Planning where we were going to eat during our Center Parcs holiday was really easy because there is a lot of choice for restaurants. Somewhere all of us was looking forward to was Bella Italia as it’s well-known and somewhere we had all been before. We had booked our meal online before we arrived and paid the £5 deposit per person, which we knew would come off our final bill.
Me and my sister had a spa session booked which was supposed to finish at 6pm so we booked our table for 6:30. As it turned out, we went to the spa a bit earlier and was finished earlier than planned. At this point, Erin was getting a bit grumpy and was quite hungry so we changed plans slightly and headed to Bella Italia early to see if we could change our time if they wasn’t too busy. This was at about 5:30 so a good hour before our booking. We were met at the desk by the assistant manager who huffed and puffed and moved around some papers for about 5 minutes before finally saying ‘oh, I guess so.’ We didn’t feel very welcome.
We were led upstairs to a table, having to leave the pushchair where we could no longer see it and to carry Erin upstairs. As soon as we got up there, I saw a lift. It would have been a MASSIVE help for the assistant manager to have told us about this instead of letting us struggle. When we got to our table we had to ask for a high chair, even though we clearly needed one. It took about 10 minute for us to get this and that was after we asked another member of staff! As assistant managers go, she was terrible. Not only was she not very friendly but didn’t seem to care about us at all as customers. Thankfully, a really lovely girl looked after us after that and she was great!
When we ordered, I asked for some chips for Erin to be brought out as soon as possible and unlike with Cafe Rouge, these were brought out within minutes. I was pretty impressed. There was no play area upstairs in Bella Italia so having Erin able to eat quickly was a massive plus for us. My sister and I ordered Margherita pizzas, John had a Campagna pizza while Chris has salmon and veg. We all had a drink as well.
Our food came out pretty quickly and at this point, Erin was still happily munching away on her chips and doing some colouring at the same time. All of our food was really delicious but I think we got a bit greedy and neither me or my sister could finish our pizzas! I forgot how big they are!
After our meal we asked for the bill quite quickly as Erin was getting tired but we were all sorted very quickly. Our whole meal, including drinks, cost around £70 which I think is one of the best we’d had all week. As we had paid a £5 deposit per person in advance, this knocked our final bill down to around £50 which makes a big difference.
While our food was really nice and great value, the assistant manager really didn’t help our experience there. Also, unlike other restaurants Erin wasn’t able to go and play before dinner so it’s not quite as family friendly as other options. There is a play area downstairs but that’s no good if you’re sat upstairs and then can’t tell someone when the food is ready! Even with these issues, Bella Italia is somewhere we’d still go back to because it was quick, well priced and lovely food.