we thank you!

The hotel will be a small part of each of you and that is why we are confident that you will love the new Hotel Don Pancho!

Now, down to business:  how is the refurbishment going?

We are pleased to announce that we are meeting our timelines:

We have spent the last two and a half months working on all the different areas in parallel.    Each area (facade, rooms, dining room, pool, etc.) has its own dedicated team. 
The first task was to dismantle what was already there.   We sold part of our goods and furniture, another part was donated, and the rest is in storage.   It’s possible we will auction some of those goods later this year, for guests who want a keepsake of the Don Pancho history.    More on that at a later time.

The facade is very advanced, and will be completely finished by the end of February.    The new *clear* glass has already replaced all the old amber glass, and the new aluminum sides of the building is in place.    The hotel exterior already looks so bright and modern… we are loving it!

We love that you can now see the beach and the sea while sitting on the terrace, and even from bed!   The smoky glass in the room balconies allows for that view, but yet maintains that level of privacy that you have requested.   As you can see, here too, we have listened to your suggestions.
The material of the white stripes on the facade is a brand new, cutting-edge and environmentally friendly material called Krion.   Porcelanosa, one of the world's leading ceramic manufacturers is the company responsible for this work.   The Hotel Don Pancho Hotel will be the first hotel in the entire Spanish Mediterranean coast with a Krion facade.

What about the rest of the facilities?

The rooms and bathrooms are well advanced too.   We are now in the process of covering the entire walls of every room with wallpaper.    The tiles have been laid in most of the bathrooms, which is the most arduous task in that space.    Most of the material in the new bathrooms is also from the company Porcelanosa, a top brand, known for its quality products.    

As for the dining room, it already has its new floor in place:  beautiful, bright, extra-large tiles.  The brand new buffet is currently being built, and will be brought in next month.

The kitchen has been completely dismantled and is being replaced by a brand new one, which is state of the art, and more efficient and environmentally friendly. 

What about the entrance gardens, you might wonder… what will become of them? 

The beautiful entrance garden will remain in place, looking as spectacular as usual, or possibly even more, thanks to the new state-of the art lighting system there, which we think you will be very pleased with.

No matter how much we refurbish, we are well aware that our greatest asset is actually our staff.    We keep hearing this from you, year after year.    That is why the hotel will re-open with largely the same staff as before; you will see the same familiar faces when you come back!

Stay tuned, because between now and the hotel re-opening, we will be giving photo-clues of the refurbishment on Facebook and Twitter.   But don’t expect us to reveal every detail; we want to keep the surprise factor!

In regard to the re-opening date, the plan remains unchanged:  we are accepting reservations from April 29, although there is a possibility we might open earlier.   If so, we will let you know ahead of time via a future refurbishment update like this one, published on Facebook and Twitter, or sent directly to your e-mail.   If we don’t have your e-mail and you want to be included in the refurbishment mailing list, please click here to be placed on our mailing list.

All staff at the Hotel Don Pancho is very much looking forward to the re-opening, and finding out whether you will love the new Hotel Don Pancho as much as we think you will.   Thank you again for being part of this very exciting project!

We'll keep you updated!

Photo-clues of the refurbishment we posted on Facebook and Twitter so far...

Your new balcony view! View from balcony of room 1607 while sitting down: Before & After. 

We are loving it! 

We love the look of Japanese paper…do you?

We like the color ‘Cappuccino’. So calming. Would be perfect in a bedroom...

We unveil one of the eight new aztec-inspired symbols you will find throughout the #NewHotelDonPancho

Do you like white? Expect to see it where you don't expect it, at the #NewHotelDonPancho

Aged silver surfaces.... #NewHotelDonPancho