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“You get what you pay for!” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sunlight Garden

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Sunlight Garden
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   | Selimiye Mah. Yali Cad. Gul Sok, Side, Manavgat, Turkey   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #54 of 230 Hotels in Side
Weymouth, England, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“You get what you pay for!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2012

Got back from Sunlight Garden hotel on Sunday 16th September. Wasn't sure what to expect after reading the reviews on here! Goods points............2 lovely pools, rooms clean and cleaning staff excellent. The staff were very friendly and always helpful. Always a good choice of food at each meal time. Even the fussiest eater could find something to eat!! The room we had was large with a kitchen area (kettle, and fridge) two double bedrooms and 2 balconies.The reception staff were very helpful, and check in was quick and easy. We arrived in the early hours of the morning and the staff had left plates of food and water in our fridge, which was a really welcome touch. There was no hairdryer in our room, but by the morning one was waiting for me at reception.

On the down side....The shower in the room was terrible. Either boiling hot or freezing cold and had no power at all. By 7 a.m. every morning towels were put on the sun beds around the pool. The annoying thing was that most of the time no body was sat on them! The beach was about a 10 min walk away, but coming back was all up hill. There was a bus service to and from the beach at set times. The beach was run by the Almaru bar, and you were only allowed to sit on certain sun beds (although they were free). Drinks on beach were very expensive.

Entertainment was basic, however on Saturday nights they have a turkish night. The dancers were amazing and even the belly dancer was good!

A week here was long enough. I stayed in the Side Trendy Beach Hotel in June which was 4 star and the difference was huge. You get what you pay for, but my advice.....if you can afford it go 4 star!!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room at the front of Hotel overlooking one of the pools
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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English first
Norwich, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2012

Had a weeks allInclusive holiday to Sunlight Gardens Turkey. If only we read some of the reviews before going we would of been more prepared. (Although some reviews are just lies). We were totally sucked in by the resorts Shop keeper Antony. Talks with a newyork Turkish Accent and speaks very good english. He was our friend (not) totally sucked us in we spent a good bit of money with him on a day to day basis, he kept giving our 3 children little treats. (Milkshakes, Lollypops beaded bracelets) even did an errand for us to get a baby bottle for our youngest and said "hey cost me 20tl but for you friend you pay me 10tl" wow we thought really helpful. By day 5 of our 7 day holida,y our eldest had taken ill and was sent to the hospital in Manavgat for an expensive 24hrs. Whilst I was there with her my husband explored the local area around our resort and found a supermarket. OMG 3 times cheaper than our fabulous resort shop. Water with antony was 6tl, in the supermarket it was2tl. No wonder he could afford to give out extra treats as we were paying over the odds for them. As for the Hospital.If you get even a tummy ache as soon as your admited a canular is put in your arm and the till keeps clocking up. In the hospital we all had meals (thats the 5 of us) we were all offered a room to sleep for the night (thats 5 of us) and all my daughter had was a touch of sunstroke. The final bill was £3560 pounds which went through out travel insurance but I had to pay 190euros just to get her out. Not to mention 20tl for a bottle of medicine in turkish I didnt know what it was so i bought it as dr said it was needed only to discover it was Ibruprofen and I bought a bottle with us anyway. Back to resort we stayed in villa28 it was a huge place but watch the marble slippery steps especially with young kids we ended up puting the sofa in the way to block it off. We sat in the dark for the first 2 nights as nobody bothered to come and change the lightbulb which after many calls finally got replaced. Food repetitve but most All inclusives are. We didnt notice any flies over the food but there are little birds flying about and alot of stray cats. The staff work hard and are friendly... tip your maid she works really hard and you have the same one throughout your stay.The walk to the beach is a must but not in midday sun and watch out for the stray dogs there everywhere once you leave the resort. We did the manavgat cruise and waterfalls excursion it was a must, but everything in Turkey is fake so haggle hard, half the original price and your getting near what its worth.Also the resort does their own sunset photos. These are lovely photos but not worth the 5 euros for a standard photo and 7 euros each for photoshop photos, we even had some parasol bases and litter in the back ground of some of our images so totally ripped off, had to crop them when we got home and the guy who sells them gets an attitde problem when you dont want to buy the whole 100 of them. we asked for all images on a disc and how much would he charge and the price didnt change from that of a photo so we selected a few mainly the photoshoped ones at a cost of £70 pounds so becareful with the photographer....And lastly if you do go could you please ask Antony the resort shop keeper. to post the 12 postcards i purchased from him with stamps as nobody seems to have received them yet and its been almost a month.... So send via the turkish postoffice there is a few in side ;) oh and take your own bottle squash and water max out your 20kg luggage with water, then you make way for the snides you bring back :)))

