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“Simple but nice hotel, great location” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Island Hotel Istra

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Island Hotel Istra
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Crveni Otok 1 - St. Andrea, Rovinj 52210, Croatia   |  
Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Touch of beauty
Ranked #7 of 23 Hotels in Rovinj
Certificate of Excellence 2014
London
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Simple but nice hotel, great location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

We have just returned from a very enjoyable holiday, staying 7 nights in Hotel Istra. The hotel is quite ugly from the outside, but inside it is very clean and mostly modern. Rooms are a little small, but have all you need for a decent stay. The buffet restaurant is ok, a good variety of food, but the self-service wine kept running out! The restaurant is not very atmospheric, and is a little clinical feeling, with bright white lights and basic tables.
The swimming pool is great, at a good temperature and filled with fresh water - so no chlorine, which is really nice. Loungers get snapped up and reserved from 8am, which is something the hotel should try to tackle as we saw plenty of people that couldnt get loungers, as others leave them unattended but with towels on them,
The beach is small but nice, although you have to pay for loungers. Or, there lots of little coves around the island where you can sunbathe and swim. The island itself is a great unique aspect to staying at this hotel - you have woodland to stroll in, plus rocky coves where you can spot crabs and shellfish, and its not difficult to find peace and quiet if you want it. The ferry ride over to the island is great, and adds a bit of fun to the stay. Rovinj is well worth exploring, it is very picturesque and has lots of restaurants and bars.
Our only complaint for this hotel was the service at the a la Carte restaurant, (Lanterna). We were sat down at a table that had not been cleaned since the last occupants. This was ok, as we expected that they would clean it asap. However, it took 10 minutes before anyone took away the dirty napkins (without a word to us). After 15 minutes of no-one speaking to us, or giving us a menu, or wiping the tablecloth, we walked out and did not go back there all holiday.
We had a bite to eat at the Captains Club bar instead, which was lovely food, and a great atmosphere.
All in all, we really enjoyed our holiday and would recommend it to others. However, the hotel needs to improve a few things to really earn the 4 star status that it /Thomson markets it as.

Room Tip: Good sea views to be had from lots of the rooms, probably worth paying for this as an upgrade.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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536 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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virgin islands
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 18, 2013 via mobile

I stayed here with my husband for two weeks and had a thoroughly enjoyable time . The hotels idyllic location really makes you feel that you are getting away from it all . The hotel however I do have some niggles with .
Firstly being charged for towels , sunbeds on the beach and wifi which was only available in reception is hardly 4 star is it ?
It's a pity as the location ,room comfort , overall cleanliness , food were all pretty good .
I would return to Rovinj and maybe the hotel if the petty charges for what should be standard in a 4 star hotel are amended .

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2013

It was mine and my partners first experience of Croatia, and the island of which hotel Istra is located on is ideal for a romantic getaway; it is very picturesque and scenic. We enjoyed walks around the island viewing the sunsets on the hills and looking over the harbour/boats after dinner, the island itself takes about 30 minutes to walk all the way around. The converted monastery - now restaurant was very pretty and i love how the original/traditional aspects have still been kept.
Boat service was great, we could use it as much as we wanted and the old town of Rovinji is a must see as the entertainment over there at night is much more lively than that of the hotels. The entertainment is situated by the shore which is lovely and relaxing but the entertainment did not 'entertain' us or younger ones as it was quite subdued. We found ourselves going to find other entertainment throughout Rovinji. Lots of choice for food at the restaurant however i have never known people to eat chips and sprouts for breakfast - but it catered for all. The staff at the hotel were all so friendly especially Igor the daytime/tour-guide he helped us out a lot, showed us round Rovinji and was very friendly! I would definitely recommend the free tour-guided Rovinji trip that is offered to you on your Thomson welcome meeting.
The water activities that they sell are good value for a canoe it is 60 kuna (about £7.50) for an hour on a canoe and it was 80 kuna (about £10) for an hour for a pedallo with a slide that would fit 4 people in!
The drink prices were expensive at the hotel so i would recommend stocking up on bottles of drink from the supermarket in Rovinji and keep them in your room fridge to drink through the day!
Also you get homemade ice cream for 7 kuna (90p isn) in old town which is very nice and cheaper compared to about 10 kuna (average price of ice cream) at the hotel !

I would not book this hotel if you planned on doing the waterfall/venice/slovenia/cave excursion as they were all about a minimum of 4 hours away.. The waterfalls were 5 hours on a bus EACH way so 10 hours of your day will be on a bus, which put us off and we were disappointed as we were looking forward to seeing one of the wonders of the world!

Overall; we had a lovely stay (Weather slightly temperamental with a few overcast days!) we would definitely go again for a peaceful and relaxing holiday to bathe in the sun and for a romantic getaway.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2013

Just got back from a relaxing week at hotel Istra, had a lovely stay and would recommend it to anyone looking for something a bit different from the usual 'beach/hotel' holiday.

Private transfer to the hotel from Pula Airport is ~£60 each way- great for a group (& can be booked through the hotel beforehand) but as it was just two of us we decided to take the bus from the airport to Pula bus station (15 mins, ~£2.50 each), then the bus from Pula to Rovinj centre (30mins, ~£4 each). The journey was surprisingly easy and in air-conditioned coaches, well worth the money saved. On the way back we did book the private transfer to catch an early flight ~35mins journey.

The boat to the hotel stops by the marina, and then at Rovinj old town (just across the harbour) before heading off to Hotel Istra, so you can board at either stop. You get a free pass for the boat when you check into the hotel (& they'll let you on for free when you arrive with all your luggage).

