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“Clean hotel great staff”

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Hotel Palace Hammamet Marhaba
Ranked #9 of 117 Hotels in Hammamet
Certificate of Excellence
Reading, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
43 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Clean hotel great staff”
Reviewed September 12, 2013

Spent two weeks at this hotel end of August and first week September.
Reception, we checked in without an issue, taken to our room, We had a problem with the shower told reception we were upgraded to another room by the management within 30 minutes.
The room was nice spacious, clean and tidy, mini-fridge with water and soft drinks only one bottle of Pepsi or lemonade and two bottles of water.
Hotel very clean never seen so many cleaners inside and also in the grounds. Nice walk to the beach past two swimming pools Pool bar by the beach nice soft sand and plenty of sunbeds. Hut for beach towels between the two pools.
Buffet restaurant was good, not great would like to have had more vegetables and potato's in the evening not chips chips and more chips.
Breakfast was OK except for the coffee always warm or cold, taken from other tables who had finished, some times with only two cups left in the pot. ask for hot coffee and you may get a fresh pot. Around 9.15am hard to find a table it takes the staff to long to clear the used ones.
Tablecloths were hardly ever clean. Dinner has two sittings which has gone back to 6.30pm until 8.00pm and 8.30pm until 10.00.
The bar/waiting staff do a great job, the brandy gin and whisky are very poor local brands you will not get any branded drinks in this hotel. The beer and wines were fine.
Entertainment was the worst we have ever seen Riu hotels should start to entertain the guests with proper entertainment and not use the hotel staff.
Wi-Fi in reception works OK you have to sign in to a Riu site User name riu / Password 2013
I'm a Riu Diamond member and go to Riu Palace hotels because of the excellent service you receive I will not return to Tunisia because its not up there with the other Riu palaces I have been use to, more of a 4* Riu club hotel.

Room Tip: Ask for top floor
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Dave C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Sunny Beach, Bulgaria
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2013

Four in our party aged between 17 and 86! Firstly the Bungalows! We booked and paid a supplement for the Bungalows on Thomson recommendation because my Mum is 86 and uses a walking stick. These are NOT actually Bungalows! Ours were on the first floor, 3 flights of steps and no handrail. When it rained the steps were treacherously slippery even for kids and people with full mobility. Ground floor Bungalows are accessed by going up one flight of steps and down the other side. I wouldn't recommend them for people with mobility issues. A trip to reception and my Mum and I were offered a lovely room in the main hotel on the 3rd floor with a walk in shower. The rest of our party were moved the following day so that we could spend the holiday closer together. Can't fault the Reception staff and porters for their attitude, nothing was too much trouble. The hotel overall has plenty of ramps and everything seems to be accessible for wheelchair users.
All area's of the hotel are kept clean and well maintained so no issues there. Any minor problems we did have were sorted out pretty promptly
The food was very good, American, Asian, Tunisian themed nights etc. Didn't like the coffee though! Even my picky Mum found things that she liked most nights! The Italian Themed Restaurant is well worth booking - the best Lasagne I've ever had! Service in the restaurant is generally very good although some mornings we had to wait a while for cutlery, coffee etc. Pool area's are clean and despite being there during the school holidays we always managed to find sun beds. We chose to use the smaller pool area which was more relaxing.
There are area's in the hotel that need a bit of touching up but that didn't detract from the light and airy feel to the building.
The staff are very anxious to keep the guests happy and content and I was more than happy to tip the waiters and pool area staff who made a point of looking after us. I'm not sure it quite rates as a Platinum but it's still of a very good standard. I would recommend this hotel to anyone. It's certainly worth a visit!
About 6td (£2.40) will get you a taxi into Yasmin Hammamet. We went to the Medina shopping on a couple of occasions and didn't really encounter too much hassle. However I would caution about going into what looks like a sportswear shop inside the Medina with lots of "Adidas" stuff hanging up outside. The shop next door sells wooden kids toys and opposite is very dark looking cafe. We wanted to buy two pairs of kids swimming shorts and the owner wanted way too much for them (£40). When, after 30 minutes he wouldn't come down on the price too much and the usual haggling failed, we decided to leave. He became rude, intimidating and extremely aggressive and we were getting quite frightened. As we left he swore at my daughter and told us what we could do with our country!
Overall we had a lovely holiday and really appreciate the efforts of the hotel staff to keep everyone happy!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Ryansnana0604
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Corby, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2013