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Stevenage, United Kingdom
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2012

we, 3 adults and an 8 yr old, stayed at the sunlight from 28th Aug to 12th Sept. Check in was quick and were helped with our luggage to our room swiftly with minimal fuss. We had a 2 bedroom villa, massive living/kitchen with excellent fridge freezer, downstairs loo and shower. 2 bedrooms upstairs and another loo and shower room.The villa also had 3 balconies. Weren't too impressed at first but after a few hours sleep it wasn't all that bad. Air con didn't work but as soon as we reported it, was fixed the same day and worked for the remainder of the holiday.Linen and towels were clean, fresh and the maids always left the place spotless. Beds were comfy,we asked for extra pillows which were supplied in minutes. We also had a leaking sink, a door fell off a cupboard, the draws fell apart but anything we reported was fixed the same day while we lounged round the pool. It became a bit comical and we looked forward to what would happen next.
So, the nitty gitty - not once did we struggle with something to eat. Breakfast had a choice of cooked brekkie (turkish style), cereals, yoghurt, meats, lovely choices of fresh breads which you could toast, our boy loved the toast with jam, honey or choccie spread and fruit. Tea cups were a bit small, so just get 2 cups. Lunch was choice of cooked meals/turkish side dishes/salads/kids meals including chicken nuggets,fish fingers, turkish Pide (pizza), spag bol and obligatory chips, breads, turkish cakes and fruit - apples, pears, grapes and melon. We used to take some for a snack later. 4ish was tea and cakes. Got you out of the sun if you needed it and then have a sneaky wee tipple after. At dinner sometimes was hard to choose what to have. At meals waiters serve drinks. Their English wasn't great and they were very busy, so what if you get Rose and not white wine - you're on holiday, go wild. We have stayed 5* in Egypt and the food and choice was far worse than the Sunlight.
Pools - clean, tidy, cool, with 45-50 degrees most days an essential welcome relief. Our son was not out of it all day. Deep enough for him to dive in, shallow enough for me to stand in. Both pools have lovely little kiddies pools by them. Sunbeds, i can report were very comfortable and all with mattresses and plenty of them and you could get a brolley - they just tended to blow over if there was a breeze. all good fun.
now the bar - yep - cheap local beverages - wine was drinklable, lager drinkable, spirits watered down - same all over the world and especially in all inc places. it's 3 star, don;t expect 5 star quality. usual mixers, coke, lemonade, tonic fanta orange. Glasses were too small. Get 2 drinks then. The staff are busy, have some patients. If you're nice, they are nice back. When you book you know it shuts at 11. The one drink per person after 10.30 rule was a bit odd. Didn't make any sense. Just went up 2,3 or 4 times. For us the entertainment was poor and when it finished, which if you were in the rooms around the noisy pool/bar area you'd be glad of it stopping, the bar area was not very inspirational and the piped music was weird, old and would more suit a funeral, not holiday material. We sat on our balcony getting cold drinks from the fridge and played cards sometimes. Had a cocktail which was a prize - was very strong and very nice.
We didn't go on a trip - not many people enjoyed them so we didn't bother. We used the money instead to eat at the Crown round the corner just for a change, or at the beach, both were lovely. They had a telly so the men could watch football, the kids could play with the turtle.s and mum could sit and relax. The staff there liked a good joke and a bit of banter. Also went to the Chinese up the road - it was delicious - highly recommend it.Good portions, we could not eat everything.
Beach shuttle is run by the restaurant Alremu on the beach it takes you too. thats why the times aren't great. Staff at the beach speak excellent English, serve drinks to the sun beds and cannot do enough for you. If you need 3 brollies coz it feels like the sun is a blow torch, you get 3 brollies. We even got a cider cocktai? which blew your head off. The sea is like a mill pond and as warm as a bath. Plenty of things going on and sandy. Watch what the lovely guys charge though, they wait till you are leaving and it's hit n miss what they add up. The food at The Alremu was good. Stunning place to sit and watch the sun go down. There are shops there that are full of characters and good fun. Cheaper than going into Side. Good watersport, staying at the Sunlight you win discounts for the sports down there.
The shop on site - the owner is a character and charges more than the shops outside. We are talking maybe 30-50p - but the guy was so helpful and he gave the kids freebies sometimes. He would get what ever he could for you.
The Spa and Beauty - cheap prices but excellent. A pedicure is €10 and was brilliant. Massages were great. I even won a free 20 min massage at bingo, was well worth losing the will to live at bingo. The woman there was tiny but as strong as an ox. For me, this part of the hotel was such good value. I would not bother having a pedicure or manicure in the UK again and i'd wait till i got to the Sunlight. the basic exterior covers up the quality.
Didn't like Side, all fake goods shops and rip off restaurants. Not the experience of Turkey we have had before.
Look, The Sunlight is a budget place you can go and whinge about or take it on the chin, you booked it coz it's cheap. It's a good base to eat, sleep and enjoy some sun, get out a bit and try some other bars/restaurants/trips with the money you saved. Turkey is more than just the hotel you booked. I'd go back there, for families it's safe, friendly and a bargain.

