Written on: 10/09/2012 by CalumC
I was extremely disappointed in this hotel: we booked it in the knowledge that 4 star meant a certain level of comfort and cleanliness, as well as the fact that it contained a gym (crucial for my holiday partner as she was running a 10 mile race two days after we returned), a sauna, an indoor swimming pool, and a jacuzzi as amenities for guests. Regarding these:
- Gym: according to the extremely rude and unhelpful reception staff (besides one guy called Victor), the gym was "in the process of being moved downstairs" (I'd wager that they've been telling guests this for a while now) so the gym consisted of 4 pieces of equipment in a room, 2 of which didn't work (cross trainer and weight machine), and a cycling machine that shook and tottered from side to side in an alarmingly unstable way whenever you used it. When we complained to our holiday rep about this and they asked reception about it, reception staff said that they had made arrangements for us to use the facilities of a nearby hotel as compensation, and that they would tell us how to the following morning. Which would have been fine, except when we asked them the next morning about how we went about this, we were told it wasn't possible at all: so clearly just a fig branch to appease the rep until she was out of the building. Considering that we had picked this hotel specifically because it was a of a certain standard and had gym facilities, this is obviously unacceptable and caused completely unnecessary stress and irritation.
- Sauna, jacuzzi: the sauna was variously "not working"/"someone has forgotten to turn it on"/"has a leak" depending on the day, and every time we asked about it we were told to ask again the next day when it would be fixed (surprise surprise, it never was). Regarding the jacuzzi, we were just told that it wasn't working and that was that. There also appeared to be a jacuzzi on the roof, but that had wood and coverings over it and was not uncovered at all during the time we were there;
- Indoor "swimming pool": one of the reviews on this site called it a glorified swimming pool, and this is completely accurate: it was absolutely tiny. To even find it we had to ask the reception staff, who before we'd even seen it told us that "it's not very nice, you don't want to use it". So that was encouraging.
Among other complaints:
- Extremely rude, unhelpful reception staff who were a) rude to the point of offensive, and b) overly defensive when asked the simplest of questions (an inquiry as to whether we needed to pay reception for use of the computers was met with "it's not our fault if they break!" Um, ok.)
- The "bar" by the swimming pool only seemed to be open when the staff happened to be around, which was not very often;
- Much of the hotel and the corridors in particular outside our room smelt of mould and damp, as other reviewers have pointed out;
- The lifts did indeed drop alarmingly when you got into them, which I'd imagine makes a lot of people nervous and is hardly encouraging;
- The fans in the room were loud enough to prevent you going to sleep, and got louder throughout the night/the longer they were on (every night I had to get up and turn it off at around 4/5am as it wakes you up);
- The majority of the sun loungers by the rooftop swimming pool were either broken or mouldy, and whilst we didn't use any of the parasols ourselves we did witness them going flying a number of times;
While you expect/resign yourself to the fact that "4 star" in Malta and the like may not be what you'd expect 4* to be in other countries, you do expect as a minimum that a hotel that advertises that it has certain facilities actually, you know, has them on offer for their guests to use, and that staff are (again at a minimum) apologetic or actively helpful in compensating you in any way if these facilities are not in use for whatever reason. The unavailability of the gym and the sheer unhelpful, "that's how it is, deal with it" attitude of the staff caused needless stress and irritation that could have easily been avoided, and is the kind of thing that can seriously damage the relaxation you are meant to feel when on holiday. This hotel certainly does not deserve to be called a 4* hotel, I would say 2* at best, and should certainly be reviewed again by inspector's to rectify this.
As for fellow holidaymakers, I would strongly advise against booking here: not only does it fail on offering what it advertises, it also falls down on offering a cheaper, "no thrills" service where you can expect a minimum amount of fuss and/or problems. Please don't waste your time going here, I implore you: the fact that I've spent half an hour typing this out when my Outlook inbox is still bursting to the seams after a week away from the office should say something as well.
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