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“Kalkan has a charm all of its own”
Review of Kalkan Suites

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Kalkan Suites
Ranked #24 of 40 Hotels in Kalkan
Reviewed April 11, 2010

I arrived in the early hours of the morning to be greeted by a huge warm smile from Naz who runs the Samira Garden. I was shown to a lovely room and settled in. The following day I climbed the stairs to the roof top restaurant and was blown away by the stunning views across Kalkan. I love the Turkish breakfast so tucked into goat's cheese, fresh fruit, bread rolls and a tall glass of freshly squeezed orange juice.
I stayed at the Samira Garden for the last two weeks of October 2009. The hotel is tiny but perfectly formed with a small pool, plenty of sunbeds and shady seating areas. The pool is ice cold and it's kept at that temperature to stop algae growing on it. The hotel even has a little library in the basement, so you won't be short of reading material.
Without me even asking I was moved into a fantastic room with a balcony and jacuzzi bath halfway through the first week. I never expected it but Karen the Thomas Cook rep thought I should have a room with a balcony ( I never expect anything glamorous as a solo traveller, but that was an unexpected treat).
Naz and her team do everything they can to make you feel welcome. Everyone hangs out in the bar area between 6-8pm before walking down the hill into Kalkan. I was adopted by a fabulous group of people from High Wycombe on the first night who asked me to join them at The Fish Terrace. I have to say that the company and the food were fantastic, they really made my introduction to Kalkan memorable.
In fact everyone I met in Kalkan was very friendly, by the end of the first week I felt like I had lived there for years! I was never alone for long and often took people that I'd met into the shops I'd been in and recommended the restaurants that I'd tried. My favourite restaurants were Kaya (great magic tricks at the table and heavenly grouper fish on mustard mash), Kosk (fantastic meatballs), The Fish Terrace (very special), Kaptans (fantastic views over the beach, good vegetarian menu as well as the meat option), Fez (delicious Manti), Pide (Turkish pizza) at BBQ and Cafe Del Mar (my favourite hangout in the late afternoon, famous for its cakes!). One of my favourite nights was at The Samira Hotel's belly dancing night, it was fantastic fun and great value for money, do not miss it!
It's only a ten minute walk into town, but it is very steep, do not, I repeat do not take high heels to this town, it's impossible to walk in them, not only are the paths steep but the stones are slippy too. Take flat shoes with a good grip on the sole. Leave some room in your suitcase as the shopping is good! There's also market in Kalkan on Thursdays and one in Fethiye every Tuesday.
Kalkan is famous for its 100 plus restaurants which clamber up the steep slopes of this pretty town. It can be found in the Lycian region of Turkey, which makes it ideal for the more adventurous traveller who likes to get out and about. You can book trips to the Greek island of Meis, walk through the ice cold waters of the Saklikent Gorge, stroll along turtle beach at Olu Deniz, or snooze on Patara beach (which is said to be one of the best in Turkey). It’s easy to book an organised tour, a taxi or even go by local dolmus to many sites of interest including the church of St. Nicholas in Demre and the World Heritage site of Xanthos. It’s also possible to go to Istanbul by overnight bus from Kalkan.
Alternatively, you could enjoy the fake mudbath that’s available on the daily boat tours from the harbour. I say fake because when the Captain stopped in a little rocky bay yelling “Mud bath! Mud bath!” I was hard pressed to see where the mud actually was. The beach looked bone dry to me. It could only be reached after clambering over very sharp rocks (invest in a pair jelly shoes for this, 10 lira from the shop in town). There were a group of walkers sheltering from the heat of the sun under an overhanging rock at the time. I soon realised that the ‘mud bath’ was going to involve a bit of creative thinking when the captain’s helper shot off the boat with a plastic bowl in his hand. As soon as he arrived on land he started grabbing handfuls of clay and mixing it with seawater, soon the ‘mud bath’ was ready to be slapped on any brave tourist that made it across the rocks! Everyone swore that their skin felt softer afterwards.
It often says in the guides that Kalkan doesn’t have its own beach, I can confirm that it does, it’s just a small one. It’s also an experience. There is an art to getting in and out of the sea on Kalkan beach and I didn’t work it out the first time I went in, or rather fell in! The rocks spread beneath your feet as you attempt to clamber down the slope to it and your feet sink up to your ankles. I stubbed my toes so many times getting in, but it was worth it as the sea was like a warm bath. The inclination to stay in the sea was quite strong as I couldn’t see how I was going to clamber out again! As I looked around some people shuffled out on their bums and others opted for the hands and knees approach which is what I did. That was when I noticed a lady walking as though nothing was sucking on her feet dragging her down. She was wearing the jelly shoes and that’s when I decided to invest in a pair.
Kalkan is one of the friendliest places I have ever been too. Nothing is too much trouble as the people like to ensure that you are having a good time. As a solo female you will get chatted up. I got a tip in Northern Cyprus to say ‘maybe’ or ‘I’ll think about it’ if asked out as most Turkish guys would leave me alone, whereas if I said no outright they would keep pushing. It was a good tip, ‘maybe’ works, its non-committal. It’s easy to be flattered by the chat up lines until you realise that any solo female will do!
You will also be offered chai from the shopkeepers, I recommend that you take up the offer, you won’t be put under pressure to buy and it’s a great way to get to know everybody. Although if I’d accepted every offer I got on my last day I might have missed my plane home!

