12 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Good hotel and staff
"Good hotel, pleasant and friendly staff, good food, brilliant water park. Plenty of swimming pools although late Oct early Nov some of the pools were a bit cold 9it wasnât as warm as I expected although that of course is not the hotels fault. Pesky, persistent flies â again not the hotelâs fault. Nice food and drinks â although a bit strict re midnight shut down. And glasses too small (250ml so about half a pint). The water par was great, the half pipe a near vertical drop wahey!! The big ring slide great for getting the entire family in (but not very little kids). The pool / playground great for the little ones. Loved the massive brick dome in reception. Yes we had to pay for the snake show but it was only 5 Euro and the kids loved it. Also paid for a camel ride on the beach. Lots of colourful fish to see in the sea although only used the dug out section as red flag flying most of the time we were there. The hotel does run a free mini bus elsewhere for snorkelling I believe. 3 hour delay on flight Manchester to Hugharda (sp) thanks Thomas Cook and a 2Â½hr transfer to resort. On return leg hotel provided a free packed lunch. Tiles damaged in the main heated pool which I was surprised at. Ask for a free map on arrival handy for first few days. Not many British (mainly French, German and Italian). Take some Euros. "
- Travel date: 10th November 2011
Our First Time in Egypt
"We stayed at The Akassia Swiss for seven days and thoroughly enjoyed every one! The hotel is clean, well maintained and well planned, there are pools of different sorts dotted about the resort complex (although we didn't use them, preferring to snorkel in the sea either in the 'lagoon' area or on the house reef), the restaurants and quality of food were good, the bars were very good and the staff were excellent. If we had to pick a fault, it was that it was quite windy whilst we were there which made it quite cool in the evenings so it's worth taking a couple of long sleeve tops. That said, once you are out of the wind, it was very warm indeed. Would we go back? We've already booked it but this time we're going for 14 days!"
- Travel date: 6th March 2008
Memories you want to keep forever
"It is one of the nicest . friendliest and awesome resort that I enjoyed. The staff , the service , the food and the environment is something to cherish . The only thing I didnât like ( and that is not hotel problem , I think ) is the taxi , limo services in the hotel. They are very costly . They charge us 40 Euro for 15 min. drive. Akassia will be the school to teach the future of tourism in Egypt. Good Job"
- Travel date: 23rd January 2008
"We stayed here at the beginning of October. and had a wonderful time. We booked the shuttle bus from the airport to the hotel whci the hotel supplies at a cost. We paid 80 euros return which is a lot cheaper than the transfer offerred us by the site which we booked the hotel through. Their charge was Â£100 both way. Anyway on arrival at the hotel we were escorted to our room which was underneaththe main walkway and was sited next to a bnoisy air condition unit . We asked to be moved which they did with the minimum of fuss. Our new room was huge , very clean with an elevated view of some of the complex. which at night is impressive because of the terracotta pot lighting everywhere. All the staff were friendly and did whatever they could to help you. In particular the bar staff at the pool bar next to the themed buffet which is outside ever night. I really liked this about this hotel. There is a small pleasant lagoon type beach area where enough fish to keep young snorkellers happy. However our main reason for choosing this hotel was the diving which was very good. It is possible to dive between the two jetties which give access to the sea outside the reef and therefore gives superb snorkelling on most days for swimmers, except when the red flag is up when the waves are high. The dive centre was excellent ensuring that you felt entirely safe wuth the set up. There were plenty of choices of dive sites to visit when you tired of the house reef. The food choice was exceptional and the drinks made to your own taste. However if you are looking for nightlife there is nothing outside of the hotel so shopping is limited to the hotel shops or if you go on any trips but even then it is limited. There is entertainment every night if low key which suited me. The animation team are on hand to keep you busy if you want it. There are not many english at this hotel but this wasn't a problem. There are always enough sun beds either on the beach or the pool areas.At this time of year the sun is on its way down at 5 but it is great to sit and relax at the beach bar area and relax. Overall we found this hotel very good and wouldn't hesitate to return again and would recommend it to divers in particular."
