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“Very helpful and pleasant staff” 4 of 5 stars
Review of El Hana Palace Caruso Hotel

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El Hana Palace Caruso Hotel
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Blv 14 Janvier 4089, Port El Kantaoui 4089, Tunisia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 37 hotels in Port El Kantaoui
Hawarden, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Very helpful and pleasant staff”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2013

The reception area is stunning with all the marble and we were seen to very quickly by friendly helpful staff. Our luggage was brought to our room, 206, which was a bit dated, but clean with spotless bathroom and a view looking towards the Villa at the back of the main hotel. Beyond this was the beach but that could only be seen from a higher floor level. Our sheets and towels were changed every day by a very polite and friendly chambermaid. There was plenty of room for clothes but only three hangers. The safe cost two dinars per day which you pay for on arrival.The dining room, which is on the ground floor of the villa, was spotless, spacious and the choice of food at all meals was out- standing. The food was always hot and plentiful and once again the waiters were friendly and helpful.We made many friends in that dining room, chatting over what we had done that day. A flight of marble steps lead into the villa, well worth the climb to see the interior of what was once a family home. The grounds are well kept and sun loungers in plentiful supply but unfortunately we didn't have the weather to use them. It was dry but a bit on the chilly side. In the bar, once again. spotlessly clean, we paid 7 dinars for two bottles of becks (10 dinars about £4). Tipping is the norm over there , even one dinar is gratefully accepted.

Room Tip: We had no noise disturance in our room, 206
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (95)
Date | Rating
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English first
Burton upon Trent, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

If you want a hotel in a wonderful setting with large bedrooms and unusual bath facilities then this is the location and hotel for you and staff are so helpful. Would I return? Well the answer is yes!! Not four star because of the depressing restaurant but a wonderful place to have a relaxing holiday.

Room Tip: Upgrade to a suite and really spoil yourself. I will next time.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Crawley
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

As someone else has already stated this is NOT a 4 star hotel! The staff even told us that they lost one star due to the state of the rooms. Thomas Cook still sell it as a 4 star so although we got a good late deal we were initially quite disappointed. When you enter the reception area it is very clean and modern with polished marble everywhere, fantastic I thought. Sadly I don't think any money has been spent on the bedrooms for many a year. The carpets were absolutely filthy, my wife showed me the soles of her slippers after 2 weeks of just walking in our room - we threw them away, need I say any more!! The first room we had was on the ground floor and came with its own aroma of raw sewage, heating that didn't work, old and very tired furniture and stained blankets on the bed (although the sheets were clean). We asked to be moved, and were the next day to a top floor room (4th floor). Once again the heating didn't work but, as we now had a room that was heated by the sun we decided not to complain again, the next room could be worse.
The bathroom looks great in the photos, in reality, some of the baths have surface cracks all over them and the water pressure is adequate to have a warm shower but not a hot one.
The good things about the hotel are the chambermaids and the waiters. They are very friendly and helpful, having said Tunisia is a "tipping" society and I always tip before the end of my holiday to hopefully get the benefit of my tip. Maybe this helped a little.
If you are half board the food is great. I can't fault it. There was always a full selection for breakfast and dinner, with hot and cold dishes galore. Some are western style and some are North African style. It is a buffet style and you can return for more as many times as you like.
The hotel has nice grounds, the gardens finish right on the beach and comes with free sun loungers and chairs. A waiter is always on hand to serve you if you wish.
Beware of drinking in the hotel bar, roughly £4 a pint for Becks slightly less for local beer (opt for Becks).
Also beware of having laundry done. Over two weeks we had two small bags washed. Adding both bags together wouldn't make 1 full load of a 5kg drum at home. They charged £26 on my last day for the privilege, had to change more money to pay for it!!
Do not expect evening entertainment because there isn't any. This does mean that you meet your fellow holiday makers as everybody sits in reception after dinner to use the free wi-fi. We met some very nice people and made some good friends.
All in all I would say, if you get a very cheap deal and only expect a basic 3 star hotel you will be o.k. If you pay anywhere near what Thomas Cook say the original price is, you will be sorely disappointed!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the left hand side in the winter. This is the side on the left as you walk into re...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gloucester
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

I am always broad minded when it comes to reading reviews, but this is not a 4 star hotel as Thomas cook have rated this hotel.
We arrived at the hotel at 12noon and was told our room would be ready in 30mins> 2hrs and 30 minutes later we were given a room on the ground floor.
The corridor our room was in smelt of sewage and so did our toilet, also the heating was not working and the TV did not work.This was the same for many rooms as lots of people complained. We asked to be moved and was told there were no more rooms available, after talking to the rep we were given another room on the 1st floor which was much better.
There was still a smell of seweage in the corridor we were on but not in the room, which we put up with. The sewage truck came 10 days into our holiday and finally went.
Although this sounds quite negative we could not fault the food or the restaurant staff.
This hotel should only be rated 3 star.
Our rep was not very informative about the local scammers as we got caught out with " dont you reconise me im the waiter in your hotel" which he then takes you to a couple of shops and then asks for some money.
Other people from other hotels said there rep had informed them of these scams.
Also as a tip do not get loose change out in your hand as they pick up your money and mix it with the loose change in your hand then they put money into your palm and want a higher coin 5Dinar etc... as change.
We booked a trip on the Medina Ramble, but we went to the Medina ourselves and ask our rep to cancel the trip, he insisted that we should still go on the half day excursion (as stated on booking) as the guide will show you places that were hard to find and would not be hassled by sellars he would also help you with haggling. What a load of rubbish, the trip started at 9.30 we spent 2hrs in the Medina, 30 mins off that was sat in a cafe for drink break followed by another 20-30 mins being shown carpets which no one was interested in. We we hassled and the guide kept rushing on head and the older people were left behind to fend for them selves( they was only 7 on the trip, i would hate to be on a trip which he said they have 80 people to 3 guides on a trip) As for helping with haggling, the guide told the sellar what we will pay(about 25% less of what the sellar wanted no haggling at all) which i know it should be about 70% to start with wich we were told by other people and from my own haggling on previous shopping trip.Bought some spices with the guide and was told this is the best price 1 Dinar per gram, we spent 18 Dinar on 3 small bags, but later found in the supermarket all of the spices of 50g per bag for 2Dinar = 6Dinar, we were ripped off 12 Dinar by the guides advice, please dont take medina trip.
Went to our rep to say how dissapointed we were and wish we never spent the £20 on and he was bothered by this did not want to know.
We would recommend the 2 day Sahara explorer trip and the Roman empire trip.
The Hotel grew on us and we made some good friends and lovely people, which made the holiday.
The Hotel needs a little attention and updating, we would not hesitate to come back to Tunisia the more time spent going to the Medina became less daunting as you got use to it.
The Value was good as we only paid £213 each incuding transfers.

