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“Ideal chill and dive spot” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Happy Life Village

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Happy Life Village
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Wady Quonay | P.O. Box 47, Dahab 46617, Egypt   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #13 of 52 Hotels in Dahab
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Ideal chill and dive spot”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2010

Just back from the Happy Life Village after a very chilled holiday, well the holiday was, the weather certainly was not. Even the staff commented on how hot it was. The locaton was exactly as the reviews say. We enjoyed it and will go back again one day.
Overall a big thank you to Mina, Mido, Nady and all the others for a relaxing week.

We booked this holiday on the basis of the good reviews of 2009 and then panicked when we saw the later 2010 reviews. Picked the location as two of our party are divers and the write up promised much.
On arrival there was much head scratching about our party, as it was one man and two women. Not sure what they thought, but a family suite complete with extra bed materialised very quickly.

Apart from the issue listed in the bad bits, the suite was perfect. Two big rooms with a double bed in one and a comfortable three-piece suite in the other. A large balcony with sea views all the way to Saudi Arabia. Even the bathroom was big and had a bath with a shower over. Everything was cleaned every day and the linen and towels were automatically changed. The mattresses were firm but not uncomfortable and the air con worked, albeit noisily.

The Good Bits
The staff were very helpful, friendly and really tried to make you feel at home. The animation team were fun but not pushy. Not everyone wants to play water polo in 40+ degree sun, honest.
The food was well prepared, and offered variety. Beef, chicken and fish along with various hot and cold vegetables and salads were available every day. Some of the combinations were a little obscure but the chefs were on hand to tell you what it was. Most of the dishes were spicy but not excessively so, enhancing the food rather than smothering it.
Three large pools, two with swim up bars and all were cleaned every evening. Loads of sun beds with mattresses and big sunshades around all three pools and on the beach.
The house reef and the diversity of fish.
The drinks were fine for us, although the red wine was dubious at times, but like the food, it is personal preference. I hate lager but enough of it was being drunk around me so it can’t have been too bad.

The Not So Good Bits
Service of drinks could be slow at times even though the place was only about a third full.
The disco is very hit and miss, due to some sort of problem with a neighbour. So apart from a dance show one night and the animation team’s variation on Mr and Mrs there was nothing to do except drink in the evenings.
The inappropriate lyrics of the poolside aural assault, will not call it music.
Nowhere for non-swimmers or young children to wade into the water except at the public beach at the end of the complex which is a shame as even wading you get to see fish if you are patient and let them come to you. The private jetty has steps down into two metres of water, perfect for the snorkelers but not so good for non-swimmers.

The Bad Bits

The only real problem was an invasion of cockroaches in the lounge area of the suite that took three days to clear, despite the best efforts of the cleaners and vast quantities of pesticide. The last one was immune to the pesticide but succumbed to a size 11 sandal, but only just, it was huge. Never been to Egypt before, so not sure if this is usual.

The Other Bits

A few insect bites, and the odd fly, but not too bad.
It is very international and communication can be fun, but a bit of German mixed in with English usually gets you by. Just glad the rest of Europe is not as lazy, language wise, as us Brits. Sue reckons she can now smile in ten different languages. Seems to work, she can get into a conversation with anybody.
The courtesy bus is not that great, only giving you about an hour in town, you need that just to beat off the salesmen. Dahab is just a glorified tourist trap with shops selling the usual T shirts and trinkets. There were one or two things that stood out but time considerations stopped the usual chat and haggle so did not buy anything.
Orca Diving were very helpful and gave our diver an excellent and varied package.

Andy and Sue

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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432 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (62)
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Czech first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hungarian first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
17 reviews 17 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2010

First off, the location was perfect. You have the Sinai mountains and you can snorkel right from the beach (I actually saw more fishes off the beach than I did when I took the boat). It's far away from the town so be prepared to take the shuttle (which doesn't go by very often) or the taxi.

The pools are nice (although I didn't use them) and the room was good (except for a sewer smell that came from the toilet that was consistently running - but I didn't tell the staff about it so I can't complain).

I don't get all the bad reviews about the food. I tought it was good. I eat anything and I have no complaints (except maybe for the juices that were quite diluted sometimes) - I think some people are just too fussy. The people complaining that they got sick probably did from drinking the water - we stuck to bottled water and had no problem (a friend of mine who drank the water got sick, but I didn't). Trust me, if you've been anywhere else in Egypt before... you'll find real reasons to complain!

