Dreams Lanzarote Playa Dorada Resort & Spa is a 5* family hotel situated in an enviable beachfront position in between the town centre of Playa Blanca and Marina Rubicón. The stunning Playa Dorada beach is on the doorstep and the promenade stretches for several km’s in either direction for picturesque walks.
Previously known as the 4* Hesperia Playa Dorada, this hotel underwent a comprehensive renovation valued in the region of 20 million euros, opening on the 1st June 2021. Dreams Lanzarote is the first AMResorts Dreams branded resort in Europe.
The hotel has 465 rooms within 4 accommodation blocks. Half board or all inclusive accommodation options available.
At the front between reception and the beach is block 1 & 2 either side of the main Barracuda swimming pool. Between reception and the Avenida de Papagayo road is block 3 & 4 either side of the Marlin pool and water slides. There are 3 floors and 6 lifts.
Standard room (blocks 3&4) facilities includes luxurious and comfortable mattresses, a balcony or terrace, 24-hour room service, pillow menu, bathrobe and slippers, umbrella, minibar, free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, 65-inch Smart TV with satellite channels, air-conditioning, USB plug, kettle, free safe and spacious bathroom with shower with a rain shower head, bath amenities and hairdryer. Room types include:
- Double room
- Double garden view
- Double pool view
- Double side ocean view
- Family garden view
- Family partial ocean view
The double room types are 26m2, they sleep a maximum of 3 guests with a king and single bed. The family room types are 36m2, they sleep a maximum of 4 guests and have 4 beds made up as a king and twin beds.
Preferred Club rooms (blocks 1 & 2) are in the most exclusive areas, with access to Preferred Club pools and Preferred Club lounge. Plus upgraded room facilities including superior bathroom amenities, free minibar, a tablet in room, coffee maker, turn down service, pillow menu and essence menu for the bed linen. Room types include:
- Double garden view – Preferred Club
- Double pool view – Preferred Club
- Double ocean view – Preferred Club
- Connected double room ocean view – Preferred Club
- Double swim-up ocean view – Preferred Club
- Superior ocean view – Preferred Club
- Suite ocean view – Preferred Club
Double rooms are 27m2, they sleep a maximum of 3 guests with either a king or twin beds. The connected room sleeps up to 4 guests with 2 x 27m2 and king or twin beds. The double swim up ocean view rooms are very limited 27m2, sleeps a max of 2 guests situated on the ground floor and have 2 sun loungers on the terrace. Superior ocean view rooms are 30m2, max 2 guests and king or twin beds. The suite ocean view is 50m2 with a 19m2 terrace, max of 2 guests and king or twin beds.
Restaurants & Bars
Dreams Lanzarote hotel has 5 restaurants, 2 of which are buffet. There’s a choice of pool bars depending on accommodation, cafe and lounge situated within the hotel.
Their all inclusive service known as Unlimited-Luxury® includes:
Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks every day – Welcome cocktail and refreshing towel – Unlimited fruit juices and soft drinks – Unlimited International and National drinks – Mini bar refilled daily with soft drinks, bottled water and Beer – 24-hour room service – Waiter service by pool – Activities during the day and nightly live entertainment.
Barefoot Grill is the pool bistro for lunch and snacks (10:30-18:00)
Bluewater Grill Mediterranean cuisine (18:30-22:00) NB. long trousers required
Sabor specialises in paella (18:30-22:00)
Himitsu Asian cuisine (18:30-22:00) NB. long trousers required
World Cafe is the main buffet restaurant open for breakfast, lunch & dinner 08:00-10:30, 13:00-15:00 & 18:30-22:00
Coco Cafe is the place for coffee and cake (11:00-19:00)
Preferred Club Lounge for breakfast (08:30-12:00), snacks and drinks (08:30-23:00)
Barracuda is the main pool bar (10:30-19:00)
Sea Legs Preferred Club swim up pool bar (10:30-19:00)
Marlin pool bar (10:30-19:00)
Rendezvouz lobby bar (12:30pm-01:00am)
Halftime sports bar (15:00-23:00)
Spin Music lounge (23:00-01:00am)
Sugar Reef cocktail bar Preferred Club (10:30-19:00)
Opening hours specified may vary slightly from winter to summer, we have included the earliest and latest times indicated.
There are 4 freshwater pool areas at Dreams Lanzarote, plus children’s pools. The main pool is Barracuda with lots of sun lounger areas and daily activities. Sea Legs split level infinity pool is heated and restricted to Preferred Club guests, there are several cabanas for hire at additional cost. The Sea Legs pool has 9 submerged stools for a swim up bar service. Marlin is the main children’s pool with water slides, situated by the Explorer’s Club for 4-12 year old guests. Teenagers have access to the Core Zone Club. There is also the adult’s only Preferred Club Sugar Reef pool and cocktail bar.
