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All reviews infinity pool animation team hotel director sousse market english families life guards shisha bar plastic glasses meat dishes amazing hotel crepes pool party children and adults main bar soft drinks week stay water sports
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Reviewed 15 November 2019

This is my review it's long you have been warned.

My husband and I came for a 2 week stay, we didn’t plan on coming to Tunisa and booked last minute we were looking for anywhere by the sea all-inclusive for 2 weeks at less than £1k and this is where we chose.

The hotel
Was nice but could do with a bit of renovation but was perfectly serviceable, the pool tables and ques weren’t in very good nick but generally the hotel was fine. Location is not great as to get to anywhere apart from 2 bars and 1 restaurant you need to take a taxi.

Reception
Noura on reception was lovely and upon arrival she upgraded to a sea-view room with balcony.

Room
we had a double room with balcony overlooking the pools and the beach. In my opinion the best views from the hotel. On the balcony were two chairs and a table.
Rooms were pretty standard but larger than a lot in Europe. They were clean and we were happy with it, we had a bath with shower over the bath, a double bed, TV in Tunisian but what do you expect no point going abroad if it is the same as home. There was also a chair and table in the room. Bath, my husband did find sometimes the water was hotter than others I guess this depended on when other people were using the water.

Bar Staff
Amazing! They couldn't do enough for anyone. Always friendly, greeted us with a smile and a handshake. The plastic glasses used are very small but reading the reviews before we were prepared for this and took our own insulated pint glasses, Slim the barman in the day time would see us coming take our glasses and fill them without us even having to join the queue often. Aziz was also great as part of the evening Bar team.

Waiters
One of the waiters (I don’t remember his name) would bring flowers to our table every morning. When it was busy at lunch and in the evening it was sometimes hard to find a table outside but as soon as one was becoming free he would tell us.

Lifeguards/Swimming Pool
The sea water infinity pool was amazing; it is a great pool if anyone has kids who are learning to swim as it is so buoyant due to the sea water.
The lifeguards were all great but Abdallah became a favourite for me and my husband. Always watching everything was safe in the pool but was great fun telling us where was good to go and things about Tunisia when no one was in the pool or we were the only people in the pool

Food/Drink
Food was OK I’ve had better and I’ve had worse. The fresh donuts in the morning were delicious and the chef who made them was lovely and made a point of speaking to us.
2 weeks of quite similar buffet food was too much for us so we ate out some days. I had a stomach for part of the holiday but this always seems to happen when I am abroad anywhere.
Large queues but the chips were the best I have had anywhere.
Lunch time is the worst for queue and we often had to wait for clean plates to arrive.

Drinks wine, beer and soft drinks were all inclusive but my husband found the beer to gassy so spent most evenings in the other bar at the hotel where you could buy named brands like Becks and Heineken. I do like cocktails but was not impressed with the attempts the bar staff made to make one, the standard one they made looked like a traffic light being red yellow and green. One night during our stay there was a cocktail bar these sold nice cocktails but they were not all inclusive and as I say was only there one night.

Excursions
The following 3 trips were bought from “Ali” who is always wondering around the hotel.

The Pirate boat: was amazing, you got plenty of food, Pasta salad and your choice of chicken or fish. The swimming stop was very long allowing plenty of time for everyone to enjoy the water. Life vests were made available if you wanted. There is also the option to buy drinks, bandanas, and photos on board. It's was a long trip but great fun we went out approx. 6 miles to the furthest fish farm to find dolphins and it was a great experience seeing them.
The quad bikes: was ok they kept you very much in a line and at a slow speed this could be a plus or a minus depending on who you are and is around a large olive farm. Our favourite part was actually in and out of the buildings in the local village on the way back to the the quad bike store.

