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“An imposing building in a stunning setting”

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Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel
Ranked #5 of 60 Hotels in Muscat
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 27, 2013

We spent the last 4 days of our Oman trip in the Al Bustan. Initially the hotel and its sheer size almost seemed a bit overwhelming and impersonal - but it really grew on us during our stay,

The service on check in was very good by an efficient German receptionist preceeded by a warm Omani welcome at the door.
The rooms are well sized albeit it quite traditional in style and bordering on "old world" with floral wallpaper, matching fabrics and cherry wood interiors.
We chose a lagoon view room - located on the ground floor level but with a private access to the adjacent large pool. Very enjoyable to slip out of your room into a pool right next to your veranda.

The lunch & dinner buffet must be mentioned - the sheer choice of dishes and impeccable presentation were world class.

The beach is lovey - a nice long stretch of sand in a dramatic setting close to the mountains. Great beach service too.
The pool is equally nice - largely populated by middle aged couples from around the world. Clearly a popular choice for (package?) beach holidays for many.

What we enjoyed most was the location close to Muttrah and the coastal scenery and magnificence of this scenic part of Musact. Having stayed a the Chedi at the beginning of our trip, we might have missed the beauty of this area if we hadn't stayed at the Al Bustan.

If you are after a boutique style holiday with a sense of intimacy it is definitely not the place to stay. If you are keen have the comforts of home with a hint of predictability and very good service - then the hotel is for you. We loved the fact that we mixed it all and stayed elsewhere too.

Room Tip: Lagoon view rooms are great if you don't mind not having a view from above. The lagoon pool make...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Weddingexpert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,276 - 1,282 of 2,152 reviews

Reviewed May 25, 2013

We stayed here around 18 months ago, shortly after Ritz Carlton took over management of the property, and things then were disappointing. On this return visit in May 2013 we experienced noticeable improvements and the Hotel felt much more settled.

The rooms are very comfortable if a little dated and it's great that complimentary Nespresso coffee has been added to the in-room offering.

We love the beach, pool and gardens at the Al Bustan where sunbeds are sensibly spaced to allow some privacy and where it's easy to while away the day in peace.

Check-in and check-out were very smooth and staff were mostly friendly and efficient, although service in the restaurants is still inconsistent. We enjoyed a nice meal in the Chinese restaurant, and taking drinks and snacks in the vast lobby was also a pleasure.

Breakfast in the main restaurant has great food choices but the service there was weak and the experience too 'canteen like' for our liking.

Although expensive, the Hotel feels very comfortable and if service levels could be lifted just a little further this resort could be truly excellent.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank tint7003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 24, 2013

We have recently spent a week at the Al Bustan. The foyer of the hotel takes your breath away with its sheer size, fabulous chandeliers and gorgeous furnishings and flowers. Our room was very nice with a sea view and balcony looking over one of the pools. It had all the right touches, iron, hair dryer, good toiletries and unlimited bottled water, which you need as it is so hot. The breakfast was excellent with lots of choice. We ate in the hotel buffet estaurant once and it was good, but not outstanding. The beach, pool, gardens and other facilities are quite beautiful. The parasols and poolside loungers were wonderful with water and towels provided. The quality that makes this hotel stand out is the service and the staff. Nothing is too much trouble, everyone is so welcoming, polite and eager to please. Unfortunately, it is very expensive and would come as a shock even to those who are used to Paris or London prices; 4 milk shakes - £32, 4 drinks at the bar - £50. We elected to go on a tour to Nizwa and felt sadly ripped off. It was £200 for the day and we were given an inedible lunch in a roadside shack. Not the Al Bustan's fault but disappointing all the same. A warning - avoid the ATM machine in the shopping arcade. It took money from our bank accounts after rejecting our Visa cards. But is is a fabulous hotel and I would love to go back.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank SusannahT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 23, 2013

Very special hotel including the building. Level of service was outstanding, staff very friendly and helpful. Great hotel for to relax and recharge!!! Dinner on the beach very special! Breakfast was also well worth it.

Room Tip: "High floor, sea view room"
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank dieleeuw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2013

I am not normally given to writing effusive reviews. I am a cheap date and am happiest with a simple bed and breakfast. I have stayed in 5 star hotels all over the world and they leave me cold to be honest. But the Al Bustan Palace does not deserve such derision. It is lovely. Ignore the architecture - built in the 1980's it looks like it would be a base for an Star Wars overlord, but once you are past this, the rest is ... well... lovely. It has the nicest infinity pool I have ever seen, and really well manicured gardens. The sea is warm and gentle and the beach has gorgeous views. The staff are the best though - attentive without being overbearing or obsequious. Downsides - I have already mentioned the architecture, I can add to that the bathrooms ( well our bathroom - fussy and over tiled with a migraine inducing pattern.) Also the internal corridors are like a labyrinth . Of course they cannot do anything about the building (cue Star Wars music) or indeed the corridors and I suspect the bathrooms are not Ritz Carlton initiated - but I hope they are in the schedule for an upgrade. The other downside is that it is not cheap -the on the beach restaurant was eye wateringly expensive. But I suppose this comes with the territory.

We went in May when it was quiet. I suspect in high season it can become quite busy.Would I go again - I very rarely say this - but yes yes and yes

Room Tip: Get a sea view room - try to get one as high as possible -or get one at pool level - you won't g...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Catherine M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2013

When staying at a 5 star property and a Ritz Carlton at that, the minimum requirement one would have thought would have been a clean bed for the night.
On pulling back my duvet, it was very evident that the sheets had not been changed from the previous occupants and judging by the copious amounts of staining on the sheets, they would not need to make love for at least a month!
But the lack of communication between departments to resolve the problem was even worse.
Would I ever place business at Al Bustan Palace - ABSOLUTELY NOT

Room Tip: Ask for housekeeping manager to go check your room thoroughly before you are roomed.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled on business
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4  Thank Acorn2oak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2013

This hotel is... quite simply... the best I have ever set foot in !!

Came here for a wedding on the beach....absolutely the best food ...atmosphere...service etc.

If you can afford this hotel...go there in the winterr... we sat with Louis from One Direction one day... Paul weller the next !!

Sun bedsd prepared for you...free cool boxes.. water.... soft drinks (mini bar}... free watersports etc etc.

Just truly superb in every way!

Room Tip: Upper floors are recently renovated but all are superb....
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Chrisbad60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel

Address: PO Box 1998, Muscat 114, Oman (Formerly Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel)
Phone Number:
Location: Oman > Muscat Governorate > Muscat
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection 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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Muscat
#1 Business Hotel in Muscat
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Muscat
#2 Romantic Hotel in Muscat
#5 Luxury Hotel in Muscat
Price Range: $354 - $809 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 250
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set against a dramatic backdrop of rugged mountains, Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel, lies solitary amid an emerald green oasis with 200 acres of lush beachfront landscaping. We are a top choice among hotels in Muscat, Oman, offering accommodations and public spaces that overlook the glittering azure waters of the Gulf of Oman. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Hotel Muttrah

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