Written on: 31/10/2010 by hazelann70 (1 review written)
I am at this moment sat in the foyer of the Dar Khayam Hotel in Hammamet. We are here for 2 weeks and have just had our first week here. I think the people who slate the hotel are a little harsh. It's clean, tidy and has a great entertainment set up for both adults and kids in the daytime. I have 2 kids with me, one 15 and one 16 (with special needs). My SN son is having a whale of a time in the pool and goes to the entertainment in the evening. My daughter is a little bored but she doesn't find it easy to make friends like my son. The hotel has wifi which is FREE but you can only get it in the downstairs lobby but is better than nothing and better than paying for their internet service they provide on their computers.
I'm pleased I read a few reviews before I came as it prepared me for a few things. Firstly, if you intend on bringing gadgets which need power, bring an extension lead. I'm glad I did as there is only one socket in the bedroom. Secondly, if you're not into the entertainment, bring a lap top and a load of films to watch. Next tip is to bring an HDMI lead if you want to attach your lappy to the TV. I was amazed to find an HDMI flat screen TV in the room but didn't bring a lead. First place I tried wanted the equivalent of £38 for one and in Carrefour they wanted £11 but still more than £1.99 off Ebay so I didn't bother.
The only complaint I would have is the food. I am sick to death of it all if I'm honest. Breakfast is generally the same every day and never have I wished for bacon like I do now. No sign of it. Ham and salami are what I would call Spam. Lunch is generally similar to dinner with a variety of food but unless you love bony fish, deep fried god knows what and chewy beef, you're stuck with the pasta. Oh for some cheese sauce to go on the pasta though. It's mainly tomato sauce and nothing much more. Deserts look gorgeous but all taste the same - dry and tasteless. I am far from being the only person to complain about the food and as a rule, I will eat most things and have never been abroad without finding something to eat but everything seems to be laced with one flavour which I've not been able to put my finger on yet! The food by the pool is generally better than in the restaurant, although the chips are nice in the day (you need to top up with something edible as lunch and dinner leave you feeling totally exasperated and you land up eating hardly anything) but by the evening, I think the leftovers from the day are re-fried and are generally revolting.
There is a nice little restaurant over the road called Orangina and they do lovely fresh squeezed orange juice which if you're anything like me and don't like living on pure carbs, it does get the internal bits working! They do a Big Mac which is amazingly very nice and they use hamburger cheese which is the best tasting cheese I have had here. I personally wouldn't touch the stuff in the UK but out here, just for a taste of cheese is a bonus. They don't know what cheese is I think!
The Arabs are on the whole very pleasant. I did have a bit of a problem with a doorman who wouldn't leave me alone and had a body odour problem and I had to have a word with the rep about him. It got to the stage I was having to make large detours to avoid the man. I've been to Arab countries before and know the crack but sometimes enough is enough and when you can't even sit on your laptop without them reading what you're writing then it gets a bit much. However, the quiet word seems to have helped and I hope he hasn't lost his job over it. This is how they are and it's their culture so if you're not into being bombarded with niceness then don't come to an Arab country.
We went on the Pirate Ship trip and that was very pleasant. BBQ'd lunch was guess what - yep, pasta! Oh, and BBQ'd fish which I can only presume were sardines. I do wonder if these people eat anything other than pasta and fish! Be warned though, they do try very hard for you to join in with the entertainment on the ship which if you're like me and my kids, isn't fun as we're not the joining in type and prefer to watch. This gets a bit irritating after a while.
One other tip is if you suffer with your back or coccyx, then bring a cushion. The seats everywhere are all very hard and after a while, your back and bum know it!
The swimming pools are all freezing cold so unless you are immune to this then it's not the most tempting pastime. My son is immune and has been in every day but I tried it and decided holidays are for enjoyment, not torture.
All in all, it's a very nice holiday bar the food which has been a total let down but I guess they can't please everyone all of the time but it would be nice to have more variety and food with flavour.