My partner and I stayed at the Turiham hotel for two weeks from 10th June 2011. We are a couple in our early twenties and were looking for somewhere cheap and close to the beach with bars nearby (but not clubs).
The location of the hotel is perfect, couldn't be better. You literally are on the beach. The sunbeds along the beach are free (as are all of the sunbeds outside the bars and restaurants along the entire beach) and staff from the hotel often come to you when you are sun bathing to ask if you would like a drink from the bar - they won't bother you though if you decide to bring your own. (Though it is polite to buy a drink from a bar if you are using their sunbeds and it isn't your hotel - polite, I would say, though not compulsery). We never had a problem getting sunbeds either and most of them are cushioned and very comfortable.
The hotel itself is nice enough. The pool is quite small and has no shallow end, but not a problem for us. The dining hall for breakfast (we were B&B) wasn't too busy in the morning, but often got busy in the evening for those on half board. The staff always found everyone a table though, no one waited long, and often people ate on tables along the beach.
The food. Right. The breakfast was okay, better than I was expecting actually. There was bacon (very crispy!), sausages (spicy, not English), scrambled egg, bread, baked beans (not heinz, not nice!), a selection of cold meat and cereal. There were also little pastry type things which I really liked, but most of the breakfast was quite iffy. Not really worth getting out of bed for. (I think breakfast was 8-10.)
I was told by a couple who were half board that the evening meals were awful, though I don't know this for sure. I did eat at the hotel's restaurant twice during my stay on both of the Turihan's Turkish nights. They did a BBQ both times and had a belly dancer who was really funny. On the first Turkish night the food was passable, though not great to be honest. The second time we did it the food was much better and I really enjoyed it. The cocktails at the bar are nice enough, drinks were pretty much the same everywhere. The bar does do a happy hour for half price drinks, but this isn't during mealtimes for the half boarders. Dinner was 8-10, I think, and happy hour 10-12.
Our first room was a bit of a disaster. When we arrived at the Turiham, at stupid o'clock in the morning, we were shown to a room which had a large stain down the wall below the air con. It was horrid. My boyfriend said if it still bothered me in the morning then we'd make a fuss, but as it didn't bother him I decided to leave it. About five days later water started to leak out of the air con and down into the plug socket. At first the hotel man sent someone to fix the air con, but it began leaking again. So, we took a photograph of the leak and the stain and showed it to our Thomas Cook rep. Well, she went mad! What we probably should have done was show the picture to the man at reception first (who was happy to give us a new room), before speaking to our rep as the pair of them soon got into a huge argument. It was arranged that we would get a new room the next day and a bottle of wine and bowl of fruit for our trouble. This may sound like a bit of a horror story, but I think we were probably just unlucky. The next day men went in to fix the air con and repainted the whole room.
Our new room was perfect! The shower was much bigger and the bathroom nicer in general. The rooms are white and a little tired looking, not pristine, but good for the money! Each room has it's own fridge and the air con is free. There is also a TV though it only has a couple of news channels in English. The bed was comfortable. The room was always clean. Spot on.
You get new towels every two days. Beware, just because you leave towels scrunched up on the floor or in the shower don't assume they will be taken away and new ones left out. One day we found our used, damp and dirty towels that we had left on the bathroom floor hung up again in place of new ones. Luckily I spotted that they were the dirty ones so we didn't use them! We did mention our concern to the hotel man who made sure we were sent new ones.
There is some noise. The huge hotel next to the Turihan plays loud music during the day and evening. We had no problem sleeping through it (it wasn't too loud) but if you are looking for peace and quiet bare this in mind.
Ozzy does the Turkish Baths at the Turihan, which are great! Really private, just the two of you in the room, as apposed to being in a huge group at the big Turkish Bath place that the Thomas Cook rep suggests. Really great fun, a great experience- I loved the bubbles! Ozzy is also really helpful if you have any questions about the area and offered to let us use his laptop if we needed the internet. Really lovely, friendly bloke. He even drove my boyfriend to a cashpoint when we couldn't find one to use.
Cashpoints - when we went in June there weren't any cashpoints working. The nearest one was near the Oasis shopping centre, about a half hour walk from the hotel. I don't know if this has changed.
Phones - the best thing to get is a phone card which you can buy from your rep or any of the little shops. We were assured this was the cheapest way to contact home and there were pay phones everywhere.
Money - can be changed up in lots of places in Gumbet, often for a better rate than back home. Many of the shops, even the smallest ones, happily except Euros and pounds as well as Lira.
A few extra things that we found out:
**You can get a lovely English breakfast from The Royal, a restaurant just down the road from the Turihan, for £2.
**There is a great bar called Alora, just along the beach from the Turihan, which has probably the best cocktails and does shisha pipes. It also has loads of comfortable pink sofas and hammocks and sometimes does a foam party!
**Lots of restaurants will offer you free garlic bread/freshly baked naan bread and garlic butter. Yum! Let them make you an offer. We liked the restaurant with the bar build round a tree (not far along the beach).
**Food in Turkey is great. Annalivia's is one of the best restaurants and you can get a free taxi there if you get the man at reception to phone them. This is a standard thing they, and some other restaurants, do.
**If you want a slightly nicer restaurant (they had a wine list, so posh by Gumbet's standards!) there is one not far from the Turihan called Sarray Zetas, I believe. This was suggested to us by one of the bar men and was lovely. If you walk along the man road past The Royal and take a right at Our House you will find it tucked down a little road there. Talking of Our House, thats also a great place to eat. We ate there twice at least.
**There are a couple of Turkish bakerys not too far from the Turihan, on the way to the Oasis. Worth a visit!
**The Oasis isn't amazing, just your regular shopping centre with some
clothes stores you will recognise - quite expensive. For souvenirs stick to bar street and the surrounding area.
**You can get a great deal on faux bags/clothes at the market. Not as cheap as you might think, but the quality is probably better. You can haggle, of course! We took a day trip with Thomas Cook and did the market, Turkish Delight place (omg so good!) and the Gold Centre.
**Gold - gold and jewelry in general is cheaper in Turkey. Sales people can be pushy though, so make sure they know no means no! Or get yourself a good deal.
**There are bars, it was much busier than I expected, but the nightlife isn't a patch on Zante or Napa or any of those sort of places. Possibly not the ideal location for your clubbing holiday. There are only two proper clubs in Gumbet and they arn't fantastic. There is a club in Bodrum on a catermaran (boat) though, which leaves about 10/11pm and doesn't come back until 6am!
**Bodrum is great for a wander. Good for shopping and there is a Starbucks! Bodrum Castle is also great, worth a visit. We loved it.
**We took a catermaran to Kos for the day. It's very pretty there, though there isn't a lot to do. Great for shopping and beautiful to walk around, or sit outside with an ice cream sundae or a crepe.
**Do a boat trip. We booked ours through Ozzy at the Turihan, though they all look the same. Such a good day for relaxing and a change of scene.
**I can't stress enough, CHICKO'S is THE BEST bar in Gumbet. Such a great group of blokes, we spent most of our second week there. The entertainment is brilliant, the guys made me laugh so much and always include you in the fun! Great cocktails from Halil, of course. Thank you so much to everyone at Chiko's, we had such a fantastic time.
I hope this review helps. Overall we had an amazing time in Gumbet and would go back to Gumbet and the Turihan. The weather was also amazing in June. I love the sun and it was even too hot for me at times! The food is cheap and drinks arn't too expensive. Have fun and enjoy :)
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- Also Known As:
- Turihan Hotel Gumbet