We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Nearby Hotels
Reviews (1,622)
Filter reviews
1,622 results
Traveler rating
497
555
232
152
186
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
497
555
232
152
186
Show reviews that mention
All reviews fab holiday hotel manager evening entertainment gardens are beautiful segregation sea diving barman egyptians pier chefs shisha
Filter
Updating list...
110 - 115 of 1,622 reviews
Reviewed September 2, 2007

my husband my self and our daughter have just come back from two relaxing weeks at the calimera the staff are excellent and helpful . make sure you follow your cases on arrival it saves getting lost and request a map on arrival its more like a small village in size. the food was okay with plenty of choice. the setting is remote but as long as you know this its not a problem, the pools of which there are four are great. we had a suite on the crazy golf course which was surprizingly large one twin room a large sitting room a large double room with dressing area off it the only draw back was it only has one bathroom although it was quite big enough another toilet would of been handy.
we went quad biking with guides that come to the complex and my husband and daughter got their open water diving certificates which is based on site.
sam is a frendly rep based here in the summer.
say hello to hussain from samantha in the dinning hall if you go he is very frendly and helpful.
i hope you enjoy your stay as we did

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank paulnorthamptonshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 29, 2007

What can I say...Its already been said in previous posts. The Calimera is pure relaxation. We have already rebooked to go back again next May with my parents. Give it a try....you wont be disapointed.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
9  Thank Deebe29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2007

Well, we returned last Wednesday from a week in Marsa Alam, staying at the Calimera Habiba and we wanted to share a few of our thoughts with you all.

We booked through Thomas Cook and took the upgrade to 'Royal Suite', which actually should cost £12 pppn, though we did not pay that much. We departed the UK on the 8th August, from Gatwick and returned on the 15th August.

As with previous visits to the Red Sea area (this was our 4th visit), we spent the previous night at a Gatwick Guest House, one that we know and trust and used their facility in which to leave our car for the week. This scenario cost us probably less than a weeks Airport parking.

Anyway, the first pleasant surprise was Marsa Alam airport. It is very new and actually quite nice. We have flown into Sharm twice and Taba once before and this airport is the best of the three. Also, the transfer arranged by Thomas Cook, using a local company called Blue Sky was without fault. A clean air-conditioned Coach was our mode of transport and made 2 stops before ours, totalling no more than 1 hour before we were in the resort. There were some guests dropped at the Kahramana before us and this looked lovely from where we were sitting!!

The initial sighting of the Calimera, though less dramatic, was not disappointing, however. Our check-in was fast and painless, but uncovered my first minor gripe. The silly wrist-bands that you are expected to wear all week to signify your All-Inclusive entitlement and which of the three, well, actually four resorts you are staying in. It also leaves a lovely white-mark when you finally remove it if you forgot to move it whilst tanning!!

The resort itself was fantastic, the rooms placed in a very uncluttered fashion and built in a traditional looking mud-hut style. The gardens never fail to impress, especially when you consider what the land looked like before the development and also the relentless and blistering heat. The gardeners work so very hard to maintain this and truly deserve a medal for the lush greenery and plant-scape they provide.

A Bell-man was provided to move our bags, we simply had to scrawl our room number on the baggage tag and take off to our room to check it out. Our bags followed within an hour.

As I said earlier, we upgraded to a Royal Suite. There are only 8 of these within the Habiba and we had fairly high expectations of it, especially since the standard published room-rate is $500USD per night!! The larger accommodation, inclusion of a Jacuzzi on the Balcony and 2 Mountain Bikes were what attracted us.

The size of the Suite certainly didn't disappoint, the bed was massive, there was a very spacious lounge with a large corner suite, TV's in the Bedroom and Lounge, a large Bathroom with Shower and also 2 further rooms (Kitchenette and Wardrobe room). The balcony was as wide as the whole Suite and looked out over the entire complex, with 2 Sunloungers and 2 Chairs and the aforementioned Jacuzzi. However, no sign of the bikes and I cannot stress enough the distance that these suites are from any of the features of the resort (Beach/Pool/Restaurants). It takes a good 15 minutes at the kind of pace that you fancy walking in that heat to get to breakfast. Trying to stay positive, we said that at least we wouldn't put on any 'Holiday Pounds'!! it was very tough though, that walk became dreaded and certainly was a thorn-in-the-side of our week.

The Jacuzzi, being sunk into the ground, was a natural gathering place for all the desert rubbish, sands and insects, which seemed to just gather there on a daily basis, making it appear unattractive. Though, on the second day of being there, we decided to clean it out at fill it up. Easy huh? No. We turned the tap on and what came out? What can only be described as a trickle of rusty orange water. We had already discovered this when we tried to use the hot tap inside the suite and had vowed to not use any more hot water!! There was no need anyway, as the cold tap emitted luke-warm water anyway, which after a few seconds of running, looked fairly clean. So, we began filling the Jacuzzi from the cold tap. 10 minutes later, the water just about covered the bottom and it became obvious that it just wasn't going to happen, so we aborted mission. I would guess that it would have taken around 2-3 hours to fill, by which time, we would have lost interest!! Shame.