The Camel ride: DO NOT DO THIS if you care about animals. When we got there we found the animals all tired together with a short string between each animal, so short as people were being thrown up onto the camels the one behind was trying to duck to avoid being hit by the leg of the passengers in front, and yes that is right passengers, they made everyone ride two to a camel and some poor camels had three people on, when you look up the weight camels should carry this was well above it. The saddles were tired on with rope that was cutting into the camels many having sores because of this. I cannot tell you anymore about the ride as after seeing this, my husband and I refused to be part of it and rather than getting on the camel we went back to the hotel (No refund was given).
We also took a tour around Sousse Market with Fetthi. Fetthi is sp friendly and it was always a joy to talk to him around the hotel. I would recommend anyone take his tour around Sousse market but know he earns commission by taking you into the shops to buy. However when you are with him no one was forceful or pushy.

Entertainment/Animation Team
The best night is a fire breathing bed of nails evening, but the rest of the entertainment we left before the end as it was so bad.
The animation team didn’t make any effort, we went to see them as boules was advertised and we enjoy this on holiday, where as other places they try to get people to join in here they just put the balls down and if no one else came over which they didn’t after 15inutes they picked the balls back up and put them away. I could have done a better job myself.

The Shisha Cafe
They have a shisha café where you pay for shisha and drinks it is good value and again the man who runs it who wears a fez is lovely, he does the best mint teas I was addicted to them by the end of the holiday.

The Beach
There is a beach belonging to the hotel it is great if you have children as it is quite shallow and even at its furthest point I could still easily stand, I did try swimming in it but personally I preferred the infinity pools.

Water sports
On the private Beach is water sports business owned by Karim. My husband and I went on the sofa bed and parasailing / parascending. I was nervous of the parasailing but after getting to know Karim, he is a lovely and honest man who speaks fluent English. It was clear that he was extremely knowledgeable and I felt 100% safe, he would not take anyone parasailing if the wind was not right. Karim and his team were a large part of the enjoyment of our holiday and we would often go down to the beach just to chat to him.

Security
I was initially a bit nervous of how much security there is but after a while you found it either reassuring or ignored it, but one Security guard at the gate called Sahbi always welcomed us with such enthusiasm when we returned it added a lot to our holiday.

Cleaners
The room cleaners were lovely and made an effort every day to put our towels into different shapes, swans, hearts etc. and to scatter petals around to make it that touch more special.

P.S I returned shortly afterwards with my sister as it was so good.
The workers at the hotel are what make it so great although I was disappointed to find when we I returned that my favourite lifeguard Abdallah no longer works there.

Date of stay: September 2019
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
5  Thank Melspartner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 November 2019

amazing hotel for 3 star the staff are amazing they loved the brits the staff are the ones that made our holiday and we will go back to see you all not the women on the reception not very helpful food not for brits but some days chips but did eat pizza in the afternoon and pancakes are amazing thank you all at palmyra holiday resort & spa see you next year i hope more brits will start to go back to tunisia thanks lewi & julie

Date of stay: October 2019
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank lewi6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 October 2019

As promised here is my honest review of our two weeks it's long but fair and id quite happily elaborate on anything further.

Arrival:
Day 1 was simply dreadful but luckily it wasn't a sign for the rest of the holiday. We booked through Sunmaster, our transfer wasn't at the airport so we ended up being 'chucked' on a couple of coaches before one took us to the hotel. Hotel wasn't ready on arrival but not the end of the world as we were there before 2. As we were messed around we had no chance to draw out money therefore when I went to pay the room tax to be told I couldn't pay by card hacked me off a little especially as the cash machines I was told to go to didn't work and ended up paying a taxi to go to the nearest village (Sahline ) all whilst my passports were surrendered. Reception weren't particularly empathetic about it either....unfortunately I am still trying to work out what their purpose was throughout the holiday as it seemed whenever I went to reception they didn't have much of an idea and were pretty unhelpful.

Room
Room was pretty standard for what we paid and we didn't pay an awful lot. However four single beds, one was broken on the corner and the floor was filthy underneath. Anyone with major asthma wouldn't cope if they had to pick up anything under it, bathroom was clean ish although there were some metal holdings just sticking out of the bath. A funny chalk like material on the balcony often meant we had to avoid the entire left hand side. Todays day and age.... 2 plugs in the whole room for a family of four and that's cause we unplugged the TV that didn't actually work very well but wasn't planning on watching it and another in the bathroom! We didn't complain to be moved rooms as it seemed pointless surely the standards should be set, a clean room. Beds were comfortable enough though and the air con was fantastic. We also then discovered towards the end of the holiday that our room could be opened without the key.

