xmas at gardenia plaza
hotel itself is beautiful the staff cannot do enough for you expecially the cleaners they are good. The hotel ofcause is in the middle of nowere, and to our way of thinking is not of 4* standards more 2half food not very good.Y ou will also find al inc is not al inc you have to pay to go down slides and inc bar is outside and you get drinks in a plastic cup. There is ofcause a nice one mile walk down into sharks bay it is quite nice down there small but nice.
Comfortable with friendly staff
Stayed at Gardenia beetween 29th March & 5th April 2007. Hotel was comfortable, food plentiful but tended to be the same, saying that you soon found out what your favourites were and tended to stick to them. The fish restauraunt is worth a visit but this is extra. The one thing that confused me was the all inclusive / super de luxe option. Had booked all inclusive, only found out about Super de Luxe when we arrived. The super de luxe option allows you all inclusive in the lobby bar near reception, this is the bar where the disco is held every night and the one that stays open until 2am. The other plus to upgrading is being able to use the swim up pool bar for free. I think this cost £34 or £36 for the week per person.
The staff were wonderful, could not have been more helpful or friendly and they like to speak English as the hotel is used by Russian tourists to such an extent that there were only about half a dozen English groups there, but this can be said about Sharm El Sheikh in general.
Would I return to Gardenia Plaza Resort - most definitely.
bit of both
stayed at this hotel end of sept to start of oct. food ok at start of holiday but went down hill in the second week. found the bar staff to be excellent, not their fault beer served in plastic cups. we used both pools. only played waterpolo in the untiled pool. pool bar not all inclusive, could not understand why. food at this bar had to be paid for. paid for a couple of burgers though because the food in the resturant was now really crap. beach bar okay same food as pool bar but this was free. ended up eating out in namma bay the last four nights. weather was fantastic. if they had made the bar inside of the hotel all inclusive i think more of the people we met would have enjoyed the hotel more, had karoeke in there but had to take tray of drinks in there with us. overall enjoyed my holiday but would not go back to this hotel
Staff we were friendly, room was lovely and pool brilliant. Great food, enough variety to meet all tastes. Do yourself a favour and ignore the bad reviews about this hotel, we read them after booking and were worried, but there was ne need!
Survivors Guide to Domina Gardenia
O.K. We read the reviews prior to our travel and thought, lets be objective and minimise the risks by putting some precautions in place. Armed with medication and snacks (our son is insulin dependant), hoping that the poor ratings others have given on this hotel were just reviewer's poor hygiene and high expectations.
This is our second visit to Sharm - our previous hotel was a lot to be desired, so thought that anything would beat that! After all, the website of the hotel showed Gardiner to be luxurious and as we were all inclusive, we would not have to worry about lots of extra money - would we?
A gross misrepresentation of this. It doesn't mean ALL - just some. Meals in main buffet restaurant are, but not in outside bars. Gardiner beach bar does have some limited snacks that are included, such as chips and burgers, but travel to this means a 15 minute bus ride to a windy beach. The rest of the food is Egyptian only (quite nice, but repeatitive) and a charge is made if you request some simple British food.
All inclusive drinks are only served in the colder outside areas, so if you want a drink in the inside bar, there is an extra charge. All inclusive drinks served outside are served in plastic cups.....
RULE 1: Come prepared with glasses for your use only and a Mug for a decent sized coffee.
RULE 2: Use the milk from the cereal bar - this is much nicer - instead of the barrel of reconstitued powered milk from the tea and coffee bar.
RULE 3: Take some plastic picnic plates and cuttlery set - this will come in very useful when going on trips out (you can request a food box with butter and jam but with no cuttlery to spread on the bread, this might proove disappointing). This will be handier than you think.....see further on in the review!
What a lovely pool with flumes for the children!
RULE 4: Have some more money ready as there is a charge for this...£2 per person per day! Although you pay for all inclusive, this is not included!
RULE 5: Come with some swimming shoes as one pool is very rough.
RULE 6: Come with some earplugs as the 'activity pool' has music so loud that talking and reading is hard. However Sasha (one of the entertainment team) is very entertaining even WITH earplugs - full of enthusiasm and go!
RULE 7: Do not swim in the activity pool, even if you do have swim shoes - there is a film of dirt on this and could well contribute to the mounds of sickness and diarrhoea.
RULE 7B: Football pitch costs ADDITIONAL £4 a session (first half hour free of your holiday. Pool, Ping Pong & Tennis is all charged addionally under the same rule as above and as there is very little entertainment (except for Karaoke which is self entertaining in the main bar for which you have to have the deluxe upgrade to orde from - see below!).
There are three other pools worth checking out, however. They are smaller and great for a bit of peace.