Still no sign of the bikes either!! So, we gave Sam (the Thomas Cook rep) a prod.

I know this sounds as though I am moaning, infact overall we had a lovely time. I suppose having stayed at the Hyatt Regency in Sharm, we had very high standards and expectations.

The next major problem and one that I think everyone going to this resort should be aware of is the major Italian presence. Apparently, 80% of the occupancy is Italian and whilst I am not prejudiced and had no previous opinion of Italian people, I can honestly that they are the rudest people I have ever met. They do not ever say 'Hello' to anyone that isn't Italian, they don't ever appear to say 'Please' or 'Thank you' for anything and seem to regard the hotel staff as their slaves. They have a dedicated area within the Calimera called 'Eden Village', which has its own branding in vivid orange colours and their own pool/bar etc, which you are not restricted from using, but if you want our advice, steer well clear. We did hear stories if Italians showing Brits 'the door' if they used 'their' facility.

One thing that did not change from previous Red Sea visits is the Arabic staff. I can honestly say that they are the friendliest people I have ever met. Extremely helpful, courteous and efficient.

I would also dispel any myth about the food. People have said about there being lack of variety and about it not being hot enough. The main Restaurant where the All-inclusive provision is given is in a buffet-style, so of course the food isn't as hot as if it were cooked to order, but this isn't a problem. There are generous amounts of Bread of many varieties, Salad, Fruit and various local and National dishes of which you can enjoy repeat visits should you wish. Also, due to the Italian presence, they have a resident Italian (female) Chef who prepares Pasta meals every day. We most enjoyed the Omlettes and were of the high standard as those that we enjoyed at the Hyatt.

We visited the Arrabiata, which is the on-site Italian restaurant on 2 occasions. The All-Inclusive entitlement doesn't stretch to this establishment, along with the other 2 or 3 restaurants. Though a generous discount is offered. Beccy and I enjoyed a 3-course meal and several soft-drinks for just over a tenner on both visits. So, big thumbs-up there. If you do visit that side of the complex, be sure to visit 'The Mine' too. From the outside it looks like an unused bar, which just didn't take off, but there is an 'inside' and infact it is a really nice bar where a variety of events take place, including Belly-Dancing (one of the male staff members is a slightly 'camp' belly-dancer himself!!).

The beach is gorgeous. Laced with Palm tree's and sunlougers surrounded by whicker wind-breaks and shaded by large parasols made from the same material. There is a very refreshing breeze constantly blowing over the resort, which makes the heat alot more tolerable, but can cause you to underestimate the suns strength, of course when the wind is blowing, the suns rays are still pounding away at your skin, even though you don't feel it so much! The on-site Animation teams, of which the Italian 'Eden' team are the most prominent, have a disco running on the beach and hold regular Beach Volleyball games and other participatory events.

The sea is unusual. The resort had a section of the reef cut away and provides an area where you can swim and paddle without too much risk of hurting yourself on the corals. The sea waves appear to break about 1/8 to 1/4 mile from the beach and the area in between is a shallow reef which, once the tide goes out mid-morning leaves rock pools where you can see Star-fish and Crabs. I have to say though, if Snorkelling is you thing, this isn't the resort for you. There is practically nothing to see and we were disappointed with this.

Balbaa, who own the entire resort, also own a private beach which is about 10km up the road and can be visited using a courtesy bus, free of charge. These buses run frequently to and from the beach and it is well worth the visit. There isn't much more to see in the water here, but we did get to see the Dugong (Sea Cow), which is a sight to behold. It is a peaceful animal, grazing on the sea-grass, and making frequent breath-stops to the surface, due to the fact that it is a mammal. People do seem to bug it a little though, we just looked on for a few minutes, then left. Some people chose to swim right up close taking photo's and attempting to touch it.

The weather was as expected. 39-42° all week, with the locals reminding us that it literally never rains. This is apparent once you look at the construction of the hotel and the very crude outdoor electrics. I imagine that if it ever rained, it would be a fairly major catastrophe.

Towards the end of our week we booked a Quad-biking trip and a massage each. Thomas Cook offered to book these on our behalf, but it wasn't hard to book these direct and I would imagine that TC just act as a 'middle-man', dealing with the same people that we did, but just (understandably) adding their little cut. The Quad-biking in the desert was great, Beccy and I rode on one bike. The organisers will try and keep Nationalities together on certain days and suggested we went on the Saturday as there were other English out on that day. But I have to say that I didn't 'buy' the whole Bedouin tent thing. It was supposed to be a genuine Bedouin tent, but it looked a little set-up to me. One of our party also lost their Digital Camera and when the 2 tour leaders left us at a 'stop-off' point whilst back-tracking to go and look for it, I thought that there really was no chance that it would be seen again. I thought it would either not be found or there would be 'foul play. How wrong I was though. They found it and handed it over. Big-up to them!!

