I had a pleasant stay at the Marmara Antalya for one week on a solo Thomas Cook package holiday to Turkey.
Room type: The Thomas Cook site neglected to mention the room wasn't one in the revolving portion. Thanks to TripAdvisor, I discovered that there are two parts to the hotel - the tower, and then the small, round revolving loft section containing a small number of rooms. So T.Cook should have better stated it was a "city view" room. Anyhow, fortunately, there was room for me in the revolving loft section, so I paid the 20 Euro per night upgrade fee to stay in the revolving room - after all, what is the point in staying in the only revolving hotel in the world to be planted in a "static" room. I would recommend you try to upgrade, even if just for one night. It's a neat novelty! You can't "feel" it - it moves so slowly.
Views: The view of the Mediterranean Sea is phenomenal. Wow. The Taurus mountains are spectacular. So if you can't upgrade to the revolving part, you should pay the 10 Euro upgrade for the sea view rooms. A balcony would have been nice. But the landscaped grounds are beautiful so it's nice to get out and explore. There was a wedding on one of the nights, which I could see might get noisy, but that wasn't my experience.
Room decor and cleanliness: Much has been made of the decor on previous posts. You should be 'warned' it is quirky, and sometimes design wins out over function. I really liked the pink accents, but if you prefer dark wood paneling and staid brown leather, this is not the place for you. Also, it's not suitable for business, as there isn't much of a desk - just a plank - and a stool for a chair. It wasn't very comfortable for long sitting periods. Free wireless internet was nice, although the connection wobbled at times. There are free computers for use on the 6th floor in the Tuti section as back-up, though. The toiletries were of good quality and had a nice, neutral citrusy smell. Housekeeping was very good - there were a couple of long curly black hairs on my blue setee at check-in, but not a big problem. I just wiped them up. The rest of the time, cleaning was great.
Room layout - The revolving loft is an open-concept floor plan. There is a frosted glass door on the toilet and on the shower (I like how they are separated) but there is a gap in between them and it feels a bit "open" - therefore, I wouldn't really be comfortable if it were, say, one's first time away with someone, as there's not a ton of privacy. The walls underneath the window showed abuse - the plaster was cracking and flaking away. The glass shower door was heavy and scraped along the tile floor when closing. So things aren't perfect, and I agree this is closer to a good 4 star property than a 5 star. But overall I was pleased.
Bed: a little soft for my liking. Not fabulous, but OK. The white linens were very crisp. I didn't have a brilliant sleep, as the 6 am call to prayer outside roused me every time. I tried leaving on the fan in the room's heating system, but it didn't help. (This is obviously not the hotel's 'fault' as this goes on all over the country.) I appreciate there were 4 nice fluffy pillows on the beds.
Staff: Very pleasant and friendly throughout the property. There was a particularly friendly and competent man at reception. English language ability is not very consistent, however, in both the restaurant and at reception (other than the fellow mentioned above). I called down to the front desk to ask for a lamp as I was trying to study and the room was too dark (again, design over function). It was excruciating as the (otherwise nice) woman could not understand the word "lamp", even when I spelled out slowly, nor "light", nor simply, "too dark in room", "can't see". (NB - I am a former ESL teacher and am sympathetic, and I certainly don't feel everyone should speak English, but an international 5-star hotel should spend money training its reception staff.) Anyhow, not a big deal - I was transferred to another kind man who easily understood my request, and an old grey lamp dug up from somewhere was promptly delivered to my room. It was of great help!
Food: Overall very good. I had half board (breakfast and dinner) but I only ate dinner there twice, as I tended to be out trying other restaurants. An earlier poster said this isn't the place for you if you like french fries with everything, and I agree (although I ordered a club sandwich via room service at 2 am and it came w fries).
Breakfast was served buffet-style and was the EXACT same every day, which got a little boring near the end. But, it was good and fresh. I liked the omelette station where they cooked it to order, although twice it was made with onions even though I said no onions (again, a language issue) - no big deal, it was promptly and happily re-made. (Minor note: the drab grey fleece vests they had the staff wear looked more suitable in a ski resort or on housekeeping staff - didn't seem to fit the Marmara's overall bright, unique decor.)
Dinner: Table-service style. I really enjoyed the 2 times I ate there. It was 4 courses and everything was tasty and unique. But it's a bit of a Hobson's Choice - you only have the main dish featured (although there is likely a vegetarian option). However, there is plenty of food to fill up on as appetizers and dessert. Also, my experience is that the hotel is very accommodating and I'm sure they'd try to make you happy by cobbling something else together for you.
It was annoying how water was included free with breakfast by way of a nice glass self-service urn, but it wasn't free at dinner (you had to buy expensive bottled water). I wished they would leave the urn out all day so guests can refresh themselves. But I guess the hotel wants to make money selling water.
I didn't have my bags searched for food as reported by others, although I didn't try to bring anything in anyhow. But I agree the mini bar prices are a little high. They do give you one small 'free' bottle of water in the room. There is a convenience store almost across the street from the hotel.
Gift shop: This was a weird little store that didn't seem to be suited for a 5-star hotel. It was sparsely stocked and not very polished looking. Also, it did not have shaving cream nor a toothbrush. (N.B. - The hotel actually will provide you these things. And they are of excellent quality - not cheap. So if you forget them like me, just ask at the front desk and they'll deliver them to you for free.)
Pool and sauna - It was too cold to go outside without a jacket on, let alone try the pool. The Turkish bath, steam room, etc on the 5th floor looked lovely, although I didn't get to use them.
There are feral cats running around the property. A few of them hissed at me although they are generally unafraid of people. They don't look mangy, but they were making a racket one night. At first I thought it was a hotel problem (and I wondered why they didn't do anything about it) but it quickly became apparent they roam all of Antalya. (Which isn't a problem, as they look like typical house cats - not diseased or scary.) A bonus for those of you who like cats! (I don't.)
Overall, I had an extremely pleasant stay in my revolving loft room at the Marmara Antalya. I would recommend it if you're looking for a fresh, novel experience - don't stay here if your tastes are boring and stodgy. I would recommend this property for its amazing sea view, its accommodating staff, and unique design aesthetics. I will also be back to Turkey - what an amazing country!
- Also Known As:
- The Marmara Antalya Hotel
- The Marmara Antalya Hotel Antalya
- Marmara Hotel Antalya
- Antalya Marmara Hotel
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A dynamic, surprising, pure, extraordinary product: The Marmara Antalya. Simple lines, crazy colors, comfort, dynamism, aesthetics, leisureness, technology, flavor, broad spaces, shared spaces, quiet corners, endless scenery of the Mediterranean are all united at The Marmara Antalya. Decorated by French architect, Christian Allart and mentioned by pioneers magazines in the sector such as; ‘Marie Claire Maison’, Maison Francaise’ ‘Home Art’, ‘Cosmo Girl’, ‘Harpers Bazaar’ from its opening day, The Marmara Antalya with its unique architecture and ‘HIP design’ aims to surprise the guests by going beyond what is accustomed and offers a refreshing alternative to Antalya with its quality. The hotel also accepts pets.The only pet friendly Hotel in the city Center of Antalya... ... more less
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