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Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort
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Reviewed April 13, 2013

Just returned from a night at the Sheraton Hotel, Abu Dhabi. First impression when we checked in was just how dated it was. The entrance lobby literally looked as if it had none of its furniture or fittings altered or changed since the mid 1980's. We had booked two interconnecting Club Rooms and I have to say, they were one of the smallest rooms and I have ever stayed in and I mean on international standards, not just UAE standards. They could in no shape or form be classed as Club Rooms. The rooms were dark and furniture miserable, dated and depressing (except the beds which were lovely and comfy) with a tiny sliding patio window which was so old, it was virtually impossible to slide it open as so heavy and rickety - the 'balcony' was barely large enough to stand on and you certainly could not put a chair out there. The two 'comfy' chairs in the room were well worn and there was a tiny Arabic Style coffee table in between the two chairs that must have been in my estimation at least 15 years old. There was a television attached to the wall and very crudely erected, cheap glass shelf (like a bathroom shelf) which had been placed underneath the TV on the wall to hold a dvd player. The glass shelf was wobbly and its corner was directly at head height of where one would sit on the comfy chair - very dangerous - I dread to think the consequences of somebody actually sitting in the chair and leaning back/standing up. Bathroom very dated in dark cream and chocolate marble with a shower that it was impossible to run the correct temperature. Toilet paper was the cheapest 1 ply paper type imaginable (for goodness sake this is a five star hotel) - no water sprays in bathroom just bidet and our bathroom had its sink built outside the actual bathroom, not inside the main bathroom. Other than beds, everything was mismatched and almost an afterthought - weird cheap looking shades suspended from either side of the bed and an ornate glass bowl with 3 decorative balls perched on the shelf above the coffee making area. It felt more like I would imagine a 3 Star hotel to be.

Executive Lounge dark, scruffy, miserable, dated and tiny - functional but certainly not atmospheric or inviting in any sense. Set up of food display so dated. Snacks were fine but no change of type in two days day and night time. The coffee was decent - I also have to say the gentleman working there was incredibly obliging, polite and worked really hard (only person on duty on our 3 separate visits there) however, his English was limited and there were some communication problems. He worked very hard and I felt that he should have had some assistance. Lounge closed at 8pm - very odd for an Executive Lounge.

Sat on the grass area near the pool yesterday, pleasant enough but nothing special and certainly not 5 star. Again everything just so dated and tired looking and as we were there on a Friday, noticed a huge amount of nannies/housemaids running around looking after children. Was disappointed that the only place we were able to eat for lunch was at the Lebanese restaurant (which was fine but overpriced for lunchtime food and a bit too formal and no children's menu available) unless you wanted to select from a very limited pool bar menu and eat at your sun lounger. Surprised to see that the Beachcombers restaurant did not open until 4pm - strange for a beach restaurant and family resort. Also very disappointed that we wanted to sit outside at the Bar B and enjoy a drink with the children at 6pm and watch sunset but were told that under 21's were not allowed to sit there even though it was casual outside seating area close to the beach/outside grass area and basically asked to leave (in a polite manner). This is supposed to be a family resort so felt a little annoyed that the children could not be included - I appreciate that after maybe 8pm an adult only policy but 6pm at a weekend in a beach resort? A little ridiculous and left us with no option but to come back inside so early on in the evening. Arrived back in the room to see a handwritten note from the Assistant Manger but a generic typed note from the General Manager (hand signed) welcoming us - surely no need for two notes and does this not reflect badly on the GM when the Assistant Manager can be bothered to hand write a note to guests and he cannot? Also a little strange as a plate of 3 pieces of fruit and 2 chocolates, small Arabic pastries had been laid out in one room but not the other - not enough to go around for 4 people - was this an error? Although the hotel is old, I expect the smaller things of a 5 star hotel to be executed correctly, these are the finishing touches that make all the difference. Could not get internet working in the room even though free wifi was part of the Club Rooms feature. Children had been looking forward to downloading a film on their ipads in the evening but could not get connection even after getting somebody from Guest Relations came to the room and they were still unable to assist.

Breakfast I have to say was lovely, a fabulous buffet with fresh juices, really good coffee and wide selection of food but all furnishings in main restaurant so very dated, literally felt like I was stepping back more than 20 years. Was amazed that there was still a smoking area in the restaurant too and we were not informed about this when we entered the restaurant and were seated very close to the area for breakfast although we had two children with us. Everything just felt very dated. Staff lovely though and incredibly accommodating.

Sat on the small strip of beach today. Nice touch the waiters coming around with cold towels and fresh melon, grapes and pineapple on sticks. The resort does have completely obstructed views now which is a shame construction is going on directly in view from wherever you sit. To be honest, the noise was not a problem and I had been warned about the construction obstructed views when I booked - I just felt it was such a shame that what was once a fabulous view has now gone. The children thoroughly enjoyed diving off the platform and taking the little canoes and were very happy with their time there. Locker rooms/pool toilets so old and dated.

