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“Had a great time”
Review of Hotel Marhaba

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Hotel Marhaba
Ranked #7 of 35 Hotels in Sousse
Reviewed May 19, 2013

Myself and my partner stayed there 11th to 18th may,great holiday!! as always it's what you make it! Few points... the food is ok always managed to find something and they make a real effort with themed nights,I recommend that you take a taxi to the madina which is a market great morning out,just keep wits about you and trust nobody as there are a few hustlers pretending to be a waiter from your hotel on a day off,in reality they get commission to take you to carpet shop and jewellery shop...please just stay firm and say no you get used to it after a while but that aside a nice shopping trip,pay no more than 4 dina for a taxi to madina !!again stay firm.
Hotel and staff I can't fault including animation although didn't have a lot to do with them they keeped people entertained.
It's a cheap holiday and you get what you pay for but for me I had a great time and enjoyed myself, honestly can't fault it,will be booking for next year

  • Stayed: May 2013
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2  Thank Leannedarren
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 16, 2013

After reading various opinions on this hotel my partner and I were a little worried, especially about being all inclusive. However, the whole holiday was absolutely fantastic! No need to be worried at all.

We are 22 and 23 years old, and wanted a quiet, relaxed break. It ticked all boxes! We landed at 12 midnight wednesday 8th may, and after around half an hours transfer we arrived at the hotel. Quick warning, at the airport do not let the porters take your bags for you to the bus, as they will expect a tip, and as you cant change your money until you're at the hotel, they get pretty angry when you explain this, and demand english money off you. However we refused and got onto the bus, and he shouted something at us and walked away.

Check-in was swift, however remember to take a pen with you for the various forms you have to fill out onboard the plane, in the airport and in reception as they do not hand out pens and it will make the process a lot quicker for you than having to wait around to borrow someone else's pen.

Rooms- We were taken to a room in the older part of the hotel, and apart from the exterior corridors being a little outdated, the room inside was fine. After speaking to people who were in the refurbished rooms, it seemed that there was little difference once actually inside. They had twin beds, pushed together, ample space in wardrobes and cupboards for clothes and accessories, and a fully functioning bathroom. Maids were brilliant and friendly. We took an extension lead as we weren't sure how many plugs there would be, and found there were only a couple in the room so it came in handy. You will need a European adaptor. Beds were a little hard but nothing to worry about.

Food- On our first morning, we took our little blue card that we were given on check in to the restaurant, and we were assigned a table and a waiter for the duration of our stay. Although we did not feel pressured into doing so, we tipped our waiter on the first day and after that he was fantastic, brought us teas and coffees every morning and was also friendly. We normally had omelettes or fried eggs every day and they were fantastic! Choice was plentiful , however it seemed that the season was picking up just as we were leaving as there became more choice for food.
Lunch and dinner were equally nice, with lots of choice, even for the fussiest of eaters. There were chips,pizzas and a selection of pasta and spaghetti with a choice of sauces every day, as well as freshly grilled meats/fish, tunisian speciality dishes, salads, soups, fruit and fantastic desserts! There is also a snack bar at the main pool, which we ate at once. We noticed as we were leaving that a snack bar was also being set up at the beach, and at the quieter pool-again, something which obviously comes into place the further into the season it gets.

Pools-There is a main pool, with water slides and music playing all day, as well as a smaller pool for children, in one part of the complex. This is also where the animation team do their various activities throughout the day, including archery, water aerobics and darts. However we did not participate in any of these, or sit around this pool, so can not comment. Although the pool was very nice, it was a little loud when we wanted peace and quiet. The next pool was the quieter pool with a swim-up pool bar, this was a beautiful pool and we used this area. It was located just down a little path from the main pool, at the sister hotel the marhaba club. Again, there was a lovely terrace bar at this area, but it was closed. (Starting to open just as we were leaving) There is also an indoor pool, but the weather was fantastic so we never needed to use this. However, I did use the shower there on my last day and noticed there was also a gym, a hammam (steam room), sauna, and massage treatments.

The beach- The beach was beautiful; we spent most of our days here. There is a little beach bar that is part of the all inclusive, as well as the buffet units being in place for the snack bar opening, There are always plenty of sunbeds available. There are two men working for the hotel who stand at the entrance to the beach trying to sell you boat trips and quad biking trips. However, after we told them NO for about 4 days they got the hint. They aren't pushy, just walk past and say no. There is also a man walking along the beach who works for the hotel who tries to sell you camel rides, donkey rides, horse rides and a trip to the zoo in port-el-kantaoui, which we seen when we visited and it was tiny, and cost 5dinar entrance (£2) Who knows how much he would have charged!

Bar- drinks were ok, rose wine was drinkable, as was the gin and tonic. However the vodak was awful! A couple of days before we left they brought in a cocktail menu-however, you just ask for the spirit you would like and say cocktail and they make up all sorts of concoctions, most were nice! We stuck to martini and vodka cocktails, and the grenadine seemed to flavour them nicely! All inclusive bar starts at 8am and finished at 12midnight, with the main bar, snack bar and the entertainment bar 'Neptunes' all serving drinks. The restaurant bar only serves soft drinks, beers and wine, although we often took our drinks from the main bar to there. Also, tea and coffee is only served at breakfast in the restaurant.

Neptunes- Neptunes was ok, this is where the kids club was held on a night time, before bingo at 9pm, followed by adults entertainment. We seen a stunt act, a magician and a 'mr marhaba' competition. However, we felt that it was very cheesy and did not really suit us as a couple in our 20's, although it was fantastic for those with kids, as the animation team were brilliant, working so hard from morning through till night, and the kids seemed to love them. The only down side to Neptunes was the fact that you could smoke inside, and if I had them, I wouldn't like my children to be breathing in that amount of smoke every night.

Surrounding area and trips- The surrounding area leaves little to be desired, with not much around. We got the tourist train into Port-El-Kantaoui; the port was pretty although we did feel a little uncomfortable as local people appeared to stop their cars and look up from their sunglasses at the pale blonde girl walking around lol. They were very sleezy and it did spoil the night a little bit, so we headed back to the hotel pretty quick. Taxis are cheap to get around, and negotiate a price before you get in.

We done two trips, both booked through Maddie our Thomas Cook rep- El Djem and Animal Magic, a trip to Friguia Zoo. They were both good, and worth the money we thought. Maddie was fantastic and very informative about the area.

Weather- weather was fantastic all week, over 30 degrees most days! However, it was very cloudy on the last day with no sun at all.

Staff- all members of staff were fantastic, extremely friendly and hard working. We never felt obliged to leave a tip, although after we had tipped, they worked extra hard, coming offering us drinks and we hardly had to go to the bar. Fantastic service!

All in all we had a fantastic holiday, and if you are looking for a family-friendly/hotel-based holiday then you are definitely going to the right place. We will be back! :)

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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19  Thank ibiza_rocks12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2013 via mobile

Just got back after 2 weeks hotel rooms fine staff helpful and friendly but they must do some thing about the food every thing is covers in olive oil or some unknown sauce why mix peas carrots and cauliflower together and cover them in oil put them out separate add nothing to them if you want olive oil on it it's on your table even a simple thing like a jacket potatoe wraped in foil but for some reason they added loads of rock salt to the inside of the potatoe wich made it in edible also French fries were not cooked properly on 3 occasion s. I'm sorry mahaba hotel but if you don't do something about your food people will not return to what I think is a great hotel and complex

  • Stayed: May 2013
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3  Thank colinjdean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2013

My family and i have just returned from a fantastic week in the Hotel Marhaba. We found it to be the friendliest hotel we have ever stayed in. The animations team are fabulous and have plenty of activities for all the family and they are not to pushy if you dont want to get involved, Fifi was great fun as was everybody else. The bar staff was lovely and nothing was to much trouble we made great friends with Latino and Ash. The food was very nice with plenty of choice and the waiter Faycal was amazing he decorated our table every night with flowers and swans he was very nice to us everyday and nothing was to much trouble we tipped him and he was very grateful same as the man with the sunbeds he gave us a very good every day and we tipped him. The room was cleaned everyday with fresh towels and the childrens pj's was made into patterns. I would reccommend this hotel to anybody and i will definately be booking again.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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10  Thank Christina B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2013

I went here on a trip with college, there was 12 of us including teachers. When we first got here the girls were put in a room really far away from the tutors and the boys but after a quick chat with the reception staff they were more than happy to move us closer. The rooms we were put in were nicer, but with no view. This didn't really take away from the quality of the stay though.

The food was fairly samey every day but I always found something to eat even being a very fussy eater. The drinks are all local brands, but this is to be expected as this is what is offered in most all inclusive hotels. Be careful if you're not a big drinker though - they have no concept of measures! I reccommend the 'special cocktail' if you want to get fairly drunk!

The hotel was very clean and the staff were very helpful. Our rooms were cleaned every day by maids who are very respectful of your belongings, I left money and valuables out and none of them were touched, the maids don't speak english very well though so try and communicate as you can.

We went on a Thomas Cook holiday and booked two excursions with our rep - the african dream and the full day trip to El Djem. I highly recommend the African dream trip as it was nice to look round the zoo, and the food and wine is all included in the price. I would not recommend the El Djem trip if you are not muslim, we visited two mosques and us girls were not allowed off the coach due to our 'inappropriate dress' even though we were not warned of any dress codes.

