More about Intercontinental Abu Soma
Lovely Jubbly @ Abu Soma
We have recently returned home from a Mark Warner holiday at the Abu Soma Resort in Egypt. If you are looking for a fantastic break away from it all with water sports, sun, warm sea, loads to eat (9 courses a day!), v friendly staff, beautiful hotel and manicured gardens, then this is what you are looking for.
We went in low season 16 - 23 March the temperature was about 28 and always sunny and the resort wasn't packed which was perfect. The wind varied, some days it was really blowing making it excellent for wind surfing! then others it was alot quieter, perfect for water skiing or kayaking. No-one suffered from upset stomach, the food and bottled water were always good. The day trip to Luxor is a must see. Alcohol in the resort wasn't cheap so take your own if necessary. Take plenty of sun screen as the sun is pretty strong. We think if your a couple, group or a family with young you will all enjoy Abu Soma. The Mark Warner staff were professional and very friendly as too were the waiters and staff in the resort and if you love your water sports you'll love it there!
(p.s listen out for the "lovely jubbly" waiter!) Enjoy!!!
Red Sea Relaxation
Having just returned from a fabulous week at the Intercontinental Abu Soma (booked through mosaic holidays) we felt that we should add a comment or two to encourage others to visit this hotel.
Facilities :- Restaurants - good variety of food and always well presented.
Pool and beach are all kept amazingly clean and provide all that you may need for a wonderful holiday.
Horse and Camel Riding
Diving - The on site diving centre (barakuda-diving) offers good value diving and, as a PADI OW diver, I had a couple of relaxed easy dives.
Staff :- The hotel staff, from the gardeners to the management, are friendly and courteous without appearing to be putting on an act for the benefit of the customers. The cleaners keep your rooms clean and even turn down your bed, the waiters almost have a sixth sense in anticipating your needs and the management appear to run a smooth, seemless operation.
Additional trips: - We took a couple of trips with Marhaba Tours (local agents of Mosaic Holidays) and can only say that the organisation and content of the trips (Overnight trip to Luxor and snorkel trip to Sharm el Narga) was faultless and the tour guides knowledgeable and friendly.
Conclusion: - Can I go back please!! We are planning another trip for Christmas and almost certain to use the tour company and the hotel again.
Just a note to Mark Warner customers. Although we did not travel with MW we did speak to several MW guests who all said that their holidays were as good as ours was!!!!
Great for a break
Just returned from our Mark Warner Holiday in Abu Soma - it was everything and more we had hoped for. The Mark Warner Staff are the tops and make everything run smoothly. The Barakuda Dive Centre was also very good and provides a fabulous aray of dive opportunities. The wreck dive to the Salem Express is a must for any experienced diver. Lots of wind but that makes for good sailing and it also takes the edge of the heat particularly down at the Beach. The food at the buffet is always excellent, the other restaurants are very under used which makes for somewhat lonely eating. All the waiters in the restaurants are friendly and efficient, "Lovely Jubbly" was particularly friendly but so were many others. Booze is very expensive but the local wines are not that bad and the happy 2 hours at the beach bar brings the cost down to more acceptable rates. We took a box of wine and bought some beers on arrival which we deposited in the room fridge. The resort is still being worked on, this was not really noticeable but some of the finishing touches like water in the landscape and the pool bar would improve the overall experience. We did the trip to the valley and Cairo, one day each was enough for us because of the searing heat. All in all the resort offers self contained facilities for a great break.
Beat the Barracuda costs!
My husband and I went to Abu Soma Intercontinental in July this year. The hotel was stunning - although it was a completely fake Egyptian experience!! The Mark Warner staff were great - really friendly and helpful. Our room was lovely - all mod cons. We are very, very fussy about standards but this exceeded our expectations!!
Our main reason for going to the Red Sea was to complete our PADI diving course. Being new to the experience, we dutifully found out that Barracuda was a PADi approved training centre and booked our holiday. But we forgot to check the prices until after the holiday was booked. What a rip off!! It was nearly twice as expensive as our UK instructor led us to believe would be the average cost. Using Trip Advisor, we found out that a previous contributor had recommended Sharm El Naga, a short taxi ride away. We pre-booked in the UK with Sharm El Naga, including the transfers, and went away. The cost was over half the price of Barracuda, which runs from the hotel site. The taxi picked us up at the agreed time on the Sunday and we started our diving experience. Sharm El Naga is lovely - a cute little bay that attracts visitors from as far afield as Hurghada. The beach is really, really nice. The diving was excellent - all credit to Murray, our English instructor, and his team at the centre. We received great personal attention on a fantastic reef and it really made our holiday. In fact, we travelled to Sharm El Naga four days out of six to complete our PADI course and four further dives. On one of the days we even saw wild dolphins, which we shall never forget.
Barracuda might well be an approved dive centre, but we don't think it's worth the money. Sharm El Naga was a great intro to diving and the personal attention we had really made the difference. We had a variety of experiences, including entering from the shore to backward rolling in from the boat. We saw turtles, clown fish, angel fish, barracuda, tuna, crocodile fish, lion fish ... everything you could wish for!! Murray was a great instructor and knew the geography of the reef really well.
The hotel at Abu Soma was great. We unfortunately came down with a stomach bug (common, looking at the other entries here!!) on the third day of the holiday - which continued for three weeks! We therefore did not have the opportunity to experience all the restaurants and services the hotel had to offer. When we did manage to get out, the whole location was really, really expensive. We paid £30 for a bottle of Hardy's red wine at the Greek restaurant. And £17 for a martini and lemonade and a JD and coke!! Recommendations about taking your own wine is the best option (don't forget the corkscrew!!) for drinking in the room. Don't forget the imodium either. Avoiding the salads, fruit and ice don't help. We only ate thoroughly cooked food, but it didn't work.
