10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Very nice stay
"All the hotel is very nice and very well equipped.
Rooms are very spacious and confortable. Restaurants and commons areas also very nice. The pool and beach areas are huge and very pleasant: lots of space, umbrellas and hammacks (no need to wake up soon to get a place...).
Staff very helpful.
The points that could be improved:
-the animation: it's rather weak, especially at night; maybe this is intentional, since the guests are mainly families with kids
-the food: not bad, but a litlle repetitive"
- Travel date: Mon 8th of September 2008
"We have just returned from Hurghada., Aug 2008. We were very happy with the choice of hotel we made. It is for sure THE BEST in Hurghada. Both by location and cost-value ratio.
The rooms are excellent, indeed 50 sqm. Well furnished, lovely bathroom, terrace, very clean, equipped with bathrobes,shampoos etc.etc. The pool is fantastic, the beach very nice, sunbeds good and always available everywhere.., golf course.
The staff are friendly, respond to requests, though a bit weak with the English language.
HIGHS: place for rest! No noise, no constant annoying offers (like massages in Turkey), enourmous space including huge pool area, spacious beach, golf course etc.etc...had the feeling that hotel was half empty, while not at all. Loved the Lazy River!
LOWS: food is acceptable, eatable, and enough in quantity but a bit unimaginative and repetitive.
Take 'all inclusive'!, if not, they will kill you with water, drinks and similar they charge even with the meals.
Hotel is full of young people mostly, but it is also good vacation for families with small children.
I would definitely reccommend the hotel to my best friend."
- Travel date: Sun 17th of August 2008
Loved the place (Thank you Mohammed)
"I traveled with my husband during March. The place was really excellent although we stayed for a very short time. The pool was very big and clean and we really enjoyed the drinks at the pool.
The staff was very polite and friendly.
Generally, really worth the visit.
Hope next time we will stay longer."
- Travel date: Thu 8th of May 2008
"Well, I stayed in this hotel in April for a week. The stay was business related. The lobby is amazing and the rooms are clean, big, and real nice. The balconies overlook the pools and the red sea (though the red sea is a bit far). The beach was real nice except for some German and Russian men who kept on getting totally undressed on the beach; which I found weird.
One annoying thing was that my card kept on getting inactivated (and no, it was not my cell phone :-)) and kept on going back to get a new one. The funny part is that the card would not even work for the lights so had to call them, took them 30 minutes (!) to send a technician who ended up by telling that I had to get a card with the hotel logo. The staff are very inefficient and a simple query requires half an hour discussion. For example, we went to the beach and exchanged some cards that they gave us for towels. At 6 pm, all the staff disappeared. So when we tried to get our cards back, we were sent from one division to another. We threw at the end the towels at the reception and demanded our cards immediately. One minor thing, if you stay in this hotel you may have to flush 2-3 times :-)"
- Travel date: Tue 29th of April 2008
"It started very nicely. The room was big and nice, bathroom very nice. Beautiful balcony. As we were honeymooners we had flowers on the bed and rose peddles in the shape of a heart. The food for the first night was very nice but it went downhill from there. Too much choice, instead of a fewer and nicer choices, it was many and not to nice. But the pool was lovely. Beach just 2 min from your room. But a problem with the people staying there, they get up at 7 and go to the pool at 8 put their towels down and then they just go somewhere! It was very annoying to get up "late" and want to lie down somewhere, and see half the benches empty but with the towels on them.
But something about this hotel and the town was too much, I was glad to leave after 4 nights. It was a bit impersonal, not something you are used too in Egypt. You could feel that this town is for the tourists, built up like Las Vegas."
- Travel date: Mon 14th of April 2008
Hard to fault
"Just returned from 6 days staying at the Steigenberger Al Dau Beach Hotel at the end of a tour of Egypt with the family (2 girls aged 12 and 8). We all loved the hotel and were overwhelmed by the service. All the staff, without exception: reception, room cleaners, waiters etc. greeted us with a smile, and nothing was too much trouble. On the first night we rang the reception about a minor problem with a toilet that would not stop trickeling; within 5 minutes someone was at the door to fix it. The rooms were spacious and beautifully appointed. Bathrooms had separate baths and shower cabinets.
The food in the restaurant was excellent and there was always something that the children were happy to eat. We ate at the hotel buffet for breakfast and dinner and at the poolside or beach restaurants for lunch.
The children loved the pool landscape - particularly the "lazy river", a winding channel on which one could be carried along sitting in a giant rubber ring. There was also a separate pool for little children, a hotter pool where the water came out of the spa, and a huge main pool with areas of different depths. The girls also tried belly dancing lessons and played chess on the giant outdoor set. After 6 days we certainly had not exhausted all the things to do.
Most importantly, although the hotel was full, it never felt full. There was never any waiting for a table or difficulty in finding space by the pool."
