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“Poor management response, Beware of "activities"” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Tilal Liwa Hotel

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Tilal Liwa Hotel
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Madinat Zayed
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
38 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“Poor management response, Beware of "activities"”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 4, 2013

We stayed at Tilal Liwa for the weekend and while the hotel itself is quite nice, we would recommend that you not get your hopes up fro the meals as the food isn't great.

Our other big concern was with the activities as we wanted to go dune bashing and called before we booked the dune bashing trip to make sure that it was proper dune bashing. The receptionist assured us that the dune driving was intense but when we got there we got into the SUV, the man drove us literally 500m from the hotel where we stopped on a dune to take pictures and then he turned the vehicle around and we drove back. My friend, who knows a lot about dune bashing, noticed that the driver did not deflate the tires at all when driving in the sand (which is a must for safety) and he did not even have the proper tires for safely driving on the dunes. We wondered why the hotel chose to put its guests in such a dangerous position!

When we got back to the hotel we talked to the manager about our concerns and he assured us we would be compensated for our disappointing dune bashing trip and then he proceeded to avoid us for the rest of the weekend.

Also, it's important to know that the hotel is actually quite far from the Liwa Oasis, probably a good 45 minutes.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lisa J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, March 10, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time to fill in your feedback from your last visit to Tilal Liwa Hotel. It was our pleasure having you as our guest.

I'm delighted to read that you've enjoyed the hotel design and our interiors. We meant to decorate the Hotel in such a style to be able to offer our guests a real desert experience and to allow them to enjoy as much as possible of the desert life.

I apologize for the misunderstanding regarding your safari. Please allow me to remove the confusion, your feedback is dated 6 days ago, I've gone through our booking details and couldn't find in the last 3 weeks any safari bookings. Since the Hotel doesn't have his own vehicle, we should book in advance with the safari company. What we do offer on daily basis, is the camel farm visit. We do the Camel farm visits with our shuttle bus which doesn't require to flatten the tires as the shuttle doesn't get deep in the sand, but rather drive on the gutch to the farms.

Tilal Liwa Hotel offers several outdoor activities for the convenient of our guests such as sand boarding, cycling, kite surfing, Dune bashing, desert walk, sunrise and sunset breakfast and snacks, Do your own BBQ, Al Dhafrah Oasis attached to the hotel with real Arabic atmosphere and traditional Arabic tents. In addition to the kids activities such as the kids club, indoor and outdoor games and the clowns to play with our junior guests.

once again, thank you very much for your feedback. We hope to be able to welcome you soon again in Tilal Liwa Hotel.

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,041 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (215)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
257 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

Our family took a drive this last weekend from Abu Dhabi for a one night stay in the "real" desert in the Western Region of the UAE. We have been living in Abu Dhabi for the past 4 years and had yet to visit the western desert, but when my Mom from the States came for an extended visit, we felt it was the perfect time to see what the other part of the country had to offer.

We had a very pleasant one night stay which included the dinner and breakfast buffet. Food was plentiful and very well prepared. The BBQ dinner was particularly nice as you could watch the chefs prepare the food on the outdoor grills. We had adjoining rooms for our family of 4, lots of room and big beds. Our rooms were located on the ground level facing the courtyard and pool, so all we had to do in the morning was walk out the door to experience the beautiful weather and activities.

I have also read a few reviews on the hotel, and I can't understand any of the negative comments. The staff from reception to housekeeping were nothing but professional and extremely friendly and welcoming. If you have the chance to visit the Western Region of Abu Dhabi, do not pass of the chance to visit this resort!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank OneInaMillion50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, March 10, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time to fill in your feedback from your last visit to our Hotel. It was our pleasure having you as our guest.

I'm very delight to read that you've enjoyed your stay with us. Also I'm very happy to read that our staff were very friendly to you. We appreciate so much your feedback and share it with our colleagues to keep motivating them and helping them to improve their skills in serving our guests.

Looking forward for welcoming you soon again in Tilal Liwa Hotel.

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
107 reviews
90 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 21, 2013

I've just read some recent negative reviews of this place. Silly things like:

- the a la carte menu took 25 mins to prepare (mmyeah - because it's fresh)

- there's "no direct access" to the desert (errr, you can see it from the infinity pool and should guests expect anyone just be able to walk into the premises?! It's only a 30 second walk to get to it - jeez!)

- the scenery isn't stunning (it's a desert - maybe not spectacular dunes, but not half bad).

- that the Groupon deal wasn't available on a specific date (check before you buy the coupon - it does say subject to availability).

I just don't get it - I feel bad for the manager having to respond to all this nonsense and I just hope he doesn't compensate these whingers many of whom, like me, got an amazing Groupon deal for 500 Dirhams (£85) for breakfast and dinner for two plus a great hotel room. It's a steal.

