HomeFam TripsClub Med - French Food Heritage & Spanish Food Culture

Club Med – French Food Heritage & Spanish Food Culture

Club Med is a global leader in premium all-inclusive holidays for families and active couples whilst always delivering a hassle-free experience. ITTN’s Shane Cullen experienced a 3-day trip to Club Med Magna Marbella and during the trip he interviewed Nicolas Bresch, Managing Director, UK & Nordics – Club Med.

Nicolas Bresch (Managing Director, UK & Nordics – Club Med) explained, ”For us, the Club Med in Marbella is really the best getaway to Andalusia to visit the surrounding area but also to reconnect with yourself, being able to enjoy activities on your own but also reconnect with your loved ones through a right variety of activities.” 

With a French Heritage, the Food is a Key Element

Shane – “I think the food offering is such a strong point for Club Med. This is my third Club Med property. The food has been outstanding.” 

Nicolas replied, “It’s indeed something we are picky about and it’s one of our key pillars… being with a French Heritage, the food is a key element. What we really want to focus on is being able to bring the local spice and the local cuisine. And of course here in Spain, the food culture is great.”

Club Med – the Original All-Inclusive Offering

“We offer two types of restaurants and so there is the buffet style or all-inclusive food, which we invented as well, turning it into a more live cooking station, more like a food court with a different style of cuisine that you can enjoy either for a breakfast, lunch or dinner”

“We do have as well, the gourmet restaurants that you enjoyed yesterday with a beautiful Tierra overlooking the view of Marbella and the sea where it is an a la carte restaurant which really displays the best Andalusian food and all this is included in the all-inclusive package. So, it’s really available for everyone.” 

Shane – “It’s brilliant – the fact that you can go to the a la carte as many times as you want, you just pre-book it and there’s no, surcharge on it.”

Nicolas explained, “There’s no surcharge. Of course, if you pick up some more refined food or wine, there’s a little extra that you need to pay, but most of it is really included. And so, mentioning the bar and the entertainment elements where the bar is, of course, all-inclusive as well as unlimited.”

These include cocktails as well, and the bartenders create innovative signature drinks so make sure to sample their creations.

Club Med Magna Marbella – Restaurants & Bars 

There are two main restaurants, a buffet-style and an a la carte. There is no limitation to the amount of times guests can opt for the a la carte but dining here requires a reservation.

Suenos Restaurant

The terrace offers a stunning view of the Mediterranean with a welcome light breeze ideal for al fresco dining. Inside, the air-conditioned dining rooms also include a Baby Corner for meals catering to the younger guests. The restaurant offers an international buffet and local delicacies with chefs preparing gourmet dishes in front of diners. Unlike a standard buffet, the dishes are constructed and plated for guests, a wonderful version of buffet dining.

The food is exceptional and the fact that the whole dish is created (rather than me at a typical buffet piling food I like in a stack). There is ample choice with delicious fresh tuna salad one day for lunch and freshly made spaghetti carbonara the next. For dinner, I opted for pork cooked in a charcoal oven (prepared by the chef in front of me and plated for me). Each station has a chef on hand to cook to order and plate the food for you. Nicholas was true to his word, the resort takes its food offering very seriously. Each meal I ate was flavourful and tasty. Furthermore, it is all prepared to a very high standard.


This intimate area serves as a bar, wine cellar, grocery store and a gourmet counter, the Gourmet Lounge. Guests can opt for a late breakfast or tapas during the day. Opt for a sit-down dinner (a la carte and by reservation) featuring the best of local cuisine, or a tasting workshop to discover Spanish wines. Equally, guests can sit back and enjoy the live music.

The a la carte restaurant offers stunning views of the sea from its terrace. While not a large menu, the food was exceptional. Starters included steak tartar and bruschetta with mains such as duck, seabream or gnocchi. The duck was so good on Wednesday evening, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to order it again on Friday.

Rouge Bar, Bar Sierra Blanca & Wine Bar

There is also the Rouge Bar, the main bar in the heart of the resort is open daily for fresh drinks, cocktails, and spirits. In the evening, this spot has entertainment and a party atmosphere. In addition, opt for a refreshing drink or light bite in Bar Sierra Blanca or check out the Wine Bar where the Club Med sommelier will guide guests through the selection of wines.

New Club Med Offering – Greece, Turkey & Morocco

Nicolas explained, “We’ve got about 12 resorts that are by the sea. We have in Spain, we’re located in Greece, in Turkey and Morocco, Tunisia, and, of course, France. Also, [I’d like] to mention eight resorts that are opening in the Alps during the summer”.

“But getting back to the beach properties that are newly refurbished, of course, Gregolimano,  in Greece which is one of our Flagship resorts, has been completely refurbished with new rooms completely refurbished and new common areas in terms of the bar and the restaurants. It’s brand new. There’s also a new beach bar that is opening this summer. We really invite you to visit it because it is extraordinary.”

“Another one that is being refurbished is in Turkey, very close to Antalya airport. It’s also a very unique resort. It’s got almost a private beach… its beach is just amazing. It opens from the beginning of May to almost November. You are by the beach, and you have a great view of the mountains that are close by.”

“[This has] a very strong offering of activities as well, especially in terms of sailing, in terms of water sports [and] wakeboarding is available there. We have our traditional flying trapeze, which is there. Also coming back to the food, the Turkish food there is just amazing and great service…  as well as a full range of kids care. The full resort has been refurbished in terms of rooms and common area so a really great destination to visit.”

“A third one to mention is Morocco in Marrakech. It is close to Marrakesh City. We just finished the refurbishment and it’s opening at the beginning of May with 16 new family rooms and a brand new family zone.”

Club Med – Lakes & Mountain Resorts in the Summer

“I mentioned it at the beginning, what we call the lakes and mountains resorts, which is a destination which is not so much known in the Republic of Ireland.” 

“You talk about summer, people want the beach but we see more and more for this destination because it offers a great range of activities once again in terms of biking either if you’re mountain biking or road biking or any other mountain activities, rafting paragliding, hiking. What we hear from the customers is people are looking for an active holiday but also getting away from the crowd, looking for a beautiful landscape and a bit of fresh freshness.”

Loyal Customer Base for Summer and Winter Trips

Sunway has a long-established relationship with Club Med. Deirdre Sweeny visited the same Club Med Magna Marbella the week before & was very impressed with the level of décor & food. Speaking to ITTN about the Club Med offering, she highlighted their focus on higher-end properties (4T and 5T standard).

In terms of the Club Med Magna Marbella resort, while extensively catering for the family offering through their activities, free kids club (baby club has a charge) and family-designed rooms, this resort also appeals to active and wellness breaks including short stays which are proving popular with the Irish. She explained that the high proportion of repeat business shows that their customer base is very loyal. Often, families will opt for the summer destination resorts with parents and then book a Club Med ski holiday during winter season.

She emphasised the value on offer with kids under 6 going free in the sun destinations and kids under 4 going free for ski holidays. Furthermore, while the Marbella resort is a short 10-minute drive to Marbella town centre, for those that want to be on the beach, there are plenty of Club Med properties including the Portugal beach-front Club Med Da Balai, located 10 minutes outside Albuferia which is equally popular in the Irish market.

For More on Club Med

Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen has been managing director of a media production studio for nearly 20 years working on projects for a global clientele. He has worked in the travel industry for over a decade and as a travel journalist since 2015. He is passionate about travel, film & photography. He also has a keen interest in emerging technology.

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