This was my second holiday in Tunisia and 4th time in a Riu hotel.

I'll get the negatives out of the way first as I believe that list is shorter:
It is between Hammamet and Yasmine Hammamet and neither are really within walking distance so to go shopping you will need to get a taxi. That being said, it will only cost you 6 dinar so it's not a great expense.

The food can be a little bit repetitive but you can book to eat at one of the three a la carte restaurants one night each week of your stay if you do fancy something different.

The hotel itself is very nice, however there are areas that look a little bit tired and could do with a bit of a refurb. This is mainly what lets down it's 5* rating.

Do not be fooled by the word "bungalow"! My 86 year old grandmother booked and paid extra to stay in the "bungalows" as she has arthritis in her knees and stairs can be very painful for her. What wasn't made clear in the Thomsons brochure or in the travel agency, however, was the fact that you would need to go either up or down stairs to get to these bungalows (ours was up 3 flights of stairs).
I do not put this issue down to the hotel so much as to Thomsons as they give the impression that they are on ground floor level, when they are not.
The hotel staff were extremely helpful in this and found rooms in the main hotel for everyone in our party so we could all stay together (including walk in showers).
I did not read on any other reviews about this issue before going away, so I thought it best to mention it should anyone else have a similar issue.

During breakfast and lunch it can take a while to find a clean table if going towards the end of the meal time, however, if you request it, a waiter will clear one up straight away for you.
At dinner you are allocated your own table so this isn't an issue.


All of this being said, the food was delicious and I always found something I wanted to eat. It is one of the few places I've stayed at in recent years where I haven't had an upset stomach.

Each room has a view, sea view rooms get sunrise and views facing the gardens get a beautiful sunset.
The rooms themselves are spacious and are kept clean by the maids. 1l bottles of water were replaced in the fridge as needed.

Service here was brilliant! We always tip as we go along anyway as we believe it gets you great service, but it wouldn't really have been necessary here (as much as it was appreciated). Everyone from the waiters, to the Animation team to the reception staff were incredibly kind and helpful.
The waiters were particularly attentive to the young girls...

There was plenty to do throughout the day. Although I prefer to relax and read a book by the pool, there are plenty of activities arranged by the animation team throughout the day, there is a gym, to walk from your sunbed by the main pool to the beach would take you less than 60 seconds where everything from camel and horse riding to watersports is available.

Kamel in the lobby can set you up with a great camel riding experience for 50 dinar (around 20 pounds) which includes watching bread being made traditionally, drinks, traditional local dress, cactus fruit and watermelon as well as the actual camel ride (or horse/horse and cart if you would prefer).

Souvenir shopping is pretty cheap. I got some great presents in Yasmine at some great prices.
If you're not particularly fond of the hassle then there are some reasonably priced fixed price shops around, however, you will pay more for the convenience.
I would also recommend steering clear of a particular sportswear shop in Yasmine medina. After hassling my grandmother repeatedly who had gone in there for a little pair of swimming trunks, the owner's attitude was such that she felt very vulnerable with us being 4 women and we got her out of there. As we were leaving her refused to give my mum her change for something she had bought from his friend and accused me of "sabotage" (I had stated that 100 dinar was too much for 2 pairs of fake Adidas trunks). As I left he said "F*** you and f*** your country" which was overheard by several other shop owners who proceeded to apologise profusely for his attitude and that they were not all like him, which I can vouch for. This experience left my grandmother very shaken up.
Advice given to us once we had gotten back to the hotel should you get this kind of treatment is to tell them to stay there then whilst you go and get the police. As tourism is the biggest source of income to Tunisia it is greatly frowned upon to insult tourists in this way.