Room Tip: If you don't like music all day, ask for a room round the quiet pool and not facing the main roa...
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  • Stayed September 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kidderminster, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

I have to remember when writing this that we only paid £1k for 2 weeks all inclusive for 3 of us and that the hotel is only 3 star.

The hotel itself is great, the cleaners work exceptionally hard and the grounds and apartments are spotless. The apartments and hotel are basic but as you are on holiday you are not in your apartments much and the hotel serves its purpose.

We were a little disappointed with the apartment as we paid an extra supplement to Thomas Cook to have a 2 bedroom apartment as travelling with a baby and what we got was a 1 bedroom apartment with two beds in the lounge/diner. This is not the fault of the hotel but Thomas Cook.

Our appartment room 112 overlooking the quiet pool had great air con and stayed cool all day even in 35-40 degree heat. Although at night time it was rather noisy because all the teenagers would congregate around the pool tables and kids playground at night drinking and smoking, a little annoying when you have a 16 month old trying to sleep but a call to reception always ensured it went quieter as they would send someone over to tell them to keep the noise down.

The food was not brilliant but as in other reviews there was always an abundance of fresh salads (which does get boring after eating it 5 days in a row) and the kids section always had chips and spaghetti and tomato sauce. We found week one was much better food but in week two when the resort got a little quieter as children returning to school (beg of September) that they churned the same food out, think we had meatball grills 3 nights in a row!

The waiters were very good and work extremely long hours although I found one of the managers very rude and think he realised as I ignored him the rest of the holiday,and left no tip for him!

The Turkish night on a Saturday is a nice touch but the stalls are expensive and something you have already seen if you visited the Side market on the morning. Be wary of the camel owners as they just put children on the camels and took them for a walk and then once back charged anything between 20 lira and 100 lira for a ride when people thought it was free as part of the Turkish night.

Side town and harbour are nice and the ruins are worth a visit. We had quite a few walks into the town along the beach after using the hotels free shuttle bus in the morning but we always walked back to the hotel as waiting until 4pm to get a bus back was too long. It is only a 10 minute walk back, although it is all up hill!