The spa has a 25m indoor pool, hot tubs, Turkish bath and sauna. Supplement to pay locally on entry. There are 7 treatments rooms and a hairdresser on site. Open from 13:30-20:00. Minimum age 16 years.
A gym is situated in block 3 for guests from 16 years old with cardio equipment, free weights and a stretching zone.
Daily activities and evening entertainment.
Hotel Construction Next Door
The 4* Barceló Costa Papagayo is a huge hotel construction situated next door to Dreams. The building license was issued in 2019 for a period of 36 months more information and images can be seen on our building work in Playa Blanca page.
Cranes could clearly be seen in the back drop from the main pool area. The Sugar Reef adults only pool and bar has been closed whilst the neighbouring hotel is built. Rooms from block 2 and 4 face onto the building site. Guests should expect to hear some construction noise in 2022, bearing in mind that the main skeleton of the hotel construction has been completed.
We booked a weekend away at the Dreams Lanzarote hotel in March 2022, we wanted to experience the hotel after the AMResorts takeover and refurbishment from the previous Hesperia Playa Dorada.
The few car parking spaces allocated for the hotel are very small, so although there were 2 free on arrival, we couldn’t park our VW Golf due to badly parked cars either side. Leaving our vehicle in front of the hotel whilst we checked in, we were able to find a space in the public car park just outside the hotel afterwards.
We had booked a double ocean view room, preferred club. At check in, we were escorted to the Preferred Club desks around the corner to complete our arrival. Whilst we completed the paperwork we were offered cool towels and a glass of cava which for some reason they call champagne.
Despite arriving early, our room was ready, we were allocated 1227 which is a high floor on the front of block 1 between the main pool Barracuda and Sea Legs the Preferred Club pool in a row of 4. Our balcony had a fabulous view towards Marina Rubicón with morning to afternoon sunshine, but not evening, which suited us as we could sit on the shaded balcony before dinner.
Although the room type is a double, it had twin beds separated by a bedside table, so not the most romantic set up! Our room had a separate toilet from the shower room with toiletries, dressing gowns and slippers. We have a mini bar stocked with 2 different bottles of beer, soft drinks and water. Plus a coffee machine with pods both of which are topped up daily on the all inclusive Preferred Club package. The flat screen TV is huge! There are lots of channels but only a selection of news channels in English, However, you can access YouTube and Netflix if you have accounts to log in and watch your favourite series / films. The air conditioning is great! It’s often an issue for us that we can’t set a low temperature, but no complaints here, it was blasting out at 19 degrees on our request. The inside relax area is a bit squashed, there’s a chair and small table between one bed and the patio doors, plus a desk with another chair. The balcony is private with 2 comfortable chairs and table. For anyone watching their weight on holiday, there is a scale in the bathroom along with hairdryer including diffuser. The wardrobe included a safe, good hanging space and limited shelves.
Sea Legs Preferred Club Area
After unpacking we headed down to the Sea Legs pool bar. Although an exclusive area, there wasn’t any barriers preventing other guests from frequenting this location. We were expecting to have to use our room card to access the area. The pool bar was manned by one bar steward who was unable to leave the bar area to offer the waiter service due to demand from guests either at the swim up bar stools or queueing to get served. The lifeguard did assist when possible. Disappointingly it didn’t feel 5* service or unlimited luxury all inclusive, Gordon’s, Beefeater, Bombay Sapphire, Master’s or Tanqueray were the gins on the AI menu without paying a supplement. Nordic tonic was included, Schweppes was extra, and the flavoured tonics listed on the menu weren’t available. You can access the Sea Legs Bar Menu below to check drink prices for half board or all inclusive accommodation.
À la carte restaurants
Another major disappointment was the à la carte restaurants, on check in we realised that the Asian cuisine restaurant, Himitsu was not available during our entire stay – closed on Friday and Saturday nights. Our dining choice was limited to the Bluewater Grill, Sabor or the World Cafe buffet restaurant. Plus, Preferred Club guests were not able to make an advance reservation, we had to take our chance with the advice being to dine early if we didn’t want to be disappointed as they were popular and filled up quickly.
We arrived at the Bluewater Grill at 7pm, we were given a table inside, 10 mins later the restaurant was almost full. The waiter wanted to take our orders for the full 3 courses as soon as we were seated. I honestly struggled to find something to eat, with the name I was expecting a selection of grilled fresh meat or fish. What we found was a very limited menu mainly pizza or pasta. We both chose the grilled marinated chicken salad as a starter. After 2 mouthfuls of grisly grey chicken meat I couldn’t continue and was not questioned why the dish was left almost uneaten. My pizza arrived with my chosen 4 toppings of cheddar, pepperoni, BBQ sauce and chillies. It tasted like a frozen pizza base with bland cheese and measly toppings. Mike’s lasagne was awful, the dish was too hot to touch from being zapped in the microwave and looked like a cheap supermarket frozen portion. The completely opposite scale of the spectrum from being a 5* à la carte experience. We left without finishing our meal.
