145 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Not Going Back
"This hotel is very good,the food and staff are excellent.
Approx 20 minutes by taxi to center or 50 minutes walk.
The entertainment at this hotel is very poor.
No Internet cafe service available
The biggest problem at this hotel and grounds is ANTS.
I thought that this hotel was 4 star but I consider it only a 3 star.
Sorry but I will not be going back to this hotel again"
- Travel date: Wed 3rd of October 2012
"OK no rubbish just honesty. Royal Kenz is a clean,good, smart hotel, offering comfortable rooms,fine waiter service and a variety of food. No, its not cordon bleu but, you can always find a meal for you. Queuing for drinks is a pain when there seem to be a lot of staff on duty but, you just get to accept this as the norm. There are a number of broken sunbeds but, if people stop kneeling and standing on them it wouldn't happen. On the real down side, the animation team, although a lovely group of youngsters, are very poor. No real entertainment created and they need to go to see other countries animation teams to learn. Do not be concerned about this hotel. You will have a great time!!"
- Travel date: Mon 16th of July 2012
Further to previous review in 2009
"I reviewed this hotel, which we have stayed at several times, in 2009. The refurbishment and extension of the hotel had been ongoing over a 2-3 year period, during the winter months, when most of the guests were retired British people on long stay holidays and my review reflected the disruption that was created by those circumstances. On returning to the area in Jan.2012 I visited the Royal Kenz to see friends and to see how things were when the refurbishment and extension works had been completed. In all aspects but one, the hotel has regained the reputation of being "THE HOTEL OF CHOICE,for British, winter long stay holidaymakers, in the Port El-Kantaoui area. The one area which is a disappointment, is entertainment, or to be accurate, LACK of entertainment. Back in 2006/2007 when we first stayed at the Royal Kenz, the entertainment available, was excellent. During the refurb. the entertainment team "vanished" and as at Jan. 2012 have not been replaced. In conclusion, if you want a nice hotel, with decent food, pleasant staff and reasonable facilities and are not bothered about the lack of any entertainment, then this hotel is an excellent choice. For a 6 week winter stay, the lack of any real entertainment, means that i will be looking elsewhere. "
- Travel date: Mon 2nd of July 2012
royal kenz hotel
"I sayed at the royal kenz hotel with my wife for a 1 week holiday and can say it was the worse hotel that i have ever stayed in,the food is the worse food that ive ever tasted and the rooms in the hotel are very basic ,we booked the holiday with thompsons and payed 100 pounds extra for a superior room when we got to the hotel we were put in a little poxy room that smelt of damp (because the room had carpet instead of tiles)we asked to be moved but were told there was no other rooms ,we were moved around like cattle in the resturant from table to table the 1st day and then only after losing my temper with the manager were put on a table we used everyday.
you have to get up at at least 6am if you want a sunbed as after 8am there are none left because there are more broken beds than good ones.
the staff behind the bars are very arrogant and will not smile at all,when getting a drink if you ask for ice you are told that you cant have any till after 5pm and you will get your drink in a plastic cup.
the hotel has a childrens play room which has a pool table,football table and a table tennis , but best of all it has a ceiling that is about to fall in ,bear wires hanging out the wall and a fuse box which is about 3ft of the floor that doesnt close.
the only thing that i can say good about this hotel is the waiter mousan in the dinner area he is a lovely helpful man and the annamation team they were the making of the holiday for me and my wife , the to girls ameria and titi were great and also the lads on the team dido, mohamed and the others were very helpful and very entertaining .
i would not recommend this hotel to anybody and will not be going back here in a hurry , tunisia is a lovely place and would go back there but its a shame that they have hotels like this to spoil it."