Some friends of mine ordered some drinks and didn't like them so I stuck with beer (Stella), can't go wrong there. Yes, sometimes the beer wasn't that cold, but it's like that pretty much everywhere in Egypt. I also had the wine during dinner (and ordered 2 glasses at a time because I found that the staff was a bit slow with the drinks).

I assume that the people who wrote the negative reviews were expecting a 5-star resort down South (like Mexico, Cuba, etc.). After travelling to Cairo, Aswan and Luxor... this place was awesome!

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2010

Location was beautiful with a backdrop of the Sinai Mountains , it's such a shame that the hotel has so many faults!!
Private Jetty was superb, a real treat for snorkelers, scuba divers etc
Peter the waiter at the love boat restaurant, was a very genuine guy and his customer service skills were excellent (he's the only credit to the hotel)

At check-in we were told that they didn't have a family room with a sea view left, and when we asked how much they were going to refund us, they miraculously found one

Food was awful, everything tasted the same, and by the 3rd day I was VERY sick and had to visit the onsite doctor who told me it was the hotels food and to stick to eating pasta, rice etc (most of the people we had met also visited the doctor and were told the same thing)

Housekeeping was very poor and simple things such as clean towels and toilet paper were not replenished

If you are ordering drinks from the beach bar be prepared to wait at least 30mins to receive them

The free shuttle only goes into dahab @ 12,6,9pm so the rest of the time you will have to get a cab

Entertainment does not exist at the Happylife hotel!!!! even the pool table was falling apart...

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2010

We went to the Happy Life Village really wanting & expecting to like it, but unfortunately we didn’t.

I have to echo the comments of Diane Canterbury in that the location is fantastic & was the main reason we picked this hotel hopeing for some fantastic snorkeling & if you swim away from the front of the hotel either up or down then the corals & fish are amazing. We ended up snorkeling most of the bay (in sections) during our fortnight stay.

Again I have to agree with Diane that the food is bland, a bit weird & inconsistent. Normally it’s my wife being a vegetarian who finds it a problem with the variety of food, but here it’s the meat eaters that struggle. We also had a word with the catering manager (the fat controller as I nicknamed him) who genuinely seems to be trying to rectify the problems but seems to be struggling to cater to all the different nationalities. I also suffered from a stomach bug for 4 days until I visited a local pharmacy to resolve the problem.

The other problem with dinner is that if you decide to site at a table outside, the hotel manager has a habit of sitting at a table across the path by the pool where he reprimands his staff very loudly. This is not something that should happen in front of the guests especially when you are trying to have a quiet meal & at one point I was so annoyed that I was forced to go over there & give him a piece of his own medicine in front of his staff, which seemed to have the desired effect but I get the feeling it wont keep him quiet for long.

Moving onto drinks we stayed on the All Inclusive option & this is the first hotel that I have ever stayed in that does not offer fresh fruit juice at breakfast, instead it’s orange or pineapple squash in plastic cups or on most morning lightly flavored water. If you want juice they do have it but you have to pay for it. Normally with All Inclusive bottled water is included & to a degree it is but initially you have to buy a bottle of water & then refill it from the various water coolers around the site. You can only have wine with lunch & dinner but not at any of the bars unless you pay extra for it. The AI cocktail list is to be avoided at all costs because of the fruit juice problem again. Cocktails made with a spirit & squash, trust me does not work. Most drinks are served warm at best & I can count the amount of cold drinks during my two week stay without the need to remove my shoe’s. If you are extremely privileged you might even get an ice cube (no I didn’t forget the “s” off of cube) in your drink but this only happened twice.

The staff are some of the nicest people we have met, very friendly & always having a joke with you. That said the majority of them are not good at their jobs (there are exceptions)but this comes down to training or the lack of it.

As for the rooms, we were upgraded to a family room without asking & space wise it’s was very large. I spent the first three days on pain killers because the beds are so bad that I was unable to sleep due to back pain & was forced to sleep on the sofa bed that was bent & twisted & creaked so loudly that it woke me up (my wife also) every time I moved but it was preferable to the beds. The only other bad thing about the room was that the bathroom had a bad smell of sewerage especially on windy days.

