I have reviewed the Fortina Spa Resort two years ago (we keep going back), but in truth this was the four star I reviewed. This year, for the second time, we stayed at the Five Star over the new year period. It costs about double the price of the cheap week in January in the neighbour hotel, but the older Fortina four star does not seem to do all inclusive any more, and for us this was the big deal. So the deal we booked was five star all inclusive which includes access to all available restaurants for full board, a-la-carte (but limited by the number of courses and a couple of exotic things like lobster), all drinks (including limited access to the minibar in room, and access to the spa.
Whilst not wishing to criticise the operation and institution, because it still represents a good place to stay at a fair price, since our last visit, a year ago, things have slipped, and this is part of a gradual process we have seen over the years. Like another contributor, whilst we had been 'upgraded' at the point of booking to a sea view room, we were told on arrival that we had been upgraded ever further to a 'wellness room' with its own Jacuzzi which we would be shown how to use. When we opened the door, this turned out not be true, and the added bonus was a powerplate machine which we never had any interest in. I immediately went to find out from the reception, and was informed that it must have been some other room that had the Jacuzzi, but it it was not in our room, then that was the end of the matter. Throughout the stay, whilst never unpleasant, we found that the staff on the reception were ill informed about the hotel and its surroundings, and preferred to give a wrong answer rather than say they did not know. They also seem to spend a lot of time on the telephone, and it is difficult to carry out any interaction with them in a business like fashion. Restaurants in the evening have to been booked, and the software system that they use is antiquated and slow, and does nothing to inspire confidence
The room we had was otherwise excellent, large, a superb over-the-waterfront view with a big bed (with health bestowing magnets in the covers), and fine bathroom. There are plenty of electrical sockets in the room with UK style fittings, and we also found there was free wifi in the room even it was a little sluggish.
There is one bar that serves a variety of drink but bar food is not part of the package. I would have thought for a five star hotel, there should be more than one bar. There is an outdoor bar, but that does not operate in the winter. Bar staff were friendly and fairly efficient.
The big deal is the restaurants, because they have some of the best places on the Island. Their taste restaurant would do well in any big city. One can choose from Taste (Vietnamese? and Continental), Can Thai (Chinese and Thai), Hibiki (japanese), an Italian, an Indian, and a new Italian called MoMo's. This used to be one of the best, but has lost its edge with a limited unchanging menu. I have also previously mentioned the Pizza restaurant which I do not like.
The restaurants now seem keen to take internal and external paying customers, and certainly in the Indian (which probably has the shortest menu of any Indian restaurant I have been to ever), once they knew we were pre-payed all-inclusive, we definitely got the feeling that we were being treated as second rate customers with less choice and so on. In the year since we have been the Indian restaurant has stopped serving poppadoms, pickle and dhal as part of the meal, and these are now all extra. We might have been entitled to them but no help was given. We were also given a non-negotiable late slot and 2100, and when we arrived the place was pretty empty. Some friends of ours who had eat there also, earlier in the evening as paying customers told us that the place was also empty for most of their meal. If you are a paying guest in the restaurants they are pretty expensive, and a main course costs between 15-20 Euros, so that could mount up over a week. Breakfast is a self service buffet, but I know for a fact that it is identical to that served in the four star, the only difference being that beverages are served. The quality of breakfast food is fair. The cooks on the omelette bar are clearly in training, and one had to break off from carrot peeling duties to overcook my omelette.
There are several mainstream five star hotels on the Island such as Intercontinental, Corinthian, Meridien, and by my experience of five star hotels, this is a four rather than a five.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated in central Sliema, adjoining Malta’s trendiest shopping complex (The Point) offering the largest choice of fashion & designer outlets, the Fortina Spa Resort is Malta’s newest 17 storey 5 star hotel. The resort faces south with magnificent views of Valletta’s bastion walls across the water and is home to the World’s 1st Therapeutic Spa bedrooms. It is the ideal hotel to indulge in a numerous variety of Spa treatments, excellent cuisines from around the world and one of the best locations on the island. Restaurants :- Taste Restaurant (Vietnamese & Mediterranean Cuisine)CanThai (Chinese & Thai Cuisine)Momo’s Ristorante Tigne (Italian & Mediterranean Cuisine)Il Giardino PizzeriaSaReGaMa (Authentic Indian Cuisine)Moroboshi (Japanese Cuisine)Bars Limes Bar (indoor)Island Bar (outdoors – weather permitting)Swimming Pools :-Outdoor Garden Pool and separate Splash Pool2 Indoor Swimming PoolsSpa Centres(see descriptions below)Thalasso Spa MediterraneeSpa Sante Belle Epoque Beauty CentreHypogeum Body, Mind & Spirit CentreOther facilities Conference facilities Fully Equipped Fitness Centre 24 hour room serviceAdded Value For All Our Guests :-Cruise of Malta’s Historical Grand HarbourUnlimited access to Fortina Fitness Centre ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Fortina Hotel Sliema
- Fortina Hotel Malta
- Fortina Resort
- Hotel Fortina
- Fortina Spa Resort Malta/Sliema