We were All Inclusive and booked a balcony sea view room. My wife and I travelled on the 30th August and returned on the 6th September 2013.
I would class this as a good 4* hotel that needs a bit of tweaking here and there to get it up to a 5* standard.
First of all let me just say that everyone's review is individual, so as far as I am concerned there are no negative reviews. Each review is based on an individual's personal experience. They are not trying to be negative, just telling it how they see it compared to previous holidays of a similar standard. Someone who has always holidayed in 3* B&B will consider this hotel 5*+. On the other hand another person who has holidayed in allot of 5* hotels may consider this hotel either better or worse. And there is nothing wrong in that, we are all different. So I would say just be guided by the reviews. At the end of the day you will only know by experience.
Transfer time from the airport is around 30-40 minutes.
The hotel is approached by a long up hill driveway. The complex is large covering a vast area consisting of the main hotel building with accommodation blocks scattered in groups around the main building, most which are on the steep hill below. All the accommodation blocks are accessed by foot, hotel buggy or the funicular railway.
The front of the hotel doesn't exactly take your breath away on arrival and to be honest could do with a bit of decorative maintenance.
A bit of a queue to check in but didn't take too long. Don't get over excited about the Champaign on arrival, it's just a small glass of sweet sparkling wine that is not particularly chilled, but still a nice touch. Some reviews talk about porters taking luggage to the room, it must have been their day off as we didn't see any.
We were allocated room 101 in main hotel building, which I would highly recommend. More of a mountain and sea view than just a sea view, but still a great view, plus we were in the main building near to everything so didn't complain.
The room was large and clean with a good size balcony with a table and two arm chairs. There was plenty of wardrobe space with lots of what I call proper coat hangers not those ones that are attached to the rail. The marble tiled bathroom is also a good size with a full size bath, large separate glass panelled shower, loo and vanity basin. Although the room was situated next to the lift it was extremely quiet, we never heard anyone passing, so don't be put off with the position.
Power supply is round two pin
For some strange reason the room safe is situated at floor level inside a cupboard, so each time you use it you have to grovel on the floor. It could so easily have been allocated in a better position. There is also not one bit of information in the room. Yes, you get a card when you check-in telling you the opening times of the various areas of the hotel but that's it. Normally you would get a binded folder in a hotel room giving you all sorts of information, but here not a bean.
The fridge on arrival was as many mention warm with just a bottle of mineral water in it. This is because all electric power to the room is via the room key card. You will receive two of these cards. Leave one permanently in the slot and use the other as your entry key. The other problem with the fridge is it is situated in a cupboard with a door, so of course if the door is kept shut heat builds up and doesn't allow the fridge to get cold, so always keep the cupboard door open a little. As for stocking the fridge/mini bar, a word with reception and soon after a waiter appeared at the room with two cans of soft drink, two Mythos lagers, a bottle of water and a packet of crisps. Their idea of a mini bar....Whoopi dee!
Two problem areas with the bathroom:
1. You just get the shower temperature right when it will suddenly change to either extremely hot of freezing cold. Obviously because other users are affecting the pressure, so beware.
2. The loo never gives a clean flush, if you know what I mean!
Good but a bit samey. great salad bars, but salad is salad. The hot food section I felt is more geared towards our other European neighbours. You can also forget your British type breakfast bacon and sausages. I know the Greek bacon is different to ours but god knows what this stuff was. I had it once, I didn't repeat the event.
We didn't use the lunch time buffet so can't comment. The bar snacks I felt were limited to around five choices. And from what I saw were more like full meals than bar snacks. Afternoon snacks consisted of a small area behind the pool bar with some fruit and packets of sandwiches which were not the freshest and all were white bread. I found this strange as there is a whole rack of various brown loaves in the main restaurant that could be use to give a choice.
Bar and Pool Service:
Firstly they all work very hard and long hours as do all the hotel staff. Some reviews say the bar staff are offish and sometimes rude. I didn't find this at all. If you engage with them, call them by their name they are fine. The first time I met one of the barmen I introduced myself, shook his hand and called him by his name. He was good as gold, as they all were. If people talk to them as though they are their personal slave then no wonder they can be stand offish. Treat others as you wish to be treated yourself. The pool bar waitresses are delightful and attentive but not overly so. Kapillikis the pool waiter was a star and looked after us very well. Ask him for a bowel of Olives, although not on the menu he is happy to oblige. They are large Kalamatas and wonderfully fresh, if you like that sort of thing.
It would have been nice to have had pool service which for a 5* hotel I would have expected.
