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“Excellent hotel despite a few minor service issues....”

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Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea
Ranked #1 of 9 Hotels in Sweimah
Reviewed December 3, 2009

Can't really disagree with any of the other recent reviews. The hotel itself is very impressive. Modern, tastefully designed and decorated, and very spacious (the resort itself is huge), but not in an over-bearing way.

As already mentioned, the resort has numerous pools, all of which are nice and unique in their own way. You are guaranteed to find peace and quiet at one if you can't at another.

The resort is located on the Dead Sea resort area alongside the Movenpick and Marriott, but on the recommendation of someone we knew from Jordon we opted for this one, as was informed it was regarded as the best.......I didn't see too much during our stay to disagree with this.

We stayed in a Junior suite in the main building which had the advantage of being close to the reception, concierge and the breakfast buffet. The pools were a good 5 minutes walk away down the hill. The villas have the advantage of being closer to the pools, but away from some of the services above, so pros and cons to both, but the walk was no problem, and they have golf carts to shuttle people around if you really dont want to walk.

We ate at the Thai restaurant one evening and the Italian on another. The food at the Thai was excellent, but the al fresco setting of the Italian was much better- sat out on the terrace overlooking the infinity pool and the ocean. Breakfast was also very good, with all the usual international offerings...

The only niggle we had was with a few instances of service. All the staff we encountered were incredibly friendly and sensed would do anything to make your stay as memorable as possible. It probably just missed a little bit of extra professionalism that you expected given how impressive the hotel was itself. It was a little bit annoying to have to get up once or twice to follow up with staff when our check in took over 30 minutes, plus we had to follow up on food and drink orders a bit during our stay as staff needed to be reminded various times about orders, but we were there at public holiday time, so things were maybe a bit busier than they were used to. If you had any issue, then the staff made sure to address it as best as they could, so you couldn't ask more than that.

We also had some spa treatments that were very nice- but they did come at a price. Felt that they were a bit over priced for what we got, but it was a nice treat all the same. The comunal spa, pool, steam room etc facilities weren't as plush as comparably priced venues I didn't think, but the treatments themselves were good.

We actually did a day trip to Petra from the resort itself, so it is possible just to be based there for your stay as opposed to finding a hotel in Petra as well. (The hotel can arrange a driver, but we did this cheaper through another firm). It is a 3 hour drive each way though, which makes for a tiring day, but we were personally glad we did it that way in the end as opposed to relocating to Petra- I think finding another hotel in Jordan to compete with the Kempiski Ishtar would be very hard indeed....

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank extra_leg_room
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 30, 2009

We hired a car from Amman Airport and drove down the mountainous steep sealed road to Ishtar for our 2 day stay before heading to Petra.

Arrival – The Kempinski Hotel looked highly impressive and luxurious as we drove into the driveway. Staff were ready and waiting and immediately we felt like VIPs.

Check – In : Our luggage was removed and put through the hotel security – we found out later we were not allowed to bring in our duty free alcohol , it was removed and returned back to us when we left the hotel ; evidently it’s the hotel policy.

Room : We were driven down to our villa 2401 by a golf buggy which was beautifully positioned close to the beach , swimming pool and infinity pool restaurant.

The ground floor villa was luxurious and gorgeous with large spacious king size bed combined lounge room with doors leading out to a roomy covered veranda which stunning views of the Dead Sea.

We particularly enjoyed the complimentary mini bar , Internet access, and tea and coffee facilities.

Bathroom : We absolutely loved the circular stone mosaic tile shower and huge bathroom which supplied excellent toiletries from the Dead Sea.

The hotel has 9 fresh water swimming pools including infinity edge ones and to us this what made this resort special. The hotel also boasts of having the longest beach in Jordon. The Anantara Spa is also highly impressive however we never got to use it…too busy swimming in all the pools and the Dead Sea.

Dead Sea : Swimming in the Dead Sea is an awesome sensation and this experience of smearing black mud over us and sun baking until our skin resembled dried up lizard skin was the highlight of all our overseas trips !

Restaurants : Breakfast was interesting overlooking the stunning views with a million flies swarming around but being Aussies it never bothered us....it was a long way from our villa to the Buffet Restaurant so the next day we ordered room service which was heaps better.

The Italian Restaurant was beautiful at night time, we booked a candlelit table positioned on the edge of the infinity pool which overlooked the sea and we could see the twinkling lights from Jerusalem. A lovely romantic evening however if a selection of New Zealand Sav Blanc would have been available - blissful !

Overall : We loved our short luxurious stay at the Kempinski Hotel. The hotel is a classy act and our only complaint was not being able to easily obtain the wine we wanted via room service . (seeing they had taken our duty-free).

