9 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Good value, clean & safe
"Arrived in late Dec 07with wife and daughter 11 old at hotel from overnight stop over in Abu Dhabi. Part of 2 week escorted tour of Egypt my second time there, wife and daughters first time.
The hotel is advertised as egyptian five star and part of a chain throughout egypt and middle east. located in heliopolis which is an upmarket part of cairo. we stayed on the 8th floor, quite, had a rollaway bed for child no additional cost, had room service once which was ok, child had spag boll, ok at best.
Reasonable price drinks, and in house italian, japanese & lebanese restaurants. Fairly good bfast in buffet style.
24/7 room service, casino downstairs and health centre which was being renovated when we were there, but looked ok.
Wife had massage which she said was good after flight.
Bank in house and tour operator for car and taxis. Great cakes and sweet store in house and coffee shop, french! had a wonderful lemon tart for about 10 egyptian pounds, cheap.
Has a nightclub and bar both good value and well patronised. Metal detector security at entrance and bollards to stop vehicles breaching security. Opposite military training establishment so felt safe.
Room we had was spacious two 3/4 singles plus rollaway full bathroom with sitting area so big enough.
jeweller, newsagency and souvenirs in house also.
about 30 mins form centre of cairo if there is such a place in a city of 25 million, close to airport 15 mins, about 25 mins from Giza. About 15 mins or 10 pounds egyptian taxi to "city star mall" which is very western and houses shops & food court etc, around corner is a small market, bakery, locals mainly use it, at end of street is a very up market, by egyptian standards, shopping street with label brand shops, catering I imagine for expats. Lots of clothes there, sunnies etc.
Had all up about 6 nights there, had to call house the house Dr which I had to get after getting tummy bug and being confined in bed for 2 days. cost $50 USD for visit so not to bad.
overall good vlaue, also pool area which was open but not well patronised as Dec is there winter. Not heated. Friendly staff very helpful, good value safe place to stay. recommend it."
- Travel date: Mon 21st of January 2008
pictures can be deceiving
"MY WORST NIGHTMARE!We booked this hotel thinking it would be similar to the one that we stayed in Sharm El Sheikh. Unfortunately this was not the case. The pictures on all the websites show how lovely the rooms are-this was very misleading as the pictures they show are probably the ONLY rooms that are nice! As you enter the hotel it looks lovely but once you get to your room you'll see how dark and depressing they are. We changed our room 3 times as there were countless problems with the bathroom for eg the water not draining in the bathtub in 2 different rooms,cracks in the wall in the bathroom, air conditioning not working properly and so on. By the end of all the room changing we gave in and settled for dirty bathroom that doesnt get cleaned everyday. The members of staff are not very helpful, I'd really not recommend this hotel,no matter how beautiful the pictures look on the websites! Plus the food is not that nice either and way over priced!"
- Travel date: Wed 9th of January 2008
Beware, the hotel is NOT what you see on the hotel's official website!!!
"My husband and I stayed at Sonest Cairo in late Oct. Before I booked this hotel, I checked out the hotel's official website and I thought: "Wow, this is a really beautiful hotel". Well, when we arrived, I thought we arrived at a totally different hotel. Except for the building itself that looks just like what you see on the hotel's official website, there is NOTHING, nothing at all inside the hotel, from the lobby to the restaurant, to the guest rooms that looks even remotely like what you find on the hotel's official website! Everywhere inside the hotel, is really dark, moldy, and just filthy! The hotel's official website has pictures that make it look like one of the Fourseasons Hotels. When you arrive, you find yourself in a road side motel. I am a world traveler and I have never been cheated like this by any hotels in my life!"
- Travel date: Fri 9th of November 2007
"We stayed in this hotel for one night prior to our return to London so chose a hotel which was reasonably close to the airport. We have stayed in many hotels in Cairo, including the Sheraton, Movenpick, Hilton and Novotel. This hotel compares very well with these other, more well known hotels. In fact we were extremely impressed with the buffet breakfast and dinner and would stay in this hotel again just because of the high standard of food! The hotel may not be the grandest, the pool area may not be the best and the rooms aren't the most opulent, however, the hotel is clean and definately above average. The lobby and bars/restaurants are attractive and staff welcoming and polite. I would stay here again."
- Travel date: Wed 18th of April 2007
Sonesta - served a purpose
"Only stayed for a night prior to flying back to UK. Functional, good resturants and rooms pleasant enough. Service good and both drinks and food reasonably priced. Location rather isolated in the new part of Cairo - good for airport but not so great for the sights. We would certainly stay again if the need arose, so the hotel comes recommended but for long periods of stay there is probably better."
- Travel date: Sun 22nd of October 2006
"Recently returned from Egypt on a package tour (from STI Travel) that included 4 nights at the Sonesta Cairo Hotel. The rooms (one at beginning of tour and another after returning from Nile cruise) were both well kept and very comfortable. The 24 hour restaurant I did use, The Greenhouse, had great food. The waiters were very accomodating. The hotel also has a 24 hour bank, useful in exchanging money before a day of sightseeing. The gift shop sells postcards but doesn't always have stamps. Better to get both while on visiting other sites in Cairo. The Sonesta is in a locatiion away from the center of the city which provides a quieter experience, but isn't necessarily convienent for exploring Cairo on one's own. There is a proposed future subway extension to the Cairo airport that should help people like myself who prefer the subway to street traffic. (The hotel is located between the airport and downtown Cairo.) There are taxis readily available from the hotel's entrance.
The Sonesta is a very safe building in that everything brought into the building is put through a scanner, even food purchased nearby. There is a western style convienence store connected to a gas station not too far from the hotel. For those looking for snacks and larger (than 12oz cans) of soft drinks, this is a good option. There is also an Alpha Market about a 20 minute walk from the hotel.
Overall this was a very good experience. I would definitely stay at the Sonesta on a future trip to Egypt."
- Travel date: Fri 13th of October 2006
"If your room faces the pool, you will not be able to sleep before 01:55 A.M., when the singers and musicians thanks the audience (only 1 or 2 tables occupied...)."
- Travel date: Sat 17th of September 2005
worst hotel ever
"We just returned from Cairo and had stayed at the Sonesta for five nites. We had two rooms one for my wife and I and one for my son. Our experience began with the door knobs falling off both room doors as we attempted to enter our rooms. Our room smelled terrible, had dust everywhere and hair all over the floor in the bathroom. We explained this to the front desk and housekeeping and were moved to another room. We were all nonsmokers in smoking rooms. The room still smelled bad. My wife asked if we could move to a nonsmoking room. The front desk threw two room keys at her and told her to check and see if they were okay. Both rooms were by the elevator so she opted to stay where we were. That nite the air conditioning did not work. (it was over 90'F in Cairo). The next morning after my wife had showered the sink water kept turning brown and I mean dark brown about every 30 seconds for 30 seconds. At this point we contacted the tour operator. He got us a new room. This one had a noisy air conditioner and was on the side of the building facing the pool so the entertainment could be heard loud and clear until 2:00 a.m. The tour operator wouldn't move us so we were stuck. After hot and busy days in city this was not the kind of place one looked forward to coming back to. Also at breakfast when asked for some napkins (ours were missing) the waiter promptly brought some from the table of guests that had just left. A disgusting experience!!!!!!"
- Travel date: Thu 14th of July 2005
"Excellent service - all the staff knew my name!! Restaurants are great, room was so comfortable, and it keeps a certain Arabic style unlike the larger chains around the city. Location for me was ideal as I was there on business, but it is a bit removed from everything.
I would highly recommend this hotel and look forward to returning."
- Travel date: Thu 17th of March 2005