The beach at the hotel was excellent. Towels were provided everyday and the staff were really helpful in bringing drinks. You could even have a massage! The Mark Warner water sports centre was well organised and very reasonable. We learn how to windsurf - loads of other people were sailing and snorkelling.
Overall the holiday was excellent. The down side was the price of everything - including the diving price. The hotel was beautiful (albeit very, very fake!!) and the choice of facilities was wide.
A very relaxing holida and thoroughly recommended!!
Second time round
Once again I have recently returned from a week's break at the Interecontinental Hotel in Abu Soma - Paradise Bay!! It certainly lived up to its reputation and name and my daughter and I were not disappointed. This time there were just the two of us whereas last summer at the same time we were a family of five, and stayed two weeks.
We chose to spend most of our days under the sunshades on the beach where we looked for shells and watched the hermit crabs and were entertained by a beautiful heron. The sea was buoyant and like a warm bath. With daily air temeperatures of around 41 degrees the sea offered welcome respite. There was the usual breeze which some days was quite strong but I don't think we would have survived without it.
The food, staff and standard of cleanliness was impeccable again and we were made to feel very special. Our fellow guests were good fun too. The entertainment was very low key but quite adequate when the object of the week was to chill out after what had been a hectic summer.
I did suffer quite badly with a stomach upset as did other guests, but we put it down to change of food and climate. Nothing really to worry about with the correct medication.
So when will I go again? As soon as possible. I've already reserved my sunbed on the beach!!
Wonderful place but........
Had a wonderful 2 weeks at the Abu Soma with Mark Warner in August. A fabulous hotel-very clean and very palatial and the Egyptian staff are very friendly and helpful. The M ark Warner staff were excellent and the sailing and windsurfing very much enjoyed by my son and husband with no waiting for equipment. In fact the watersports were very impressive.Two children aged 15 and 14 in the Indy club-brilliant. We actually had to remind ourselves we were on holiday with them as we hardly saw them at all.!!! The beach was wonderful-clean towels every day and not crowded at all-5*!!! Just how a beach should be!!The pool area was busy with towels on the beds before breakfast!!! There`s no escape even in Egypt!! The food was ok- lots of choice at the buffet(excellent pancakes for breakfast!!) and the Greek, Italian and Lebanese restaurants good. Alcohol expensive but the Egyptian wine not bad. Ask for a menu and try the wine before you order a glass or bottle. One does actually taste of TCP.!!
The only downside, and this is the but, was the stomach problem that 2 of us went down with and an awful lot of other guests. It appears to be a common problem no matter how careful you are.
Trips are available to Cairo and Luxor amongst other things.
All in all it was a wonderful holiday and we all enjoyed ourselves doing as much or as little as we wanted. An amazing place but when only 30% full and that`s mainly Mark Warner guests you wonder how it can survive. Would we go back? We certainly wouldn`t rule it out!!
Booked this resort after reading reviews from this site. Travelled with Mark Warner and took my daughter aged 2.
It is the first holiday we have taken of this type since having our daughter and we are so glad we have found it.
Our daughter loved the child care and so did we!
We only used it in the mornings but we were very impressed.The baby listening ( even though not keen on this before we went ) meant we ate out every evening on our own.
Mark Warner staff and resort first class from the minute you arrived at the airport to the day we departed. Hotel food fantastic for us and children, they have a special childrens tea at 5pm. We ate quite alot at the speciality restaurants as it only works out at about £8.00pp extra for all courses. Loved the Italian. All reviews about wine being expensive are very true, we took the advice of an earlier review and took 2 wine boxes in our suitcase and bought a bottle of gin from duty free.
Had absolutely no tummy upsets ( I was also 25 weeks pregnant) and no mosquitos.
Pool was quite cold but the pool in the health club was perfect.
We did have some wind on the first 2 days which I must admit was strong but we were lucky that it died off after that.If you can, do 9 nights you will not want to go home after 7 nights!
A very sociable resort for people with children - would not recommend if you didn't have children.
We absolutely Loved it
We were a couple with one child and stayed for two weeks, this was the second time we visited this resort, our first was in January 2005, what a difference in service and the overall quality of the hotel, a huge improvement, you can actually see the managers walking all over supervising and assisting the staff servicing us. the food was great, the Greek restaurant was excellent, the Italian was very good , the Arabic very good, the buffet in the all day restaurant was very nice with a good choice, the staff were superb, friendly and very helpfull.
all the facilities were excellent, we will definitely return. Thank you for a great holiday
Hardly beginners' sailing
Overall I was left feeling disappointed at what could have been a great holiday.
If you are looking to go away and make use fo the creche and maybe sail/windsurf once or twice this is probably the resort for you. Top quality accomodation, superb service and food and baby care out of this world.
Unfortuanately I chose this resort as the brochure made it out to be ideal for beginner and intermediate sailors alike. The reality for Egypy in June I have since learnt is Force 6 winds regularly rising to force 10.
Of the 2 weeks we were there my wife did not sail once, she was too scared to in the strong winds and the staff didn't really really seem to have any urge to encourage guests to particpate.
For most of the time both beaches were shut, as being too windy. Often left with the impression it was more because there were not enough guests to make the effort worthwhile.
The food in the evening was okay in the main bar and childcare meant we could go out for meals rather than be tied to the rooms and the Greek bar was especially good. If you like avoiding the crouds this is the place to be!
Overall I would say go here if you want a quiet break relaxing inside with someone to look after the kids during the day. Don't go here if you are a watersprots fan - the beech is closed far too often for the conditions and the staff always give the impression that everything is too much effort for them. Go to one of the Greek resorts instead or one more set up to provide proper instruction.