Friday, February 02, 2018

Day 00: Club La Santa Orientation

With the utmost sadness Marcus and Agata are no longer at Club La Santa (CLS), Lanzarote.   CLS is a world famous destination for athletes, families, in fact anybody with an interest in a varied environment for sports fitness.   From casual, to moderate, to full immersion 24x7 exercise, CLS caters for you.

Today we jump back to Day 00 of our wonderful holiday.  By following our time at Club La Santa we hope that you can be aware what you can expect when you too book this fantastic destination.

The Overview
Club La Santa is based in Lanzarote, technically a part of Spain although physically located in the Canary Islands which is off the coast of North Africa

In previous times athletes used to arrive in groups on days Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday,  based on country of origin available flights.  So UK arrivals came on a Friday!

Today, more flights are available and so you can in principle arrive and depart on any day and so CLS booking and pricing reflects that change.

Two Apartment Styles
The original apartments are shown at the top of this diagram and the new more luxurious suites are shown in green below.

First you should know that in the last 10 years the original apartments have been substantially refurbished.  This meant gutting the original and replacing all the floors, bathroom and all furniture, etc.   It is still intentionally spartan, after all the idea is that you will be out exercising all day, and when you come home you might make some food and then head to bed.

(Note, there are a full range of Restaurants available on site if you prefer not to cook.  But since there is an onsite supermarket full of healthy foods, we preferred to cook meals ourselves.)

By contrast the new Apartment suites not only have better views but are considerably more stylish and provide, well luxury, by La Santa standards.

Here are two photos from a Suite apartment.

Is it obvious?  Well the reason to go for the simpler apartment is purely cost based.  Both are minutes away from all the facilities like the running track, Olympic distance pools, or Bike facility.  So yes, you have to choose by price.

La Santa Apartment Descriptions
(official link)

The Prices
This is the resort manager link

So for 2 people you can expect to pay from about 1000 Euros per week in the basic Apartment, rising to over 2000 Euros for a Suite.   This is low season pricing with higher prices as the year progresses.

If you travel on your own you can share an apartment with a paired up person of the same sex, though of course they might not speak your language.

We have investigated this and it will be the subject of an a separate post.

Travelling Ryan Air

From the Midlands in the UK, Agata found Ryan Air have the best prices.  But beware about luggage

- Standard flights do not have any hold luggage.  That is 40 GBP extra
- You carry on will be ticketed and put into the hold
- You are allowed a second, very small hand luggage to take into the plane
- Ryan Air Baggage Link
- I measured the carry on dimensions that are for the hold.  Perhaps Ryan air is taking the piss but my carry on was 1cm too big in 1 dimension, so if they strictly checked sizing they could charge me an additional 50 GBP to put it in the hold.  (I left it partially packed so I could compress the extra cm, but in the event they did not check the sizes of anybody boarding)
- Also the size of the actual small bag you can take on board is smaller than a laptop, so if they actually check you are pretty screwed if you carry anything larger than a tablet.  In practice from Birmingham nobody did check.

Our flight was on time, and after the normal excessive but necessary (thanks to terrorists) multiple bag scans and pat downs we boarded on time in Birmingham and landed on time in Lanzarote.

Hiring A Car
It is about a 40 Euro taxi from Lanzarote airport to Club La Santa (CLS)  Alternatively  AutoReisen can rent you a car for 1 week for about 110 Euros.  There is free parking at CLS so why might you need a car?

If you want to see any of the islands sights (hint Cesar Manrique), visit a Supermarket or visit Decathlon.  Or perhaps rescue a friend whose bicycle has broken down!

For a 1 week stay we recommend to hire a car for better automony.

As a CLS resident there is free Internet and Marcus measured the speed at 10Mbits/sec or thereabouts.  Fine for general surfing etc.  It's an Open WiFi so you can connect multiple devices without issue.  I think there might be some throttling based on MB used per MAC address so don't expect to Torrent hundreds of MBytes whilst you are there.  But I uploaded a 50MB video to Facebook no problem.

Apartment Tour

For our money paid we got a 1 bedroom twin room, away from the square  (because it is noisy there), close to the running track  (well about 90 seconds walk!!), without view  (cheaper) , entry level  (not the suite) apartment.

Do note the kitchen facilities, there is a safe for valuables, ample storage space,  sofa with pullout bed for a third person.  Plug sockets are continental European standard.

Smartphone Application

You really need an Android or Apple iOS smartphone.  Without it booking activities will be a total pain.  To explain.  On arrival you get a userid and password, download the app and logon.

You then have 250 points to spend on activity bookings.  Some activities have 0 points, most have some points e.g. 60 for a Half Marathon.

You can browse available activities, read descriptions and book.   Your points total gets decremented.   You get your points back after you completed the activity or if you cancel the booking   (must be > 30 mins before activity).

Because you have limited points you can't just book up a weeks worth of activities on arrival.  You have to choose and prioritise.

Also note, you can load the App before arrival but you can't get the userid/password in advance, so you can't start booking until you actually arrive.

You can look at and download the future programme here

That is it
For day 00,  please stick with us and follow our exploits at the centre.   We hope that in the coming days you will be convinced that CLS is worthy consideration for any athlete.

Full Club La Santa Brochure January / February 2018 pdf

Forward to Day01 Club La Santa, Cycle, Talk, Run, Gym