Bar Staff and Waiters
Amazing! They couldn't do enough for anyone. Always friendly, greeted us with a smile and a handshake and were fantastic with our kids a lovely touch on our last night decorating the table for my little man's birthday too. Unfortunately I didn't get all the names of the ones we had most interaction with but the 'main guy' in the mornings with the older guy with glasses and then the guy in the photo below.

Lifeguards/Swimming Pool
Arguably made the holiday for us, they were fantastic, great fun with the kids and fantastic at their job. Apart from first aid, I'm not sure what the requirements are in Tunisia for a lifeguard however in England you definitely need to be first aid trained. Our lad took a bang to the head on the slides and his back of his head swelled up like a golf ball, it took a rather worried mother and persuasion just for someone to check and get some ice although twenty minutes later he was being iced I still wasn't confident the young man was sure about what to check for so we dealt with it in the end. Again, on his birthday the lifeguards did a little song and dance chucked him in the pool etc and they were great jokers the whole holiday. The swimming pool was quite pleasant and the slides were good fun. The smaller kids pool had someone poo in it which was scooped out with a cup then business as usual... Make of that what you will. Not many used the kids pool after the pool party as the foam was still present for two days after.

Food/Drink
Food was OK at best.... 2 weeks of quite similar buffet food wasn't ideal. I had a stomach ache for eleven days of the holiday. Not sure if that was caused by the food/water or simply a bug though. I couldn't understand why the label just said 'beef' or 'chicken' etc with no real clue what the sauce or other ingredients were to help people choose. The queue for pizza, chips and chicken nuggets was always the biggest, I think the hotel can take a hint there. 3 hours for breakfast 2 and a half for dinner but only 1.5 hours for lunch meant lunchtime was unbearably busy, the staff and the chefs struggled with the capacity during that time. We went out for food twice and were glad of the break. There is a fantastic Hard Rock Cafe in Port El Kantouri which will cost 60 to 80 dinar (20 to 25 quid) in the taxi and they will drop off and pick up. The food there was amazing and for us four having a starter, main and drinks (including a couple of cocktails) cost around fifty pound. There is also a restaurant called malibu space about five minutes walk which was decent too, a little bit more pricey but not too bad, the steak was delightful (11 quid). Drinks were your standard, coke, sprite, Fanta, some random juices which were strange, wine, vodka, rum, gin, whisky and beer included in the all inclusive. Not a bad selection but you'll be lucky if any of it was cold! I had two cold drinks the whole holiday. You will often be pushed asidein the queue by a certain contingent who will read this - but you weren't queuing for love nor money and I have to admit I don't think your attitudes particularly impressed the staff either who were quite vocal about it but then they still catered for the majority. My partner often got in arguments cause of the rudeness of thinkingthey had priority.

Excursions
We didn't do a huge amount, the pirate trip from Monastir organised through the blokes wondering around the hotel was good, you get some food but there are hidden charges, you have to pay for drinks on board about 5 dinar per drink and also they try to get you to buy bandanas and photos on board too. Make sure you barter the price down they start high. It's a lively trip and they do hang around to see some dolphins though we didn't see too much of them I had heard others who went on a different day did. We also did a free bus trip to Sousse Market organised by 'Fetthi', a lovely chap and very knowledgeable however just be wary he is quite clearly working as part of a group and earns commission by taking you into the shops to buy and those in the market can be quite forceful. But Fetthi himself was fantastic the whole holiday very friendly and could advise more than most.

Entertainment/Animation Team
In all honesty this was the disappointment for me. The main animation (who were about all day) barely made an effort with us unless they wanted someone to make a fool of themselves on stage as they needed English to go up. The entertainment manager (Ben I think his name) was a good laugh and the youngest lady Sousa, whos older sister also worked there in the first week but we never spoke to her, was lovely in the kids club. The entertainment wasn't great and a bit desperate at times... The hotel need to invest in this I felt the team were overworked and more variety needed.

The hotel
Relatively well maintained in the main lobby and surrounding areas. Toilets weren't always in good nick including water from the 'butt washers' leaking and being left on so flooding the cubicles. Though behind the pay bar there were some toilets that weren't in bad nick. Quite a laissez-faire approach to a lot of things including the cleansiness of the halls to the rooms, I notified reception of a wasps nest being built in the fire exit sign on one of the doors, being allergic to wasps myself my first concern was children going near the nest. The maintenance simply flicked it off with a screwdriver.... Needless to say the horrible little cretins returned the following day.... Don't go to the hotel if you can't live without your phone or social media the WiFi is particularly poor and struggles with the bandwidth of so many people. I often caught up on socials after needing to secure our sunbeds at 630 in the morning. There is a beach belonging to the hotel, I would definitely recommend going for a swim it was beautiful.

Departure:
Reception had no idea about transfers to the airport the day before claiming its all done online, which is fine had we been told. Nevertheless we phoned the company in the end, giving us a pick up time . For them not to turn up sending us into panic mode yesterday and having to pay for another coach to take us... We'll be taking that up with Sunmaster!

Overall
We were disappointed to find out after we arrived the hotel had changed (on Sunmaster) from a 4 to a 3 star hotel without confirmation to us however it was definitely no more than a 3. We had a good time overall and were very rarely bored however unfortunately we will not be immediately returning, the hotel is too far away from the real tourist areas and Tunisia as a whole maybe not for us but we may return when the kids are older. But strangely we were sad to be leaving but at the same time ready to go, I would say 10 nights is enough. I will say if you are a single mum or a very pretty woman you will be looked after and spoken to a lot, I was looked after by some but I also am a very fair tipper. I can't honestly say I would recommend the hotel as I think some would be disappointed but then again some wouldn't so hence my really extensive honest review. The 'really friendly' manager that said we had nothing to worry about pre holiday.... Never spoke to us... However had no hesitation in speaking to the newly arrived 4 English girls (mother and three daughters) on their first day, again reflects my point above. At one point it was just me and him in the bar.... No word said. The waiters, bar staff and lifeguards are the heartbeat and blood of that hotel. We also met some great families and hopefully will keep in touch. Tunisia really want the Brits back and I think over the years it will happen.

Date of stay: August 2019
Trip type: Travelled with family
4  Thank adamwW699NE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 October 2019

We stayed here for a week in September (2 adults 2 kids aged 14 and 12) and had an amazing time. The hotel staff from receptionists, cleaners, bar staff to managers are all very professional and helpful. Big thanks to Shedli (forgive spelling) the restaurant manager for giving us a brilliant evening and always looking out for us. Thanks to the lovely, smiley pool bar guy for the beers. I can't write a review without mentioning the Animation lads - legends every single one. Rio, Dofi, Zizou, Arkem and not forgetting DJ Madi. Such talented and friendly lads. Do not hesitate to book here it is utterly brilliant.

Date of stay: September 2019
Trip type: Travelled with family
1  Thank DonnaMcNeill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 September 2019 via mobile

I’ll do this as short as I can and any other reviews you have read it about about it from somebody from Britain then please trust it and everything is true there’s always good staff is always bad staff and you got that at this hotel but whenever they are bad, They are really bad, some say if you tip there okay but if you don’t it for a couple of days then you just go rude,food same old same old drinks horrendous again I’m just a normal bloke likes a good pint and a short occasionally none of that is drinkable, As everybody else has said it’s all catered for the Russians I don’t mind or cultures in fact the Russian people weren’t that bad But like I said trust me believe if you’re from the UK what are you fussy eater not fussy eater you won’t like it if you’ve already booked and all the best and good luck

Date of stay: September 2019
1  Thank RalphB180s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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