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“Nice grounds but definately not 5 star. Will never return” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Garden of Eden

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Garden of Eden
4.0 of 5 Condominium   |   Sveti Vlas 8256, Bulgaria   |  
Hotel amenities
Cheshunt
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
“Nice grounds but definately not 5 star. Will never return”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012 via mobile

This hotel/apartments claims to be 5* and to be honest it COULD be and probably was when it was first built.

The complex has everything you need, numerous swimming pools, lovely grounds, 3 restaurants, spa and private beach.

HOWEVER the reception staff, cleaners, shuttle bus drivers are the rudest most unhelpful staff I have ever encountered. The reception staff have to drag themselves reluctantly away from their personal mobile phones and facebook to even speak to you. When they do eventually give you their attention, they do not answer simple questions as in 'where is the path to the marina?. Simply laugh and reply 'there is no path. Stay and eat in our restaurants' - we found the path on our own which DID exist.

The 'free' shuttle bus is not free. It consists of a rude bulgarian man who doesn't even say hello who will drive you 5 mins to sunny beach and charge you 24lev for the pleasure. The only good thing is they will pick you up whenever you want and give u a phone number to ring.

On the contrary, the staff in the restaurants are lovely and very friendly. The food in the Italian is very very good!!

The beach - small, rocky and patrolled by another rude man who walks up to you the second you sit down and CHARGES 6lev per subbed and 6lev per umbrella!! 5 star resort charging its own guests to use the beach is absurd. I even witnessed him arguing with a young girl for money as she has laid a towel NEAR the sunbeds. She refused and he stood over her intimidating her until she left.

This theme runs on and on. The spa is on site but to use the sauna its 12lev......jacuzzi 12lev.......

The room we had was ok but the bathroom was essentially a boiler cupboard. You had to climb over the toilet to get in the shower.

Location is 10 mins drive from sunny beach which is not walk able as its too dark as poor lighting and the staff refuse to tell you where the bus stop is as they want you to pay for their taxis.

All in all, if they changed their staff and stopped charging for EVERYTHING then it could be a 5* resort again.

We will certainly not be returning.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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108 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Manchester, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2012

We first arrived and one dark curly haired woman on reception was most unhelpful and rude. This however was the worst and only bad point of our visit. This did not repeat on check-out as i went to a male and he was happy to help with everything.

I booked an apartment through holiday lettings and i could have it cleaned for an extra charge everyday if i wanted and was most pleased at the apartment and the owner of the apartment.

We ate 6 times in the complex at all 3 restauraunts and although slightly more expensive than in the harbour, its only about 5-10 uk pound more at the most. the waiter was also not bothered when we couldnt leave a tip as the card machine doesnt let you.

The complex is well maintained with the gardens kept very well!

food at all restaurants is very good with the paradisio being the best, however the all inclusive food isnt of the main menu and looked like there wasnt the same amount of effort put into it.

Overall, very very good holiday

Room Tip: Dont go all inclusive the exchange rate and cost of living is less when compared to uk
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Glasgow, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2012

had a fantastic stay in the garden of eden , rented an apartment from owners direct, flight from thomas cook, hotel send a taxi to pick u up from airport so no hanging around or having other drop off,s I can,t fault the staff especially maria from reception she goes the extra mile for you. i travelled there with my family (four adults and my 18 month old grandaughter) there was a kids club which she loved, family entertainment at night but finishes at 10.30 which is great if you have young children. Apartment was just great, two bedrooms and three toilets!! which was a bonus. we ate in all the restaurants and were all really good and great value for money (quite cheap) u can go out to st. vlas for a cheaper meal (really cheap) only one disapointed with was the apple bar at beach long wait for not a lot but the cocktails were good!! very very safe place if you have a young family and with its own private beach makes it even better overall had a magnificent holiday would recommend to all families.

Room Tip: ask for rooms in block elena nice and quite at nightime or on beachfront for great views
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2012

This is a review of one of the garden 1-bedroom apartments we stayed in. We arrived very tired at 4.30a.m. after a late night flight from the UK and a one hour coach transfer from Burgas airport. We had asked for a cot for our 1 year old at the time of booking. When we got to the room, there was no cot. We phoned reception and they said they would try and get in touch with housekeeping but we may not get it until the next day and anyway we would need to come back to reception and pay 7 Levs per day for it! So we were looking at the possibility of either putting baby on the floor or in bed with us. Fortunately the cot arrived not too long afterwards.

