10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Great Times, Great people
"After a few boring, typically predictable nights in the standard run of the mill beach hotels that most tourists in Dahab go to.. we luckily stumbled onto a complete gem... Alf Leila.
From the outside Alf Leila has an intriguing design, the German bakery (Great bread) is next to the reception entrance and the entire design is befitting of the unique experience to come. When we saw the room (Vanilla, one of eight uniquely differently themed bedrooms) we were even more happy, it was designed in a way that befitted a Arabian princess, and all three of us fitted in their comfortably enjoying a superb shower, enchanting beds and the wonderful free fast wireless internet at an extremely reasonable price.
After traveling quite a while (most of Africa, SE asia and all of Europe) in my youth, I had worked in the craphole that is Kuwait for 2 years, with no breaks, and anyone that knows Kuwait, knows you need a break after 2 months.... Alf Leila really gave me this and the traveling bug again, it also fulfilled a huge spot missing in my life, a "zest" for it.. from meeting like minded people while having authenticity delivered at a time convenient to me(beduin supper is highly recommended, also the sheesha with good Rose wine)
Sherif and Andy were always at hand with whatever we needed and continued making us feel at "home".
This I believe is the essence of an experience when traveling, and can be described as the epitome of the host in his obligations to his guest.. If this magically feeling is obtained, then "khalas" the experience is won and we all left revitalized. We all felt after 2 days that Alf Lelia was even our place... with the ambiance from the architecture and classy decor, it was also a proud place to call home, away from the intruding madness of the beach boulevard.
I will undoubtedly return to this hotel, and I left with great experiences, good friends and a happy demeanor..
5 STAR EXPERIENCE
- Travel date: Thu 5th of June 2008
Authentic Cozy Hotel with Great Value for Money
"This is our second stay in Alf Leila. We found this hotel to be a special experience on its own right with its authentic decor and charming ambience. The management has changed but the same personal service is there. Andy always asks if everything is ok.
We loved the piazza lounge/reception area in the middle of the hotel where all the guests get to meet each other and it feels like a small family. The wireless Internet connection in the Bakery and hotel piazza is very useful. Also there's a diving centre in the hotel which is one of the main activities in Dahab.
The German Bakery in the hotel is a blessing in Dahab, where good food is available in some five star hotels and a very few restaurants (Ask about Eldorado Italian Restaurant).
The rooms and bathrooms are Arabian style, local materials with a simplistic colorful design. The mattresses are in pure Egyptian cotton which are good for the back, but can get getting used to at first if you are accustomed to very soft beddings.
When we went in March 2007 we had the Mint room with AC but didn't need to open the AC at all. But this time in May 2008 we had the Safran Suit and we used the AC especially in non-windy days.
Alf Leila is not by the sea-side and rooms do not have a view. It is however a five min walking distance from the sea-side promenade where shops and restaurants are.
Finally; what we saw on their website is what we experienced. We were a little worried last year for it to be too good to be true. For us it was very good value for money."
- Travel date: Fri 23rd of May 2008
Very nice decor and delicious bakery
"We stayed three nights in Alf laila and we loved it. Very nice little hotel, beautifully decorated and friendly staff. The room was nice despite the hot water didn't last long enough for showering (electric heater) Andy was helpful in answering any questions we had (regarding transportation, places to go, etc.) and the food at the bakery (part of the hotel) is delicious. Overall we had a good time and would definitely stay there again.
Mags and Jenn
- Travel date: Sat 17th of May 2008
"I can't fathom how this is the number one rated hotel in Dahab.
After reading these reviews and seeing some of the beautiful rooms with double beds on show on the website, we were more than a little disappointed when we walked in to the "Vanilla" room.
After asking for a double room, two single beds and a random cot bed weren't exactly our idea of a romantic holiday. To make matters worse the room smelled of what can only be described as body odour. The bedding was also particularly musty.
Normally a biscuit on the floor wouldn't bother me but it just added to our suspicion that the room hadn't been cleaned for quite a while. We also found the shower was blocked.
Sleeping was another matter, the mattresses were only about 3 inches thick so you can feel the wooden boards beneath. The garage next door and cars beeping on the motorway right outside the window didn't help either.
Having travelled around Thailand and Central America I've definitely stayed in worse but I was on my own living pretty rough, not with my girlfriend on what was supposed to be a romantic holiday. There was NOTHING romantic about this room.
Yes, the decor was lovely and rustic and it has character plus I won't deny the bakery next door served good nut cakes.
For 35 euros a night I felt slightly robbed... especially when we decided to move the next day and were charged for two full night and 20% for five nights stay because we had booked a full week.. Although we argued this we were told it was in our contract with the hotel verified by the email we sent. However on reflection there is no mention of this 20% charge anywhere on the website or in the emails we received. I thought that was pretty disgraceful. My parentsâ run a guesthouse in England and they would never do that.