Tunisia in itself has some great sights to see and the people can be lovely. I would definitely recommend this hotel and wouldn't hesitate in returning there.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ajjones92
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed September 9, 2013

After having been to 4 and 5 star hotels in the Carribbean for a large majority of my vacations, I was unsure what to expect from the Riu Palace Hammamet Mahaba. I am aware that the standard of which you can expect in a 5 star hotel in the Caribbean is completely different to what to expect in a country such as Tunisia, but I must reinstate that the hotel did surpass most of my expectations.
This hotel, regardless of other reviews, most definitely deserves its 5 star rating. Although it is not the most prestigious of hotels I have visited, it is most definitely one of the most organised and guest-based hotels I have stayed at. The manager of the hotel was seen at all three main meals of the day to ensure that everything throughout the sittings were running smoothly - something that I had never noticed at any other hotel. He also attended the Welcome Meeting that we had with the representative from our travel company, also bringing along the Head Chef, Head Barman and Head Receptionist to accompany him in assuring us that they would be there to deal with any problems that we had throughout the duration of our stay.

We had a bungalow room, room 811, which was lovely. Very spacious... however bathroom a little disappointing as would have expected these to be more luxurious. The shower was in the bath - although we expected a separate shower cubicle, especially being that we had paid a significant amount more for the Bungalow option.

The beach of the hotel is not private - although is guarded by security from the hotel all the while it is daylight/open. The security do, however, allow the locals who are trying to sell goods across the hotels bit of beach although these men are instructed not to disturb customers who are sunbathing on the beach - however they were permitted to speak to those who were down towards the water. They didn't hassle too much... they offered you what they sold, you said no, they said okay and moved on. Although I expected not to have this, I found myself not too bothered by them in the slightest especially by the end of the week. Unfortunately on our visit we did not get to see the beach as much as we wanted as the weather was not particularly in our favour. We had rain most days - and the hotel did not offer much for when the weather was as such, and so most of our time was spent in the lobby playing cards, similarly to our evenings.

The animation team were not particularly enthusiastic - they seemed to only be there because they had to be. They had no desire to ensure that the guests were fully enjoying themselves every evening, nor did they make conscious efforts to familiarise themselves with the guests at the hotel.

The entertainment back in the Bungalow was interesting - although this not for the right reasons. Inappropriate TV channels were available directly to our room - there was no filtering available and so we ended up with 3-4 pornographic type channels of an evening time and ended up not turning the TV off of Sky News the whole time we were there as we were uncomfortable with what we may find.

Food was impressive, the variety however, was not so. Food seemed to be replenished quickly - very rarely did I see anything empty, however very often did I see the same dishes. Breakfast was the same every day - which is fine, if the variety of foods is big enough to compensate this which I would not say it is. Lunch was also quite repetitive. I was however surprised that throughout our whole stay, there was only one themed buffet night. This however was some of the best food that we had throughout our stay. We attended one speciality night - the Italian - which we were also extremely impressed with.
HOWEVER, REGARDLESS OF WHAT ANY TRAVEL COMPANIES SAY WITH REGARDS TO THIS HOTEL, LONG TROUSERS MUST BE WORN BY MEN AT DINNERTIME WHETHER YOU GO TO A SPECIALITY OR EAT AT THE BUFFET. The hotel told my partner he wasn't allowed to wear shorts (tailored shorts with a shirt may I add) and so he ended up wearing the same pair of trousers to dinner throughout our stay and changing immediately afterwards. However, we often saw men wearing shorts at the buffet - and so in this field, the hotel has a very strange system of double standards in which I am not best pleased about.