Still hungry we thought we’d go to the World Cafe buffet instead. What a mistake that was, we literally couldn’t find anything we wanted to eat. In the end Mike opted for freshly cooked pasta dish from show cooking and myself an Entrecôte steak – the dishes were marginally better but we couldn’t find any fresh salad or vegetables to accompany them. What a disaster for our first night. In despair we thought the Preferred Club lounge might at least offer us some snacks, but no, the food there was the same from the afternoon and uncertain how long it had been sitting there, we left.
We were hesitant about breakfast, however it was a completely different story from the evening service. The Preferred Club section of the World Cafe had plenty of space to be seated at 8am and the hot breakfast section was very good. There’s a choice of pre cooked streaky bacon or back bacon cooked to order, with British style sausages, eggs any way you want them, fresh mushrooms, hash browns, beans etc. Continental meat & cheeses were available with a choice of breads, cereals, yoghurt, fruit and pastries etc. We can definitely recommend this hotel for bed & breakfast accommodation….. if it was available!
Writing off our first nights experience we approached the Barefoot Grill just after 13:00 for lunch. There was a red tape across the entrance, despite their being 6 tables available and laid for service. We and another couple were ordered to wait whilst they made tables ready for us? After 10 minutes of watching organised chaos whilst food and drinks were tried to be delivered to the correct tables, the couple ahead of us walked away in disgust. We hung in there, but another 8 minutes later there was no sign of us being seated anytime soon, so we also turned away in defeat and headed to the World Cafe. Having received a warm welcome at the buffet restaurant we opted to sit on the terrace, but needed to ask for a shaded table to be cleared before we could sit down. We both opted for the salad bar which looked the best choice for lunch. I wanted a Lanzarote white wine, unsurprisingly this was not included on all inclusive despite being a local wine. The World Cafe buffet restaurant drinks menu can be browsed below.
The Sea Legs pool bar service was much improved on the Saturday afternoon, Yolanda had some assistance with Estefani and waiter service was available. Our preferred drinks were also in stock, even if we were paying a supplement for them.
For reference, the same snacks as the day before were on offer in the Preferred Club lounge, there was a slight difference in cakes. We visited the lounge shortly after 5pm to find no food left and dirty dishes on almost every table without a soul in there. We mentioned it to guest services and to be fair they went in and cleared the dishes and ordered more food although we didn’t hang around for it to arrive.
Sabor was a completely different experience, we arrived shortly after 7pm to a warm welcome and some interesting dishes including a choice of 3 paellas cooked on a central charcoal grill. We ordered a bottle of Lanzarote Bermejo white wine (€17 supplement) and enjoyed a selection of cold seafood dishes before a main course of paella. The dessert section had a profiterole cake which we also enjoyed. This restaurant had a steady influx of guests arriving during our meal, with tables to spare throughout the evening. Situated downstairs from reception in the centre of the hotel.
For breakfast on Sunday we went to the à la carte restaurants where they open up Himitsu, Bluewater Grill and Barefoot Grill into one area. We were welcomed with a cava or mimosa and offered a terrace or indoor table as preferred. Despite being a smaller dining area than the World Cafe buffet restaurant there was a great choice of hot and cold options available with friendly staff.
We wanted to use the 25m indoor swimming pool in the Spa for training. We had one visit free and discounted entry and treatments available throughout our stay. Frustratingly the spa wasn’t open in the mornings so we didn’t get to use it, as it would have compromised our afternoon sunbathing or dining options for the evening.
We enjoyed the performance from Tempo Forte on Friday evening in the lobby bar Rendezvous. This trio of tenors entertained us with a fusion of opera, pop and rock songs in different languages. Some of the waiters had Jungle themed costumes as it was carnival weekend in Playa Blanca.
In summary, this hotel is a fabulous option for family holidays in the centre of Playa Blanca, Lanzarote. It could be amazing if the à la carte restaurants standard & service was improved and a reservations system implemented. The breakfast service in all restaurants and buffet dinner in Sabor is excellent. We would recommend booking Preferred Club rooms for pool and ocean views. The standard rooms in blocks 3 & 4 could be noisy from children playing at busy times, plus some traffic noise from the road behind and some have car park views.
How to book
Feeling inspired for a family beachfront holiday in Lanzarote? We’d love to help you book a stay at the Dreams Lanzarote hotel in Playa Blanca.
Camel Travel are an independent UK travel agency based in the Canary Islands, run by Julie & Mike who have lived on the islands for more than two decades and are supported by a fantastic admin team based in the UK.
ABTA member P6938.
Freephone: 0800 810 8404 or contact us via your preferred platform.