Tip: Best rooms closest to beach – 2000 – 2100 ground floor.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Ellemay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2009

What a superb hotel!
Beautifully designed/decorated and superbly well run, I am afraid it has really spoilt me for any other hotel which would find it very difficult to live up to the standard set by this hotel.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank MichaelTCapeTown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2009

We stayed here at the end of our tour of Jordan. We added an extra 5 nights to our tour and enjoyed our time there. The weather was warm and the hotel was luxurious, especially the rooms and pools. The room was spacious, stylish but quiet and the bathroom was sumptuous. The restaraunts were fine but not particularly memorable. The service was for the most part good but was occasionally let down, particlarly at the weekends. The weather was good but the resort does suffer from flies, which can be annoying. There is little outside of the hotel grounds so be prepared to stay within the confines of the hotel. The hotel was expensive, but not outrageously so and the complimentary mini bar most welcome. Overall a good place to chill out after a busy tour of Jordan.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Cleggy12A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2009

The first thing you notice at the dead sea is the flies.They are everywhere. But you get used to them. You think you cannot lie by the pool in a luxury five star hotel with flies crawling all over you? But you can!
The hotel is a showcase of elegant architectural extravagance.The extensive grounds and massive buildings are inspired by the fabled hanging gardens of Babylon.Everything is quality,and made of stone.
It is, however quite difficult to get around this maze.
The rooms are spacious, beautifully designed and well equipped.They are set in shady gardens overlooking serene pools.The pools are out of this world,each one separate and unique.The main pool is like a huge bowl,impossible to stand up in,and lit up at night.It is heated and is the place to watch the sunset from.The lazy river pool is set amongst spectacular gardens and is quiet and peaceful. The infinity pool by the Italian restaurant is the only pool you can actually swim lengths in. It overlooks the Dead sea and the beach. Here they play chill out music and serve you drinks as you relax.
The beach is nothing to speak of.The main attraction is floating in the Dead sea and watching all the giggling russian women cover themselves in mud.The mud is said to be good for your health.
The staff cannot do enough for you and are very polite, forever providing you with fresh towels and attending to your every need.The rooms are kept in an immaculate order by room service.
The main buffet restaurant is a bit out of place with the rest of the hotel with regards to decor, and the food is a little disappointing for a hotel of this class.There are two big television sets showing the news, and coloured neon lights on the ceiling.However there are other restaurants within the hotel.
The spa is very big and luxurious; again with ample fresh towels and facilities, but the overall impression is that it is not worth the extra cost. The water jets in the pool, for instance; are too powerful, and the water too deep to relax in. The beauty treatments are overrated. However the spa infinity pool and juice bar set in a citrus grove is worth a visit.
The gym,if you can find it, is big, well equipped and once again you are provided with ample fresh towels and drinking water.
The Kempinsk Ishtar Dead Sea is a good place to relax and unwind and lose yourself in its spacious luxury;that is if you manage to forget the flies.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Chris P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 23, 2009

This is the best hotel we have ever stayed in, the rooms are lovely, ours was 2301 and we walked out onto our own verandah and then along a path to the beach, the room looked over the beach and the Dead Sea. The food was wonderful in every respect, plenty of it, with choices and the quality was second to none. Hotel is very large and if we wanted to get anywhere we just rang thro to reception and ordered a "cab" and an electric golf type vehicle came within 5 minutes and took us to where ever we wanted to be. There are 8 pools, we only swam in the infinity pool which was fabulous looking out to sea.The Dead sea is right beside the hotel, there are staff on the beach giving out towels, doing massages and generally looking after guests. Every request we made however small was dealt with immediately by very polite staff.
I cannot recommend this hotel highly enough it is JUST THE BEST

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank lovfam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2009

Very pretty hotel grounds and service was EXCELLENT: But I went mainly to have a nice spa weekend and I was surprised many of the treatments on the spa menu were not available: NO Yoga: NO Body Slimming wraps. etc. I was surprised the Fitness center is not even in the building with the spa or hot tub.
Hotel is on the water so it is a short walk to the beach were there is plenty of dead sea mud to be used and then a nice float in the water, or choose one of the many pools.
Large resort yet had many golf carts to take you to any building needed.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled solo
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Thank perkytd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea

Address: Dead Sea Road | Dead Sea, Sweimah 11194, Jordan
Phone Number:
Location: Jordan > Dead Sea Region > Sweimah
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Sweimah
#1 Business Hotel in Sweimah
#1 Spa Hotel in Sweimah
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Sweimah
Price Range: $175 - $348 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea 5*
Number of rooms: 345
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Kempinski Hotel Ishtar gives you the opportunity to enjoy its riches where Queen of Sheba and Cleopatra once strived to unravel mystery. Situated gracefully on the shores of the largest spa in the world the Dead Sea, unique for its ozone-rich air, mineral sea water and ultra-violet filtered sunshine. Surely there is no region on earth where nature and history have more wonderfully conspired, where so exciting drama has obtained a so beautiful theatre. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kempinski Hotel Amman
Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea Jordan

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