I have never written a report on a holiday before but I felt I had to this time. I am not one to complain or moan but I wanted to give an honest account of my experience at the Shores Aloha so you will have all the facts and could then make up your own mind whether you still go ahead and book and go to this resort. I returned last week from Egypt , I spent 10 nights at The Shores Aloha. On the whole it is a pleasant complex but it does as other reviews state depend on what type of holiday you are after and how many other British families/couples there are as this is a predominaltely Italian hotel. I have written a lengthy objective review including the positives and some negatives as I feel if I had known these prior to booking I would have looked to alternative accomodation.
HOTEL:- The hotel itself is a nice complex which has a reasonably sized pool, its own section of so called ' beach ' and the grounds are well maintained. The reception is staffed 24hrs a day and the Hotel provides a free shuttle bus to and from Naama Bay. The shuttle leaves the hotel at 6.15pm and 9.15pm and returns 2 hours later. It only has 26 places so you need to book the day before at reception . As the hotel is owned by Italians it predominately caters for the Italians. However on arrival we were not given any information regarding our stay. All the information/tips we did find out was from other British families who had been there for a few days.
BEACH:- The hotel has lots of sun shades and beds on its private beach. We found that there were always beds available even if arriving late morning. The beach so to speak is about 6ft up from sea level and has stoney sand . There are steps leading down to a rocky beach area where you can paddle and see some fantastic fish close up and some coral. The water is crystal clear and refreshing. There is a wooden pontoon which takes you over the top of the coral reef and then has stairs down into the actual sea where you can snorkel or swim. It is very deep. The steps into the sea are not very wide and there were occasions where people will just sit and not move making it difficult to enter and leave the sea. There is a lifeguard on the pontoon and the sea although very deep is very buoyant. I am not a confident swimmer but once I had become used to the depth of the coral reef I was very happy and confident to swim the length of it looking at all the fish. The marine life on the reef is amazing. There are loads of different colourful fish some of which swim very close to you. Also on the beach is a Volley ball court, bouelles, football, bat and ball court however this was used by the Italians.The British were not encouraged to take part. It also had a beach bar where you could get chips and pizza at luchtime alcohol was not free here.
POOL:- There is only one swimming pool which never really got too busy. As there is only one you do get all the kids running about and twice a day aqua aerobics with very loud music again for the Italians . The pool was cleaned but only after someone complained. There were a lot of bits floating in the bottom of the pool and the surface layer has a lot of bugs and scum which when snorkelling you could see very clearly . There were a few , mostly children who went down with ear infections whilst I was there. The water does get very warm throughout the day and as such does not cool you down. More like a very warm bath. There are beds and umbrellas all around the pool but not sufficient for the number of guests. The All Inclusive package includes pool / beach towels. The towel man was taking money from guests in order to reserve beds by placing towels on beds early morning. I set my alarm for 7.45am for the first few days and managed to get two beds reserved and then go back to bed. Having done this for a few days I then found that by 8am all the beds had been reserved already and I gave up trying and went to the beach instead. The annoying thing is that quite a few of those beds would not be occupied until the afternoon. (Mostly by Italians).
STAFF:- The staff all work very long days and do work very hard for little money. They are on the large part very friendly and helpful and will do almost anything to ensure you enjoy your stay although not all. The bar staff and staff in the main food hall are absolutely lovely. I found those on the beach and some of the reception staff very un-helpful. There is snack food on the beach from 12pm. I asked if more Pizza was being brought out on a few occasions as the tray was empty. Both times I was told that it was all finished then not long later Italians would walk past with fresh Pizza. Our flight home was not until the evening and generally check out time is midday. We asked if we could keep our room later than that the day before we left and were told that it was 100 Egyption pounds for one person and 220 for two people to keep the room until 6pm. The next day we saw a different member of staff who initially said we couldn't do keep it and had to leave the room by 12. Once we explained that we had been told we could and the prices he took the money and wrote a receipt allowing us to keep it.
