Headed up to Alton with some family and some friends who had never been over these two days, after we spotted a great deal on Group on where a group of 3 (two adults one child) got a hotel stay, theme park entry, waterpark entry and extraordinary golf for £149 in the week. Arrived on the Thursday at midday. Hotel car parks were both surprisingly full so had to wait for a space, but eventually got one and made our way over to tree top quest. As usual the staff there were happy and jolly and got us all kitted up to do the high ropes. Once we started the training session the rain started, and got heavier, and heavier, and heavier as we made our way through the course. I was actually surprised they let us do it given the amount of rainfall coming down, but they said they only stop it if there is thunder and lightning, but hey ho, we still had fun. We checked in then to ATH while the others in our group had rooms in Splash. Nice to see they have finally revamped the bathrooms in ATH, with new sinks, decor and bath. Like the train style lighting, and also in the main bedroom, the old style fan attached to the wall. Had a view out towards Enchanted Village, and the subsequent "builders yard" by the side of it! Hotel is looking the same as usual, except for the ugly wooden fence now cutting off the once scenic view out over the gardens. Foundations are now down for the new hotel from what I could see, while windows to the Spa are boarded up. Anyway, headed to the waterpark next. Was packed, probably given the horrendous weather outside. Interestingly, the staff told us that as hotel guests we can stay in there all day, whereas for Joe Public they have 2 sessions, one ending at 2.30pm and another starting at 3.30pm. Never knew that. Changing rooms were rammed, had to wait, and as usual, it was so loud in there! Toilets were disgusting to say the least. 45 min queue for the master blaster, but, everything was open and working, including the outside slides. In the platform bit most of the water features were not working, water cannons, knobs and twisty things broken, bit shameful really advertising all these "interactive" features which just dont work. I managed 2 hours in there before I felt I had to get out before the inevitable headache came on from the noise inside and entertained myself with a cold beer in the bar. That evening we dined in Flambos. I havent eaten here for a while and was pretty sad (but not shocked) to see the prices have gone up quite a bit, now £21.50 per adult! Food quality however seemed better, everyone in our group commenting on how good their food was. Noise from the entertainment upstairs however makes it really difficult to talk to each other over dinner, and they need to do something about the sticky coating from the cleaning agents on the wooden seats. However, 4 courses later and stuffed bellies we all enjoyed our meals. Headed to ATH for the evening "entertainment" and the god awful Scott Sisters. Once again, the same songs, the same routine, the same attempt to sing. Awful awful awful. Seriously they must realise if people are staying more than one night they dont want to hear the same songs and the same routine over and over?!! Next day brekkie in the Secret Garden which was very nice. We went early to beat the crowds and it was much more relaxed. Even the orange juice tasted like orange juice and not the watered down stuff you normally get out of the machines! We had checked out and on the monorail by 9am. Great to hear the music they played at the fireworks on the monorail blasting out, and announcements from the train drivers. Slight irritation however when we arrived at 9.15 to find only 2 entrance gates open and queues stretching back to the monorail. Given the poor selection of rides open for ERT we didnt manage to get over to Oblivion until nearly 10am so that was that over with! The park wasnt too busy all day the sun was shining, so we did everything more than once. Highlight of the day must be my brothers 8 year old daughter doing Air for the first time - front row as well with no holding on! She loved it. Reason she loved it was that the ride ops were not forcing people to wear the headsets, and I would say at least 50% of guests were going around with no headsets on. Air is back! I didnt bother with them this time and enjoyed the ride a lot more. Some of the friends I was with who had never been on it did wear them, and some said they felt ill at the end of the ride. Others couldnt focus the image very well. All said they preferred it without the VR on the second ride. The kids enjoyed themselves , though comments were made from friends about how many places were closed, even the food outlets. At the end of the day we headed to extraordinary golf for 9 holes and had a good laugh. Looked like some of it has had a bit of clean up, and it was great playing golf with the sun behind us setting over Air. So, we had a great 2 days, weather helped on the Friday as did the company we were with, but it truely was a magical two days! However.......... I wouldnt have stayed in the hotels or did what we done if it were not for the value for money Group on offer! The hotels and waterpark especially, are just not worthy of full price.