- Travel date: 23rd January 2008
"i stayed at this hotel for a week from the 2nd January and it was absolutely out of this world. the flight is very long but its worth it as soon as you feel that heat when you arrive ( even in january its very warm). long transfer to the hotel and book through the hotel as taxis very expensive. You arrive to a fantastic reception area and a pleasant welcome from the great staff. Its great as you can just drop all your bags and have a drink as soon as you arrive and your cases and bags are just taken care of, i also didnt feel a need to give a tip like other hotels in egypt- we did not tip once this holiday and still received first class service from all the staff at the resort. Which is another thing- This is a resort itself, not a hotel... absolutely everything you could wish for is on site and in a week you would never have to leave... of course perhaps after two weeks you might wish to venture out but with the hotel you can travel to el quseir city and port ghalib marina very reasonably which we will do next time we return.. Food was great... not a rediculous amount of choice but all the meats etc cooked beautifully.... if you don't fancy trying some of the food ther is a man cokking fresh pasta with whateever sauce and ingredients you like----- Lovely!!!! Also there is the sneeky little plate of chips for the british philestines out there. At the beach bar (our favourite place) at 3pm is where everyone gathers- homemade burgers, hotdogs and rolls are cooked to order as part of the all inclusive paxkage as are all dirnks all day from all the bars on the complex. At 4 at the beach there is dancing with the animation which is great fun and a pleasant way to spend a relaxing day in the sun. There is also a great wave pool by the beach which comes on every hour. As you come down to the goregeous beach there are men waiting for you to set up your sunbeds for you... the place your towels on your beds for you and move the windbreaks to relieve from the winds that this part of egypt are quite susceptible to, but in the summer months this would be most welcomed. The sea very choppy every day bar 1 so snorkelling on the reef a no no but the lagoon snorkelling is also superb which is always calm... stingrays, eels and every variety of tropical fish you would see on teh reef but in a calmer, safer environment. The hotel runs a bus every day at 12 noon to a bay where you can snorkel in fantastic coral if the wind is too strong at the house reef. Rooms great with turrets on top like castles and gardens are stunning... very nice to wake up to. Even the entertainment at akassia is brilliant... excellent top class shows such as fire show, comedy and dancing-- they do get across the language barrier which you wouldnt expect with sucha diverse amount of nationalitie. Several shops yo wander round at night time are great and you can dine outside every evening and breakfast which really makes oyu feel as though youre not in an all inclusive... alll drinks are brought by waiter service and there are no self service dirnks (apart from water and a few juices). We had a fantastic week at this amazing resort and would most definitely rerturn to marsa alam and akssia swiss resort very soon... We loved it!"
- Travel date: 13th January 2008
"We stayed at The Akassia from 28th November until 12th December and had a fabulous time! We have been to Egypt 5 times and have done 5* All Inclusive a few times before and can honestly say, this is one of the best. From the moment we walked into the wonderful domed reception area until we left 2 weeks later, we were treated very very well. Nothing was too much trouble for all the staff at this hotel. There a very few English tourists who go to this hotel but for those of you who want a relaxing, no hassle break, this is the place to come to! There are only the on sites shops, which are hassle free and also very welcoming people who do not pester at all. There is nothing outside of the hotel, so if you want a holiday of nightclubs and loud people, this is not the place for you! The rooms are a good size and our room was close enough to the beach and we had a good view of the Red Sea. All staff are so nice and friendly and genuinely want to treat you well. The food was very good and on one of the themed nights, âEgyptian Nightâ, they spit roast a whole lamb! There are 8 pools at this resort, we only tried a few of them but they were clean and well maintained. We went snorkelling and saw quite a few fish including blue spot rays, lion fish, parrot fish to name but a few. We bought a fish guide which had over 220 species of fish which can be seen in the Red Sea, from the shop in the lobby and I ticked off as we saw them. My partner went out from the jetty one day and came back and said not to tick any more as he had seen the lot!! So, a good result there! I would like to finish by saying that this hotel is well worth a visit and as they have very few English that know of itâs existence, get there before itâs too popular! Quick hello to Rashia in lobby bar, very polite and helpful, Mohammed at the beach bar and the âbird manâ Mohammed who does a brilliant impression of a bird chirping, ask him!! Andy & Joan"