We got up late morning, looked at the room –seemed quite nice – very spacious, clean etc, nice sea view. Then went out onto the small terrace, saw there was a small breakfast table but only 2 wooden chairs, which was not really sufficient for a family of four. Then noticed an arm on one of the chairs was broken and so wasn’t safe to sit in. Decided to go to reception to report it and ask for a replacement. The staff on reception were unfriendly and asked if we had broken it. We explained we had only just arrived and hadn’t even used it. They then contacted the maid and told us that because she hadn’t reported any problems, then we must have broken it! They finally said they would try and replace it but it may be not until another day. That other day never arrived. The broken chair was still sitting there when we left 10 days later. Their attitude left an unpleasant feeling right at the start of our holiday and left us afraid to report any subsequent problems that arose in case we were accused of breaking anything else.

It wasn’t all bad though. The complex is large, the gardens are very well kept and stocked with a wide variety of lovely plants and there are several pools dotted around and a choice of restaurants. Also a reasonably well stocked onsite shop at reasonable prices.

The self-catering facilities in the apartment were pretty good. 4 rings hob, oven, grill, microwave, plenty of crockery and cutlery. Ideally could perhaps have done with a frying pan, colander, cheese grater etc, but no big deal. Aircon worked well, one unit in both rooms. TV – mostly Bulgarian and German channels. Iron and ironing board also provided.

Rooms were cleaned daily to a good standard, though the cleaners never said good morning nor even smiled. General maintenance was a little poor. The grill on the cooker couldn’t be used as the trip switch went every time it was turned on. The hairdryer burnt out a couple of minutes after turning it on, the tin opener didn’t work, the shower hose had sprung a leak and rather than report it (due to aforementioned chair incident), I bought a replacement hose and fitted it myself.

There is no safety deposit box in room and don’t use up those little bottles of shower gel too quickly either. They won’t get replaced again during your entire stay.

As for getting a good night’s sleep, the rooms were quite well sound-proofed but the bed was uncomfortable - as hard as concrete. There were no curtains, just thin vertical blinds – cream in colour, which were totally insufficient in keeping the light out, especially as there was a bright street light on the road right outside the room.

The pool water seemed clean enough, though one or 2 of the pools had a distinct drain smell about them and the tiles were badly maintained. Lined with small mosaic tiles, many many tiles were missing, some leaving sharp edges which you could cut yourself on. There could have perhaps been more sunbeds around the pools. It was quite difficult to find any empty ones. The hotel does however have an excellent policy of not allowing the reserving of sunbeds by towels for more than 30 mins, but how rigorously they enforce this, I don’t know.

A lot of things seem to come at extra cost here. The cot, already mentioned, 2 Levs for a basic local map, and if you want to use the sauna, steam room, gym or jacuzzi (though not currently working), you have to pay separately for those too. There is free wifi in reception though.

The location of the hotel itself is quite remote and is very hilly. It’s quite a way out of Sveti Vlas village and Marina. If you have a young family like us, especially if you have a pushchair, unless you are really energetic, or are happy to stay in the complex, you really need to hire a car. There are local buses too. Turn left out of hotel and bus stop is 5 mins walk on the right hand side. Or the hotel will be more than happy to arrange their own taxi for you at 10 times the cost.

There is a little private beach at the bottom of the hotel. You can access it by walking down the steep hill or getting the lift. It was quite nice but we preferred to drive to a quiet little naturist beach 3.5km away, just at the very start of what then becomes the hideous overcrowded sunbed sprawl that is Sunny Beach.

The onsite fish restaurant was a huge disappointment. By Bulgarian standards it was expensive. My wife ordered red mullet but got whitebait. I had Plaice, which was very nice, but the veg was clearly prepacked frozen, and overcooked. There was no kids menu (but this seems to be the norm everywhere here). So for my young daughter we picked good old ‘fish and chips’ off the menu, only to be told there was none left (this was a fish restaurant) and he could offer her unbattered fish with plain rice instead, which turned out to be 50% more expensive when we got the bill. And the wine we ordered turned out to be out of stock so he brought us a bottle of something else, which was 40% more expensive. We decided not to leave a tip, just pay the bill amount. The waiter counted our cash then kindly reminded us in no uncertain terms that ‘the tip is not included, you know’. Incredible stuff!

On checking out, staff ignored us for a few minutes whilst they chatted amongst themselves, then we were asked to wait a minute whilst they phoned the cleaner. Presumably they were checking we hadn’t stolen a broken chair or something. We settled the hotel bill. She took our money and went back to what she was doing. No niceties apparent, no ‘did you have a nice stay?’ or anything remotely customer service oriented like ‘goodbye’ or anything.