They run quad trips from the hotel & the quads are very new & well looked after. The trips into the desert are great fun & well worth a try, it’s definitely an experience not to be missed.

The really sad thing is that with a bit more effort this could be a very good hotel, it’s location, layout & grounds are great but it’s let down by penny pinching & silly policies by the management.

One last word of warning. If you are going to have a massage make sure you are very clear on the price your expecting to pay especially if the word “Medical” is mentioned.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2010

The location was great for us. The Sinai mountains on our right, very picturesque. Snorkelled every day from the beach. Great pools, accommodation good. Food really not good. I read the reviewsbefore we went and they were mixed in relation to the food. I eat anything - I really do and am not fussy. I really struggled with the food, the lack of colour, lack of taste and very strange concotions. I had a tummy bug for two days and my partner had his for three days whilst on holiday and continued when he came back. We went half board and really struggled to eat anything nice. This is a real shame because if they food was good I would definitely go back again - unfortunately I will not be returning. The catering manager found out we were unhappy and met with us to find out our views and feedback which was good customer practice. However, we both had our tummy bugs at the time and he wanted us to eat the food and give him our views. He even sent us a massive plate of fruit to our room!!!! Also there is no entertainment so they do definitely have to improve on this too. I would recommend to a friend because of the location and snorkelling only.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Amersfoort, The Netherlands
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2010

I want to join in on all the good reviews!

I did not tip very much, only about 25 EP during the 7 days stay. But they served me just as good with or without tips.

The food was good and changed enough for a one week stay.

I was All-inclusive so I can't judge the prices if you are billed on a account. All-inclusive is cheaper to book at home than at the lobby (I thought It was twice as expensive as with my tour operator, I paid 70 euros for 8 days, but some operators charge more!)

Diving is also a little bit cheaper do book at home. The reef is really beautifull and the diving staff is great. (german and english diving staff)

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Staffordshire, England
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
124 helpful votes 124 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2010

This is our second trip to this hotel as due to the ash cloud we had to cancel our original holiday and get what we could when the planes started flying again. Why did we go again, well we are very keen snorkelers and this hotel has very good snorkelling just off the beach with the addition of taking a trip organised by the diving centre on site for an additional cost of €10 per person. Not only is there are a huge variety of fish to see, but also 600m from the hotel there is a good selection of hard and soft corals that have only a little bit of damage and an even better selection of fish, its well worth the extra walk / swim to see it. The bedrooms are quite large with basic furniture, TV, fridge, safe, table and two chairs. All rooms have a balcony and they have two comfortable wicker chairs and a table. The bathroom we had did spoil things a bit as the build quality is poor, broken tiles, shower rail hanging and an extractor fan with no guard on it, so you could easily chop off a finger / hand. The grounds are great and the team work hard all day making the place look beautiful. The waiters and dinning staff also work hard but sometimes they get over stretched and you will find you have to wait for a drink. The food is not consistent, there are some good meals, but then you will get a really bad one. They create meals with unused food, which is acceptable, but this does lead to some interesting combinations!! There are four bars on site, one on the beach which when we were there got little use, the lower bar by the lower pool is the worst as the staff try to do as little as possible, while the top bar by the upper pools, here the staff work non stop to serve you and pamper you and they deserve a special mention. The ‘English Bar’ we did not visit as it did not appeal to us. There is building work and so you can get dust blowing down the site, when this is finished it will highlight the tired state of the rest of the hotel. And that’s the problem, the management has not had a program of renovation and re decoration, the front of the ‘Love Boat’ restaurant is pealing and flaking. While on the subject of management, the manager has a habit of reprimanding his staff in public. If you go and he does it again, do as we did and complain and we are not the first to do this. You should be aware that this hotel is NOT in Dahab, it is about 20 mins by free bus out of town so if you want any night life, you will have to go off site, but that Would we go again, possibly if we got the right deal. And last if you see the dog in the picture, please give it something to eat and a pat from us !!!

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Happy Life Village

Address: Wady Quonay | P.O. Box 47, Dahab 46617, Egypt
Location: Egypt > Red Sea and Sinai > South Sinai > Dahab
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Dahab
#6 Family Hotel in Dahab
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Dahab
#13 Romantic Hotel in Dahab
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Happy Life Village 3*
Number of rooms: 250
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Also Known As:
Happy Life Village Dahab
Happy Life Village Hotel Dahab

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