- Travel date: 7th January 2008
"We stayed at this gorgeous resort for Xmas and it was wonderful! We tried snorkelling and scuba diving for the first time - the waters were so calm and crystal clear, it took only minutes to fall in love with the underwater wonders. The colourful fish and corals were like a dreamworld. The gorgeous beach was a few steps from the hotel, the weather was fantastic, and there was so much to do that we never left the resort, except for the desert safari. The pools and the infinity jacuzzis with incredible sea views are irresistable. The massages are out of this world. The all inclusive package is a must and there is nothing like cappuccinos and ice cream on tap - but be warned - we did all gain a few pounds as there was so much choice in the restaurant! The entertainment was fun and the staff were so caring and friendly. The other guests were perfectly mannered and there was a lovely atmosphere of utter peace and relaxation. The rooms are large and bright and the whole resort is impeccably clean, with the loos being cleaned every hour. The gardens are beautiful and greenery abounds. For families with children, this is a dream vacation. We found all the children impeccably behaved and pleasant. The other guests are mostly well mannered Italian or German families. Apparently the Russians can often prove a nightmare in some resorts, so the fact there were none here was a huge plus! The staff were all caring and friendly and could not do enough for us. There was no drunkenness or loud behaviour from the guests and certainly no clubbers, which was great. We came back yearning to return to the Akassia!"
- Travel date: 31st December 2007
"Stayed one week for diving, and only diving, but would recommend this place for sun and relaxation as well. The dive center is very well organised, albeit a bit expensive. They make half and full day excursions for near by shore dives or boat trips. The local dive guides are very professional. The house reef is beautiful, I made my first night dives here and loved the spanish dancer, the yellow moray and the small shrimp! I missed out on the big fish, but this was made good with lots of coral reef fish, rays, tuna and mackerell. The soft coral is abundant. As for the resort, only good points for the large room (double room for single at no extra cost), the friendliness of the staff and the quality of the food. If only they would drop the evening shows of dancing egyptian faraoh's or singing german ladies..."
- Travel date: 30th November 2007
Great Resort with plenty of facilities
"We flew out on Astraeus, from Gatwick to Marsa Alam on a Wednesday. The seating was 3 â3 and comfortable enough. There is no premium so if you get there early there may be a chance of getting seats in rows 1-9, which are leather and slightly more roomy. There are no TVs in the seats so if you want to watch the film its on the aisle overhead monitors. There was the usual drinks service, duty free and a meal provided. Astraeus also give Divers an extra 5kg free on production of their Dive Cert, and you can if necessary buy another 10kg for Â£20 â we were told this was both ways but on the way back the Egyptians tried to charge us excess but then relented. On arrival your rep will give you a visa, it cost us Â£10 but I found out later if you paid at the kiosk you got it cheaper by using Dollars ($15). On the way out of the airport there appears to be a duty free shop so you can stock up again. The transfer was in a mini bus with AC, for just 2 of us and it took around 35 mins, as others have mentioned there is building work going on at the hotel but you only notice it as you go in as it is to the north of the resort and we never heard anything through out our stay. The reception is something to see with a massive brick dome building, one of the largest in Egypt also the hall is decorated with reproduction Egyptian furniture and wall freezes. There is also an ATM and money change machine but like most things its for Euros. Check in was the usual form filling, allocating you a room; you then chalked your number on your cases and left them to it. You also got a little booklet with information about whatâs included, extra freebies, entertainment programme, other information and vouchers for Free bottles of Water each day, if and you will drink them just fill them up from the water coolers on the bar or change to Juices. The resort fans out from the main reception in a crescent with a jetty at either end. The majority of rooms are in blocks built like Castles the largest had 8 rooms, a single at either end and 3 up and 3 down in the middle, but there were single storey rooms around the beach or garden. The numbering system is 4 figures, the first two denote your block number and the second 2 your room e.g. 1901 which was block 19 room 1, which was near the main pool overlooking a garden. The Lower numbers are nearest the main dining area, pool and stage, the higher numbers over 30 are on the other side which is quieter but nowhere takes more than 10 mins to walk to. The distance between the two jetties is 