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled solo
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7  Thank Pamreader
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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83 - 89 of 104 reviews

Reviewed March 18, 2010

We stayed here for a week, my first time to Turkey in the lovely resort of Kalkan more upmarket than the other well known Turkish resorts. We arrived and were given a ground floor room which we quickly changed without any fuss to a first floor room and Naz even helped to transfer our belongings. The room was spacious, clean and with modern fittings. The balcony was narrow but we were still able to sit out and watch the world go by. The pool area was peaceful with padded recliners an absolute must for serious sunbathers! and plenty of shaded areas for those not so keen. The staff were very helpful, pleasant and well presented and always had a smile and a friendly word for all the guests. We had a few meals at the hotel and they were of good quality and reasonably priced. It was a short walk to the heart of the resort and beach down a very steep slope so a word of advise to ladies do not wear any heels!! All in all a very relaxing week in a comfortable hotel and would gladly return.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Jaslou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2010

Arrived at 3am to a pantomime.we were shown into a room which was like a cupboard with no lights!!Porter who spoke no English thought it was "romantic".Approched the smiling Naz the next day on reception who did not understand the problem and refused to move us.It was not until the rep arrived late pm that Naz picked up the phone to get the electricity sorted.An electrician came and fixed it and the lights blew as soon as he left!!We had visits from teh electrician four times.The room was disgusting,funny enough Room 101!It had a massive damp patch and a leaking aircon unit.Eventually they agreed to move us on day 4 of a 7 day stay and the manager had to evict their pal from another room.The managers,especially the female were disgraceful.They were never there and treated us like we were the problem.She was particularly rude and tried to blame us on the fact the lights wer blown each day!!!Once we were moved,room 101 was condemmed.They seemed to start pulling the damp wall down and replastering.It had never been fit to be a hotel room.Also the room had a window which opened to a walkway.There was no peace to sit on a balcony as the bar staff kept popping round.There are no sectioned off balconies on the ground floor.You may read stories of smiling faces but be warned,they are not so smiling if you encounter a problem.First holiday in Kalkan with no kids.Ruined by Samira Gardens.Will never go back.P.S Karen the rep was helpful but when we complained ,as recommended,Thomas Cook did not want to know.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank monty101Bexleyheath
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2009

We stayed here in early September 2009 and found our room VERY small. The shower leaked and we had to use all the towels everyday to mop the flood, er floor. Only 1 light in the bathroom worked above the sink so you had to shower before it got dark. We talked to other guests who had panoramic views and jacuzzi baths. Nearly all the other rooms were bigger. The hotel was clean. We were on half board and the only people for the first week. The menu was very limited, lamb, chicken or salad. They wouldn't let us swap dinner for lunch even though it would have been cheaper for them to do so. The owners were often at the hotel and didn't speak or acknowledge us. The manager on the other hand was touchy feely and forever taking snaps of everyone. She made us feel uncomfortable. The pool was good and during our stay it was very quiet which was great. The hotel has a sister the Samira Deluxe but we were never informed of any activities going on there. Lots of people complained about the rooms (some had no balcony) and they were put up at apartments acros the road.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank UKJean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 1, 2009

We stayed at the Samira Garden Hotel for a week in the middle of October and were impressed by this small hotel. Thank you Naz for your help and constant smile.

