We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lovely hotel... but service was a comedy of errors”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 9 more sites!
Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi
Ranked #15 of 128 Hotels in Abu Dhabi
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 4, 2010

A lux hotel in the Arabesque tradition, the Shangri La is big, low-rise and very comfortable. If you're after a funky, modern design, try the fabulous Fairmont (virtually) next door, or (if the location works for you) the uber-futuristic Yas hotel, instead. We'd probably have returned to the Fairmont (if only for the amazing pool menu!) had the gym and spa opened on time but it was good to try something different.

KUDOS...

Smooth check-in and a lovely big quiet room with a firm king-size bed, luxurious bathroom with separate walk-in shower and OK products by L'Occitane, distinct work and dressing zones etc. The room was so huge that the 30" TV was too far away from the bed; they need bigger tellies.

Abu Dhabi city is set upon a series of islands. So the Shangri La's small but adequate beach doesn't have a horizon sea view but (like the Fairmont) looks across a broad stretch of water to the beautiful Grand Mosque (which non-Muslims can visit on Sundays I think but check with the concierge).

For cultural reasons, the hotel has both a male gym and a ladies' gym. I peeked into the men's before heading into the ladies'. These are virtually identical with the latest Technogym equipment (multi-channel TV - and fans - on the screens on the treadmills, cross-trainer, bikes and wave machine). As in all lux hotels, headsets, bottled water and towels are provided. I spent a bizarre hour on the treadmill, watching a TV show about hiking and skiing Mont Blanc.

The gym is a short walk (or longer buggy ride) along a picturesque canal from reception and sits above the spa, with a yoga room above it on the top floor. There's also a blissfully quiet lap pool overlooking the Grand Mosque, a brilliant place to sunbathe or read in contemplative peace and quiet, with no children in sight. When there are no sun loungers free by the pool, this is worth knowing about.

SNAGS...
The service we received was pretty shambolic. The staff messed up every request or order. We arrived quite late and ordered room service from a silly Rolodex-style menu that looks cheap and is fiddly to use. We ordered a lentil soup, a butter chicken, an apple pie (for him) and some Vietnamese rice paper rolls and a shrimp and green papaya salad from the Hoi An restaurant (for her), plus 2 glasses of white Bordeaux. Room Service correctly repeated the order to me and then delivered only the first 3 items and two glasses of red Bordeaux instead of white. This was just intensely irritating as we couldn't dine together. The correct wine and the remainder of the order appeared 25 minutes later.

My man was the only person at breakfast at 6.45am the next day and experienced the international buffet at its most spectacular. He ordered tea with cold milk. It arrived with no milk. When prompted for cold milk they brought hot milk. At which point he gave up and left to race cars around the F1 track at the nearby Yas Marina Circuit. Three hours later, I tucked into fruit and sticky buns but getting a cappuccino involved 25 minutes, 3 requests and a tantrum. During the wait, I popped to the bathroom, having informed the waitress that I hadn't yet finished my breakfast and not to clear the table. Returned 2 minutes later to find they had cleared the table. Then the cappuccino turned up.

Our poolside lunch was even slower: 50 minutes is way too long to wait for 2 chicken shwarma wraps and 2 glasses of wine. The shwarma was nonetheless absolutely delicious (lovely dark crispy chicken bits) and came with tahini and garlic sauces. I asked them not to bring fries with mine; needless to say, they brought fries.

To avoid further disasters we ate elsewhere that evening (at Chamas, the fabulous Brazilian barbecue place in the InterContinental; highly recommended, also the elegant bar!).

Next morning we ordered breakfast via room service. They Duty Manager very kindly comped it (also the pool bar lunch) following our complaints, which was good... because once again they got the order wrong! We'd ordered two poached eggs on toast with a side of hash browns; they brought two plates of poached eggs on bread with sausage, turkey bacon and a grilled tomato on the side, and two fresh green apple juices (this stuff is great) instead of one.