RULE 8: Take plenty of insect repellant. Bathing anywhere in Gardiner attracts very persistant flies (they attempt to nessle in any oraphice). This could be another cause of the sickness, diarrhoea and flu like symptoms that no one seems to escape from in Gardiner!
DELUXe ALL INCLUSIVE:
So you think that wouldn't it be nice to upgrade and have what you thought you paid for when you booked your holiday? You are offered a resolve....THE DELUXe! Brilliant, you think. The following is advertised:
* only $5 per day (be careful here as you will be charged in favour of Egyptian exchange rate, despite Stirling being strong against the dollar!).
*ALL inclusive drinks in all bars (again be careful as this is for local alcholic drinks only and does not include your bar snacks).
* Room service Breakfast all stay (told that to qualify you will need to do a min of 5 days - however only applies if deluxe is active)
*Mini bar at the room upon arrival only (great - a couple of cans and juice - no alcohol!)
* One Fish Market menu per stay (please, for your own health do not use this - lobsters and crabs need to be cooked alive or you will get food poisoning....we saw the same fish and shellfish churned out over four days - perhaps another reason for the domina sickness of the majority!).
* Glass boat trip (this was quite pleasant but only available when deluxe is live).
* Free Laundry all stay (told that to qualify you will need to do a min of 5 days - however only applies if deluxe is active)
* Late check out (told that to qualify you will need to do a min of 5 days - however only applies if deluxe is active - so make sure that deluxe is active for last five days of your stay). We were led to believe that our room was late check out, but when we turned out at 6pm, they locked our bags up and demanded £20 before we left knowing that we would not quibble or we would miss our flight!
RULE 9: Don;t get caught by the holiday rep on your first day - it is much cheaper to get your trips from nearby naama bay. You will make a saving of half the price!
RULE 10: You will get a better deal and packages from the in house reps of the Russians - look for the great deal on the overnight bus to Pyramids and Alexandria for only £55 including hotel accommodation!
Be prepared! Mosquito bites, transferance of diseases from flies to person to person. airborn viruses, lack of cleanliness from room cleaning and the fact that all washing up done by staff involves cold water and dirty tea clothes, the transfer of germs from the currency and shaking hands with Egptians that do not have loo paper or wash their hands, it is therefore imperitive to keep clean.
RULE 10: Take some antibacterial hand gel and use on all whenever in contact with hand to hand or currency contact. Prevention is better than cure so take some citricydal (grapefruit seed extract from health food shop - has helped us, until we didn't use it - then we were really ill!). Remember to eat yoghurt as citricydal distroys all bacteria whether bad or good - yoghurt replenishes good bacteria!
RULE 11: Take a bottle of bleach with you as the cleaning is not effective enough (deliberate dirt was left on the toilet seat and was never cleaned away) - especially if you are ill or in contact with the dreaded sickness and gravy poo! It might even come in handy for cleaning - in hot water - you picnic plates, cuttlery and glasses.
RULE 12: Purchase some antibiotics, antihystamins, paracetamol locally - this is the treatment that the in house doctors give you when you become ill - they then charge you £60 for the privilege! Another effective cure that a doctor treated me with (who happened to be holidaying aswell - he was ill too!) was by swallowing two tea bags of tea with cold water. The science behind this is something to do with the tanning stripping you of bacteria! Thanks to Tarek for this!
THE LEMON SQUASH EFFECT
We are tourists seen as lemons. It seems here that us lemons are awaiting the squeeze for every last drop of money that we have! With this in mind, buying loyality and service is essential for getting through your holiday.
After a backhander, for example, we were given a lovely, seemingly clean double room.
RULE 13: Tip a little at the beginning and you will have them at your beck and call! Do not get sucked in by your rep about giving groups of staff £25 per staff section (i.e. sections of waiters, bar staff, office staff etc etc). Pin point key people for tips that you find have been exceptional. These Egyptians are corrupt and if you give a lot of money to pass on, this will be pocketed by the managment!
RULE 14: Aggressively knock down taxi charges. Make sure you have the exact money (they have a habit of not having any change - conveniently in their favour!). Try out the VW buses in blue and white for the local people. These do circular trips over Sharm and only cost 20 per person anywhere!
We hope that this guide helps you through your Gardiner experience - perhaps you can relocate to another hotel?
This is one of the worst hotels I ever used in the last 25 years. Rooms were so dirty and towels were not meant for human use!! food is another nigtmare. Staff were totally unfriendly if not rude.
What a nightmare of a hotel??
Thought I'd book a Christmas getaway for my partner and I. After staying in Sharm El Sheikh twice in 2005 we thought we'd like to go back.. Looked at all of the usual online offers and found a good one showing at on the beach's website. The hotel looked fabulous on the internet pictures, but oh how wrong can you be??