- Travel date: Sun 6th of April 2008
Nice place, poor services, stupid management
"The place is nice, but the management and services are not 5 star. Not even 3 star!
We had Ultra All Inclusive, we went there with the agency Tez Tour. We asked for the best place for diving in the Red Sea no meter how much it costs and this is what they gave us.
Ultra All Inclusive does not include everything, there are still a lot of things "not inclusive", like... a cake served in the lobby.
The services are poor, you wait 30 minutes for a coffee even in the lobby bar.
We went there 6 persons, 2 of us had stomach problems because of the food.
Wireless Internet connection not available, they have a special room for internet connection but the internet did not work :-(
They charge you services not provided and you must pay them because they will not give you the luggage so you can not live the hotel. The agency does not want to be involved, because they have interest in having good relations with the hotel management, so you can be a victim of a robbery and you can do nothing. This was our case.
In every action they do and every word they say, you can read: "Give us everything you have in the pocket and never come back!"
We will never go there again."
- Travel date: Tue 27th of November 2007
Great ambience but there are some gripes
"Agree very much with Muerz's comments. We stayed there for 4 nights recently. A few other gripes:
- I noticed at the breakfast buffet that once the first round of guests had had their breakfast, the staff was pretty slow to re-set the tables. I had to go around looking for my own crockery & cutlery.
- The staff is friendly but not too bright. The resort had activities
going on throughout the day, but none of the staff members seemed to know where these were being held. Even the reception and guest relations officers couldn't tell me this. They sent me on a wild goose chase to the beach, where the beach staff themselves didn't know either.
- A couple of staff members appeared to be Russian and could speak only very bad English. Not good for a hotel that claims to be 5 star.
- We encountered a off-putting incident: we ordered a bottle of water
at the pool bar & signed for it to our room. Upon checking-out however, we were charged for additional items which we never ordered!
The extra amount was not enormous (about US$10) but we were appalled that the pool staff had written in these extra items in our bill. Unfortunately we had not kept our pool bar receipt so we had no proof
that we had signed for the water only. The check-out staff was unhelpful in this matter and insisted that we pay the full sum. We were miffed that we had to put up with dishonest/negligent staff and have complained in writing.
Other than that, we had a good time & the resort grounds are great. Rooms were beautiful & spacious but beds were not so comfortable. Bathrooms were exceptionally lovely."
- Travel date: Mon 5th of November 2007
Excellent hotel let down by appaling service.
"The Steigenberger Al Dau Beach Hotel is visually a beautiful hotel and photographs you may see on their website or here paint an accurate picture of its magnificence.
It is a huge sprawling hotel with an immense labyrinth of pools and despite the number of guests there was never a shortage of sunbeds or towels around the pools.
The Ultra All inclusive package we had during our stay was mostly excellent, a variety of local and international drinks plus alocoholic and fruit cocktails enough to please everyone. A few money grabbing ommisions from the all-inclusive package annoyed slightly - the jaccuzzi's by the pool incurred a charge of 5 Euros and slices of melon available from the beach bar one day were not included but were being sold for 15 L.E. (about Â£1.40). Also the minibars in the rooms were only refilled once per week so if you sensibly drink a couple of bottles of water a day you'll find yourself heading down to the bar so that you can get a bottle just to brush your teeth with later in the week,
The service in the bars and restaurants was terrible. Both were understaffed and disorganised. On our first night having ordered drinks at the bar we were told they would be brought to us on the terrace outside. Twenty minutes later when they hadn't arrived we discovered that they had 'forgotten' about us and they needed to take the order again. On the following evening in the restaurant we ordered wine to accompany our meal but by the time it arrived our entire party had eaten their starters and main courses and we were eating our desserts. After complaining to the restaurant manager we were looked after a bit better on subsequent nights, so do not let your complaints go unnoticed if service is not everything it should be.
There is one main restaurant serving 324 rooms and at peak times it creaked under the pressure. At breakfast time there is one chef cooking egg and omlette dishes so quite frequently there was a queue six or seven deep waiting to be served. Similiarly there is just one machine for toasting bread which often had a crowd around it. Clean teapots were an especially rare commodity.
Housekeeping were excellent and any requests from any of our party for laundry or additional items for the room were dealt with within minutes. However, one of the ten rooms used by our party had a faint sewer odour constantly, a problem which management obviously felt was solved satisfactorily by leaving a card in the room to allow the air conditioning to be left on constantly. The air conditioning in the rooms was largely ineffectual and if you prefer to have a coolish room and sleep under bedcovers you will be disappointed.
One other point of note is that the clientelle of the hotel were almost exclusively German and Russian (we were the only 10 English guests in the hotel), so if you prefer to be amongst some guests of the same nationality you may be better looking elsewhere."
