More about Fortina Spa Resort
The Hotel Fortina has a great location on the Sliema waterfront offering superb views across the water to Valletta. In winter, when I was there,the vast majority of the guests were English over-60s, so it can seem at times like an old people's retirement home.
Prices vary as there is a 4-star section and a much more expensive 5-star section. The hotel offers a lot of different all-inclusive packages, which can make the price MUCH lower than the advertised nightly room rate. It is still not as cheap as some of the hotels in Bugibba or St. Julian's, but it has a better location.
At the Fortina : a great public pool with a view
In Sliema you will find a great public pool with an excellent view of Valletta. It is part of the hotel Fortina, but non-guests are welcome there as well. In the beginning of November it was a bit chilly there on a windy day, but I also had some days that had been warm enough to take a bath there.
good sushi and sashimi
Hibiki is a delicious Japanese restaurant inside the Fortina Spa Resort… when you go there you can choose to eat at traditional tables or at the teppanyaki table – where a chef cooks in front of you and puts up an interesting culinary show.
The restaurant is open daily for lunch and dinner, except on Tuesdays when it’s closed.
Reservations are not necessary for lunch but they are necessary for dinner. If you are a guest of the hotel, you have a 25% discount. We had sushi and sashimi… you can select the different types of rolls or fish that you want, or else go for the set menus for around 30 euros.
Terrible Hotel, bad service and major building works
Having stayed here in March this year, I felt that the previous reviews posted on trip advisor were not reflective of my experience of Fortina hotel.
I guess the expectation of a 4-5* star hotel misled us in the first instance. The looks on everyones faces on the coach as we first arrived at the hotel, on a busy main road, next door to a building site full of cranes, was a picture of horror.
Please see the photos!
The hotel reception is run by a team of most unhelpful staff who seem to just want to place you in the worst room they have, and wait to see if you complain. EVERYONE we saw complained, so why don't they give you the room you booked?
We had booked a 'spa' bedroom on an all-inclusive and expensive package. BEWARE... You must be aware of the huge differences in the types of package you book and the terminology used by this hotel. Our 'spa' room consisted of a dirty bath with bubble jets and green slime running from the jets - a sea-weed spa treatment, I don't think so!!
The mini-bar (all inclusive) was stocked with a half drunk mini bottle of wine, and that was it - we waited 2 hours for some water to be delivered. Everything was dirty.
The hotel reception was unable to help us that evening, saying we were stuck with what we had, and were actually quite smug about it.
The following morning we spoke with our rep and together with the hotel agreed an upgrade to a 'delux spa' room with jacuzzi, steam room and pod. This is what we thought we had booked in the initial instance. It did cost us a lot more for the upgrade, but was a nice room in the end. We were aware that we could have had a 5 star holiday in the Caribbean for the same total price we paid for this week in Malta, leaving a really sour taste in our mouths.
The all 'inclusive deal' is confusing, it depends on the room you have been allocated. In the initial 'spa' room we were only entitled to the a la carte menu. Full upgrade to 'delux spa' you can chose what you prefer from the whole menu - much better. Restaurants generally were lovely, the Italian for lunch and Japanese 'personal chef' for evening meal both highly recommended.
The 'spa' complex is good (it is not inclusive unless you have the most expensive room package), However the staff are rude and I had a terrible pedicure.
The hotel is not only next door to a building site, but was having it's own cosmetic updates, resulting in all outdoor pools being out of access for our full week stay, and drilling and painting from 8am until sundown. The weather for our week was splendid, so no pool was a huge dissapointment.
In addition, the hotel does not mention on their web-site the 'Saga' lounge within the complex, and the average age of residents being 65+. This is not a reason for complaint, but meant only to illustrate that the entertainment is targetted for that age group, and this is not highlighted in the website and hotel marketing. In addition, the bars are very low key and empty early.
This is a strange hotel. If you stay in the nicest room with spa, two person jacuzzi and they put some water in the outdoor pools, I can see that it might be an enjoyable holiday, however you'll have a very different holiday in a 'standard spa' room with limited all inclusive choices, and being treated as a second class guest.
Many thanks to my cousin/ best friend/ holiday companion Ruthie for making the holiday fun dispite the hotel.