450m and the main reef runs between them it is also the width of the beach. Due to windy conditions it is not always possible to snorkel the house reef but there is a small area by the beach or take the free bus to another bay run by the hotel when the red flag is flying. We had no problems getting a sun bed on either the beach or the pool. There are 3 bars by the pools and the beach, also one in the reception area all part of the all-inclusive package. The rooms we were in were all air conditioned, had two beds, a table between with a power socket, overhead lights for the beds, A wardrobe, dressing table with drawers, a fridge, safe and TV (only CNN is in English). In the bathroom was a bath with shower, a retractable washing line, basin, loo, soap, shampoo, shower gel, there was also a little hose by the toilet, which was I found great for washing shoes :-) If you want fresh towels just leave them on the floor every day or every other The food is taken in the main restaurant for breakfast and lunch; at night they move everything outside as its warm. Each night is themed e.g. Egyptian, Mexican Chinese, Italian etc. You could also at lunch at the Panorama Restaurant, which was overlooking the water near the south jetty, It did fresh pizzas. I found plenty of choice including fresh pancakes and waffles at breakfast; kiddies corner and healthy section, there was also an Italian restaurant, but it was extra. There was a disco run down by the south jetty at nightâ we never heard it, also a Sahara tent and an amphitheatre where shows were put on, we never used these so cant comment. The staff â as mentioned this was Ramadan so the staff are not meant to eat or drink during sunlight, given this, their happy disposition was amazing and you only had to ask. Pedro at the pool bar was ace and spoke very good English, as did Emil the bar manager, also one of the lads at the bar in reception and one at the beach bar. I say this as not all the staff did speak good English or needed you to speak slowly before they understood. This is not really surprising as the majority of guests were Italian or German with a few Dutch and Swiss. Diving â My prime reason for going as one of our friend is a dive instructor there. The dive school is Waterworld who have their own website, the base is run by Werner there are at least 5 instructors, more depending on number of guests, all speak English some better than others and at least one other language, also there are at least 6 Egyptian Dive guides all speak English especially Wael, Attea and bolika who were great fun, Khaleed is one the back room boys, who also speaks good English, he always made sure I had a Nitrox tank when I needed it. They also run a repair service if necessary and there is plenty of kit for hire. The school requires everyone to do a check dive, around the usual skills including making sure you have the right weights and checking your buoyancy but it doesnât take long if you know what you are doing, If you have over 30 dives you do not need a guide on any of the sites unless you wish you just sign up for what you want each day. The House reef can be dived at 5am, 6am and then from 8am onwards whenever you like just log the time and your tanks will be taken down to the jetty. There is also a night dive at 1800. Otherwise it is shore dives ranging from 5 mins drive to 40 mins drive some are excellent especially Torfa Sabaa which starts by descending through a hole on the surface down a tunnel to the reef. They also arrange day outs to the more famous sites e.g. Salam express, Green hole and Elphinston and dolphin house they have at least 30 dive sites and do plenty of courses including ones for youngsters. If you can pay in cash its cheaper as Egyptian banking put a surcharge on all credit card transactions. Also if you are leaving before breakfast, tell reception and they will provide a breakfast or lunch box Other facilities provided; A gym with sauna and massages, a mini club for youngsters, baby-sitting services and a childrenâs play area under cover near the dive centre. Also a medical Clinic with doctor plus shops in the main reception and at the back of the dive school including a Pharmacy, which stocks Antinol (7 euros). The animation team is Italian and run all sorts of activities, which are listed daily. The hotel will also arrange taxiâs a cost list is sited at a desk or there is a mini bus several times a day to the local Town of El Quiseir its worth a visit but not for long as there is not a lot to see â it takes about 15 mins. Whilst we were there, the weather was mid to high 30âs with a breeze most days There were 9 other English guests the first week and 4 the second. We were asked why there wasnât many brits coming there and other than the fact it is not carried in any of the major tour operators brochures I canât understand it either. I had no complaints regarding the hotel and would go again â"
- Travel date: 18th October 2007
Akassia Swiss Resort - loved it
