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“Bombed in the 90's, not much better now ...”

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Hotel Holiday Sarajevo
Ranked #48 of 68 Hotels in Sarajevo
Reviewed July 6, 2013

June 2013 we checked in and left the same night. This hotel is "famous" for being across from the parliament in Sarajevo and "accidentally" being hit by missile fire during the war in the 1990's. International media was staying there. Well, I don't think they've done much, if anything, to fix it since it was bombed. It was just awful. No AC, parking in a dump of a lot a block away, and the room was comparable to a cell. The beds were old, sagging, little light or lamps, and the bathroom was dirty and nothing really worked. We checked out immediately - at least they knew it was bad and gave us our money back. Sarajevo is a beautiful, rebounding city with some unique tourist attractions and nice hotels. Stay away from this hote.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank Traveler37485796
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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64 - 70 of 192 reviews

Reviewed June 29, 2013

We are very satisfied with the service and staff is exceptionally kind.
Beds are very comfortable.
The minor problem was refrigerator and air condition working during the time we stayed, but as we were there in April and had a lot of work outside, it was not too big problem.
But, I would strongly recommend it because the location is perfect, it is not far from Bas carsija, which you can reach really easy from there and there is a chopping malls close, too.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank J0ax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 21, 2013

When looking from the outside - regular hotel. Still has smth very special inside. The furniture seems to have over 80 years. I would even say it looks Moroccan. 2 out of 4 lamps in the rooms were not working. Bed is comfy enough to have a relaxing sleep. Breakfasts are ok. Sweets are tasty. Location is quite good: a mall next to the hotel, the Parliament on the opposite side. The lovely Old town should be no more than 20 min walk. Cleaning service is quick and efficient. Hair dryers are obsolete and working not in all the rooms. No irons in the rooms, but can be ordered from reception.The personnel is friendly and helpful.

Even if my first impressions were not so promising, now I have to say that Sarajevo is charming and Holiday Inn also.

Room Tip: Choose a non-smoking room if you're not a smoker!
  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled on business
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2  Thank Janessik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2013

This hotel has a board at the entrance that indicates that it is a 4 star hotel. I think management should seriously consider removing the sign as it is not living up to its rating. It is in serious need for refurbishment. When I read previous reviews, I thought they were just exaggerations, but after staying there for a couple of nights, I realize they were not. I need say no more.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Agil N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2013

This hotel hosted press and international journalists during war in Bosnia, was set to fire couple of times and renovated up today. The bathroom in the room was so dirty, bed was so uncomfortable. I've been told the hotel was elected the worst hotel in Europe recently...

However, the location is perfect. Minutes away from the Bazaar and everthing is quite near by.

Room Tip: I stayed at room 531, nice view but the bathrooms was awful.
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank osmantoprak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 4, 2013

Pros: the hotel was built for the Olympics in 1984 and was a major target of attacks during the Bosnian War in the 1990's. A movie called "Welcome To Sarajevo" staring Marisa Tomei and Woody Harrelson was filmed here to bring the plight of this forgotten war and acts of genocide back into the forefront of our minds. Tomei and Harrelson played the parts of CNN and other international reporters who stayed at this hotel covering the war and the plight of orphaned children. Sadly for these people of Sarajevo, they are still prisoners of a war that ended over 20 years ago. When the Olympics were held there they were given modern facilities with top of the line ski lifts that could easily attract tourists. What happened instead was the "war" and to date only 20% of the landlines laid by the Serbs all along the mountains ski lifts have been removed. In all that time, decay has come to even the best of buildings left unoccupied for such a long time and what tourist would want to go there now? And you ask me HOW can THIS be a "pro"? It is because these people are poor and they need the world community to help them. They are friendly and warm and do the best they can.

Cons: Hotel owners ought to either fix a few things or have the reputable name of Holiday Inn removed as it is clearly deceiving. I have stayed in the internationally recognized BEST Holiday Inn and sadly, I feel Sarajevo is the worst! For management to say that this is what they were left with following the war is a cop-out because there was substantial damage to the building that has been repaired. Management however has not updated a single thing in that hotel...from the smoke filled halls, to the in-room blow dryer that had a hose that was shredded. When I called front desk to borrow another blow dryer, I was told there was only ONE for the entire hotel. THAT is inexcusable as others on my tour were trying to get their hands on the single dryer for the very same reason! I feel the owners are just lazy and playing the pity party rather than trying to do something that would improve the lives of their employees AND guests experiences! The food served was almost inedible YET even that could be forgiven under the circumstances. The box springs we slept on rather than mattresses could have very well been left over from the war when they used them to cover hotel windows and keep sniper bullets out! The THICK dust found on the furniture and the absolutely broken air conditioner made the room feel like a sauna. But the USED towels left lying around in the room when we arrived was just creepy. It would have also been nice if for at least ONE of the TWO nights we were there, they could have given us the wake up call ordered by the tour guide. Thank God for jet lag else I would have never made the tours!

If this Holiday Inn were to commit to REAL renovations and improvements and not just a slap a coat of paint on the walls...if they were to clean up those rooms and replace the entire hotel's blow dryers with WORKING equipment, and if they would fix the A/C systems then I could see myself wanting to come back and support the people of this town. We had 40 people in our group and not a SINGLE hair dryer was useable and for management to have the nerve to go out and purchase only ONE to be circulated to ALL guests on 6 floors is the reason poor Sarajevo will be doomed to continue to decay rather be able to lift itself from the ashes. This hotel receives a very sad SHAME award...not just for what we as guests endured for a couple of little nights of our lives, BUT rather the working conditions of their EMPLOYEES and the impact on their LIVES because they must work to carve out a living in such a depressed and often hopeless environment.

FIX this hotel and I'll return to happily change my rating! The people of Sarajevo deserve better!!! I'm just a tourist and I'll get over it!

Room Tip: Until management commits to fixing this hotel, stay at the Europa hotel...
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank NMC_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 23, 2013

This hotel needs some renovation very badly. It was built for the Olympics in 1984 and you can tell all is authentic from that time. I believe they try to keep it well maintained, but the owner has to invest some money now. Our night stands were scratched and the carpet looked not so clean.
It has an atrium in the middle with a lobby bar. The bar staff is ok, but not great. You see them talking to each other and not fully concentrating of serving the guests.
We did appreciate the free Wi-Fi and also good breakfast with a lot of fruits. Also it is located close to the center. It took us about 10-15 minutes to walk to the historical center.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank KryLast13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Holiday Sarajevo

Address: Zmaja od Bosne 4, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Location: Bosnia and Herzegovina > Sarajevo Canton > Sarajevo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#25 Luxury Hotel in Sarajevo
Price Range: $79 - $125 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Holiday Sarajevo 4*
Number of rooms: 206
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Also Known As:
Holiday Inn Sarajevo Hotel Sarajevo
Sarajevo Holiday Inn

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