The hotel was not a bit how it had been described on the internet and as for the pictures, these made it look far too good.
The main doors in the reception area were off more than they were on. They were always messing around with the mechanics. Every day the metal detector would go off when somebody walked through and in to the hotel lobby and not once did I see security check anybody. Every day we'd go out of the hotel and return with carrier bags and not once did any of them get checked for weapons.
I found the rooms at the hotel very basic and although ours was cleaned regularly, a lot of people we met were complaining about the standards here. We had windows that the wind blew in through at night time and the mosquitoes must have had a field day beause every day we had at least one new bite on us.
I was really disappointed with everything right from the food down to the free courtesy bus that you had to pay for every night if you wanted to go in to Naama Bay. The swimming pools were filthy and freezing cold and the music far too loud. Any chance of relaxing and reading by the pool went right out of the window.
My partner and I were both ill and I don't know what it was that I ended up with but it wasn't the normal sickness and diarrhoea bug that you get for a couple of days, this lasted 10 days and has only cleared up since returning to the UK.
I will not be returning to this hotel and neither will any of the other English people that we met. The Egyptians managed to manipulate all of the English and everyone that was all inclusive complained about NOT being all inclusive. How can you be all inclusive when you have to pay extra on arrival to make the most of what should be all inclusive? The Egyptians see the English coming a mile off and will rip us off at every opportunity. I pity anybody that has children because this is another way that the Egyptians get money out of people. The hotel advertises a water park but on arrival there were no signs of this. Two days before coming home they erected three slides and were charging £2 per child per day for the privelidge. So please be careful and be warned!!
The hotel is full of Russian guests and the English are very few and far between.
Good luck to anyone that decides to stay at this hotel!!
Report of Hotel By Viv and Steve Dade
On arrival looked shabby for a 4* from outside, inside looked Dark and tiny. We were told that we could go and get some dinner. As it was late did not expect much. We sat down at table it was filthy no one offered to change tablecloth so we tried to find a clean table no luck. I was dicusseded and wanted to go home there and then. The food was awful, rice and chicken. This was pretty much all they served lunch and dinner Rice, Chicken Potatoes some kind of beef that was more like leather hide. The sweets were very good if you liked cake all the time.
The room we had was pleasant but not unto the standard of 4* hotels we have had in the past in other countries.
We both looked forward to breakfast and agreed to make the most of things, but what a shock breakfast was a free for all we felt intimidated by the rude and ignorant Russians who pushed through when we found a table we sat down to dirty tables, all I could eat was cereal and toast nothing else was suitable for the English it was all geared up for Russians and Egyptians. Note: only one of us went to get the food or your chairs would disappear along with the cutlery.
Went to pool nice size, but was freezing, the music at the pool was very loud,
All drinks were given to you in white plastic cups you use for parties
the entertainment was none existent after our evening meal the only thing to do was go back to our room.
W paid for all inclusive but be warned it is not, if you want to have a drink in the bar you have to pay or sit outside but Egypt gets cold at night in February. You can upgrade at a cost of £4 pounds per person per night this sounds very little but why should you when you have paid all-inclusive if you want to eat by the pool and have burger you have to pay.
Our advice is to stay away compared to Jamaica we went to we would grade this Hotel as a 1*
Loved the hotel and staff
We booked the gardenia but after reading bad reviews we were going to try and change our hotel. We decided to wait until we arrived. Once we arrived we were pleasantly surprised, the hotel staff were very friendly, the room was spacious and our balcony overlooked the pool. we really enjoyed our stay at this hotel, the staff couldn't do enough for us. They also made animals out of the towels each day!
We had no problem getting a taxi from the hotel to naama bay each night, and the drivers had a fabulous sense of humour we were entertained by them on our journey. They never overcharged us.
The pool was not heated but once in it was very refreshing! We went with another couple and we all had a really good holiday and hope to go back to Sharm soon. we would stay at this hotel again, although it was a little out of the way we had no problems travelling to Namma bay.
don't worry about the other reviews they must have stayed in another hotel!!!!!
domina gardenia plaza resort?
hi evry1,going to domina gardenia plaza resort on the 21st for 1 week,just wanted to know what the hotel was like,and how the food was. going all inclusive.
any info on this hotel would be appreciated.
RE: domina gardenia plaza resort?
well we never actually stayed there but we met some people who were.
By all accounts they liked everything apart from the gym. No treadmil, but to be honest going for a jog on a treadmil was not on my things to do list whilst on hols.
Also apparently breakfast coincides with prayers and thee was some confuson and abbrasivenes for not realising this.
They never hilighted any "complaints" as such.