As is so often the case, the lighting controls are totally counter-intuitive. We wandered about for ages before working out how to switch the light on in the loo. The "do not disturb" sign is operated by a tiny switch next to the door, with lettering that's unreadable in dim light, so we didn't even spot it until Day 2. The old skool hairdryer was a bit rubbish as well - I hated having to keep my finger on the button to fire it (take your own if you want decent power output!).

We split the bill upon checkout, putting the spa and hotel shop charges on a separate card. This caused immense confusion, so much so that the receptionist even called us later that day, still confused.

Would we go back? Probably not, thanks to badly trained staff (many with poor English). This is a shame because the hotel and F+B are fabulous and the management tried so hard to keep us happy.

MY TOP TIP!

If you have time, do not miss The Saadiyat Story, a stunning visitor centre that outlines the vision for Saadiyat Island, home to the Cultural District where the new Guggenheim, Louvre and Maritime Museums will be appearing in a few years' time, alongside schools, golf courses, nature reserves and so on. With huge models, interactive exhibits and an amazing super-widescreen film, this is the best tourist attraction in Abu Dhabi outside of Grand Prix week - at least until the amazing-looking Ferrari World opens. Watch out though - it will make you want to buy property on the island!

Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
2  Thank DanielleNay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (2,407)
There are newer reviews for Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

1,914 - 1,920 of 2,407 reviews

Reviewed March 20, 2010

Hotel setting was great, the rooms were lovely and spacious, nice views too! Pleased that the place actually had an Arabian feel to it. As with all Shangri La's the staff were the hotels best asset, all incredibly polite and service orientated. Breakfast was great, an amazing buffet was laid out; you could not of wanted for more. We also had the buffet in the evening which was equally good and we left feeling we had got more than our moneys worth.

Extra praise must go to Shufi who serviced our room - in all my years of travelling I have never had such an attentive member of staff look after me. He went out of his way to make sure the room was immaculate, cleared up after me and made sure we were given plentiful supplies of "proper " English tea!!

The let down was tepid water two nights running in the shower, which despite informing reception was never properly rectified. Major problem with this hotel though is the beat of the music coming from one of the bars in the hotel! It was totally unacceptable, went on until the early hours, and made sleeping hard work. Why the hotel let this go on I dont know, from other reviews this is not a isolated complaint, and I am not a person that needs silence to sleep which gives an indication of how loud the music is! Beware as this could wreck a stay here!

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank dcp_7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 19, 2010

nice garden view and so private. enjoyed all my 3 days stay here.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank dhanuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 15, 2010

I stayed here for 4 nights. The food, the infinity pool, the easy beach access and the room decor make this the best hotel in Abu dhabi.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank sergpro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 6, 2010

The hour long drive from Dubai to Abu Dhabi at 1am, having travelled from Thailand seemed like a bridge too far - until we arrive at the Shangri-La! Half hour from the city centre, the hotel is well located on the beach. It is extremely well-appointed and very comfortable. The rooms are large and lovely - with a fabulous, large, comfortable bed and luxurious bathrooms.
Breakfast is amazing - an enormous variety with everything from the cereals to fillet steak...to a chocolate fountain - whatever you fancy - and it's half price if you are a Golden Circle member - although you have to enquire to find this out!
The selection of places to sunbathe, on the beach or around a variety of pools is excellent - despite the size of the hotel, the space around you makes it never seem too busy. There was an all-day beach party ongoing one day whilst we were there - some guests were really unhappy about it as it was noisy - but we quite enjoyed the spectacle!
The perfect hotel for a long-weekend in the sunshine. We'll definitely be back.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Inbetweenholidays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 5, 2010

I stayed here for 4 nights in late January 2010. It is an excellent hotel, great staff, great amenities and good restaurants. I can second what other reviewers have said about the buffet being superb all in all, dining at this hotel is good to excellent.

The significant problem I had was in relation to one of the hotel restaurants, situated in the hotel garden, called Pearl and Caviar. I also dined there and my dinner was very, very good with excellent service, BUT this place also functions as a night club most nights. The noise in my room was deafening and sleep was impossible.