It all ends well though, we found a lovely hotel right on the beach front called Dyarna which is away from all the noise and most importantly from the main road. For only 28 euros a night we had a nice clean double bed, a fridge, air con, a view of Saudi Arabia from the balcony and a swimming pool... not bad eh? It beggars belief that it has no review on here. I guess thatâs my next step."
- Travel date: Wed 14th of May 2008
If you want a slice of Egypt Alf Leila is for you!
"We pre-booked 4 nights at Alf Leila and 3 at The Hilton. Although The Hilton was everything you would expect - in terms of character, attention to detail, personal attention and helpfulness of the staff, our time in Alf Leila was the highlight of our holiday.
Andy helped me to overcome my fears and I couldn't have wished for a more patient and encouraging instructor for my first proper try dive. He was happy to answer and help with any query and even when we had moved to The Hilton, he went out of his way to help and advise us. He was also able to organise any trip or excursion that we were interested in. Abdul was friendly and welcoming and was always willing to help us in any way that he could. The rooms and communal spaces were tastefully decorated,clean and comfortable and the short walk to the sea and the atmospheric, heart of Dahab posed no problems. We had a wonderful holiday and a big thank you to Andy and Abdul for playing a big part in making our stay a memorable one.
Fiona and Gerry Stovin (Scotland)"
- Travel date: Mon 7th of April 2008
Perfect for lazy Dahab days
"Tucked down a little alley across the road from Alf Leila, boutique hotel and German bakery. Not as grand as sister hotel but exudes charm and has beautiful private garden with shaded outdoor seating and roof terrace with distant sea views.
Only 5mins walk from the Lighthouse and the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk, yet very peaceful. Staff very friendly and helpful and can organise most things. A highlight for us was the Bendouin dinner and overnight stay at the Wadi."
- Travel date: Fri 4th of April 2008
Best small hotel in Dahab
"This is for sure the best independent hotel in Dahab. The rooms are big, clean (for Egyptian 2-3 star standards) and cosy. The only problems is that currently not all rooms have A/C, but the management claims this should be OK in few weeks. The hotel is not situated directly on the sea, but it's 3 minutes walk from ther, more precisely from the famous Lighthouse Reef diving site. Speaking of diving, the owner, Andy, is the best diving instructor you can imagine - serious, experienced, dedicated to groups up to 4 people...At the end, I'd like to mention that in the basement of the hotel there is a real German bakery, delivering perfect bread i cakes in incredible conditions...definetely thumbs up!!!"
- Travel date: Wed 2nd of April 2008
Great place to stay / perfect location and good value
"Perfect hidden gem in Dahab. Great location with amazing rooms. The bakery is a perfect spot for a good breakfast whether that be healthy or chocolate cake!
Good value and certainly worth a stay..."
- Travel date: Thu 27th of March 2008
Definitely a cut above the average. Great for couples.
"Found this small hotel via a search engine and booked on the strength of its website. We returned last night after a thoroughly enjoyable weeks holiday. Loved Dahab and loved the Alf Leila.
We also stayed in the Arabesque room and I confirm the positive writeup the previous correspondant has filed. The rooms are named rather than numbered and styled individually. We were totally charmed by the place. Set around a small open courtyard with bedouin style couches and palm tree, a large shared terrace with a cooling breeze overlooking the beautiful mountains and a bit of typical Egyptian street life to keep us entertained - and only 5 minutes stroll down to the Lighthouse coral reef dive site. Fantastic!!
And only 40 euros a night for our huge double room! I do love a bargain and the Alf Leila is a bargain. Perfect for romantic, chilling getaway."
- Travel date: Mon 22nd of October 2007
Hidden Beauty in Dahab
"Alf Leila is described as a Bed & Breakfast but it is a lot more than that. We stayed in the Arabesque room, which was more of a suite than a room, as it was very spacious with a seated area. The hotel was quiet when we stayed so we were able to look at some of the other rooms, they are all individual and a welcome change from the clinical international hotels.
Although we only stayed 1 night (as we had pre-booked accommodation elsewhere before we found Alf Leila) the great people here told us to call them anytime if we needed help with anything, restaurant recommendations etc. The service was superb. This felt like staying in a beautiful home rather than a hotel.
There was no fridge in our room but they gave us the use of the fridge in the kitchen, which we could access at anytime.
The location is superb as it is only a few minutes walk from the beach.restaurants/ bars but also a quiet spot.
The bakery next door is owned by the same people and is great for breakfast, the pasteries were superb! There is seating in the bakery or there is a roof top terrace at the hotel.
We used the hotel to transfer us from the airport (Sharm) it cost 35 euro. It saved all the hassle of the taxi drivers at Sharm el Sheikh.
We will definately visit Dahab again and stay at Alf Leila (and we are hard to please!!)"
- Travel date: Thu 18th of October 2007