Everything else from the hotel is what you would expect and more - staff were extremely friendly, couldn't do enough for you. They would often give you big bottles of fizzy drinks to take back to your room which was easier than making trips to and from the nearest bars. Drink variety was good for a hotel which only uses local alcoholic drinks in their all inclusive selection.

Overall I was impressed by this hotel - obviously my few faults are stated more than the things I liked about the hotel - but overall I liked it and think I would return. The grounds were beautiful and well kept, the staff fantastic, the food was not the worst I've had, the lack entertainment was made easier by the company I shared and the weather we encountered was through no fault of the hotel and therefore can and will not be held against them, however a drainage system should be put into place at the hotel as the marble floorings were very slippery and dangerous after heavy rainfall.

I would return if I got a good deal but I would prefer to look for a slightly more prestigious, possibly adults only hotel if I were to go to this area again.

Room Tip: Bungalows were very spacious and soundproofed well.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Natasha W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
essex
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed September 5, 2013

I will start with positives:
The staff especially bar staff fantastic.
Hotel very clean.
Now negatives:
Food was horrible very repetitive yuk! Cannot understand other reviews on how great food was.
Had a garden view bungalow, in need of a refurb, bathroom not very nice .
Had to ask for fridge to be replenished even tho it states it is done daily!!!!! Not!!!
Very disappointed with Riu.

  • Stayed September 2013
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Helpful?
1 Thank dawnthespud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maastricht, The Netherlands
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed September 2, 2013

It was my 20th holiday in Tunisia. My second time to Hammamet, 15 years after my first visit to same city. This time in the Riu Hotel Marhaba 5 star. Being pre-dominantly a business traveler and regularly in business hotel, it was a wonderful change to be a guest in a RIU holiday hotel for my vacation.This hotel is among other RIU Palace hotels an excellent choice for spending time off.
Room was spacious and a fantastic view of swimming pool and sea. I can cautiously indicate our room must have been the best location in the entire hotel building. What an amazing view. See the photos. Knowing Tunisian people are friendly and always willing to take the extra mile with a smile, the hotel staff attitude is a 'cherry on the cake'. Hotel staff is conscious in offering first class service. Although it was all-inclusive, a tip now and then for their effort is highly appreciated.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner was constantly a mixture of cuisine dishes. Needless to say the extreme variety of choices fulfill any 'fussy eater' demands.
Two separate swimming pools and a magnificent garden directly connected to the beach complements the architecture of the hotel. Its layout spreads tranquility and relaxation to it guests. Not to forget, this hotel is known for its wellness services.

Room Tip: Topfloor (3rd floor) in the middle. rooms 1331, 1333, 1335 have best sea and swimming pool view.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
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2 Thank Gerard1955
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
devon
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed September 1, 2013

Recently stayed at the Marhaba Palace in July 2013 this year this is our fifth time at this hotel so that obviously says something about the hotel and staff. We found it as usual a wonderful relaxing experience, the rooms are beautiful and spacious, the staff go out of their way to be helpful (with or without tipping) we always tip as we are leaving but get great service the whole time we're there. The food is the highlight, plenty of choice and plenty of it! It most definitely is 5 star but without being pretentious. We prefer early or late summer this was the first time we had stayed in July and it was very hot but lots of nice shady spots and cool drinks. We hope to keep returning Tunisia is a fabulous country.

Room Tip: Found the bungalows in the gardens to be hotter inside than the rooms in the hotel even with the air...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank anney21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Palace Hammamet Marhaba

Property: Hotel Palace Hammamet Marhaba
Address: Avenue Moncef Bey | Hammamet, Hammamet, Tunisia (Formerly Hotel Riu Palace Hammamet Marhaba)
Location: Tunisia > Nabeul Governorate > Hammamet
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 117 Hotels in Hammamet
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel Palace Hammamet Marhaba 5*
Number of rooms: 200
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