Room Tip: Rooms on the higher floors were better for views. Rooms between 01-12 are cooler in the summer, Room...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

I am writing this as I have recently returned from two weeks staying in this hotel over Christmas and New Year.
I was given the room which I had to get changed as it was dirty, the fridge door fell off and the carpet and covers were stained.
I was told that the hotel was built in 1991 and it has never had any upgrading or decorating done since, so if you do go please do not expect it to look like the pictures.
The food was mostly inedible and I had to live on sardines and salad for the whole time I was there. There was no entertainment at all until NYE when they had a drag artist who was not very good.
The bed had a sheet & brown blanket on and nothing else. The indoor pool had tiles missing and the ones that were there were dirty.
I travel alot and really am not very fussy but need to express how terrible this hotel was.
We just read a review that said they would rate this a 2* not a 4* but I would not give it a star rating at all.
I asked the Thomas Cook rep on the 4th day of the 2 week holiday to return to the UK and he told me it was nothing to do with him, as he was there to sell the tours/trips.
If you decide to go to this hotel after reading the reviews then good luck, if you have booked and have time to change it, I would say it would be worth paying a little more to get something better.

Room Tip: Do not go there... A tip to choose a good room would be to pick one in a different hotel.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

nice standard 4* hotel with excellent breakfast and evening meal with too many varieties of dishes to mention excellant quality preparation with taste ,only downside i would state is the rooms could really do with upgrading not that they are bad just old style too my preference.

Room Tip: if you book and are not happy ask for a better room ! that is if they have any different ones to the...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2012

This is the third time we have stayed in this hotel, which says a lot about it's location, quirkiness and the friendly, helpful staff.

Last year it's decaying grandeur was being elbowed out by new management that had taken control and every afternoon we were serenaded by chain saws trying to keep the vegetation in check. This year the gardens looked a lot better but the indoor pool was out of bounds as the decor was being refreshed, but then the outdoor pool was available and the sea (from a Brits view) was warm enough for swimming.

There has been a lot of work done on the communal areas and one of the wings has had a lot of renovation. Despite this we decided to upgrade to the 'Palace', the old building on the sea front. Again, a renovation is scheduled for this grand building in the near future, fingers crossed they leave the enormous crystal chandelier alone as it is stunning in artificial and sun light.

So the Palace. Up sweeping marble steps to a grand ballroom, all guests can access this but very few do, a great pity. The marble balcony facing the sea has a wonderful breeze, you can sit there with a glass of something cool fantasising that you are the sole occupant of this wonderful place.

Food. We stayed on a half board basis that really was value for money. Breakfast is the normal hot and cold buffet but some of the Tunisian dishes were excellent. A bread a butter pudding type dish (without the currants), eggy toast and battered sweet things. ( I was on holiday, it's my right to pig out.) Also a chef on the hot plate so you can have fried eggs to your liking and fresh omelettes every morning.

We didn't find the food cold at dinner (apart from the salad which is acceptable) and even though my partner is vegetarian we always had sufficient choice. One thing I ate in the hotel a lot was chicken. Tasteless in the UK but it actually tastes of chicken in Tunisia. Again a hot plate in the evening with a chef making pancakes - you choose what ice cream, sauce you want. Us, we are traditionalists and our faves were cinnamon sugar and fresh lemon or lime juice.

The staff are friendly and helpful, an off hand query about sourcing Tunisian honey, it arrived the next day. I was appalled by the attitude of some of the hotel's guests. Why do the middle classes have to act as if hotel staff are their personal slaves and act so rudely?

Finally, this is the sort of hotel to visit if you want a quiet time. It does not offer entertainment it's a place to read, play cards, look out over the blue sea, relax and recharge your batteries.

Room Tip: If you can afford it go for the Palace
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about El Hana Palace Caruso Hotel

Address: Blv 14 Janvier 4089, Port El Kantaoui 4089, Tunisia
Location: Tunisia > Sousse Governorate > Port El Kantaoui
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in Port El Kantaoui
#8 Romantic Hotel in Port El Kantaoui
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Port El Kantaoui
#11 Luxury Hotel in Port El Kantaoui
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Hana Palace Caruso Hotel 4.5*
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Also Known As:
Hotel Hana Palace
El Hana Palace Hotel
Hana Palace Port El Kantaoui
El Hana Palace Tunisia

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