Would I go back? Probably would for just a night and a quick getaway if the price was reasonable but it really cannot on so many levels be classed as a 5 star hotel it is seriously dated and not in a good way - I would be surprised if the hotel is still standing in the next couple of years. It feels somehow like it has been 'given-up' on and whilst I know from experience, years ago it certainly did have plently of atmosphere, now that atmosphere has gone and I don't think that has anything to do with age - the Hilton down the road is also old but oozes more atmosphere. I think if we got a very good price, I would be very happy to bring the children back for the night, have a great breakfast, friendly service and opportunity to sit and relax for a couple of hours by the pool - but would say to others thinking of staying here, do not expect anything more or you will be very disappointed

Room Tip: Staff very friendly and accommodating but please do not expect a five star experience - very dated and tired hotel but nice for a night away.
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Ladyonhertravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Cramer, General Manager at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 16, 2013

Dear Customer,

Thank you for taking the time to post a review of our hotel on tripadvisor.

Please note that we take such firsthand feedback very seriously and use the comments to improve on our service offering whenever relevant.

I was of course quite disappointed that you did not find the hotel facilities to your liking and while I agree that we are not the most recently open hotel in town, we nonetheless constantly maintain and upgrade our facilities and as you may see from most reviews our customer tend to enjoy them. It of course then comes to a matter of taste and appreciation and I very much respect your opinion in that matter.

I was on the other hand pleased to see that you found most of our associates to be well trained, accommodating and welcoming. I believe that at the end this is what makes the overall experience enjoyable and push customers to return. You may rest assured that I will share your feedback with my entire team.

I do hope that we will have the pleasure to receive you again in the future and remain at your disposal to handle all arrangements personally.

Once again, thank you for the time you took to share your comments with us.

Warm regards

Yves

Yves Tarabout
Deputy General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

My wife recently wrote a review stating we were returning to Abu dhabi to stay at the Sheraton corniche for a third time with our two children. Well we have just returned and cannot emphasise or begin to explain how amazing this hotel really is! Having travelled to many places in the world we have never experienced customer service like this and that's what makes it 5 star!

Yes, as discussed, the rooms are smaller and there is construction work around the hotel but none of these things should be an issue as nothing can be done to change these. However, in our experience if there is anything the staff can do within their means then they will! The thing we love best is that everyone is treated that extra bit special while the staff also manage to individualise needs based on each traveller or family. These small extra special bits add to the luxury of your stay.

WE LOVED
~the pool and lagoon area - very safe and relaxing, handy for hotel room.
~The extra touches: offering cold towels at the pool each day to cool you down. Offering fresh fruit to the sunbathers. Coming around your room in the evening to see if you needed anything such as bottles of water.
~ the treatment of our children. Nothing was a bother to staff who appeared genuinely interested in the children while also allowing them to have great fun at the pool, beach, lobby.
~ club level included fantastic breakfast and use of club lounge all day
~restaurants including the Friday brunch which is a bit more expensive but worth it!

Last but not least is the amazing staff. They honestly make this hotel the fantastic experience that it is! The are courteous kind helpful and interested. Very special thanks to Diana Martinet who Made our stay so very extra special and to olly at the club lounge who is the nicest man we have ever met.

We never return to the same hotel twice but when in Abu Dhabi we would only ever stay at the Sheraton corniche as I'm sure we'd only be disappointed elsewhere!

Thanks again and we look forward to returning soon

Room Tip: Opt for club lounge it's well worth it!
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank jpharkins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Cramer, General Manager at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 16, 2013

Dear Customer,

Thank you for sharing your recent experience with us on tripadvisor.

I was very pleased to see that you thoroughly enjoyed your stay and that we managed to make you and your family feel welcomed and looked after.

I cannot agree more with your comments when it comes to the importance of the associates dedication to serving our customers. It is as per me what makes any hotel experience a little extra special.

I am happy of the prospect to be able to receive you again in the future and remain at your disposal to handle all arrangements personally to ensure of your comfort.

Once again, thank you for your kind comments which I have shared with our team.

Warm regards

Yves

Yves Tarabout
Deputy General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

Once again I found myself at the Sheraton in Abu Dhabi. I have stayed here quite a lot and although it has its bad points I find that overall it is a good place to stay.

Good Bits:

Choice at breakfast
Pool and beach area are super
Staff are very friendly in the main
Good selection of places to eat
Rooms are well appointed with great bathrooms

Bad Bits:

Smoking in restaurants and bars
Not enough staff at breakfast so had to wait for tea or orange juice
Noisy rooms, both from other guests and construction

Having booked my visit via the SPG site I was given a nice welcome pack in the room which was very welcome. Rooms are small but have everything you need. I was kept awake though firstly by the B-Lounge music, by doors banging on the floor I was on (after 1am!) and the sound of jackhammers and trucks reversing from the construction across the lagoon. The construction noise is outside the control of the hotel but I found it disturbed my sleep every night.

Staff are the real asset of this hotel, everyone is friendly and helpful. Particular mention should go to the staff in the Club Lounge who were excellent.

