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  • Andrew Welch
    Andrew Welch

    A guide to the urbanisations at Vera Playa

    Considering a holiday in Vera Playa and not sure where to stay? The area around Vera Playa has been growing for years and now - in addition to the well-known hotel - there are many “urbanisations” with houses or apartments, restaurants and pools of their own, amongst other facilities. This is a designated “naturist zone”, so whilst each urbanisation is separate, you can walk on the surrounding roads to the beach without having to get dressed – a kind of naturist housing estate!

    The Vera Playa Hotel offers a choice of rooms and mini-apartments with fridge and basic cooking facilities. There is a choice of bed and breakfast, half- or full-board or fully inclusive. The food is a typical buffet service, with a barbeque on the beachside terrace. The hotel is naturist, but you must dress for meals and after 8 p.m. I believe that access to the pool is restricted to hours when the lifeguard is on duty.

    Natsun was the first naturist urbanisation, built more than 30 years ago. Some of the blocks are front-line to the beach and quality varies enormously. Many are studios, some are very basic and rather old. Some of the older apartments have been beautifully renovated, but there are also some new apartments (Elcano III) and some small bungalows (La Medina).

    Behind Natsun is Vera Luz. Vera Luz consists of (I think) 36 apartments, ground floor with a garden and 1st floor with a rooftop sun terrace. There are communal gardens and a small pool.

    Vera Natura is also front-line to the beach and consists of 200 apartments – one- and two-bedroomed on the ground floor, with two-bedroom duplexes on the upper floors. It has beautifully mature gardens, much of which are enclosed by hedges belonging to the ground floor apartments. It has a lovely large outdoor pool and an indoor pool. The urbanisation is about 12 years old. Some apartments are a little basic, with a two-ring hob and no oven, but the apartments are very spacious, with a big round bath in the large bathroom. Some are also rather basically furnished, but many that are privately owned and marketed to the English market are lovely. There is a communal satellite system, so most apartments have CNN and Eurosport.

    La Menara is second-line behind Vera Natura and with ‘Moorish’ architectural detail. It consists of 56 apartments in seven blocks of eight, one and two bedroomed on the ground floor, one bedroom on the second floor with rooftop sun terrace and two-bedroomed on the first floor. It was completed in 2002. La Menara feels very spacious because the gardens between the blocks are ‘open plan’, so there is plenty of green space between the apartment blocks and around the pool. The pool and communal gardens are very pretty. Some apartments have a two-ring hob and no oven, others are very well furnished and equipped. Again, these are very spacious apartments with large, luxury marble bathrooms and granite worktops. The communal satellite system gives BBC1, BBC2, ITV1 and ITV3. La Menara has secure parking.

    Bahia de Vera is a larger urbanisation, with 200 apartments in long two-storey blocks and a ‘high-rise’ block of four floors called Brisamar. There are also three large detached houses. Bahia has lovely apartments, some have private gardens, others have huge terraces. The communal gardens now lovely, following a change in the management system and the outdoor pool is beautiful. There is a fully refurbished indoor pool, heated and dehumidified for use throughout the winter. Bahia de Vera has secure parking.

    Torremar Natura is third-line to the beach, behind Bahia de Vera. These apartments are beautifully appointed, but some are rather small. Some on the ‘outside’ of the urbanisation have lovely patios overlooking the pool and communal gardens, but the ones in the middle are very high density. There is an indoor pool that is heated throughout the winter. Torremar Natura has secure parking.

    Parque Vera is second-line to the beach, behind Natsun. This development was built in several phases. Parque Vera 1 is an urbanisation of town-houses, built in a square around beautiful central communal gardens and pool. The town-houses are two- or three-bedroom and there are also 18 apartments, large studios, one-bedroomed and two-bedroomed apartments. There is private parking, though not inside the gated community. Each subsequent development became rather more high density - the final phase (Parque Vera 5) is now complete. The later developments consist of three- storey blocks of apartments. Some have lovely round balconies, but many blocks are ‘the wrong way round’ – facing north or north-east.

    Armony Natura is front-line to the beach, next to Natsun. This is a small development of apartments that were very expensive. They have sophisticated security systems and electronic gadgetry and are very well appointed. These can be recognised by the very distinctive blue domes.

    So how do you choose?

    Different apartments suit different people. What are your priorities? When do you plan to travel? What is your lifestyle? If you are planning to winter in Vera Playa you need to avoid a north-facing apartment, or you will not be warm enough. If travelling in summer, mosquito nets and fans are the minimum requirement, and from mid-July to mid-September air-conditioning will make your nights more comfortable. Does the patio have some shade? If not, your patio will not be usable in the afternoons.

    Security is important: like every resort, Vera Playa occasionally has trouble with opportunist thieves. How secure is the apartment, does it have a safe? Does it have rejas (security bars)? In summer, parking is quite important as the streets are full, but all-year-round secure parking is a bonus.

    Lots of private advertisers in BN offer excellent quality, well-serviced apartments, furnished and equipped to suit British holidaymakers, and there are plenty of holiday companies who deal with the area, too. Travelling is easy - public transport from the airports is possible and most people letting apartments will organise airport transfers for you (for a supplement), but a hire car will allow you to enjoy the fabulous surroundings and explore pretty villages, the mountains and other fabulous naturist beaches. Spain is a fabulous place for a naturist holiday - come and enjoy it!

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