(New Pathways – MS Magazine April 2006)
By Dawn Bailey-Hague
“The holiday was such a treat for us as we never thought
I want to tell you about the most memorable, enjoyable and relaxing holiday we have ever had at a fantastic place in Cyprus called the C & A Tourist Apartments. The holiday was such a treat for us as we never thought such wonderfully adapted places existed.
My husband Peter has MS, and has been wheelchair bound for over 20 years. He has no lower body mobility and very little movement in his upper body mobility. He is also registered blind.
Before we went on holiday, Pete was suffering from Trigeminal Neuralgia and leg spasms but he didn’t experience this whilst we were enjoying the sunshine and hospitality in Cyprus. We flew into Paphos airport and even the airport staff was brilliant. The wheelchair that we hired was waiting for us as too was the taxi to shuttle us complete with ramp. The transfer took around 45 minutes to get to C & A Tourist apartments.
TOTALLY ACCESSIBLE EVERYWHERE
The apartments and studios are extremely spacious. They are totally adapted especially to suit the disabled guest as well as able bodied ones. The studios etc are designed for easy manoeuvrability around the beds and furniture etc. There are extra wide doors so wheelchairs can get through easily, very spacious shower rooms and accessible toilet facilities. All bedrooms have air con (payable locally).
Electric powerchairs, scooters and hoists are all available to hire should you not wish to bring your own equipment.
All areas around the pool (which also has a fixed hoist) and apartments are extremely accessible and everywhere is scrupulously clean and tidy.
It has been over 30 years since Pete has been in a pool or in the sea- I am so proud of him.
The C & A Tourist Apartments are run by Eva and Andreas and Chris. Chris is also in a wheelchair. The family is so friendly and welcoming and literally welcome you with open arms.
They will do anything to ensure your holiday goes without a hitch and even have adapted vehicles so that the airport transfers and excursions are available too.
The family speak fluent English and are always keen to help and assist you. Their hospitality is so overwhelming. We’ve made friends with all of them, so much so that we are going back next year!
Careful consideration has been taken in order to ensure that the wheelchair guest leads as near normal life as anyone of us. They have made it a fantastic holiday environment and it’s a long way from a clinical/respite type of holiday. After optional breakfasts, holiday makers may make cups of tea/coffee etc down by the poolside bar and get cold drinks etc. If Eva isn’t around you are trusted to write your ‘purchase’ in appropriate book left at the breakfast bar, and settle the account later.
Evas home made cakes were to die for, as well as all the special dishes she cooked for us on a BBQ evening.
PETES FIRST DIP
In the Med…
We did excursions on the glass bottomed boat, where a hoist and safety seat is on board to help lower you into the aqua blue sea. The trip cost £10 and was for 3 hours around the island, stopping at the blue lagoon for a dip in the sea- Pete’s first ever in the Med! Fully qualified scuba divers live locally and can be called upon to give you a free session leading to a paid course, so that you can pursue your dream of scuba diving. They are well able to guide and assist and help the less able bodied visitor.
Paragliding is also available for any visitor, despite any physical problems they may have. The team are fully aware of the need for safety etc whilst helping the disabled visitor to take part in something that they would probably never ever thought of doing before.
Back at the apartment, my husband was able to relax on a special floating bed in the pool. There are sun beds with raised mattresses for ease in transferring to and from the wheelchair and there’s a hoist to enable safer access into the pool.
Even in the quaint village of Polis, just 5 minutes walk from the apartments, Chris has campaigned for accessible walkways etc and most shops have ramps into their premises. The restaurants that Chris recommends have accessible tables and the staff are able to lift the tables onto special blocks to allow you to sit easily and enjoy your meal.
The beach is a 10 minute walk/electric wheelchair ride away. Chris campaigned to get a beach ramp installed to allow a wheelchair to get as near to the sea as possible without getting your wheels wet!!
THE WHEELCHAIR WARRIOR
Infact Chris, known locally as the Wheelchair Warrior- has campaigned in Polis to get as many things as he can accessible. He is pleased to tell us that an accessible path is almost complete to go along the shore to the next village/harbour of Latchi.
Shops, banks, markets and restaurants are mostly all accessible – nothing is out of bounds to the wheelchair user. I received an email from Chris showing me his ride in a ‘bunjy jump’ type contraption and also a pic of him paragliding.
The family will welcome you with open arms, and if you decide to go, please mention my name!!
C & A Hotel
C & A Hotel
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