1 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Be aware before you book this hotel - a...
"Be aware before you book this hotel - a *** rating in Tunisia is NOT a *** rating we expect in Britain. We visited in October 2006 and were really disappointed with the hotel overall.
Their website says that the hotel was built in 1992 and renovated in 2003. I can't believe this - the place doesn't look like it has seen a lick of paint since 1962. The rooms are grubby and dingy and totally outdated. We were originally put in a room at the top floor at the furthest point from the facilities even though we were there with a baby. We asked for a change of room and, to be fair, were moved in to a bigger, ground floor apt, although this was left up to the cleaners who I'm sure had better things to do with their time while reception staff sat there doing nothing! The original room was awful, like a nasty bedsit - dark and overlooking a derelict hotel and a main road. The second was marginally better but still pretty horrid.
The in room facilities were really poor. The beds were so hard and lumpy that it was near impossible to sleep, I actually ended up with bruises on my knees from the ridges in the mattress and having trouble walking because my hips were so stiff! My husband's bad back wasn't helped either. For self catering we had two electric hobs - one didn't work, no kettle, toaster, microwave or grill or for that matter any forks! No can openers (thank goodness for Swiss army knives) or any other utensils, two tiny glasses and a couple of plates and bashed up old pans. The toilet meanwhile was grubby, the seat and lid didnât fit so every time you flushed water jumped back out and the loo roll holder was almost off the wall. The bath hadn't seen enamel for several years and the grouting was mouldy. Windows meanwhile were also dirty, curtains were filthy, sheets (not once changed in our stay) stained with dirt and what may have blood and (I hope) suntan lotion. Walls had evidence of mozzies murder all over them. The air con unit stank when we switched it on. The cleaners, although ever so friendly, didn't seem to have the greatest grasp on how to use a mop.
The hotel facilities weren't much better. We didn't use the bar but again it looked pretty dank, the 'pizzeria' is a hole in the wall and doesn't appear to be in use, we never saw a chicha bar, I can only imagine the 'Air du Temps outside bar' is the plastic seats haphazardly thrown on the grass outside reception and the poolside snack bar is some plastic seats outside the main restaurant. The restaurant looks like a staff canteen in a prison, dreadful lighting, bare white walls and hard floors while the food is what can only be described as dubious. My husband said his kebab was fine but 'nothing special' while my burger and chips (I know, what I expected?) revealed the source of the overwhelming deep fat fryer aroma which hung over the area. If there was any beef in there I'll eat my sunhat. Often the place was deserted by staff and much of the menu wasn't available. If only there had been another decent restaurant nearby!
The pool is clean and in a sun trap position but don't be fooled it's TINY and, for those with kids, up a flight of stairs, there's no way you'd get all the residents round it in high season. There's no poolside bar as they would have you believe. The 'private beach' is up the street, across a busy road and down what appears to be an abandoned sewer outlet (I'm not being overdramatic, it really is). If you make it without being run over or breaking your neck on the non existent path it's not really private, they don't check who you are and you'll be hassled by people selling cigarettes and doughnuts. Thank goodness Mother Nature made the sea and sand beautiful. By the way we never saw a beach bar or water sports, just a couple of blokes handing out the umbrellas. For the record back at the hotel the 'children's play area' looks dangerous.
The location of La Paix is dubious. It looks like a quiet road but is obviously a bit of a rat run for locals so very noisy. There are a few restaurants behind it on the main road but they all look very dodgy while Hammamet town centre is a good fifteen, twenty minute walk away and you won't be overwhelmed with a choice of pavements on the way. Once there it's pretty down at heel anyway and you won't find any 'real' Tunisia, just a lot of pizzerias. In the opposite direction a half hour walk takes you to a handful of not great restaurants too. Take a taxi to Yasmine, it might be tacky but there are some good restaurants and things to do.
By the way the onsite supermarket is what we Brits might refer to as a corner shop, bread, water, cheese and a few baseball caps! Watch out for the bloke who runs it, he was really pally with my husband then charged him twenty quid for a baguette, four yoghurts, some jam and an already opened jar of pasta sauce. Have your savvy hat on (they don't sell those in the medina).
I would definitely recommend going to Yasmine instead of Hammamet proper and going for a 4 or 5 star hotel (which we eventually did just to get a decent comfortable bed - Karthago was a breath of fresh air). If you do go to La Paix be ready for a lot of taxis or long walks, take as much kitchen equipment as you can carry and cans/jars or make do with tuna sandwiches in the day and eat out of an evening and make an appointment with your chiropractor on your return!
I'm sorry to say but I can only hope that La Paix is going the way of that hotel next door.
- Travel date: Mon 6th of November 2006