There are two pools. One large freshwater pool at the hotel and a indoor pool situated in a separate building a little way down the hill next to the tennis court. We had a look through the window of the indoor pool building and it didn't look very open. To be honest I can't really see the point of it. In the summer you surely want to be swimming outside and the hotel shuts down in the winter, so when does it get used.
Firstly go All Inclusive, even if you are not a particularly big drinker it is still worth it. To me the drinks are very over priced. But the location of the hotel makes you a captive audience so they can charge the prices. You can check what is available for All Inclusive guests by asking to see the A.I drinks menu, which is surprisingly comprehensive.
Unless you want drinks for the pool all drinks are table service, (plastic for pool, glass for bar area). Beer is the local Aegean lager or Mythos. Spirits are both local and International, although I didn't see much of the top shelf bottles being used, that's not to say they weren't. But having said that I had a Captain Morgan and coke, whisky and gin and tonic (not all at once:) which were all very nice. The G&T's were often weak in taste but that's because they over do the tonic even if you ask for a small amount, plus the ice melts quickly. Just ask the waitress for another shot of gin to be put in and they are happy to oblige. Again, it's how you ask.
The white and red wine is local and to be honest just passable for drinking. OK, in the high temperatures you don't really want to be drinking 14%vol wines. But at just 11%vol it was pretty poor for this class of hotel and was the only red and white on offer for the All Inclusive guests. If you wanted better you would have to pay. Not good enough Thomson.
Sun beds:.......How long have you got.
There are three types
1. The ones on the pool bridge are narrow with metal arm rests which I can see getting red hot after short exposure to the sun. I thought about trying one but then thought better of it.
2. There are several with a plastic wicker type affect frames cover which I found very uncomfortable and short in length.
3. The best of the bunch are the wider steel frame beds which are longer and more comfortable.
Again, for this grade of hotel I would have expected higher grade sun beds with waterproof cushions for extra comfort. Some reviews commented on the sun beds being too close together. I found them not too bad, I have seen worse.
The hotel say there is no reserving of sun beds. Forget it, it's a myth. And as much as you disagree with reserving, as I do, you have to go with the flow of reserving or you will miss out and end up with nothing. So if you want to bag your preferred spot each day then it's an early trip with your towels. Leave it till after 9am at the latest and you've had it. This is one aspect of the holiday that takes the relaxation out of it as the lie-in you were hoping for isn't going to happen.
The other thing I don't get is the pool towels. For a week's holiday they can only be changed twice, yet you could have your room towels and bed linen changed every day if you wanted. Work that one out.
Surprisingly good. Helen and Greg the resident entertainment team are great as were the Latin dance duo that performed one night. The band that played on our last night (gala night) were excellent. I even had a brief spot on the mic! (How to clear the bar area in ten seconds :)
There was only one duff night, a couple, he played or should I say pushed keyboard buttons while the blonde lady sat on a stall singing. Both had the personalities of a house brick.
Linda who organises the daytime entertainment such as pool games an exercises was great fun and always had a smile.
Trust me on this, they are everywhere. Not in great numbers, but never the less more than one constantly flitting around you is enough. I was unable to relax on the sun bed for the whole week in fear of being stung as there was always one or two lurking around. I thought that perhaps they were just around at that particular time of year, but after speaking to one of the waitresses they are there all summer. So forget about eating outside for breakfast or around the pool during the day. As much as it looks tempting you will constantly be pestered by them.
It's not all doom and gloom though. As soon as it starts to get dark they disappear, so eating outside can resume unhindered.
There is one small shop in the hotel lobby and one at the bottom of the hill selling the usual papers, drinks and bits and bobs. Both ridiculously over priced.
One little gem, excuse the pun, is the jewellers, also situated in the hotel lobby. Quite large jewellery, typical Greek, but not all of it. Prices are not bad and the lady and gentlemen that run it are an absolute delight.
Unless you are a die hard beach enthusiast don't bother. Small and not very clean.
The 'Thaletta' beach bar is part of the hotel. Here you can use your All Inclusive the same as the main hotel.
All in all we had an enjoyable time. The staff were always happy and willing to help. Nothing seemed too much trouble. There were a good mixture of guests of varying age groups, although I would say a large majority were between the 20-30 age group.
Would we go back, probably not. Mainly due to the wasps.
If there is anything you want to know just message me and I will try and answer.
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Mediterraneo Hotel Ermones
- Grand Mediterraneo Resort And Spa
- SENSIMAR Grand Mediterraneo Resort & Spa By Atlantica Corfu/Ermones