Overall, it was a good looking place, with good facilities, and we had good weather and a nice holiday, but the staff were rude and disinterested. Certainly not 5 star in my opinion, more like 3.5 star.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2012

Very enjoyable place. We changed apartments on day 1 of our holiday, as my partner found it a little too small, too noisy near the waterfall being on 1st floor, no sea view but modern in decoration. We then got an apartment on 5th floor with a little sea view and view of an unfinished hotel, that has been left abandoned. Very large apartment and maid cleaning everyday! Unfortunately our children were ill on our stay, some bug doing the rounds, although someone mentioned the filter on the large pool which was green in algae? We ate only in the italian restaurant on the complex,which was the best value for money on site and ate mainly in town which was good value for money. In all we had a very pleasant stay and the animation team are very welcoming in deed.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Craiova, Romania
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2012

We just came back from a short (5 day) getaway at this residence. The location is quite nice, maybe a little too crowded for what we expected. It could be quite ok, for the families with babies and little kids, as there were a lot of them.
The hotel has almost all the facilities for 5*, excepting most of the guest services and a very rude front desk staff. We’ve paid for a sea view room and we’ve got a room just above the entrance, with a beautiful view over the parking and some sort of side view over the sea. We complained at front desk and the answer was „Sorry, you can still spot the sea and anyway, we are fully booked, maybe tomorrow...” In the late evening, out on the balcony, we could discover the great Bulgarian cuisine, as we could smell every menu prepared in the restaurant, the ventilation hose from the kitchen being just 5m away. Next day, of course, they were again „fully booked” We asked to speak with the manager twice, but he was too busy and „it is not his job, to speak with the complaining clients...” So, after some phones at our tour operator, they finally changed our room. Off course, in the sweet balkanian hospitality tradition, this room was facing the sea, but you can see the sea only if you can see through one building. They said it is the only free room in the hotel, even if for two more days, the rooms next to ours, which really had sea-view, were not occupied.
Another „welcoming” thing, was the room maid, which despite the fact that she was doing ok the cleaning part of her job, has a really pleasure of slamming the doors on the hall, starting at 7.00 in the morning, probably thinking that your best choice is to try to catch the gentle morning sun on the beach.
Otherwise, nice restaurants in the resort but also marina or the village that can meet everybody’s requirements no matter if looking for quality, prices, services or diversity...
Deciding not to let us affected and having as much fun as we could, it was probably the smartest thing to do in our holiday. It was a pleasant trip mostly due of what you can find around...in the Marina, Dinevi Resort, St.Vlas, etc.

Room Tip: Avoid 714 in the main building. Rather try in the villa-buildings, rather main building, as they are...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Havant, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2012

Good points - Breakfasts are lovely. Apartments are good sizes 2 bedrooms 2 bathrooms lounge dining room and kitchen and cleaned every day. Quiet Area, not a huge amount of noise at night. Shop excellent and very cheap. Plenty of pools. Very cheap. Sunny Beach and Nessebar accessible very cheaply via bus.

Bad points - Private beach that you have to pay to use! Lack of cooked food during the day if not self catering. Reception staff rude and unhelpful. Would not tell us where the bus stop was as they wanted us to pay for their taxis or book their trips. Had to find information out from our Rep. Not enough sunbeds or parasols (sometimes 5 sunbeds to one parasol). Wifi only free in reception area. Half board option a joke. Do not turn up for dinner after 7.30 as you will not have any food. We turned up at 7.40 on the Thursday to find no melon, no potatoes, no chicken. We asked for potatoes and chicken and were told "all finished" despite dinner being until 8p.m. (which in itself is ridiculously early), and asked 3 times for melon until we got some. When we complained to reception about the lack of food and said our daughter was still hungry as she had only had melon and ice cream for dinner the receptionist actually laughed at us. We later complained to the Manager who did absolutely nothing, not even a refund on our bill for lack of food. Also the Fish and Italian Restaurant are not included in the half board option which you are not told. Hotel very far away from anything and a 10 minute walk to the bus which is not good at night especially in heels or in extreme heat. Advertised that transport is via buggies but these are only accessible when you arrive. Also advertises that there is a regular shuttlebus to Sunny Beach but we saw nothing of this. We had to get the regular bus and pay.

Room Tip: Go self catering
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Garden of Eden

Address: Sveti Vlas 8256, Bulgaria
Location: Bulgaria > Burgas Province > Sveti Vlas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 53 Specialty Lodging in Sveti Vlas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Garden of Eden 4*
Number of rooms: 724
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Also Known As:
Garden Of Eden Hotel Sveti Vlas

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