My wife and I stayed here from 6 - 13 Oct 13. having stayed at Riu Palaces before we were expecting a luxurious holiday. How wrong we were! The hotel, rooms and grounds are beautiful however they have serious problems with their food and a lot of staff members.
On day 2 of our stay we watched a cooking demonstration at dinner given by the Head Chef. The prawns in garlic sauce he was preparing looked gorgeous so I helped myself to a large plate full. Every prawn had the 'dirt sac' left in them and were therefore inedible. When I pointed this out to the head waiter he made a funny face and shrugged his shoulders! That same evening my wife had what looked like a toffee tart. Unfortunately, the toffee filling was so hard I could not even break it with a knife - much to the amusement of the French couple on the table next to us. I again call over the Head waiter and banged the tart on the table to show him how hard the dessert was, but was again he was unimpressed. This set the seal for the rest of our week, the waiters seemed to deliberately snub us and we had to ask for everything when we entered the dining room - clean tables, cutlery, etc.
Overall the food especially a breakfast was either over or under cooked. The other meals were repetitive and boring.
On our 5th night we were asked to complete a survey which we did with our candid comments. When we returned from selecting our meal from the buffet the questionnaires has been removed. When I aksed the Head waiter what had happened to them he told me that he would hand them in for me. Given our comments, I doubt that he did!
Our week was exemplified by the debacle we encountered on our last day. As our flight was not until 7pm on Sunday we asked on the Friday before if we could have a late checkout beyind the 12am deadline. We were told to ask again at 10am on the day of our departure! When I went back at 10am I was told to come back at 1130am! We were finally told we could have a late checkout at 1230pm - 30 minutes after we were due to check out!!! For the privelige we were charge 120TD (around £50)!
When we went back to ur room at 3pm to prepare to leave my wife noticed that one of our suitcases which wer part-packed had been opened and that her hair dryer was missing. We searched to room thoroughly before ringing the duty staff to report this theft. What followed next was like something out of a British farce.
Initially, the lady in charge of the cleaners arrived to check out our alleged theft. She then left and returned with the Chef de Security (who could not speak english) and we went through the whole saga again. The both left saying they would check the computer records to see wh had eneterd our room that day to narrow down the suspects. 20 minutes later they returned this time with the acting hotel manager with them. I had to retell the whole story again to him. He kept insisting that we had 'lost' the hair dryer but I reminded him that in fact it had been 'stolen'.
Realising that the Manager was not too bothered by this theft by one of his staff I insisted that he call the police who eventually arrived some 30 minutes later along with the Thomson tour rep! When the police arrived I was told that they could not check the hotel computer as the only person with access to the computer was the maintenance guy who was on his day off!!
When I asked the police to give me a crime number so that i could follow this theft up I was told that i would have to go with them to the police station and that it could take a couple of hours to complete the necessary paperwork. I reminded them that I was due to leave for the airport in less than 1 hour however they shrugged their shoulders. In the end I asked the Hotel manager to look into the theft the next day (Monday) and let me know what he had found. The Thomson Rep also informed me that she would be keeping an eye on their progress. As I write this review it is Thursday and I have heard nothing! I will give Riu and Thomson until close of play on Friday 18 Oct 13 to get back to me before I start writing e-mails to senior personnel at both companies.
As for the hotel in general - it is not a 5* Palace hotel. It would barely rate as a good 4* in most countries. The food is second rate and most of the staff are on the look out for tips all of the time. The free minibar for all-inclusive personnel is a nice touch but you should not have to ring room service every day for a supply of fresh milk!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located in Hammamet-Jinene * Situated on the beach * Complimentary sun loungers and parasols on the beach * 4-storey building surrounded by 70,000 m2 of gardens * 8 km from Hammamet's old quarter * 2 km from various shops * 60/95 km from the Tunis/Monastir airports * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa, Diners ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Orbitz, Despegar.com, Hotels.com and Otel so you can book your Hotel Riu Palace Oceana Hammamet reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Riu Palace Oceana Hammamet