This was by far the worst holiday experience and most disgusting hotel that I have stayed in and would strongly suggest you look elsewhere before booking your holiday at Hotel Fortina.
My family (husband and 2 sons aged 13 and 9) and myself had a wonderful 2 week stay at the fortina. It was also our first ever 'all inclusive trip'. I truly believe we got excellent value for money and would always go all inclusive with children in tow. Included in the all inclusive was all your meals, drinks, snacks, 2 spa treatments and two boat trips!
Check in was very efficient and well organised and staff appeared neat and tidy and helpful. We had an ocean view delux room which was lovely and of good size. The bathroom was nice and clean with lovely soft white towels which were changed daily. The room was also fully cleaned daily and hoovered. The mini bar was also re-filled daily (had to prompt for this twicein the 2 weeks stay) and was included in the all inclusive package. the room was bright and cheerful with a video player (ideal as you could hire videos from the gift shop in hotel ). Balcony had a fab view of the ocean. Building work was going on but on the whole did not ruin the trip.
The restaurants were all excellent and it was lovely to have such a vast choice. We ate at the Valletta self-service restaurant mailnly as our sons prefered it. Lovely view of Valletta especially at night when it is lit up. The food was excellent. The other restaurants you DO need to book up and we were unable to get a place many times so book early is my advise. I would say that the Valetta is also most suitable for children too. The bar did fantastic coctails and you are spoilt for choice. The children are not left out either as they have non-alcoholic coctails. The entertainment was below average but they tried! The lifts were terrible and you waited for 25 minutes for them to arrive to the top floor (where we were). They need to do something about the lifts for certain. The giftshop was okay and seemed to be run by two ladies. The blonde one was very friendly but the dark haired was very unfriendly and RUDE. All other staff were excellent and very professional. The swimming pools were all lovely and very clean. The garden was peaceful and relaxing and even with children around was fine. There is a walk up bar and area away from children which is lovely! There is little for the children to do at the hotel. It would be nice for them to have a childrens club? The day trip to see the dolphins was fantastic. Malta is a lovely country and the people are generally friendly. The ocean is crystal clear and the free boat -trips were wonderful. One was a tour of the harbour which lasted an hour. the other was a glass bottomed boat trip also excellent and FREE!! there is much to see and do on the Island of malta and buses are very cheap. Mdina was very interesting. The markets are fantastic. A trip to Gozo on the ferry is also worth doing. I would go to Fortina again and go in a spa room as a treat! Keep up the good work Fortina!
Came back from our second visit to the Fortina last Tuesday and again feel really depressed - to be back!
Last year we didn't see any of Malta because we were enjoying the hotel so much and decided that this year we must do some sight-seeing. Alas, we failed again and must go again next year for longer so that we can see the island! We were upgraded to a spa suite and enjoyed all the amenities as usual. All the staff are very friendly and helpful, including the lady in the little shop!
Complaints? Only the weather, but as we spent so much time in the Spa Sante, it really didn't matter. The new restaurants are great, especially the Thai/Chinese and the buffet restaurant was excellent as always. Made new friends and met old friends from last year. Keep it up, Fortina!
5 star hotel 1 star lifts
Great hotel with superb facilities apart from the lifts, one of our party got trapped in the lift with no power or lighting another spent twenty minutes riding various floors. Wonderful restaurants and food. Rooms were very nice ( not always topped up with tea and coffee). Some staff were extremely helpful and pleasant other were surly to the point of rudnesss and this would need to be addressed if the hotel wants to maintain its growing reputation. I would however return to this hotel and would recommend it.
Its good but not that good
Just come back from a weekend break from this Hotel, and whilst had a great time, it was not as great as all the other reviews have made it out to be.
We was all inclusive and having a booking system for dinner is not the best idea, we had really no choice on where we eat, we asked for the one that does maltese cuisine and told it was full the whole time we was there along with the chinese, the curry house, but we could have the buffet. if we wanted, but being on many holidays i really dont like buffett, could be a better system but seeing as most reastaraunts there only hold 50 people max i cant see how.
