By Andrew Tarling
Holiday Compensation Claims Manager
Disappointed holidaymakers have been venting their frustration on review sites such as TripAdvisor, where they have reported instances of poor hygiene, a lack of pool maintenance and possible food safety errors at the Aqua Mirage Club in Morocco, with some saying that they have suffered the symptoms of a holiday illness.
All-inclusive in Marrakesh
The Hotel Aqua Mirage Club is located in the popular Marrakech region of Morocco and offered as an all-inclusive to British tourists by TUI owned tour operator Thomson, who began making the hotel available in the UK in May 2015. Advertising the hotel as featuring tradition-style courtyards, a waterpark, spa and a selection of restaurants, this Marrakesh resort has a lot to offer, but from reviews left by guests, it appears that there are a few problems at the Aqua Mirage Club.
Reports of problems at Aqua Mirage Club
Reviews on TripAdvisor for the Aqua Mirage Club are a mixed bag, with some praising the resort and others commenting on several outbursts of violence and verbal abuse from other guests. Problems at the Aqua Mirage don’t appear to be limited to burly guests, as there have also been reports of problems with hygiene, the standard of cooking, and guests becoming ill:
Norwich holidaymaker ‘megagirl21’ titled her review “Worst holiday yet“, and amongst complaints about the lack of housekeeping, says that her “little brother stepped on glass that was left by the pool” which meant that “he had to get 9 stitches” from the hospital as “there was no nurse or doctor on site“. She goes on to say that “the food is horrible, battered fish isn’t fried properly and once got RAW meat.”
‘Smiley334’ from Leicester says that on the third day of her family holiday “3 people were starting to get poorly” and during the course of a week “5 of [her] group of 6 had been ill with [her] husband in bed for 3 days.” She goes on to say that “apparently 400 guests were ill at this point, pool water was being checked, food checked etc but no conclusions.”
Tyldesley holidaymaker ‘spo1983’ travelled to the Aqua Mirage Club for a 10 night stay, and came back with a number of negative comments about the Moroccan hotel. They say that “the food court is very poor with the food giving 9 out of the 13 who went on this holiday diarrhoea and really bad stomach cramps“.
‘Kelly C’ from London stayed at the Aqua Mirage Club with her husband and four children. She says that “day 2 ended with [her] 2 year old throwing up while watching the entertainment“, with these symptoms continuing for “3 days“. On the fourth day her “4 year old woke with projectile vomiting and diarrhoea” which “lasted 2 days“, after which even though “she was recovering, she started vomiting again“. Although she was told otherwise, she “believes it was the food” that caused the illness.
Gillingham tourist ‘jo w’ travelled to the resort from the end of July to the beginning of August, and when looking around her room “poo finger marks around where the toilet roll holder was“. As she explored the Marrakesh resort she noticed that although “there was hand gel available, instead of it being by the main doors it was placed randomly over the restaurant.” She goes on to say that the food on offer “was very oily or under cooked” and she “was ill a few times as [were her] children“.
‘Clare161182’ travelled to the Aqua Mirage Club with her family, and when visiting the hotel swimming pool was told by another guest not to “sit there someone has done a poo.” After getting out she “expected them to close pool off” but “they just scooped it out and let people still go in there“. On the second day she found out that another child had “done the same in the relaxation pool” and again the maintenance team did “not even clean pool out.”
Wakefield holiday goer ‘susan250’ said that even though she booked two weeks at the Aqua Mirage Club she “was ready for home on day 3.” She says that the “food was raw on many occasions” and this included high risk produce such as “chicken and turkey.” She says that “3 out of our party were poorly“, this “is the first all-inclusive [she has] lost weight” at. And “one night a lady found a maggot in her food.”
Is there a possibility of Cryptosporidium?
It’s possible that the actions taken to address the faecal matter in the hotel swimming pool might not be thorough enough, and contamination is causing people to become ill. In our experience poorly maintained hotel and waterpark pools can soon become contaminated with the holiday ruining Cryptosporidium parasite, which can result in debilitating symptoms such as profuse diarrhoea and abdominal pain.
Could there be Salmonella food poisoning?
Undercooked meat is equally concerning, as high risk produce such as poultry should be thoroughly cooked to ensure that harmful bacteria such as Salmonella are eradicated. In the UK we use the HACCP system to ensure that basic food hygiene is being followed, and in hotel kitchens where systems such as HACCP aren’t being followed, guests could soon find themselves suffering a sick holiday.
The importance of good hygiene
Good hygiene is an essential step for any all-inclusive hotel, but from some of the comments left online by displeased guests of the Aqua Mirage Club, such as a guest finding excrement in the bathroom and other examples of basic hygiene mistakes; it appears that not enough is being done.
Your rights to claim compensation
When standards at an all-inclusive become so low that you suffer an illness that could have been prevented on your package holiday, you have the right to be annoyed, but did you know that you may also have the right to claim compensation?
Under The Package Travel Regulations 1992 your tour operator has a responsibility to ensure that when you book a package holiday you won’t come to harm. If they fail to take reasonable steps to prevent your illness, they could be negligible in this duty, and this is why you can make a claim.
Find out more
During a free no-obligation consultation, our travel law specialists can provide you with an assessment of your case and advise you of how much compensation you can expect to receive. We can represent you on a ‘no win no fee‘ basis meaning that it will cost you nothing to start a claim for your holiday illness.