The Tilal Liwa is a fabulous hotel. The rooms are clean and comfortable. We had a pool-facing room which was superb. The buffet breakfast was fantastic and the dinner was good. The quad-biking in the desert was great fun and reasonably priced at 150 Dirhams/hour. The camel farms were fantastic - nobody there but you and the friendly camels who wander over to sniff you! Great experience and we got some brilliant photos.

Minor quibbles: the quad bikes (which are independent of the hotel) may not be available outside of peak times (ie. weekends) and the lighting during dinner was very dark.

A tip: for the really spectacular scenery take the long way to/from the hotel to the Qasr Al Sarab hotel by heading south to Liwa then east and then north. Have coffee in the Qasr Al Sarab (unless you can afford to stay there!) and continue north to the outskirts of Abu Dhabi. This adds two hours on to your journey (ie. four hours to Abu Dhabi instead of two), but it's worth it.

All in all the Tilal Liwa was excellent. Thank you.

Room Tip: Pool-facing rooms are excellent.
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BritTravellingAround
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, February 23, 2013
Dear Valued guest,

Thank you very much for the time taken to share your feedback from your recent stay at TIlal Liwa Hotel!

We really appreciate the time taken to write something about the Hotel. We're very delighted to read that you've enjoyed your stay, the facilities and our selection of food & beverages.

We're very happy with our guest's experiences and also very interested to receive their feedback. We see these critical feedback as challenges which we use as educational tools to train our staff how to even exceed our guest's expectations. It is our pleasure to write individual replay to all our guests as all feedback counts very much for us.

We're very happy that you've enjoyed your stay with us and looking forward for welcoming you soon again in Tilal Liwa Hotel. I'll be more than happy to invite you for a drink during your next visit.

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 19, 2013

We have been in the hotel for our first time and it was really disappointed, starting from the booking of a table for lunch, i called to amend my booking, the person who picked up the phone,did not ask me my name to amend the booking to be for dinner. so we chose to book online, when we reached the hotel at 17:30, the doorman greeted us, we entered the lobby area, noone from the reception approached us, we didn't know the location of Al Liwan, we did not find anybody to ask. We went down to the pool bar to have some drinks, we waited 10 min, nobody approached us, then my husband went to speak with the shisha man if there is any waiter to take our order, he said that no waiter available except him, if we can wait, he will come to take our order. Then we went to have a couple of drinks in Al Layali bar, we were served the most disgusting Mojito ever, we couldn't even have a small sip out of it. Then i told to my husband to move to Al Badiya since we already booked there online, we were greeted with the hostess but unfortunately, she couldn't find our booking, there was an option for either buffet or a la carte, we chose a la carte, starters took us 25 min to arrive, although there was nobody at the restaurant, i chose the pasta& my husband the pad thai, one of the most bad pasta i have eaten in my life, even there was no manager around to approach our table and ask us what was the problem.
Conclusion:
bad value for money, the hotel is really very nice, location is very beautifull, but the staff has to be more trained and to care more about the guests.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Rouba82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time and filling in your feedback of your recent stay with us. Your opinion is of great value to us as it helps us to improve our level of services and take corrective actions where needed.

I apologize for the misunderstanding and not being approached by our staff- as expected. Your complain has been communicated with the concerned Department Head to avoid such situations to happened in the future.

Please be informed that a La Carte orders take normally 20-25 minutes to be prepared freshly for our guests. The timing should have been communicated by our staff upon receiving the order. I'm sorry that you didn't enjoy your pasta and drinks. I assure you that our guests are always happy with our selection of food and beverages.

However I can't remove the previous experience, but I request friendly to allow another chance. Please drop us an email referring to my feedback for further compensation. Kindly send your details to info.tilal@danathotels.com or call 028946111

Looking forward for welcoming you soon in Tilal Liwa Hotel

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Copenhagen, Denmark
Level Contributor
77 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 13, 2013

The biggest problem with this hotel is its location. Its surroundings are completely unattractive. There are beautiful rolling dunes some 50 kilometers further away towards Liwa, but this hotel sits on flat nondescript land close to the highway and a power station. The scenery is utterly unremarkable.

The hotel's architecture is a mess. None of the rooms that face the desert have balconies. The parking lot and staff barracks have been situated in full view of many of the rooms. The hotel doesn't provide direct access to the desert at all - one has take a detour through some game room & bar - to get onto the sand. And the restaurant has no view of the desert - but instead only of the pool through a few windows. Mostly it looks out onto the empty lobby. These total failures are only surprising to people who have not stayed at other Danat hotels - such as their beach hotel without beach access, or their Liwa hotel in a horseshoe shape that reflects every noise is continuously off its walls.

The rooms in this hotel were decent. They were rather small but clean. Problematic are the connecting doors with gaps beneath them. We heard our 'neighbors' throughout the night.

The staff in the hotel were friendly and efficient.