- Travel date: Fri 22nd of June 2012
had a lovely holiday
"stayed at royal kenz in may 2012, had a lovely time, our daily waiters at breakfast lunch and evening meals( ezerdeene and walid ) were very helpful and friendly. As were all the other waiters and bar staff.
the hotel grounds were very clean and tidy, the interior is cleaned constantly.
the food was lovely,( i was worried as i cant eat lots at home due to an allergy of certain foods )
The animation team dido amira maddie kiko soffianne were very good entertaining you all day long and through the night. the hotel thomson reps danny and martin were very good.
the trip with joseph which we booked in the hotel for the camel train was very good and funny. also trip booked through thomson reps to el jem was very good and good value.
i am hoping to go back again next year and hoping some of the same staff i met will be there.all of the staff work very hard to make your holiday enjoyable."
- Travel date: Thu 21st of June 2012
"I have just returned from the Royal Kenz where I stayed for 2weeks with my husband son and daughter in law.The staff were great especially Mo and Habib at the pool bar,looked after us brilliantly.Houcham and salah in the dining room also made sure our stay was good although there was a small hiccup getting a decent table,but thanks to the Maitre D Mohammed we soon got that sorted. We found it quite refreshing not to have to push and shove trying to find a table you stayed at the same table all holiday.
We had superior rooms which were quite away from reception and there is a maze of corridors lifts etc to get to them.You get used to the walk good exersize after eating all the wonderful food that is available morning noon and night.
Entertainment is pretty basic and they play the music far to loud. The team are very pleasent and try to entertain the guests.There are occasions when outside entertainers come in,on the whole can be a bit tedious during the evening.
The pool areas are very good although I felt it a bit of a cheek having to pay 1dinar each day for a mattress for the sunbed.You will also find that sunbeds get reserved from 6am so get up early there are plenty of beds and areas to sit.
Lookout for pirate boat seller mediocre trip and also Joseph who sells horse riding very nice guys and not to dear.
All in all we had a good holiday and we would definately think about returning to the Royal Kenz if we go to Tunisia."
- Travel date: Thu 7th of June 2012
Very, very disappointed, left after the first night.
"We booked this hotel through Thomson/First Choice (they are owned by the same company) and were looking for a relaxing, good quality beach holiday. What we got was a whole lot of disappointment and a very stressful start to our holiday. I have travelled extensively in Tunisia and Egypt and had totally realistic expectations about this holiday, but it just didn't deliver.
The interior on the hotel is very smart and impressive as a first impression and almost lives up to it's child free "boutique style" image as portrayed in the Thomson Brochure, but that is where the similarity ends. As another reviewer has stated, the description on the hotel and facilities is wholly inaccurate and extremely misleading. I am amazed that Thomson are able to get away with the overselling of this property.
The only positive was that our room was spacious and well decorated. It overlooked the pool area and had a partial see view. However, I did not go on holiday to sit in my room. I purchased this holiday wishing to enjoy the "stretch of white sandy beach located just 250 yards from the hotel".
On arrival we went to look around the property and locate said beach. There were absolutely no signs or information as to how to find the beach and we were stopped by a guest who offered to help us as we looked so lost. When we asked her about the beach she said flatly "Don't bother, it is DISGUSTING". We were quite shocked and assumed that this lady must have been a very fussy customer and set off to find it. To access the beach we had to leave the property and walk down a very dodgy looking ill maintained path which was against a brick wall on one side and an open area where local children were smashing bottles and kicking rubbish around. There was also a partially constructed ugly shell of a building which did not help the general look and feel of the place. As we were a party of two ladies we did not feel safe walking unaccompanied in this place.
When we arrived at the beach it was very, very small and completely empty except for one couple huddled in one corner behind a stack of sunbeds. The beach we found did not look anything even remotely like the one advertised in the Thomson or First Choice brochures or on their websites. When we walked down further onto the beach we found that the access to the water was blocked by a massive, fly infested area of deep seaweed which stretched nearly the entire length of said "stretch of white sandy beach". The only open facility was a toilet as the beach bar was closed as it was apparently "low season" which was something not mentioned when we made our booking. The only member of staff around was snoozing in a chair and his only job was to tell you " No Beach Bar! Closed!".
We walked back to the property to see if the pool area would be a viable alternative, but we were already pretty upset. We were again greeted by the same guest who told us some other things about the hotel we needed to know before we took up residency. We could see for ourselves that the outside areas were in serious need of repair and looked very tired.