- Travel date: Wed 26th of September 2007
Good but not great
"The Steigenberger Al Dau Beach Hotel in Hurghada is completely new and claims to be Hurghadas most luxurious hotel. Let me say from the beginning that I had a good stay and that I really think they could be right with their claims but they certainly aren't yet. There are still too many minor annoyances and problems at this property which I will try to cover in the following review:
The rooms are well appointed (at least 55 square meters) with large balconies and most overlook the pool area and have also seaview. Ask for a room on a high floor as those staying on floors 1-3 will have problems seeing the sea once all the plants have grown. The bathroom is nice (all marble) and has a fainforest shower as well as a bathtub. Unfortunately the rooms feature some of the most uncomfortable beds I've ever seen in all those years I travel the world. Also didn't I feel really welcome in the room, it was kind of sterile. It didn't have any flowers, tabletop lamps etc. In short all those little things that make you feel at home were missing. It looked like there was not enough money left to fill the large rooms with life.
I felt that service was good except for a few negative points like the front desk which was incapable at best. On arrival we asked for a room next to the lobby, we were assigned a room abound 300 meters away. On the day of departure, we asked if we could check out at 2 pm instead of 12 pm. The front desk person replied we would have to pay 50 USD. 50 USD for 2 hours in a hotel that had an occupancy of 20%? Example of very bad service. Also did they lose a mailing for us from the tour operator at the front desk... Other service weaknesses: On 4 out of 7 days, they had no sparkling water at the main dining restaurant. Impossible at luxury hotel!
Food and Beverage:
We had booked all inclusive and while we haven't had this before, we were kind of disappointed. Although the tour operator stated and reconfirmed we could have lunch either at the buffet or the beach restaurant the hotel wouldn't let us use the beach restaurant. Also did they feature "Sport Cola" instead of Coca Cola while other hotels in the area (which do not even claim to be luxurious) serve Coke or Pepsi. Same for most other drinks. Food on the other side was ok, I'd even say good yet a little repetitive. The appetizers on the buffet were always the same during all our week except for the two nights that had a special theme (Asian and Oriental). There wasn't a plate of smoked salmon (or any other fish) during our entire stay. Always the same arrangement of salads. At least the main courses were changed every night and they also had a pasta station as well as a special grill/rotisserie dish. The breakfast buffet was ok and had a crepe as well as egg station. Not as nice as the breakfast buffet at the Hyatt in Sharm-el-Sheikh for instance. One more thing that I did not like. Staff is allowed to use the buffet restaurant too. Due to the low number of guests it wasn't uncommon to see 20 guests and 40 staff using the buffet.
We also ate one night at their more formal restaurant and had a very pleasant night. Great food, very good service and we felt it wasn't too expensive.
One minor annoyance: They require gentlemen to wear long pants at the buffet restaurant at night. While in early march, I had no problem with this, in August when it is 40Â°C, I would prefer to sit on the piazza wearing a short instead of long pants. But maybe they are going to change this policy later this year.
The hotels best part! A very beautiful lobby (they say it's African style) and nice pools and gardens (at least when every plants and trees have grown). The hotel features a large pool as well as a lazy river pool and also has an indoor/outdoor pool connected to the fitness center. But there are still major annoyances or even design flaws with their public spaces as well as deficits in service connected to the pool area:
- The pools are not heated and therefore weren't usable (about 15Â° Celsius). Only the outdoor/indoor pool of the fitness center was heated and you were not allowed to use it except for when you payed to use the sauna or spa treatments.
- No windbreakers aren't installed yet and it really is windy in Hurghada during winter.
- Not enough spaces in the shadow. I agree most travel to Egypt to enjoy the sun but there are also people who try to avoid the sun or those who can't be in the sun too long and for those there aren't enough possibilities to stay in the shadow.
- The wooden loungers at the pool hat plastic mats but still weren't really comfortable.
- The main pool which is somewhat large, only has one real entrance. Same is true for the lazy river pool. They should add a few ladders around the pool area in order to enter or exit the pool more easily.
Some general comments:
We visited a few of the other good hotels in the area and we have to admit that none had equal facilities to this Steigenberger. The alternatives in the Hurghada area are a few miles away, in El Gouna, in Soma Bay or Saal Hasheesh. But if you want real luxury, go to Sharm were there are a great Hyatt and a great Four Seasons. The Steigenberger is one league below these two hotels I just cited. I even liked the Hyatt in Taba better than this hotel. The Steigenberger Al Dau just needs more time (to grow the gardens) and some more investments (to make it really luxurious). You could sense and feel that it was cheaply built. One of the "faux plafonds" of the spa even fell down one day and they had plumbing problems at the restrooms of the buffet restaurant another day. The spa is managed by a French firm and it also charges european prices.
Nice although not luxurious, this hotel needs more time and more investments in order to live of to its claims of being Hurghadas premium hotel. We had a nice but no superb stay. I would return to Sharm in a heartbeat (to the Hyatt for instance) but I wouldn't go back to the Steigenberger al Dau tomorrow."
- Travel date: Mon 19th of March 2007