We have just got back from 10 days at The Mariblu. We wanted a quiet break after the big family holiday rush and somewhere warm (essential). We chose the mid two weeks of September, probably the ideal time.
If you are looking for Holiday Inn type accomodation which is faceless but functional, then you will have come to the wrong place. Instead, what you get is a family-run B&B with loads of character and friendly hosts in the form of Maria and Frankie.
It is also a restaurant, so as well as Bed and Breakfast, you have the option to eat in and a very pleasant experience it is too, and reasonably priced. The food is excellent and prepared from fresh ingredients by Maria and her staff. They have a proper Pizza oven and they make really good ones, none of your doughy examples you get in most chains. You can tailor your own or go for one on the menu. (Hot Tip: ask for their home-made Chile Oil - lovely stoff if you like it hot). The Seafood Salad was really good and served as a good starter, shared by myself and my wife. Breakfast really sets you up for the day with a selection of cereals, fruit, yoghurts, toast and a choce of eggs, including fried, boiled or the Omelettes, for which they are renowned. You can have cheese, ham, cheese and ham or cheese and ham without the cheese and ham (plain)! The restaurant itself has loads of character, being decorated with lots of Maritime and Diving memorabilia. Frankie used to run a Diving School and it is still there, behind the hotel.
We had a large room at the back of the Annexe to the main building (3 doors down the Road). This building is also full of character, having a lovely marble staircase leading to the first floor. There is a good-sized balcony with a view of the famous Rotunda Church and en-suite facilities. I have read some reviews that say that the rooms at the front can be a bit noisy because of the busy road and that the church bells can be a bit obtrusive at the rear. We certainly didn't find them obtrusive - it is quite a pleasant sound and not too close. Mind you, perhaps they could turn down the volume on the 5am call to prayer! Air conditioning is provided at extra charge (8 euros per night) but we didn't need it as a large fan was in the room which was perfectly adequate. There is free wi-fi (essential for me as I am a Freelance) and it never let me down, even 3 doors down. Hence, we were able to listen to Radio 4 on my Netbook, which was nice.
The Arriva bus service on the island is very good, if very crowded at times! There is a bus-stop by the hotel and it only takes about 10 minutes to get into the main town, Victoria. You can buy an 'all-day' ticket for 2.6 Euros which will take you anywhere on the Island or about 6 Euros for a week. Very good value. There is a small supermaket in the village square, along with a couple of bars, where you can also eat and drink coffee.
The island doesn't appear to have many sandy beaches in the tradional style, but we enjoyed going to Marsalforn on the bus a few times, where the swimming is good, you can rent a sunbed with mattress (4 Euros) and there are plenty of places to eat. Go to Mellos Bar & Grill for a decent cup of coffee (too many places serve week Nescafe) and good Tapas.
Gozo is not the pace for you if you like a lot of lively night-life. I didn't see any clubs. I imagine the mainland (Malta) would be the place for this. But if you want to eat out in the evening elsewhere, the buses run quite late and the cabs are not prohibitive.
We weren't there at the hottest time of year, but an average 25-30 degrees was just right for us. We would definitely go back to the Mariblu. Perhaps next time, we could save some money by booking our own flights and dealing direct with them. It's about a 30 minute taxi ride from Malta Airport to the Ferry and about another 10 minute ride from the Ferry to the Mariblu. Frankie can arrange all this for you, if you wish.
All in all, satisfied customers. Thankyou Maria and Frankie.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Mariblu is family run and provides accommodation in superior double rooms, twin rooms, triple rooms,studios and family suites. All rooms have ensuite shower, TV, A/C, Wifi, Fridge, hair dryers etc. At the Mariblu you will feel at home and will be considered as a new member of the ever growing family where you arrive as a customer and leave as a friend. The Mariblu is your home away from home. You will surely love Maria's local traditional cooking as well as our hospitality for which many keep coming back. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Mariblu Hotel Island Of Gozo/Xewkija, Malta