"We have just returned from a glorious two weeks at Akassia. Our main reason for visiting this resort was to meet with a friend who is a dive instructor there. Our allocated room was smallish but had all we needed, except after 4 days the A/C failed to work. This was "mended" but very soon failed to work again. We were allocated another room which was much larger and more comfortable, all this was completed with no hassle at all. The hotel was said to be fully booked but there were always plenty of sunbeds, both round the pools and on the beach. There were quiet areas and other areas not so quiet. Like the previous contributor, I found the snorkelling to be a bit disappointing, but this was due to the weather being windy and the red flag being ever present. I did manage one drift snorkel from jetty to jetty, and found the water to be crystal clear, with fish and coral in plenty. The food was good - plenty of choices, although we did find that if you got to dinner late, the staff were starting to clear the tables, and some of the food was not replaced. Having said that, the catering staff worked very hard, and the waiters were generally cheerful and helpful. Bearing in mind this was Ramadan and the staff could not eat or drink during the daytime, I think I would not have been able to maintain such a cheerful disposition under those circumstances, but they all managed to. The various bars, particularly the pool bar were very good, Paulo at the pool bar was very friendly and always spared time to have a chat with us. The evening entertainment, especially the folklore evening was very good, considering that English is not the first language of 99.99% of the animation team. Particularly the female singer who entertained us prior to the show starting. All in all, this holiday was very relaxing, and quiet (by choice) and we would have no hesitation in returning to this hotel."
- Travel date: 13th October 2007
"The Akassia resort is an extensive and very beautiful resort north of Marsa Alam near Al Quesir. Itâs about 35 mins to Marsa Alam airport and about 50 mins down to Abu Dabab by fast taxi. Somewhat longer in a mini bus. We booked through Crusader Travel. There is further building work going on at present (up to block 79 now with 8-10 rooms per block), but it does not interfere with hotel guests, unless they try to put you in an unfinished room as they did us on arrival - but we were changed the next morning after being fairly firm that their âlast roomâ did not suit us. The new rooms were beautifully appointed, spotlessly clean and the initial rumpus was forgotten. The reception staff were charming but had no clout to make any real decisions about changing rooms etc and everything had to wait till their manager showed up the next day but they always greeted me with a big smile and although we had not had the best of starts they were helpful and pleasant especially Alaa. At no time did the hotel seem too busy and there was always lots of room by the many pools â they keep adding new pools as more blocks are built. Many people seemed to head down to the beach for the day. It was 35c most days Facilities were good, everything from archery to the wonderful wave pool which is really good and is on for 20 mins twice or three times a day. The Pool tables costs a bit extra per half hour but everything else we came across is included. There was always entertainment on each evening at 9.45 and was varied from a good fire eating show to a Broadway medley so most of the time language barriers did not matter. The animation team were around all day and led a variety of activities for all ages. The amphitheatre is a really good idea and meant everyone had an excellent view. The main currency is the Euro due to 95% of guests being Italian/ German/ Dutch / French but due to calculators on everyoneâs mobile phones all the small shops, taxis etc were willing to take Egyptian pounds, dollars or Sterling too. The resort has one ATM which was intermittently empty so the taxi firm we were trying to pay took us to the next hotel up the coast whos ATM was also empty. In the end they took us on our day out anyway on trust and we stopped off at each hotel along the way until we found one with a real bank and an ATMs that worked. I had chosen the Akassia due to the reports of a pristine house reef for snorkelling. It may be so, but unfortunately the red flag was flying much of the week and the yellow flag for a few days too due to the wind. On the first sign of the white flag we entered the sea via one of the two jetties to find there is a very good reason for the two jetties. You have to do a drift snorkel, in on the left jetty and then get carried down the coast with the current, see what fish and coral you can along the way and exit at the second jetty. We found it hard work to try to swim back to the first jetty against the current. There are staff on hand on each jetty should you need assistance. I gather that on some days it is like a mill pond and you can just float around but we did not have one of those days. On the days when the red flag is flying they do lay on a mini bus to a local bay with a guide who escorts you on a gentle snorkel trip which is pleasant but over quite quickly. The food and beverages are good and in truly plentiful supply. The waiters work so very hard and