Towards the end of our week, we still hadn't seen the bikes, despite several reminders, so we resigned to the fact that we wouldn't see those, but never phased, we decided to have another crack at the Jacuzzi. We started the filling process at about 10.00am and left it to it. By 12.00 it was full and we enjoyed 10 minutes in it before deciding to go for lunch, planning to spend the afternoon relaxing in it sipping soft-drinks!! However, on our return the Maid had only let the bl**dy water out!! Thanks for that!! So, we were missing the 2 main features of the Royal Suite and certainly disappointed, especially since we still couldn't escape the massive hike each day to get anywhere! The room was lovely, but on balance, we would have taken a lesser room without the walk, of that I am fairly sure. Having got to know the resort, there are some 'Standard Suites' along the beach which really are the ones to have in my opinion. Their location is absolutely ideal, central to everything and they have lush green frontage. I think the only thing they seem to lack is the Jacuzzi. So what!!

Anyway, one evening about 2 days before our departure, we returned from an evening out and I had my usual glance out of the french-door before closing the curtains and imagine my shock when I saw the silhouette of a Scorpion in the empty Jacuzzi!! It had somehow wandered along the balcony and fallen in. Lovely. It was dealt with swiftly by the staff though, but we were told that it was a potentially deadly one!!

I think I really have rambled on enough now, if I think of any other significant points, I will add them later. I had considered uploading our photo's and if I do so, will post a link.

Hope this helps someone!!

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
20  Thank christianbeccy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2007

Me and my hubbie went to the Calimera Habiba in Marsa Alam in April this year.
The flight went well, and the transfers went well. The resort looked nice enough when we pulled up and the room was nice and clean and spacious.
However the place is dangerous, and I was horrified at how many people had cuts and broken bones. The paving is all broken up, there are steps everywhere, around the pool the concrete is uneven massively.
The resort does not seem finished off.
The restaurant is huge and done in bedoin style which was nice. The food on the other hand was vile. Same stuff regurgitated every day and its cold! I am not a fussy eater, but there was nothing nice unless you liked rubbery meat, and lettuce. After the first night I was in bed until day 6 due to food poisoning. I was sick constantly and had the runs. I had no energy, and wanted to go home desperately. The thompsons rep Vanessa was canny and told me this happens all the time - she even got me the tablets off the doctor without me needing to see him! She asked the restaurant manager to make me my meals fresh. When we went he told me to pick something off the buffet and he would 'heat it up'. Says it all really. So for day 6 and 7 when I was well enough we went to the Lebonese restaurant for lunch and dinner you have to pay, but it is worth it. Lovely food and nice people, and the drinks were good as well as it wasn't the rubbish they serve to all inclusive customers.
During the day at the pool they serve 'lunch' which is a few chips and sometimes some buttered bread. This is put out and left until after 3. So if you are not there when its hot its either all gone or not worth eating.
The drinks were awful, the soft drinks machine was always broken at the pool, and when it was 'working' the waiter was always fixing it by poring bleach and water though it which didn't look good. The wine is gross, and the spirits like home brew.

The diving was supposed to be good but as i was ill I missed my trip. Gutted.

Defo not a good all inclusive resort. Come here bed and brekkie then go to the al a carte restuarants which all were rated good by other members of our party. This is not 4-5 star as advertised it is 2 star max.
Apart from the resort there is nowhere to visit.

Go to Sharm if you want a good all round Egyptian experience.

  • Stayed: April 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
2  Thank chez1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2007

I visited the hotel in June with my husband and 3 year old son.
First impressions of hotel complex were good. The complex is large and does take some walking which when the temperatures are high can be torturous!!
We booked a suite which we were very impressed with. We were located right beside the activity pool which was superb. Our room consisted of a twin room for our son, a lounge area, king sized bedroom, dressing room and bathroom. Well worth the extra money and very good value for money.
I was concened about the food options as my son is a very fussy eater but he did manage to find something that he enjoyed pretty much every night.
My major complaint abot the hotel is that there was no fresh fruit juice available, not even to buy.
If you have a young child who enjoys milk before bed you will struggle. The milk is not cows milk and my son would not entertain it. We actually paid £6 for a carton of milk from reception which was not drunk!
The hotel is predominently German and Italian occupied. We found the German guests very friendly and my husband enjoyed the water volleyball daily. The animation staff although not English will try their best to include you if you want to join in.
I was informed by my husband that the diving was very good although he was diving from the same reef daily which he found slightly boring. He did recommend the night dive though!
Towards the end of our trip (late June) we did find that it was more of a fight for the pool loungers and the hotel certainly need to invest some money on the poolside as it became very shabby, peeling paint a grubby as the hotel became busier.
I would recommend this hotel but not for those with very young children.
The airport is superb, we were very quickly through immigration in both directions and the fact that you pay for your visa on the coach on your way to the hotel really does speed the process up as it is not necessary to join the lon queue.
I would recommend that you take American dollars as they are more readily accepted.
Overall I found this hotel very relaxing and by Egyptian AI standards comarable.
There is very little to do in the evening so you really do rely on the hotel entertainment .
If you want a relaxing holiday this is a good resort and as long as you don't expect 5 star food you will not be too disappointed.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank BarnesKent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews