We stayed for a week 13-20th July, with our 20 month old.
The plane trip through Thompson/First Choice took less than 3 hours, coach transfer was painless and we were greeted in the lobby with drinks and our all inclusive wrist bands.
We we extremely impressed with our room. A 'kids den' room in Manar 1 which was ideal for us. Even though we didn't make use of the bunk beds, the cot provided for our boy was easily moved in-front of the beds so that we could relax and watch TV without disturbing him. The only downside is you have to go through this room to get to the bathroom/toilet but this was no problem. The room was decorated to a high standard, had satellite tv (limited channels), a small fridge with very small frozen section (for ice cubes) and was stocked with water and milk daily. Having arrived at 2am this was a god send. We woke in the morning to find we had a gorgeous sea view, which nearly all rooms in manar 1's upper floor have.
This is where it gets the 5 star ratings, for Tunisia the facilities are impeccable;
3 kids/side pools, 3 larger pools and water slides. Plenty of sun loungers, though you will still need to go down prior to 10am to get a decent spot in peak season.
Outdoor Amphitheater where they do the kids entertainment, it's just had a new HUGE outdoor screen which displays music videos and kids cartoons prior to the shows. This Amphitheater has it's own 'Show Bar' too, so you can have a drink while the kids cause chaos.
5-a side and tennis courts, archery area, small kids playground. Creche for under 3's and kids club for all ages (up to 15 i think).
The grounds are kept in perfect condition, with gardeners and cleaning staff often about.
Wi-fi internet, and even available in some areas by the pool side!
Food / Restaurants:
You will only get bored with the food on offer if you're REALLY picky. The main buffet restaurant has themed nights which have plenty of extra specials for you to try each not, failing that there's always chips, pizza, burgers, spag bol, bbq etc every night. We particularly enjoyed Mexican an Indian nights and the food was always cooked and presented to a high standard. We often eat at the 'Snack Bar' outside or had a sandwich at the beach bar during the day rather than the buffet restaurant. This way you can get out the pool/off the beach for a few mins without having to get dry/changed to eat. This food wasn't exactly restaurant standard but it filled the gap between breakfast and the evening buffet. Our little boy loved the chocolate ice cream cones!
The only reason the beach get's it's own section is because other reviews have really brought it down. People have stated it as being messy, clogged with seaweed and that you get hassled by sellers. THIS IS NOT THE CASE. Previous reviews have clearly been made after a storm has brought in rubbish and seaweed - which would be the case anywhere in the world. When we went, the beach was the best we have been to. Clean, tidy - and no sea weed! There is a beach bar serving drinks and sandwiches and there are plenty of lounges (often when there are none by the pools). The beach is sectioned off for just hotel goers and has dedicated security staff that make-sure you won't get hassled (we never saw any sellers). The reps advise not to accept camel/horse rides from people crossing through but the water sports offered are done direct through the hotel and have experienced staff on site to book through. Kayaks are also free, and a large swimming and water sports area netted off.
Honest, genuine and helpful. I have never come across a friendlier atmosphere anywhere. The hotel staff are quick to learn your drinks orders and will go the extra mile to ensure you're happy. This is most apparent in the buffet restaurant. The waiters stick to their own sections each day, so if you sit in a similar spot each visit, the guys will really make an effort to remember your drinks, have a quick chat about your day and be around to make sure your drinks are never empty, and your plates promptly cleared. Our little boy liked a particular high-chair (which we have at home) and the guys even reserved this for us, bringing it out as they saw us enter the restaurant. We went during ramadan; These guys are fasting and serving us drinks and food for 14 hours a day and still have a smile on their face all day.
An entire team of dedicated reps and a real credit to Thompson. Kids clubs/entertainment extremely well run. Reps always available when you have questions and are extremely helpful and knowledgeable.
The only issue we had was that the lifts tend to get busy. Waiting with the lifts opening sometimes 5-6 times before and empty one becomes available to get us+a pushchair in.
If you've read this far, I will close with this. The staff at manar work extremely hard, you're in Tunisia where the rest of the area is tired and run down. The hotel might not be 5* luxury with bath robes and sandles but it lives up to all expectations for a family village. Everything you need is on-site, there's plenty for the kids to do and the staff and reps will do all they can to makesure you have an enjoyable holiday. No where else in Tunisia can offer this level of service and facilities for the price, period.
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Village Manar Hotel Hammamet
- Magic Life Manar Imperial Hammamet
- Magic Life Manar Imperial Hotel