Advantages Comfortable if a little dull. Fab roof top pool
Disadvantages Mr Grumpy on reception and a general lack of 'festivity'.
When the old Air Miles scheme announced that it was about to reinvent itself as 'Avios', we decided to use all the old Air Miles we'd built up buying fuel at Tescos and have a weekend away before BA and their buddies made it unattractive to use them again. We looked at the map of where we could get to and picked a place that neither my husband nor I had ever been to. We chose to go to Gibraltar for the weekend before Christmas. I've struggled the last few years to get into the holiday mood and I hoped that going away might help us to start feeling 'Christmas-y'. And if it didn't, at least we'd have a weekend somewhere warm for a change.
Gibraltar is almost certainly the only airport I've ever landed at where they have to stop the traffic because there's a public highway right through the middle of the runway. It's also the only airport I've ever been to that had absolutely no taxis outside the terminal. We asked the lady on the 'Information' desk who told us that we might as well walk, gave us a map and pointed us in the right direction – basically, look for the big rock and head that way. Her suggestion that it was only a fifteen minute walk was a bit on the optimistic side – it actually took more than double that but we may have been doing a tourist dawdle rather than a focused march. As we entered the city through the tunnel and then walked across Casemate's Square and then right along the main shopping street, we had seen quite a lot of the city by the time we reached the hotel.
We got a bit lost and went too far. A chap on a corner speaking on his mobile phone called across to ask us what we were looking for, nodded wisely and told us to go “past the Scottish church and you can't miss it – it serves a good pint of Guinness”. Sure enough, we passed the church of St Andrew and it was on the other side of Governors Parade, a leafy little square. It was weird to be in a little corner of UK territory, surrounded by people who look Spanish and being told where to get a pint of Ireland's finest (or most famous).
The O'Callaghan Elliot is part of an Irish hotel chain that I'd never heard of and its Irishness is about as 'fish out of water' as Gibraltar's local Morrison's supermarket. The hotel is a strange sort of place, caught in an odd 'time and place' warp that characterises so much of this anachronistic little place.
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In the heart of Gibraltar town, O'Callaghan Eliott Hotel has 2 restaurants and a fitness centre. The stylish hotel features a rooftop pool and...
Shipping: refer to website
Availability: Price is per double room per night and may vary depending on date booked