There is only one restaurant - and no options within dozens of kilometers - but the food was good and reasonably priced. The wine is another story though: 800 AED for a bottle of Chablis is enough to ruin someone's dinner. The cheapest option on the menu was a bottom of the barrel Blue Nun wine for 250 AED! This is a $3.95 bottle of wine selling for $70 !

A hotel to avoid.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank elber2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for submitting your review and taken the time to fill in your feedback of your last stay with us.

Your opinion is of great value to us. We are always very interested to see our guest's feedback and ideas in order to use them to improve our service levels and even try to exceed our guest's expectations.

I'm sorry to read that you didn't like our location and interior design, in contrast with all other guest's reviews. The hotel is located in the heart of Al Rubaa Al Khali desert and is surrounded by the beauty of Liwa dunes. There are several camel farms nearby, dates farms and camel race track adding more to the hotel atmosphere. The hotel itself is built and designed to suit and match the concept of a desert gateway escape with lots of details from the Arabian hospitality which gets lots of positive feedback from our guests.

Kindly be informed that the rooms overlooking the dunes are not equipped by balconies and windows as per the country rules and based on health and safety reasons as those will not be monitored and not allowed to open windows or doors in un-monitored and open area's as per the Civil defense instructions.

Tilal Liwa is located in the heart of the desert and there are several access points to the desert. The access through the Al Liwan Bar has been made for our guest's convenience and to keep control on who is entering the hotel from the back side.

We're very delighted to read that you've enjoyed the rooms and the food. Kindly be informed that the beverage prices are monitored by the Tourism Authorities and are within the limit set for the 4 stars categories. In fact our prices are most reasonable comparing to other desert hotels in the UAE.

Looking forward for welcoming you soon in Tilal Liwa Hotel

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
69 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 10, 2013 via mobile

Positive: only 3.5 hours from Dubai. Lovely hotel. Very calm and quiet. Excellent rooms. Free wifi. Great breakfast.
Negatives. Pool was cold. No inflatables to buy in the shop. Kids club only open on weekends.
Overall: great break. Would come back with different guests

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chapter41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time to fill in your feedback about your last visit to Tilal Liwa Hotel.

It was our honor having you as our valued guest. We're very delighted to read that you've enjoyed the stay, the hotel and facilities, the atmosphere, the facilities and food provided in our hotel. We save no efforts in presenting the hotel at its best shape. Your opinion is of great value to us as we are always looking to improve our services and stands.

We're most welcome to visit us anytime with your family and friends. Looking forward for welcoming you in person soon in Tilal Liwa Hotel.

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
19 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2013 via mobile

I bought a Groupon coupon for this hotel, advertised for Valentine's day, but when I tried to book, they told me if fully booked?!? Why do you offer things that you can't honour? I am still trying to get options but, no answer from the hotel. Even writing to hotel group management doesn't help; again no answer. So, be aware if you want to do future booking with this hotel.

Stayed February 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank Busy_Dubai_traveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilalliwahotel, General Manager at Tilal Liwa Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear valued guest,

Thank you very much for giving your feedback via tripadvisor.
Kindly be informed that we run very attractive offers on several websites to give our guests the chance to enjoy the hospitality of Arabia and the luxury desert gateway escape of Tilal Liwa Hotel.

As stated on those last minutes deals, they are subject to availability. We have allocated certain number of rooms for those offers(kindly check the terms and conditions mentioned on your voucher).

Kindly be informed that our "All U need is love @ Tilal Liwa Hotel" was not only limited to the Valentine day and is valid till end of April.

Please accept my appology for being fully booked the last couple of weekends and feel free to contact me anytime to assist you in utilizing the voucher. Please mail to info.tilal@danathotels.com or call 028946111

Kind Regards,
Ayman Ashor
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tilal Liwa Hotel

Property: Tilal Liwa Hotel
Address: Million Street | Western Region, Madinat Zayed 112723, United Arab Emirates
Phone Number:
Location: United Arab Emirates > Emirate of Abu Dhabi > Madinat Zayed
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Madinat Zayed
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Tilal Liwa Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 111
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tilal Liwa Hotel is a 4 star hotel. A stunningly secluded Desert Hideaway perched at the edge of the majestic Rub Al Khali desert, with breathtaking views of some of the highest dunes in the world. Immerse yourself in an authentically Arabian “Oasis of Hospitality,” where tantalizing restaurants, an infinity outdoor pool, and a full range of luxury amenities offer lush accompaniment to the surrounding desert beauty. Whether you are embarking on an exhilarating Desert Safari, discovering the raditional sights of Al Gharbiya – Camel farm, dates plantation, Heritage Fortress, or simply escaping to solitude for a few days,our captivating four-star UAE hotel resort guarantees an unforgettable Arabian hospitality experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tilal Liwa Hotel Madinat Zayed, Emirate Of Abu Dhabi

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