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Merton Hotel 3.0

St. Saviour, Jersey, Channel Islands

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Historic hotel is family-run
  • Huge range of kid-friendly entertainment and activities
  • Outdoor swimming pool and FlowRider artificial wave machine on-site
  • Water park features slides, waterfalls, and a lazy river
  • Within walking distance of St. Helier town center
  • Many of the simple rooms and suites are well-suited to families, with free movies and bunk beds
  • Five restaurants and three bars on-site
  • Plenty of evening entertainment for adults

Cons

  • Only one hour of free Wi-Fi per day
  • Parts of the resort feel dated, include common spaces and the rooms (particularly the bathrooms)
  • Mediocre gym mostly has weight-training machines
  • No air-conditioning in rooms
  • FlowRider often out of service

Bottom Line

The family-owned and -operated 291-room Merton Hotel, opened almost a century ago, is a mid-range property that includes a leisure center, water park, and simple rooms. Almost everything, from room amenities to entertainment, is geared towards families with kids, although it also attracts a fair share of older couples. Rooms have some dated decor along with flat-screen TVs and electric kettles. Although St. Helier town center is within walking distance, an array of on-site restaurant, bars, and evening entertainment means guests can spend their whole vacation without leaving the resort. Plus, there's an outdoor pool, indoor pool with waterslide, mediocre gym, game room, and large theater. Considering the range of amenities, rates are reasonable, but for those seeking a little more space, the Merton Suites (part of the same hotel but in a separate building) is a better option.

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Scene

Huge family-owned and family-focused hotel juxtaposes a waterpark with century-old heritage

Originally built by Jersey's prominent Seymour family close to a century ago, the Merton Hotel steadily expanded to become the island's largest hotel and still remains part of the Seymour chain. Elements of the property's original early 20th-century charm have been maintained, though most of the property is comprised of modern add-ons and extensions that include the hotel's main attraction -- the Merton Leisure Club and Aquadome. While interiors have been modernized, they're far from contemporary -- early-nineties decor feels dated in parts and some buildings are charmlessly old-fashioned. However, the hotel remains popular with fun-loving families and older guests who seek a self-contained leisure resort.

Location

Set on quiet street around a mile from St. Helier's town center

Map of Merton Hotel

The hotel is located on a quiet street in the southern part of the St. Saviour parish of Jersey just outside St. Helier. St. Helier town center, with its bars, restaurants, and shopping, is about 15 minutes away on foot, or a five-minute drive, while the seafront is just a 10 minutes' walk away. La Route du Port Elizabeth -- with ferry connections to France, Guernsey, and mainland Britain -- is also under 10 minutes away by car and Jersey Airport is just 15 minutes away. 

Rooms

Simply styled, dated rooms with family-focused amenities

The hotel has a whopping 291 rooms in all, most of which follow simple chain-style decor with blond-wood furnishings, patterned fabrics, dark carpets, and neutral tones -- though some decor is starting to look tired. In-room amenities are particularly family-focused, including baby-listening systems and flat-screen TVs with satellite channels and free family movies around the clock -- though rooms lack air-conditioning, and Wi-Fi is only free for the first hour per day. Some rooms have bunks to accommodate kids.

Adjacent to the hotel, the Merton Suites (part of the Merton Hotel) opened in 2011 and provides 28 slightly more modern apartments with fully-equipped kitchens (complete with Smeg fridge-freezers, ovens, and cookware), dining areas, and comfy lounges -- some with log-effect fires. All suites also open to south-facing balconies and provide nice touches such as duck-down duvets and White Company brand bath products. 

Features

Vast array of child-friendly entertainment and activities -- and a few things for the adults

The resort provides a vast array of entertainment and leisure facilities, mostly centered around the Aquadome -- a sub-tropically heated water park complete with waterslides, a lazy river, and waterfall fountains. There's also an outdoor pool and the FlowRider, which allows visitors to surf on an artificial wave -- though it is not free of charge and often out of service. Play areas, a supervised kids' club, game room, and entertainment for children and teens of all ages also make the hotel especially kid-friendly.

There are also five different restaurants, of which The Belvedere is the main one where breakfast and buffet dinners are served daily. There is also evening entertainment for the grown-ups -- mostly live tribute acts -- as well as three bars and regular themed events. Wi-Fi is only free for one hour each day. 

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Address

Belvedere Hill, St.Saviour JE4 9PG, United Kingdom

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