The hotel is clean & modern, enormous buffet breakfast, our only gripe was that the coffee at breakfast was awful- but you can get a great cappucino for <£2 at the bar.

However the real magic of the hotel is the fabulous sea & the views. The clear, turquoise water is perfect for snorkelling,diving, sailing or windsurfing (all of which you can do from the hotel). Definitely, definitely take a mask and snorkel, and jelly shoes to protect delicate feet from the rocks. Even first-time snorkellers will love it!

We opted for breakfast only at the hotel, allowing us to go out each evening into Rovinj for dinner. Rovinj is gorgeous, tiny little streets packed with arty shops and hundreds of restaurants, mostly Italian or seafood (pizza/pasta £6-12 each).
The hotel puts on live music at the outdoor bar ('Captain's Club') in the evening which was a little 'easy listening'/cheesy for our taste, but the setting is gorgeous.

Best bits- location, swimming, Rovinj old town
Worst(?) bits- poor coffee at breakfast, people 'reserving' sun loungers all day (grrrr)

  • Stayed July 2013, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

We stayed for 11 nights at the Hotel Istra with Thomson holidays. Firstly, let's just say the building itself is no looker. However, once you get past that the hotel is well-equiped, pleasant and the staff are friendly and efficient.

The rooms are light and airy and are a little more spacious than ones we've stayed in on other holidays. There was adequate storage space for all our things and our room was cleaned every day to a good standard. The balcony didn't get any sun, although we were told that this meant the room was always cool to help people sleep at night and I have to say I slept like a baby every night with no noise from staff, guests or the ferry.

The main pool area was very nice, with a large main pool, children's pool, saltwater pool and an indoor as well. We used all except the children's and they were all very nice, if a little cold on first entry. We did not have any problems with getting sunbeds around the pool and if there are any issues, the hotel has some grassy areas where people also put some sunbeds out themselves, which is a nice alternative.

The food was to a good standard. The breakfast selection was as expected with some hot food like bacon and eggs but also pastries, breads, cereals, cheese and ham. You also get the occasional veg item in there and fries but obviously it's your own choice. The evening food was also to a good standard with pasta, salads, meat and potatoes (mainly pork, turkey and chicken), fish and a small selection of vegetables (we would have liked a few more options). Having beer and wine on tap at dinner is definitely a nice touch.

The lobby bar and the Captains Club were both very good bars and I disagree with people saying to go to the island to get drinks, as we found the bar prices very reasonable. We stuck to the local beer which was about £2.60 per half litre bottle. Cocktails worked out at just under £5. The entertainment was good with a mixture for all tastes including piano music, live bands and performances.

The resort of Rovinj itself was very small but scenic and picturesque. The boat over to the island goes once an hour which is fine. Some people got a little confused as some of the early and late boats are the hotel Katarina boats but they still do stop at Istra too.

The only low point was possibly that being on the island often made you the first pick up and last drop off of the excursions. We went on the Lake Bled (stunning) and the Venice trips and there was an hour added on each way to already long trips dropping off passengers at all of their different hotels in Porec. Having been through Porec and at the port with the boat from Venice, however, we would say the resort itself was not as nice as Rovinj.

All in all a very good holiday and very good value for money going with a package deal.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ripon, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

Myself my wife and 2 children (8 and 5) stayed from the 18th - 25th June 2013.
As you approach the island via boat the hotel does look abit like a multi-storey car park in concrete grey. If only they would paint it white it would look a million times better.
The hotel was modern and spotless both inside and out and the staff were very friendly, especially the kids club staff. There is loads to do on the island, we only left to buy bottled water and wine and beer from the mainland which is a must. (Don't pay the hotel prices)
The buffet food was great and the Halfboard plus with free wine and beer at dinnertime was even better as it was self service.
There is a large softplay area for the children and Kids club with Mini disco.
In the spa there is an indoor pool and jacuzzi which we had all to ourselves. (Not sure other guests knew they were allowed to use it.)
We normally have Villa Holidays and was very surprised how much we all enjoyed our holiday. I think we did time it well as the hotel was very quiet. It started getting busy on our last day and we did not enjoy it at all.
In conclusion fantastic holiday mainly because hotel was quiet.

  • Stayed June 2013, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barnsley, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2013 via mobile

We had two lovely weeks at this hotel.
The rooms were great with lovely views over the sea. The food was buffet style - you could always find something you wanted and free wine/beer with evening meals.
The hotel bar has a lovely atmosphere, but the best is Captains Club. It is so romantic and they have live music some nights it is definitely the place to be at 8.30!
The swimming pools are fab, plenty of space round the pool and you can always get a few lengths.
The walk round the island is lovely to do in an evening after your meal.
The ferry from the island to Rovinj is hourly and very enjoyable.
We went with Thomsons and did two trips - Venice and Lake Bled. Both were fantastic experiences.
We would definitely return to this hotel in the future. Thank you!!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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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Additional Information about Island Hotel Istra

Address: Crveni Otok 1 - St. Andrea, Rovinj 52210, Croatia
Phone Number:
Location: Croatia > Istria > Rovinj
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Rovinj
#4 Family Hotel in Rovinj
#5 Romantic Hotel in Rovinj
#6 Luxury Hotel in Rovinj
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Island Hotel Istra 4*
Number of rooms: 326
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Istra is an island of its own, a traffic free oasis of sea and sun, private beaches and secluded spots, a ten minute boat ride from Rovinj. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Istra Hotel Rovinj
Hotel Istra Rovinj

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