This is what we were told by other guests and what we found out ourselves -
1) You have to pay for the mats on your sun bed and you can only do this by going to reception to put credit on your "all inclusive credit card". Towels on the other hand had to be paid for with a cash deposit to the pool staff.
2) Every single drink you want you have to surrender said card, wait for a receipt which then has to be signed. Slow lack lustre service made this an extremely slow and inconvenient process. When we complained to our Rep she said that this system had been put in place because All Inclusive guests had been abusing the system by giving drinks to half board guests. One has to ask how all of the other All Inclusive hotels in the world get around this!!!???!
3) You had to sit at the same table for breakfast and dinner every day in the main restaurant, but you could sit anywhere during lunch. Huge areas of the main restaurant were no go areas (we actually watched the manager angrily shooing customers out of them) as they wanted to leave them undisturbed ready for dinner as they were under staffed.
4) If you changed money at reception they had been warned by the previous Rep that you must get a receipt or the Cashier will give you his "own special rate of the day and short change you". When we mentioned this to our Rep, Laura she said that you needed the receipt to change the money back before leaving the country which was true, but a completely different reason to that highlighted by the previous Rep.
5) Large areas of the garden were roped off so that the poolside waiters didn't have such a large area to cover when serving drinks so the majority of people were crowded around the main pool. They also dropped their staffing levels on transfer day so this was the worst day to try and get served.
6) Service was not just "hit and miss", it was miss. The waiters in the main buffet restaurant were more interested in talking to each other than attending to their guests. They were sullen and down right lazy unless you were one of the over 60's staying for weeks on end to avoid the English winter. The hotel was filled with these guests who had paid peanuts and not the artificially hiked Easter prices.
We called the 24/7 helpline in the end and told them what we had found. The staff member I spoke to initially tried to deny the issues we had found, but then eventually even he admitted that he had visited the property and found the beach "disappointing" and that was during high season. He called our Rep to the hotel and we discussed our options which were to basically sit it out of PAY to be moved to another hotel. We were disgusted as we already felt that we had been sold a lie when we purchased this holiday and that it was up to them to make things right. After much discussion and the rest of the day being wasted taking phone calls and trying to make the best of the situation we were offered a hotel we had visited before and at a considerably reduced additional amount to that originally quoted. We were also told that the hotel Manager had "let us off" having to pay their cancellation charges, but he jolly well should have done.
Just to rub salt into the wound we had to pay our own transfer charges to the other hotel when we left the next day. THOMSON YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED. If you visit their website it states that the property will be rated as part of their "Platinum Collection" from the 1st of May and start admitting children. There is nothing there for children AT ALL and unless they flatten the property and build a new one there is nothing remotely "Platinum Collection" about it.
We moved to the Abou Sofiane which was absolutely outstanding. Don't touch the Roylal Kenz with a bargepole. There is nothing "Royal" about it."
- Travel date: Mon 23rd of April 2012
Royal Kenz Hotel
"The Mrs and I had a weekâs stay at the Royal Kenz Hotel mid Jan 2012 all inclusive. When we arrived at the hotel the first thing we noticed was the hotel grounds and reception area was spotlessly clean. Then as you do we got our key and tried to find our room well what a mission we had trying to find it we was in room 1015 you had to go to the first floor walk for ever then go down a flight of stairs then along a corridor to your room nr 5 mins in total from reception. Our room was a superior room with pool and sea view, There was only two things wrong 1. The shower would not stay in the holder if put on more than Â½ power as it was broken, 2.The wc seat would not stay up that was it. There was always plenty of hot water, soap, shower gel and shampoo and a lovely deep bath (happy days).
Food.. We never had a problem with any meals there was a good selection at all sittings and it was hot. What we did not like was being put on a table with another cpl. (ask the waiter for a table for just the 2 of you but he will expect a tip) made us think it was done on purpose.