Complaints from about midnight to about 3AM brought a lot of sympathy but absolutely no action nor any reduction in my room charges which I thought was unfair. The manager on duty admitted that there had been complaints the previous weeks as well.

I found it very strange that an otherwise good hotel would allow about half its rooms (in the SOUTH wing nearest Pearl and Caviar) to be saturated with noise pollution of its own making. As the hotel was full I could not move rooms and I was terribly deprived of sleep. When booking the warning is to insist on a quiet room if the night club in Pearl and Caviar is still functioning otherwise it will definately spoil your stay.

Abu Dhabi itself is not for those who require a lot of external stimulation. But if you are passing through or if you want total R&R is a good hotel go for it

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank keredewor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2010

hotel is very professionally run, with high levels of trained and friendly staff. Restaurants are truly excellent if not historic (especially the FRench one and the buffet),and the bar, for UAE, is fun and stylish. Rooms are large but a bit over elaborate... acres of marble, wide screen tvs, large gleaming bathrooms but a bit too much fake arab detailing that verges on the disneyland.

there are two lovely pools and pleasant gardens with an amazing view of the mosque but a little spoiled but the constant hum of the nearby motorway and the adjacent building sites. why, when they had all the coastline to consider- did they build it in such an unlovely location?

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank designer16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Abu Dhabi hotels
11.2 mi away
Jumeirah at Etihad Towers
Jumeirah at Etihad Towers
#1 of 128 in Abu Dhabi
3,218 reviews
11.6 mi away
Emirates Palace
Emirates Palace
#7 of 128 in Abu Dhabi
3,319 reviews
0.5 mi away
The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
11.0 mi away
The St. Regis Abu Dhabi
The St. Regis Abu Dhabi
#6 of 128 in Abu Dhabi
1,384 reviews
8.3 mi away
Yas Viceroy Abu Dhabi
Yas Viceroy Abu Dhabi
#5 of 128 in Abu Dhabi
3,131 reviews
9.1 mi away
Rosewood Abu Dhabi
Rosewood Abu Dhabi
#4 of 128 in Abu Dhabi
992 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi

Address: Qaryat Al Beri Complex | Khor Al Maqta, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Location: United Arab Emirates > Emirate of Abu Dhabi > Abu Dhabi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Abu Dhabi
#2 Romantic Hotel in Abu Dhabi
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Abu Dhabi
#8 Business Hotel in Abu Dhabi
#10 Spa Hotel in Abu Dhabi
#15 Luxury Hotel in Abu Dhabi
Price Range: $168 - $476 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi 5*
Number of rooms: 213
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on a one-kilometre stretch of private beach overlooking the strait that separates Abu Dhabi Island from the mainland, the hotel is situated ten minutes drive from the city's international airport, five minutes from the golf course and the new Convention Centre and 15 minutes from the Corniche and the city centre. Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi, features 213 luxurious rooms and suites, all furnished to the highest standards in a modern Arabic style. Each room also has a balcony or a terrace providing an ideal setting for viewing striking ocean sunsets and traditional Arabic domes and minarets. Accommodation choices also include six spectacular villas comprising four bedrooms and a private swimming pool. Regarded as an ideal hotel in Abu Dhabi for longer stays, the Shangri-La Residences include 161 spacious serviced apartments ranging from studios to four-bedroom units.The 8.5 Hectare hotel complex provides a wide range of facilities and services for the discerning traveller. These include the signature CHI, The Spa at Shangri-La, and a dedicated well-being zone comprising two gymnasiums, a swimming pool and a yoga room. In addition, there are four swimming pools within the grounds. The Souk traditional Arabian market built in a modern setting offers a variety of shops under one roof which are connected by a waterway featuring Arabic gondolas, or abras, which slowly meander through this unique architecture lush garden scenery. Supreme waterfront lifestyle enhanced with Shangri-La hospitality. Designed with luxury and comfort in mind, the Shangri-La Residences has all the features of the hotel at their doorstep. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Booking.com, Priceline, Cancelon, TripOnline SA, Agoda, Hotwire, Cheap Tickets and HotelQuickly so you can book your Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi Hotel Abu Dhabi

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing