I have just returned from 2 weeks here, and frankly didn't want to come home. There is not a lot at Makadi Bay, but for a sunshine holiday this was ideal. The weather was fabulous and the sea warm enough for snorkelling.
In true Dunkirk Spirit we hardy Brits were the only ones in this hotel which was under 20% occupancy as all the other nationalities had retreated, but the situation in Cairo and Alexandria didn't affect us one little bit. There was a lovely atmosphere, with so few guests it was all very intimate and friendly - I think I was on at least nodding terms with most guests and staff and met some lovely people.
The food was very good - ok not cordon bleu, but for AI there was nothing to complain about. It was better the first week, but that may have been due to supply shortages in the 2nd week. We were treated to freshly prepared smoked salmon starters, freshly griddled large shrimps, excellent kalamari and super roast leg of lamb. Plenty of salads, fruits and vegetables at each meal
The evening entertainment is never my thing in hotels, I'd rather sit and chat or read a book, so I can't really comment on it, but I did enjoy the aquarobics and aerobics sessions. The spa is super, and with things being so quiet was offering 4 for the price of 4 - ladies, I would really recommend the Cleopatra and the Rameses. There is also a steam room, sauna, and a jacuzzi which overlooks the sea.
My room was kept beautifully clean, and I had a balcony overlooking the pool and a sea view too. There is a fridge, and each day 2 small bottles of water are provided in the room, with water coolers at every bar and in the main restaurant for topping up.
The only thing that let the bar drinks down (and the restaurant at breakfast) was that rather than real fruit juice, we were supplied with sickly sweet squashes. However, there are shops just outside the hotel reception so I purchased a litre of OJ and kept it in my fridge.
I had one day of illness, gastric - but a trip to the pharmacy just along the beach sorted me out and within 24 hours I was back in the sun. I doubt that my illness was a result of any problem in the hotel or restaurant, more likely to be something brought in by a guest.
The staff at the hotel are all lovely, and it needs to be borne in mind that they work extremely long days, 7 days a week, for very low pay. Due to so many tourists deserting the country many people have been laid off, and I doubt that they are receiving any kind of unemployment pay. No-one in the hotel ever solicited a tip, but were delighted to receive a gratuity. They are also extremely grateful to the Brits for not abandoning them, as so many other nationalities have.
A quick plea to animal lovers - there is a litter of 4 kittens living in the fake rocks by the pool bar, not yet old enough to hunt but mum has left them to it - a bit of fish or chicken is always appreciated, as is a drop of fresh water.
I did two trips through Thomas Cook, both by boat in view of the fact that in the Red Sea area there is more to be seen under the sea than above it. The one day trip on a dive boat for snorkelling was very good. The day to Mahmaya island is great too - very Robinson Crusoe, but with clean toilets and a good lunch, plus some optional snorkelling - on this trip we were lucky enough to see dolphins.
I'm sure that the hotel will have a different feel when full, but that its true of anywhere. Reading some of the earlier reviews I have to say it's a shame that some people don't research properly and choose a hotel which would suit them better.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Stella Di Mare Makadi Beach Resort & Spa is located in the prominent Makadi Bay area, on Egypt's beautiful Red Sea Riviera. Makadi is a peaceful bay with many opportunities for snorkeling and scuba diving. The semi-tropical climate makes this both a summer and winter resort. With its warm, healthy climate and the beauties of the coral reefs, this is a place to delight sun seekers and water sports enthusiasts alike. Makadi Bay is a convenient 25km south of Hurghada International Airport. The location makes it easy to access the town of Hurghada, and there are many other notable places of interest nearby, such as the island of Giftun, which is a Marine National Park, where desert and marine life are protected by law. In fact, much of the Red Sea area has a protected status. The Stella Makadi Resort & Spa is situated on a white sandy beach, and has a spectacular house reef very close by, which guests may use for snorkeling. In addition to the natural beauty of its setting, the resort has the advantage of many facilities and services to ensure a holiday that offers a wide choice of activities. There is a Spa and Health club, a shopping mall and a discotheque, to name just a few Stella Makadi Resort & Spa guests are assured of dedicated service, with all their needs taken care of in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Stella Makadi Hotel Makadi Bay