Drinks.. This was probably the best all-inclusive hotel we have stayed in for drinks as the larger was good, soft drinks out of a bottle and proper coke & diet coke and a good selection of spirits.
sorry guys but it was terrible for us, yes they had bingo (you got to see it to believe the machine they use) they had a quiz twice a week a belly dancing show that was free (if you see it you will see why its free) once a week and a show you had to pay for once a week 15Dinars which we did not see.
The waiters at all times will expect a tip (breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner and bar) Yes itâs not a lot of money but add it up over a week or two and then think about it. The person we felt we had to give a good tip to was our room cleaner she was great.
Scams There are a few scams you will find when you are out and about the most popular we found was the hello Iâm your waiter from your hotel and even name your hotel. The other main one is when you are in the shopping area they ask please May I ask you a question?
Would we go back? too right we would at the end of the day it was great value for money.
- Travel date: Tue 14th of February 2012
Book all inclusive and be treated like a leper
"All inclusive can expect -
to be served last
get small measures
to be unable to get more than half a wine glass of a soft drink or water at any time.
drinks to run out but only for all inclusive guests, there are plenty avaialable for half/full board who are passing money over
Staff asking you to get them a beer.
Have to sign for every drink - even a glass of water.
All guests can expect -
a dirty beach
repetitive menu (lasagne on the menu 7 times from 14 nights we were there)
Good maid service.
Fantastically cooked meals.
Would not return. Would not recommend. Talking to people who are repeat customers said they pitied the people seeing this hotel for the first time."
- Travel date: Mon 10th of October 2011
Theft going on at Royal Kenz
"I have visited the royal kenz at least 3 times a year for the past 7 years and have always been happy until this year when 3 of my friends were short changed by Â£12 on a Â£100, and clothes from their room and a sony walkman stolen which they deny, but believe me it is true, for this reason beware with your money and belongings, also there is a 10 dinar refundable deposit from the safe deposit box same for 1 week as 2 weeks, i willl no longer be going to this hotel and a lot of regulars have told me the same story even the elderly people were being robbed of their money when exchanging it was reported but after a day or two started again , i will stay at the imperial maharba palace next door 5 star excellent as have stayed once before 2 years ago, but returned to the kenz as more british holiday makers and just to let anyone know the man dressed up as borat for a bit of fun as there is no entertainment at all, and mido the entertainer is definately not camp or gay i know him very well. shame they have started to steal they will suffer from this and it will be down to themselves.also over the years we have been very good to some of the staff bringing gifts, clothes and vodka for them but seems they are only out for what they can get now, beware if they mutter zipzip as it is a very insulting word so dont tip if you hear them mutter this as be assured they will. stealing off guests especially regular guests disgusting behaviour."
- Travel date: Fri 15th of July 2011
"Stayed at the Royal Kenz for a week on our honeymoon in May 2009, such a fantastic hotel and country we went back in the September of the same year and took friends for another weeks holiday. This year we are going back to the Royal Kenz in September, this time for 2 weeks. Everywhere was so clean, the food and service excellent, everyone was so friendly and couldn't do enough for you.. Cant wait to go again."
- Travel date: Sat 18th of June 2011
very nice hotel nice staff clean rooms
"my husband and myself went to royal kenz in oct10. we had vouchers for our wedding anniversary.We went halfboard,we got to the hotel late evening,we payed for a sea view but when we woke up the next day we discovered it looked over the back of the hotel not the sea.We went down to reception to see what could be done but there was no seaview rooms avaliable,The room we were givern was very clean and comfortable.The food was good the first morning we went down to breakfast and just went to the table.we did not know we had to go to the one with your name on! The staff were very nice.
If you want a sunbed, i would recommend to get to the pool area very early.
we went on some trips all very good, must go on the star wars and deset trip very good for the money, very tied but good.
The rep was very helpful, We stayed for 11days.
The only thing is drinks took a long time to come unless you give them a tip, and the entertainment was ok,but it was the same 1st week and the 2nd week and finished about 11.30,not good for a hoilday in my eyes.and if you are young and have a family i would not go to this hotel, we did feel that the hotel was full of elder people. so i will not be going again untill we our older? sorry.we did find some people are own age and had a very good time. "
- Travel date: Fri 4th of February 2011