Thomson do not offer a package deal to this hotel but booked it for us through Cosmos. We were given a contact number for the Cosmos representative but when we got there found it was no longer attainable, so we will not be using Cosmos again. Another English couple booked with Thomas Cook who offer a package deal using the Thomson flight from Gatwick.
THE HOTEL AND SETTING: The hotel is about a 20 minute transfer from the airport. There is an old and new section and we stayed in the old. The hotel is in the middle of the desert bordering the Red Sea with no facilities close by. A taxi or the hotel shuttle, which is 7 euros a head each way, is needed to get to Marsa Alam town. We only saw 3 other British people during our 2 week stay, the cliental being mostly German and Italian. Staff are very friendly and helpful and many can speak English.
ROOMS: The design of the hotel is very good as it appears all rooms overlook the sea and the pools. There are three floors and we had a room on the top floor with a balcony. Each block of three is staggered so that each individual balcony is not overlooked by its neighbour. Despite being in blocks with many rooms joined we found it very quiet and had undisturbed sleep. The rooms are spacious and the bed comfortable (twin or double available). There is a spacious shower room with hairdryer. No tea making facilities in the room but as all inclusive this wasn’t really necessary as tea and coffee making facilities were available in the restaurant and reception areas. The room was very clean. The chap cleaning the room was very friendly and the “towel sculptures” got more elaborate as the weeks progressed – dogs, swans, turtles – quite a talent! There were two minus points regarding the room. Firstly, on the night of arrival a glass shelve above the sink dropped to the floor when touched and smashed into many fragments. The brackets fixing it were of a poor design and it didn’t look like safety glass as the shards were very sharp. Secondly, although the air-con was set at 16 degrees C, the temperature was never that low and the room felt quite warm if the air-con had been off for a period of time. We stayed in May and I think that the air-con would have been inadequate for the size of room if it had been later in the year.
THE FOOD: There was only one restaurant, but a good selection and good standard of food was available 3 times a day as well as snacks at the beach café. Everything looked hygienic with the chefs serving wearing gloves. There was a good choice for vegetarians, but beware as certain dishes that were referred to as “vegetable” contained meat, so check first. There was basic “house plonk” available with all-inclusive which was drinkable, but better quality wine was extra. On certain nights you could book a table at the beach café for a fish dinner, though I think this was an extra 26 euros a head. One minus point and source of confusion was water. When we arrived there was no water in the room. I asked at the bar and was told that you had to pay extra, a large bottle costing 3 euros - not all-inclusive! Water being a necessity, I complained about this at reception and was told that you could fill the bottles from the mineral water dispensers around the hotel which was a bit of a pain every time. Occasionally “free” bottles were left in the room, but not every day. Reading Trip Advisor since my return I see that other people got bottled water on showing their wrist bands so what exactly is the rule?
THE POOLS AND BEACH: There are plenty of sun beds and umbrellas around the beach and pools. There is a fenced off shallow section for children in the pool. The beach consists of sand and a fringing coral reef which is reached by a 800 metre long pier. The down side of this is that the water is extremely shallow close to the shore so if you want to cool off in the sea, deeper water is accessed by wading out or walking along the pier. If you want to swim in the sea, but don’t want to go to the end of the pier there is access to waist deep water via a ladder about 300 metres along the pier. There are no life guards.
PIER AND HOUSE REEF: The house reef is at the end of the pier and shallow sand, and drops off dramatically into 15 metres (50 feet) of water so is only suitable for those who are happy to swim out of their depth. The water is crystal clear and you can see the bottom. The coral reef is excellent for snorkelling and diving and has an abundance of life including surgeonfish, pufferfish, large triggerfish, rays and turtles. For those who want to stay dry there is much to see in the shallow water whilst strolling along the pier, including moray eels, sea snakes, pufferfish, Picasso triggerfish and blue spotted rays and occasionally small black tip reef sharks. The pier is lit at night so you can have a pleasant after dinner walk.
ORCA DIVE CENTRE: Conveniently located in the hotel the dive centre offers training and beach and boat dives for the experienced. No medical is required, just a valid certificate and a health form declaration. As experienced divers we were allowed to dive unguided. The main problem about the centre is that, because of weight restriction on the flight we had to hire some of the equipment, some of which we found faulty, leaking connections, etc., so had to be changed. It is a pity as otherwise it was a good centre with friendly staff.
ENTERTAINMENT AND FACILITIES: Every evening there was children’s entertainment and songs before the main event which varied, some evenings being better than others. The best was the traditional Asian night with belly-dancer, whirling Dervishes, Egyptian dancers, etc. There is a kid's club and a gym which we didn’t use.
SUMMING UP: Yes, we would go again. For those that want a quiet holiday in a remote spot and like the swimming, snorkelling, diving, etc., this may be for you. Biggest minus was the flight back to Gatwick that lands at 2.20 am!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The hotel is located on the seashore of the Red Sea with its own private beach; it is 12 km to Port Ghalib International Marina. The hotel is 17 km from Marsa Alam Airport. Along with a peaceful location and a wealth of leisure facilities tailored for family holidays, beach holidaymakers and water sports enthusiasts, Tulip Resort offers you warm Egyptian hospitality during your stay. This 435 room resort has every facility that leisure travellers could wish for. Rooms at Tulip are well appointed with space and feature a sitting area, private bathroom and amenities and a terrace or balcony overlooking the sea and views of the pool. All rooms have individually controlled air condition, minibar, direct dial telephone, TV, smoke detector and electronic safe. The en-suite bathroom includes a shower and hairdryer. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Tulip Hotel Marsa Alam
- Tulip Resort Marsa Alam
- Tulip Resort Egypt