We recently stayed for 2 weeks directly after Easter with our two children.
We originally booked garden view rooms however upon arrival we found that all garden view rooms are situated at the front of the hotel with the main access road running straight through them - potentially very noisy.
We upgraded to Grand Dulux rooms on the top floor of block 6. The rooms were both clean and well sized with a wonderful view over the pool and sea. The only problem being, that as all the hotels rooms have external corridors they can be quite noisy, block 6 backs directly on to the entrance of another hotel so we were continually woken by coaches picking up and dropping off throughout the night. Wasn't too fussed about this, covering the door with cushions from the balcony sofa resolved it. Whilst this dealt with the coach noise it did nothing at all to dampen the noise of the next door hotel's animation which went on in to the early hours every other night. The night manager confirmed this was a common problem and moved us in to so called premium rooms in block 2 facing directly on to the beach, the room was not as good as the grand deluxe! Only stayed in this room for 1 night as it backed on to the disco. For some reason the hotel considered it acceptable to leave the doors to the disco wide open at 1 o'clock in the morning with music blaring out. Finally ended the holiday in a room at the far end of block 1 - which was superb. It’s worth popping back to your room half an hour or so before you leave the pool/ beach as this gives you the opportunity to remind someone that your room hasn’t been serviced. Generally there is an acceptable low standard set for guests convenience and comfort.
We arrived early evening and ate in Ramses, the only place to eat free if you are all inclusive; the food was at best adequate. Service at Breakfast the following morning was dreadful, the staff were only interested in getting your room number, after this you're left to fend for yourself in a large dining hall full of dirty messy tables, the game is to find the cleanest table you could and then get someone to clean it and re-lay it for you. If you expect someone to ask you if you want tea or coffee don't waste your time. This was not a one off experience it was repeated every day for 14 days - Absolutely AWFUL.
As we couldn’t bear the thought of eating in Ramses for lunch and dinner we had upgraded to Ultra all inclusive by lunch time the first day. UAI allows you to eat at Mezzaluna and Palms Bar & Grill for lunch and dinner and Silk Road for dinner. Our first attempt at Palms we were served starters and main courses at the same time – quite amusing really! For about 75% of the time we ate at Mezzaluna, which had a good Italian menu and was the only place in the entire hotel that came close to 5* service - Top marks and a big thank you to Malik and team!
It is worth noting that if you book all inclusive you can only get a drink in the evening at Ramses or the sky bar, so unless you fancy spending your time in a school dining hall you’re stuck with the sky bar and the extremely rude staff that work in it. A word of caution:- if you see a couple of large empty tables in the bar with a small bottle of water on them do NOT sit anywhere near them . If you do a bar man will promptly shout at you indicating in poor English that you are extremely stupid for not recognising the world renowned custom of reserving tables for those who tip you well - all others be dammed!
The grounds are superb and the hotel is generally very clean and tidy except for the ladies toilets, my 8 year old daughter emerged from one in tears as the smell was so bad and my wife refused to use them. The all-male staff do not pay the ladies conveniences the same attention as the males.
The pool staff are pleasant and attentive. The hotel does not have its own animation team, instead it gives free reign to an Italian tour company to use the public address system around the swimming to shout (very loudly) at a handful of Italians partaking in Aqua Gym for 1 ½ hours every day apart from Sundays.
In summary, as the pictures indicate, this certainly has the potential to be a very good hotel. As it stands at the moment though they don’t have a clue about service and neither do they want to – which is a shame.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Palms Bar & Grill Located on the beach front, Palms offers BBQ, Seafood catch of the day mixed grill, crispy salads and exotic cocktails throughout the day. Guests can relax under the shade of the beach hut and enjoy a refreshing drink while admiring the spectacular view of Tiran Island and the Red Sea. Palms Bar & Grill is included in the Ultra All Inclusive Formula Opening hours from 09:00 AM till 18:00 Pm In Winter from 19:00 PM till 22:30 PM In Summer from 09:00 Am till 18:00 PM & from 19:00 PM till 23:00 PM ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Rotana Resort And Spa
- Grand Rotana Hotel Sharm El Sheikh
- Grand Rotana Sharm El Sheikh