NEGATIVE :- The hotel is owned by Italians and most of the guests are Italian. There were some Russians and Polish and about 30 other English guests at the complex whilst we were there. All of the animation team are Italian. I knew before I went that the evening entertainment was largely in Italian but I was taken back by the way the English were treated by the Entertainment team as a whole. They deal with the pool games, the beach games and the evening entertainment. The staff would not even acknowledge the English guests. If by mistake they did speak to us in Italian they would quickly walk away once they knew our Nationality. They only spoke in Italian and did not invite any English, Russian or Polish to join in any of the events despite walking around the beach and pool asking the Italian guests to join in. The evening entertainment was very amateurish and only lasted a few hours. The animation team did nothing to unite the nationalities in fact I found them very divisive.
There are a number of staff who work in the Dive centre, Spa, Beauty Parlour and excursions who will repeatedly walk around the beach and pool with clipboards trying to sell you their services numerous times a day. As two females we were constantly hassled to the point we would see them coming and take steps to avoid them by getting into the pool or sea or pretend to be asleep. They were all very chatty and polite and mostly wanted to practice their English but it did become tiresome.
ROOM:- The room was basic but sufficient for the amount of time spent inside it. The bed linen and towels were changed everyday and the male maid always left some towel art on our beds. There was a mini fridge which was good for storing bottled water which we brought from the supermarket just outside the entrance to the complex for 50 English pence for a 1.5L bottle. The tap water is not suitable for drinking. The only other thing provided is a hairdryer. There is air conditioning which cools the room down fairly fast. It requires the door key to make it work so if possible get two keys and leave one in the air con slot all the time. We had a few power cuts. The generator kicks in quickly for lights and is noisy but it will not do the air con as well. The room heats up very fast if not working. We had three power cuts whilst we were there all in the evenings and for about an hour.
FOOD:- There is a wide variety of food. It does become a bit repetitive and boring after a week though. The cakes are superb. The main food hall for breakfast lunch and dinner is a buffet. For lunch and dinner you can have local wine and beer with your meal. The wine is horrible. There are chips, pizza and hotdogs etc on the beach from lunch until late afternoon and from 5pm at the pool bar there are pancakes and bruchetta. The pool bar is the only other place apart from the main hall where you can get alcohol as part of your all inclusive package. Alcohol comes in paper cups, ask for four cups this way they have to get a new cold bottle of beer instead of using the bottle that has been left on the counter getting warm. If they like you they may give you a beer in a glass but that was very rare. The evening entertainment is also here and the bar is open until midnight for local beer and spirits as well as soft drinks. There are not many chairs though considering this is the only evening entertainment area and the Italians take the chairs to watch the entertainment so you could end up sitting on the beds around the pool.
GENERAL:- We had an enjoyable time at the hotel despite the animation team causing a divide between the nationalities. There were other English families there who we mixed with and socialised with in the evening and this was the reason why the holiday was good without them I believe it would have been very different. We only went out of the resort once to Naama bay which did have a TGI, Hard Rock Cafe, McDonalds and KFC plus many more. If you don't mind being constantly hassled then this is a buzzing place where you could get yourself a bargain The preferred currency is US Dollars or Euros not their own Egyptian pounds. The local supermarkets will accept their own currency but excursions and dive centres etc prefer one of the others or even English pounds.
If you do wish to Scuba Dive the best place to go is Camel Dive Club in the Royal Grand Sharm Hotel about 5 min taxi drive. They all speak excellent English, very attentive and prices there are in Euro's if you pay cash. If you pay on a card it will be taken in their own currency which may work out slightly more expensive. The dive club at the Shores Aloha is again Italian. They will not teach the PADI system which Camel do.
Shores Aloha is one of 3 hotels in the same chain next to each other. I wouldn't class it as a 4* but it was adequate for our needs and if you are happy to chill on the beach and keep yourself to yourself most of the time then it is fine.
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- Also Known As:
- Shores Aloha Hotel Sharm El Sheikh