I read some positive reviews of this hotel in French and English. I think these people have visited either another hotel or never visited more than a 2-star hotel in their lives. When my wife and I stayed in this hotel (March 2013) it was crowded with French, German and Italians in the age category of 60-70+ years old. Which in all fairness is fine, but I could see they were treated by the hotel staff as cattle and was sad to see. The families with small children had a tough time too as the food was simply horrendous.
Let me start off by saying the Neckermann/Thomas Cook brochure looked great and that's why we selected that hotel. What a tourist trap!!!!
Room: The room smelled like a toilet. We believe it had been repainted though the painter must have been on drugs or alcohol as the paint dripped on the floor, doors and light switches - my 13 year old daughter can do a much better job. The airco made strange loud noises every 3 minutes so we had to turn it off during the night. The room was simply filthy and we risked our lives sleeping there. It is dusty, the bath room tiles broken, shower curtain is a great laboratory paradise of bacterias. The small TV was new in 1980 I think, the channels are not fine tuned and so you the TV images are full of static. The towels don't dry you off, the must have been washed with some water repellent soap or something, as they do feel soft by don't absorb water i.e. you stay wet. The toilet, well what to say....you have to use it when you have too but you wouldn't linger to read your paper as it is filthy as the rest.
The Staff: The staff is rude to say the least. Thanks to the great food (more about this later) my wife had gastro problems because of the hotel food and stayed in the room. So I went to the restaurant to get her food on a plate to bring to the room. The staff said that this was not allowed and after talking to the manager and having my voice raised he agreed if I would bring back the empty plate. Sure...not! There are plenty of Tunisian staff who try to get you booked for trips, and try to get you pay up front: The guy with his camel ride, the guy with his pirate boat and the guy with his quad bike ride. They are all quiet pushy but f you're not interested say it straight out - do not let them waste your holiday time with their shatter. They try to speak to you in broken Dutch, German and English which is funny in the beginning but tiresome after a week as they are pushy. There are also the guys on the beach who like to sell you all kinds of junk (made in China) and the hotel staff just let's them be (i guess everyone has to make a living from the stupid tourists they think). We got lured in the Camel ride. We were told it was a big group that we were going with...we ended up being only the two of us. The 3 hour camel ride which was promised was in fact only 20 min. Instead of visiting the berber family which would show us how they make local traditional bread, the wife of the camel guy just brought us the bread. Then there was a 5-min stop by car to see the ostriches. Of course the whole thing is a rip-off. And when you don't want to give these people tips because they don't deserve it then they get very angry.
The hotel services: The Gym/fitness room: I took a photo to show my friends at home as I'm sure no one would believe me. The gym was a large empty room, well almost empty as it had 3 bikes in there and that was it. I can't tell you if the bikes worked because they were so dusty and greasy that i didn't dare to sit on them. To get a hotel beach towel, you have to get up before dawn as the towels are limited and run out immediately. This meant that we had to use the towels from our rooms on the beach and at the pool. It was then a hassle to get fresh room towels as the hotel staff believed we should these towels at least a week or 2. I don't believe it was to care for the environment as you see the filth in the hotel and on the streets romantically blowing in the wind as it was more pure hotel staff laziness.
Food: ah the food. Well the food is not a gastronomical experience - it simply keeps you alive. It is great for people on a diet as the food is either uneatable or you get diarrhea. I lost 2 kg. The food is not warm, every day the same and mostly greasy. If you are a vegetarian you get lots of vegetables, but if you prefer a piece of meat or fish you better off eating outside the hotel. Breakfast, lunch or dinner - all the same food. For children there is no food unless you want to serve them every day pasta or french fries - bring your vitamin tablets. My wife got food poisoning and was stuck in the room for 3 days. Breakfast is again served as lunch, lunch is served again as dinner and dinner is saved for breakfast the next day. How interesting it was to see that the staff is snatching food while passing the buffet and stuffing their mouths full. The orange juice is water with sugar and colorized. The alcohol served in the discotheque is watered down.
Needless to say we complained about the hotel situation but we didn't get any other room as they were fully booked and other rooms were being renovated (which causes a noise from 8 AM in the morning). No money back either. The information on the document we receveid with the check-in read that there are midnight snacks (sandwiches,...) from 00:00-06:00 AM. So at around 1 AM I though let's check these snacks out. No snacks to be found. I asked the hotel staff and they said that the information paper is incorrect. Dinner is from 18:00h to 21:30h according to information paper. One evening we arrive at 20:45h eat dinner and the restaurant is closed already. I ask the hotel staff and again the paper is wrong because they close at 21h and today there were not so many people for dinner (I wonder why??) so they decided to close a bit earlier. We survived on snickers that night.
No Wifi in the rooms.
All in all - you get what you pay for but why they advertise this as a 4-star hotel is a mystery, and why you are treated without respect? If I want to book a 2-star hotel at least I know that it will be very basic and i do not expect much but it is cheap.
However, this hotel is a pure rip off. I will never ever go there again!!!!!!
PS: I know where my money goes to: Most probably to the petrol for the white Bentley V12 tuned up Brabus which is from the owner who parks it authentically in front of the hotel every day.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Capturing the magic and mystery of the Mediterranean Sea El Ksar Resort & Thalasso is located on a private sandy beach surrounded by generous gardens. The hotel offers plenty of activities such as mini golf, bridge, table tennis, Volleyball, tennis, shooting centre, jungle park, four outdoor pools, one indoor pool and many more. The beautiful yacht port “Port El Kantaoui” is only a few kilometers away.Featuring 552 comfortable and elegant rooms, junior suites and 1 presidential suite, inlcuding family rooms which interconnect. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Karthago El Ksar Sousse
- Karthago El Ksar Hotel Sousse