Can I first give you some context to this review being that my partner and I are not experienced with all inclusive holidays and this was our first time to Sharm - therefore my review of the hotel is simply based on our stay, not whether this hotel is either better or worse than the norm in Sharm.
We stayed 7 nights all inclusive and at the price we paid we had an ok holiday with lots of swimming and sunshine.
Being an avid trip advisor user i had read up a lot on this hotel before arriving and it was the reason that we chose it. I have to say that we were pretty disappointed - i don't think we are picky travellers at all, but felt pretty let down by certain aspects of the holiday.
Staff:The staff we dealt with were fine and we had no problems getting a late check out, ordering breakfast boxes when we had excursions etc. It seems some people really get to know the staff and appreciate that but we prefer to keep to ourselves a bit more. Staff in the dining areas were definitely hard working and cleaned plates, drinks etc very quickly.
Location: We weren't fussed about going out of the hotel other than on our pre-arranged excursions so appreciated the location about 15 minutes from the airport.
Cleaning and room: Hotel generally appeared to be very clean, our room was cleaned everyday and fresh towels left but small things like toiletries not being replaced let it down slightly. However not a big deal, it was done better than a lot of hotels we have stayed in. We tipped the guy that cleaned our room most days and had some fantastic towel art left for us. Our room was in block 17, top floor and we had a very nice view of Tiran Island, used our balcony quite a bit during the heat of the day and had a comfortable king sized bed.
Food: We honestly found the food pretty limited, and found dinner very unappetising. Breakfast was fine, could have fruit and cereal (very limited range) if you wanted as well as cooked eggs and toast etc, all what you would expect from a standard buffet. We did enjoy the freshly cooked pancakes but after three days we resorted back to fruit and cereal. No fresh juice, just this horrible sugary stuff that you find down in the pool bars etc. We ate lunch each day in Elements restaurant down by the main pool. Has about 10 different items on the all inclusive - we tried most things, which tasted okay, nothing too bad and nothing great at all. Service always very efficient though. Dinner, in our view, was terrible which i am finding really hard to reconcile with all the positive reviews on the food being great? I just want to repeat, we aren't picky eaters or fine diners but most nights we struggled to find something that looked nice other than bread or salad. Most things were very very bland and there are no condiments provided other than ketchup or mayo. The main dining area feels like you are going up to eat at school camp.
We ate in the Shisha lounge one night which was a lot better, in fact our comment was if only the food in the main restaurant was at least this standard. We also paid to eat down in Elements restaurant, not on the jetty just inside the restaurant. The food was very good, we both had very nice steaks with sides and entrées for under £40. Had absolutely no atmosphere whatsoever as there were about 8 of us in a big space. We both had stomach cramps and upset stomachs for most of the trip but i think it could have just been a change in food rather than caused directly by the food itself.
Sunbeds/pools: We went down to the main pool by the beach every day and learnt the hard way after day one that if we wanted a bed that we had to get up early to reserve it. I am an early riser and was down to get towels around 7.30am (early i know) by this time all of the sunbeds by the pool were gone but some were left in the second row which suited us as we weren't directly in the action when the games were going on. If you arrived post 9am you were probably out of luck in that area. We never saw any policing of that at all. When we wandered down to swim off the jetty we saw beds available in the terraces above the water - very dry and hot area with the gravel like sand which wasn't appealing to us. The animation team around the pool were nice people, we enjoyed having activity and music around us even though we didn't take part - didn't find it overbearing down by the pool but we didn't see any of the night activities.
You are approached several times a day by the people selling excursions, tattoos, health spa stuff, dinner in Soho square, dive school etc. We said we weren't interested in any of these on day one (as had already booked our excursions to Cairo by Air and Petra through Sinai Safari Adventures - Tim and Janet were excellent and i would highly recommend them) but were approached every day without fail. They disappeared after you said you weren't interested but would approach you if you were sleeping, reading, talking etc - just kinda annoying.
Alcohol: The local spirits reminded me of the cheapest stuff i could buy when i was trying to get drunk in high school, just awful. I am a vodka drinker normally and i couldn't stomach the stuff they used. Further the cocktails are made with this sugary stuff, no actual juice in sight. The white wine and beer was ok if it was very cold so we stuck to that.
Noise: Our room itself was pretty well insulated from the rooms either side, never really had any noise from them. Our complaint (which is not this hotels fault but something to be aware of) is that our room being in block 1700 got a lot of noise from the resort next door at night. They had beach parties until at least 11pm, midnight one night and the noise just travelled, it was like the party was on our balcony. I just mention this as if you are a light sleeper then this would drive you nuts, we were in bed early two nights as we had two very early starts and just couldn't sleep. Again not Xperience's fault but just something to be aware of if you have a room in 1700 or 1800 blocks.
So i have just tried to be honest with the above review, i don't want to seem cynical but i did have high expectations due to reviews already posted. It is definitely not a 5 star hotel but maybe a 4 star by Egyptian standards? Can't fault cleanliness or staff but the food, alcohol and fight for sunbeds was a real turn off. We won't be returning to Egypt but if we did i would probably consider paying more to get a better standard all around, we wouldn't return to this hotel. You get what you pay for really.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Xperience Sea Breeze Resort is situated on Shark’s Bay, a prime spot in Sharm El Sheikh. This spectacular beach front resort uniquely boasts its own private marina & offers magnificent sea views with a variety of aqua sports, scuba diving & snorkeling. The 304 luxurious guest rooms & suites are elegantly furnished to provide every facility to indulge the discerning traveler. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Xperience Sea Breeze Hotel Sharm El Sheikh