We had a free sea water session and the man who did it was extremly rude and seeing as my mother cant swim and is scared of water, he got even ruder and started shouting, now really that aint going to instore confidence in anyone is it?
Spa was very disorganised, we booked a massage (everything else was booked out) and when we got there we had to wait 30mins as they had over booked and instead of telling us they ignored us, plus lots of red tape to do any sessions.
Beer and spirts really really watered down
And dont get me started on the lifts, if you have trouble with your mobility try not to get above the 2nd floor, you could be waiting 10-15mins for a empty lift (thats if they work).
Now the good points
Hotel was extremely clean, staff (bar that one man) were really really helpful, always nice, always smiling and would always help you out if you needed anything, rooms were spotless, even though none of the outside pools were full (its march) i can see that they will be fantasic when its all finished, when we did eat, the food was magnificent, the japan restaraunt was fantastic and seeing it cooked in front of you is amazing (my dad is a veggie and they done his food first and made sure his glass was never empty) the pizza place again fantastic really large, and we did manage to get a late booking for the Maltese one and i was left speachless again amazing.
plus we had a free mini bar, top notch i tell you...... hic........
So not as good as everyone elses review but still a top hotel, few minor niggles will not dampen your enjoyment of the hotel, when this place is finished and they iron out the few minor problems we encountered it will deserve 5 stars, but for me it only deserves 3 and a half
oh before i go, you must if you want lots of sessions/nails beauty etc when you are there, book well well in advance, when you get there, there might not be much left.
Just about to go on my first Saga holiday, to Malta. I usually travel independently but the three weeks for the price of two, all inclusive deal was too tempting to miss. I have been very impressed with the service from Saga (specialists in travel for the more mature, for those of you outside UK!) so far. We are staying in the Hotel Fortina Spa in Sliema which looks to be a pretty good location and base for exploring from. Watching the weather forecast, chilly up to now but the forecast is for 16C during the day in the next few days - staying for 3 weeks I guess we'll get a bit of everything anyway!
"I love Malta"
We had a great time in Malta and would love to return. The people are so friendly and have so much time for you.
The island is very historic and such a mix of nationalities due to its great strategic location.
The Hotel Fortina was a hit with a great range of eating options and the spa was fantastic (but pricey). Some of the hotel is timeshare so there was some selling going on but we got a free harbour cruise out of it so that was okay!!
Three weeks wasn't too long to stay, in fact we left a lot of things on the "to do" list for next time and took things easy, making good use of the great transport - ancient buses but they run frequently, all day and are cheap - much better than paying out for an organised tour through the holiday company.
Although I have to say Saga were good, very knowledgable and helpful staff, plenty of things organised from excursions, shuttles into Valletta, talks and slide shows to bridge tournaments if that was your fancy!
One of the classic trips out is to Mdina, the Silent City.
We went once with Saga when we were in a group of about 50 people but had a good local guide. We arrived at about 10.30 a.m. and the Silent City was actually pretty noisy!
Our second visit was made independently and we arrived on a local bus at about 8.30 a.m. and had Mdina pretty much to ourselves for about an hour and could really appreciate the atmosphere.
If you go, go early, and take an extra layer, it really gets quite chilly in the narrow, silent, shaded streets.
Valletta, from the Fortina Spa Resort
Malta in Jan - worth a visit?
I am thinking of heading over for week in January and would appreciate some advice. Will there be plenty to in January and also what the weather will be like?
I was would also like to know the prices of meals (& drinks!) and recommendations for eating out?
There are offers in the Hotel Fortina and Hilton during this time so if anyone knows anything about these hotels I would greatly appreciate their views.
Sorry for all the questions!
Thanks for your time,
RE: Malta in Jan - worth a visit?
The weather is pretty mild in January, often in the low 60's (farenheit).
It depends on what you want to do, but there is a year round population in Malta, so compared to some islands the number of places that will be pen in January will be high.
There's a guide to Malta at http://www.yourmalta.com
( For a guide to the island, including hotels in Malta, holidays, self catering holiday villas and apartments, flights, the weather, car hire and details of Malta’s main towns of Valletta, St Julian’s, Sliema, Mellieha, St Paul’s Bay, Qawra and Bugibba visit