The drinks I thought was ok but I only drank vodka and diet coke, hubby was not impressed with the beer buying his own at the supermarket to the left of the hotel to drink back at the apartment. The soft drinks are made from syrup and some days can taste like palma violets and sherbert! They serve the drinks in quite small glasses and even water, which I did not agree with as in 35-40 degree heat you needed to drink at least 5 glasses in a row to stay hydrated and the water was warm. The did swap the water machines over in the last week so you could get cold water but they told us off for filling our small water bottle up and told us to order more glasses!

We wouldn't go back to the hotel but as I said at the start we wanted a nice getaway for a bargain price and we achieved this so it was nice, just food really that let the hotel down.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Grinstead, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

Stayed at the Sunlight Gardens, Side early September for 1 week.
The 2 bed apartment was clean and huge! Two balcony's one looked out onto the road and the other a laundry room..... There are lots of niggles I could mention about the hotel and it was not up to the usual standard of Turkey all inclusive I have experienced, but it had a very easy going relaxing atmosphere ideal for families with children. Not much in the way of entertainment and the bar closed at 11.00 pm so if looking for night life even a trip to the harbour would only be lively up to 1.00 am. Lots of veg and salad dishes on the menus but not much in the way of meat and fish although I always found enough to eat, had a couple of meals out which were fab. Not many bars around mainly restaurants for couples and families. Side beach was also dissapointing wall to wall sunbeds, very crowded and dirty. All in all I would not return to Side there are a lot of other more scenic, fun areas in Turkey with beautiful beaches.

Room Tip: Apartments on road side are bigger but you may be offerred one on the third floor. No problem for us...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2012

Stayed here Late August for 2 weeks. The hotel exceeded our expectations, the apartment was a good size, very clean and the air con worked very well. It was only in one room but powerful enough to cool the whole apartment.The food was plentiful with a wide choice, and very rarely did anything run out. The evening entertainment was OK, the drinks selection was a little limited and another beer tap would not go amiss. After 10.30 it was one drink per person, this did not cause a problem but perhaps the rule would be better applied a bit later on. The swiimming pools were of a good size and clean, they also never got overcrowded. We managed to get 4 sunbeds everyday that we stayed at the hotel and even after 9 or 9.30 there were generally some left without a "towel reservation". The staff were generally friendly and helpfull and made a big effort to keep everywhere clean. This is not a 5 star hotel and therefore some compromises should be expected, however there is no reason why anyone should have anything but a good holiday staying here. The Turkish Bath at the hotel was really good, clean and good value.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Yorkshire Dales National Park, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2012

Don't believe all you read about the bad reviews...This a good place to stay for families. Quick check in. Late arrivals have meal in your room ready for when you get there. Clean room with aircon in living room. if you leave all the interior doors open it stays cool. Very hot so wear high factor cream, Meals...something for everyone although we did go out for meals to the the Crown and into the centre. Don't buy water from the shop onsite go to the supermarket by turning right out of sunlight and cross the road, 2 mins down the road you can get 12 bottles for 2 lira. Animation team work hard to entertain everyone. (no entertainment Sundays due to local laws). Otto the compare has a wicked sense of humour.
DO NOT BOOK TRIPS FROM THE GUY TO THE RIGHT. go down the hill and get them from near the beach he only charges a fraction of everyone else. We went fishing (twice), pirate boat, (9 hrs) and jeep safari (great).

Sunlight staff are all great, try to teach (Adem in the restaurant a new word it's soooo funny and he loves it). Your daughters will be ok in this complex the staff are very friendly and will look after them , we took a 18 yr old and she was fine, overall i would give 10/10 to sunlight, we would definitely visit sunlight again. Thank you to all at sunlight garden for a memorable holiday.

Room Tip: We was above the crown on the main road and had no problem sleeping, plus you can people watch.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 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
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Sunlight Garden

Address: | Selimiye Mah. Yali Cad. Gul Sok, Side, Manavgat, Turkey
Location: Turkey > Turkish Mediterranean Coast > Antalya Province > Manavgat > Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#35 Family Hotel in Side
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Sunlight Garden 3*
Number of rooms: 95
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
85 apartments and 10 villas ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sunlight Garden Side
Sunlight Garden Hotel Side

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