in my opinion, get treated very badly by many of the guests. If I had been spoken to like some of them were I would have thrown the drinks at the guests, especially knowing how little they earn for the privilege of serving extremely rude people. One of our party was unwell one day and our waiter Rabi-Mohammed noticed they were not smiling as usual and went out of his way to make sure he was there each time to carry their plate back to the table and keep extra bits like lemon and ice and peppermint tea set on our table for the next few meals. The evening meal is the only busy time as everyone congregates in one place but they have 3 identical food setups with a wide variety of food so even if you don't like themed food, there was always enough variety to cater for all appitites and tastes. There was never a big queue and it was all topped up continuously. The staff go to a great deal of trouble to make it all look lovely and the pudding aisle especially is superbly presented with a great deal of attention to beauty. At lunchtime you can eat in several places and the pizza beachfront restaurant is well worth a visit. We went by taxi to Abu Dabab beach for several days where the snorkelling was magnificent and the turtles and Dugong were in good form. On the first trip we came across Tito-Mohammed who works for the national park and who was persuaded to be our guide for the afternoon and was fantastic at showing us around the bay and pointing out all sorts of fish that we would otherwise have missed as well as having mates further out looking for the dugong and yelling when it was found. We also went for a great Quad bike trip into the desert where you were encouraged to open them up and see just what they would do. It was much more open desert than previous Egyptian quad bike trip elsewhere, which have been in canyons and thus the sunset was gorgeous and we came back in convoy almost in the dark which was a novelty until we nearly ran over a couple of joggers. We could have gone on camels too for a sunset ride but didnât get round to it. All in all the Akassia resort is a superb resort if you want to chill and not go very far as there is plenty to do on site, but if you want to wander off then it is a little bit out of the way. Also, if you want guaranteed good snorkelling conditions, then somewhere with a bay rather than straight coast line might be easier. I shall be uploading pictures of the resort on www.jesscalke.com shortly."
- Travel date: 4th October 2007
We are not newcomers to Egypt. We have b...
"We are not newcomers to Egypt. We have been 6 times now, twice to Sharm, once to Hurghada, Luxor and Cairo and Marsa Alam. We arrived at Marsa Alam Airport which is a private Airport. You have to arrange Transfers before you go as no taxi's at Airport. Small Airport with not a lot of shops on the way out. We were a Family of 7, 2 Adults, 1 OAP and 4 Children Aged 15, 13, 10 and 7 so wide range of ages. Akassia is about 1 hour from the Airport in the middle of the Desert on the Sea. We arrived about 6pm Egyptian time. Check in was easy with welcome drinks in a beautiful Reception with a very large dome made by hand in brick (unbelievable) and a large bar area, marble floors and cosy chairs with a couple of small shops. We had two rooms, one set for 3 and the other set for 4, both were on ground floor with pool view, large rooms and very clean. They were cleaned every day to a very good standard. The Hotel is set in very large grounds with large heated pools, a large Jacuzzi pool with a view to die for. A wave pool that impressed the children. Set on the beach you can walk into the sea and snorkel there, also there is a peer where you can see amazing fish when snorkelling off there. Camels and Quad bikes are on the beach which you can go on for a fee but not too expensive. We did the camel ride which was interesting. The Animation team were fantastic all day and at night they had a show different every night from belly dancing to fire eating and knife shows not to be missed, comedy shows, we have never had entertainment as good in all the time we have been to Egypt. We expected no entertainment at night but was very impressed with this hotel. Most spoke in English too even though there were only a dozen English in the hotel mainly Italians, Germans and Russians. The Restaurant was large with very friendly staff from the Chief's to the Waiters. There are 3 restaurants but we only used the main one and the pool bars (3) served food when the restaurants were shut. Also the reception bar served sandwiches at night between 11pm and 12 midnight. We had no bad tummies and the food was fantastic even the children ate, ate and ate all day long. There is always something to eat and drink. As we went all inclusive which is recommended. Think I'm writing too long now but this is a 5 Star hotel which I would say going on First Class. Go and see for yourself you will not be disappointed."
- Travel date: 25th January 2007
Top traveller tips for LTI Akassia Beach
"Get the free map from reception"
LTI Akassia Beach is also called
- Akassia Swiss Hotel
- akassia swiss el quseir
- akassia swiss hotel el quseir