We also booked to excursions with the 'looky looky' men who like to harass you on your walk to the beach! We went on a pirate ship and quad biking. Would not recommend the pirate ship trip if you get seasickness as it was a fairly rough ride. Also the men on the boat are pretty much there to drain you of your money for photos and jewellery, I did not enjoy this trip. The quad biking trip was fun though, although we were in a large group so could not pick up much speed! To be honest you get what you pay for with these trips, they only cost us around 15 gbp each.

Although there is construction work going on at the hotel at the moment near the pool, it did not really disrupt our peace near the pool. The pool is clean and refreshing as it was very hot, and the slides - although they do not look much - are quite fun and recommended for children and teenagers.

The animation team at the hotel were always very smiley but as you get at most hotels the entertainment is VERY cheesy (lip synching to grease, karaoke, magic light show) but I quite enjoyed it all the same! It's good for a laugh once you've had a drink. There are also plenty of free activities to get involved in during the day such as archery.

I went to the spa for a massage and it was nice but I imagine it would be much more enjoyable if I didn't have sunburn! It was pretty painful because my legs were so red raw! It is so cheap though.

For people who are eager to tan I recommend the oil and citrus cream you can buy from the in resort shop. It is only 4 dinar and it helps you to catch the sun quite a bit!

All in all I had a very enjoyable trip to this hotel, and I would recommend it for anyone who is on a budget and looking for somewhere fun to stay.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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7  Thank Hayley K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2013

returned yesterday from this Hotel and would not go back.
Positives - room was nice, huge bed, nice bathroom, very clean, sheets and towels changed every day.
Mustafa the pool guy was brilliant. Always smiling and always helpful. Pool okay but too small. Hotel wasn't packed but could imagine if it was you would have trouble finding a space around the pool.
Beach was lovely but no food although you could get drinks at the bar.

Negatives - food was shocking and the drinks terrible. In the main the Tunisian people outside of the hotel all seem to be con artists.
Would never go back.

Room Tip: make sure you get updated room
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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3  Thank rona p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2013

Firstly would like to say this is not a 5 star hotel, but a good quality 3 star +, and have stayed in many 5star and 3 star.
The negatives -
We were there from the 1st-8th May, weather was fantastic however there major renovation works going on around the pool area, pneumatic drills, angle grinders, cement mixers, which meant no quiet time around the pool.
The corridors are really noisy.
The rooms in the refurbished block were still work in progress and on one occasion we ran the bath and mud came out the taps.
The rooms are cleaned each day but not too a high standard, for example there were long dark hairs over the floor the mirror was filthy and the windows were dirty.
Guests are allowed to smoke in the lobby in two areas, however the area to the front of reception is supposed to be no smoking but this is not the case.
The bar staff in the lobby ignore you and the drinks leave a lot to be desired.
The beer in the restaurant was vile, on our last day we found out the reason - Left over drink in glasses was being topped up at the bar - DISGUSTING in an understatement but explained the vile taste.


The Positives -
The pool man was lovely, slip him a few quid and he will save you a space and lounger each day.
Also the lady who cleans the pool area was lovely, works tirelessly and we gave her some money and she was really aprreciative.
The Pool Bar was clean and the food was fairly good just repetitive.
Restaurant, your allocated a table however be prepared to share with other couples not my idea of fun., Food not a vast choice but perfectly edible and done us for the week.

The guys who sell the trips on the beach for the hotel, DO NOT BOOK THE CAMEL TRIP this is a waste of money, we paid £50 to be taken up 2 dirt tracks and to a dirty café that we had already covered on their quad trip, however the quad trip was quite fun and good value.

We also tried the 2 restaurants outside the hotel, the Farmers being the best and very good value for money, the Saloon not bad little more expensive.

Overall good 2nd visit and would be prepared to go back once the renovations were complete

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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2  Thank SidariRules
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Marhaba

Address: 2011 Boulevard 14 Janvier | Zone Touristique, Sousse 4000, Tunisia
Location: Tunisia > Sousse Governorate > Sousse
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 Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 35 Hotels in Sousse
Price Range: $91 - $144 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Marhaba 3.5*
Number of rooms: 734
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Classe 4 etoiles et faisant parti du Marhaba Resorts, reference par la prestigieuse chaine Marhaba Hotels, le Marhaba Club est entierement dedie a anticiper vos besoins et satisfaire vos attentes. Situe au coeur de la zone touristique de la ville de Sousse, a : 10 mn du centre ville de Sousse, 10 mn du Port el Kantaoui et du terrain de Golf, 20 minutes de l'aeroport de Skanes-Monastir, 40 minutes de l'aeroport d'Enfidha et a 90 minutes de l'aeroport de Tunis-Carthage ... more   less 
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