So overall enjoyed my stay. Will probably stay again. Club privilege is AED 300 a day for two people and is reasonable value for money but only because everything is so expensive. Breakfast is AED 110 per person, internet is AED 75 per 24 hours and drinks are AED 30 for a beer so adding all that up the free snacks and drinks at night just about makes the upgrade worthwhile.

Room Tip: Not worth paying extra for a sea view room. Noisy and no view!
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank fossildog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Cramer, General Manager at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 11, 2013

Dear Fossildog,

Many thanks for sharing your comments with us on tripadvisor.

I have read them carefully and feel very pleased to you enjoyed your stay with us and are planning a future visit.

It is always a pleasure to hear that our team of associates delivered on our promise of service quality and made our customers feel welcomed and looked after. You may rest assured that your comments will be shared with us.

I am sorry that you felt disturbed by the noise around the hotel and while it is not in our control and can be disturbing sporadically, we normally do not have too many issues with it.

Please do not hesitate to contact when you’re travelling plans are finalized as I would be more than happy to assist you with the arrangements and personally ensure of your comfort.

Thank you and warm regards

Yves

Yves Tarabout
Deputy General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

This particular sheraton is an older, low level building within easy reach of most of the attractions. The hotel is known as the Sheraton, Corniche, but to get to the "promenade" is a 10 minute walk across some waste ground, car park and an underpass.

The hotel rooms are on the small size for a middle eastern city. The club rooms being about 25 square metres and comprising a 7 feet wide bed, two easy chairs, a desk and chair. The bathroom is nicely appointed if a funny shape ( long and narrow).

The club rooms give access to the small club lounge which serves a limited range of food from 10 am to 8 pm along with unlimited premium drinks from 6 pm to 8 pm. Considering the price of alcoholic drinks this is a valuable bonus. The lounge is lookers after by excellent and attentive staff.

There are a number of restaurants in the hotel. We tried the tapas ( excellent food and staff. Reasonably priced wine and sangria). The Italian (excellent food with more expensive wines. Service not as good but still worth a visit). The reception cafe ( good basic snacks and hit sandwiches - no alcohol). Cloud nine bar ( Good food but very expensive. Not worth it)

There a couple of other restaurants but we didn't try these.

Nice pool and artificial beach areas with comfortable beds. Pleasantly shaded grassed areas if you don't like too much sun.

The good points about the hotel...

The staff. They can only be described as excellent.
The pool and grassed areas.
The gym, very modern and large.
The hotel is a member if the Starwood group. Worth joining because members get 20% off restaurant bills.

The not so good...

Currently building two very tall building next door and there is a lot of noise during the day. Having said that the noise isn't uncomfortable and it certainly didn't other us. Don't let that put you off.

The whole of Abu Dhabi is very pedestrian unfriendly and the malls are mostly expensive designer shops. Don't try and walk anywhere other than along the corniche because the taxis are cheap. (Airport to sheraton is either 70 dhr fixed price or similar, give or take, in the metered taxis. Sheraton to grand Mosque is 35 dhr and sheraton to gold souk - don't expect a bargain- is 11 dhr)

Overall we can recommend the hotel for a week of winter sunshine.

One worthwhile tip. The sheraton offers to beat any other quote. Check other sites such as booking.com or Expedia first.

Room Tip: The club rooms are worth the extra
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Lanmar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Cramer, Manager at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 11, 2013

Dear Lanmar,

Thank you for posting a review of your recent experience with us on tripadvisor.

I was very impressed with the detailed information that you are providing the potential readers with and I certainly appreciate the time you have taken to share your observations.

I am happy that you enjoyed your overall stay with us and managed to use most of the available facilities and restaurant and bars.

Being very familiar with the hotel myself, the comment that rejoiced me the most is the one stating that you found our team of associates “Excellent”. At the end of the day, offering a warm, attentive and professional service to our customers and is what it is all about. In a city like Abu Dhabi where the choice of quality accommodation is vast to say the list, what ends up making a difference for the travelers and is the care people put in ensuring their comfort.

I am looking forward to your future visit and remain at your disposal to handle all arrangements personally and ensure of your comfort.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us and thank you for your loyalty to Starwood Hotels & Resorts.

Warm regards

Yves

Yves Tarabout
Deputy General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 5, 2013

We upgraded to club level for about £30 per person per night. So worth it. Upgraded room breakfast, club lounge with sandwiches coffee then drinks and snacks in the evening wifi 24 hours. I thought all the restaurants were good. Much better place than Dubai. So much more relaxed, people are friendlier.

Room Tip: I think all the rooms are good but up grading to the club section was slightly better.
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Thank suebray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin_Cramer, General Manager at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 8, 2013

Dear Suebray,

Thank you for posting a review of your recent experience with us on tripadvisor.

I was very pleased to see that you have a not only enjoyed the hotel itself but also Abu Dhabi as a destination as indeed, it has a lot to offer.

I do agree that upgrading your room to our Club Level offers great value and more and more of our customer are looking at this option. It not only offers you an upgraded rooms and services but it gives you access to a very high amount of special services such as the ones you have mentioned in your post.

I hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you again in the future.

Thank you for your time and warm regards

Yves

Yves Tarabout
Deputy 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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