The staff were very friendly and helpful and the rooms were spotlessly clean. We had a bedroom on the ground floor, facing a side road. Probably the same room (or similar) to one of the other people writing a review. We didn't mind facing buildings across the road, as this was a quiet road and the hotel gardens, orange trees and shrubs partially acted as a screen.

The breakfasts were typically continental, but you could have a cooked breakfast for a small extra cost. There was plenty of choice and the view from the dining terrace was stunning.

This was our first time in Turkey and Kalkan was just wonderful. Winding streets leading down to a pretty harbour and a small but lovely pebble beach. We had very good weather and swam in the sea every day. Swimming from this beach is great, very clean and safe.

I have never been away anywhere where the food was so good. Wonderful restaurants, either down by the harbour or on the rooftops slightly further up the hill. Affordable, beautifully presented and delicious. We enjoyed Aubergine (portions are huge) and the Ivy, but one of the best was the Istanbul Hotel along from Alternatif - just a few tables on the rooftop. Also, this was one of the slightly less expensive ones. All the restaurants are very reasonably priced with Aubergine being the most expensive one.

The journey to and from Kalkan was long and very tedious, but worth every minute. We will definitely go back.

Stephanie Harris & Eric McRobert

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank StephEastMidlands
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2009

My husband and I have just returned from a weeks stay at Samira Garden.We are regulars to Kalkan and love the town and its people but I must say I do not agree with Whitey 30 ,it is not a well run hotel.The receptionist seems to berunning it and is trying her very best and is very friendly,but the management (Tekin&Barnu) just seem to sit around looking pretty.That is when they are not over the road at the Samira Hotel (owned by the same family).We booked independently & wher quoted £30 per room per night.On fronting up at reception to pay at the end of our weeks stay the receptionist had to ring up (the boss) for the rates & was told £40,luckily I had the quote on paper & this was for a room without balcony.To add to the insult my husband had to carry the case down the stairs his self non of the staff present were call to help. We usually stay at the Samira over the road & have always had excelent service from Ergun & his staff. Has for Whitey s comment about the breakfasts they are typically turkish,isn t that what we holiday in Turkey for. The Samira Garden could be a great hotel if run properly .They just need Ergun to show the the way.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank mcavity2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 9, 2009

Just returned from a two week stay in the Samira Gardens Hotel. Our first few days were wonderful with a quiet pool area and super service from the staff ~ Naz, Oz and Chico.
disappointed with our room as the balcony was on ground floor looking on to the side street and a building site opposite!
Our first week was quiet int he hotel which was why we booked it but during the second part of our stay a wedding party moved into the hotel and apartments and we found the hotel too crowded especially on one night when a 'mock' wedding took place!!
Noise is a problem when people are at the bar area as it travels to all of the rooms and we found that people not staying at the hotel were partying until the early hours!
We had also booked half board and as we wanted to try the other fantastic restuarants on a few nights we asked if we could exchange for a lunch instead! We were refused, but still went out on a few occasions to the lovely Aburgene and also the Musaka ~ food was super! The BBQ restuarant is also very good and the pizza fantastic.
We decided to visit the many beach clubs during our second week as the pool area was packed! These are super as you can catch one of the little boats at the harbour for free and spend the day there with superb views of kalkan bay and the many boats sailing in and out of the harbour.
Samira is a good hotel if it is not fully booked, we also found that a large family of nine completely changed the hotel as it was harder to get to know others there and also the pool area is not really suitable for children and teenagers.
Rooms are clean but as guests are not permitted to bring in food and drink it restricts you to using the bar at all times. A kettle and tea/coffee making facilities would really bring this littte hotel up to scratch along with a fridge for water during the night.
We also found the owners more interested in the sale of their villas than the hotel guests.
Would definitely return to Kalkan but don't know about Samira Gardens?

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank cmitchuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kalkan Suites

Address: Yaliboyu Mah. Nilufer Cad. No:1, Kalkan, Turkey (Formerly Samira Garden Hotel)
Location: Turkey > Turkish Mediterranean Coast > Antalya Province > Kalkan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#15 Romantic Hotel in Kalkan
Price Range: $93 - $194 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Kalkan Suites 3*
Number of rooms: 8
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Also Known As:
Hotel Samira Garden

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