56 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Beware over booking at this hotel....
"I have been going to Marhaba Beach for over 18 years.
I went the 22nd September 2013. Booking through Travel Republic to get a single room. But, when I arrived the hotel had over booked, and sent all independent travelers to a sub standard sister hotel with a ant and cockroach problem. They tried to blame Travel Republic, but when I tackled the director I got the truth, Mr Khaled laughed and said he over booked. Funny?? Paid over Â£650 and laughed at. BEWARE if you book independent you may not have your holiday honored and they don't care a less, as I said 18 years meant nothing. Disgrace!!!!"
- Travel date: Mon 30th of September 2013
Return Guest - mixed thoughts
"We stayed here (myself, my husband and our 6 month old baby) 22 July - 04 August 2913. We choose and returned this hotel as we thoroughly enjoyed our previous stay here. I do love this hotel and I would like to 'big' it up but I do write an honest review. Firstly we were not given the room we had requested, I don't know if this was a fault of our accommodation provider or the hotel itself, however the room we were given was nice (over looking the pool on the 3rd floor).
The rooms are very nice, the decor is up to date and they are generally in a good state of repair. The only suggestion I would have for the hotel is that they equip the rooms with a mini fridge as there are in the neighbouring hotels with in the same complex (Hotel Marhaba & Hotel Marhaba Club). Otherwise they are prefect. Our cleaner(s) were very good and couldn't have done a better job.
Breakfasts are average, omelettes, fried eggs and pancakes are made to order and there was never really much of a queue considering the hotel was very busy, they do get them down quickly. The fried eggs were especially nice I rarely eat them at home, they are very tasty in Tunisia. There was a mixture of cereals, croissants, pan au chocolat, salad a few cold meats and cheeses and yogurt. Tea and coffee is served to your table which I think is a nice touch as most AI hotels you help yourself.
Lunch & dinner, I have to say I was disappointment this time as I found on many occasions the food undercooked! Mainly the fish in batter and chicken and turkey! The fish was just sloppy and clearly raw inside and the poultry had blood on it. my Mum & Dad & brother were also on holiday with us and they had the same. I did hear people complaining to the restaurant manager about this but it didn't seem to improve as there we still many foods undercooked on our second week. One of the reasons we returned to this hotel was because the food was very good last year. There isn't as much choice of food in this hotel and this time I didn't feel it was particularly made up with quality. There is always pizza and chips available and live cooking of pasta.
I would like to say that our waiter 'Moez' was great, he was always on had with our usual drinks at lunch, he was always cheerful and welcoming when we came to dinner.
The restaurant itself is nice and clean.
We ate in the beach bar a couple of times, they have a BBQ which starts at 1230pm daily, along with buffet and there is always pizza and chips available.
Swimming pool / garden / beach
The swimming pool is always clean and fresh looking. The gardens are so well kept and the gardeners go around daily ensuring there's not a bit out of place. It really is a lovely place to spend your holidays lounging about, not litter, it's not rowdy, it's a nice family complex. The pool bar is self service for water, soft drinks and beer. Other drinks can be served here. The beach again is all in order, clean tidy and is spacious. I did find this time that the tides were quite powerful but usually the sea is more calm in Sousse.
The beach bar again is very nice.
Animation / Enterrtainment
We were disappointment that the evening show on the beach wasn't on this summer, all the evening entertainment on the terrace which was very nice but it was nice to have had that one evening show on the beach last year, it was a lovely atmosphere so I am not sure why they have stopped it?
Monday night is Indian Night (Fakir Show). Tues & Thurs are Caberet. Wed evening game, Friday Tunisian Folklore & Saturday (is a disgrace) Sunday is karaoke. The animation team do their best and they work very long hours, however I think the Caberet nights should be thought up again as its not funny humour just silly humour aimed towards adults but at a child's standard standard it does put the hotel to shame. The karaoke night should probably be abolished as there will be a handful of people if that over a 1.30 to 2hr period who will get up and sing so the majority of the time there is nothing to watch. As for Saturday night .... This is the evening when they have the 'Changing Ladies' transvestite show which is a paying show 20 TND. OK so that's not costing the earth but if you choose not to pay and watch it (in the indoor salon bar) then you are succumbed to listen to a man playing a keyboard for 2 hrs on the stage. They obviously don't have alternative entertainment on Sat evening because they want to sell tickets for the Changing Ladies show (which is not done by the animation team). On the first Saturday I bought a ticket for the show, and no I wasn't expecting it to be superb but I was not impressed, it's basically 3 men dressed in drag singer songs by, Celine Dion, Tina Turner and Cher. Personally I thought there would be more of a comedy act as well.
The indoor smoking bar (I am not a smoker but I am not against smoking) this bar is really nice, the staff are so professional and swift with their jobs, I wish I could say the same for the American Salon bar! The bar men in this bar were awful! Favouring serving drunk tipping guests over polite patient guests, my husband being asked to show his wristband as we had been (staying) in the hotel too long!!!! and the bar man didn't believe it was genuine, needless to say my husband spoke to manager about this immediately and then bar must have been spoken to as he was constantly saying 'hello' 'goodbye' to us the rest of the holiday!.
I would like to return to this hotel despite the few niggles on this occasion. I would hope that next time it has improved that little bit.
I would recommend this hotel, I think we were just a bit unfortunate with the food this time. It really is a lovely hotel.
Also beware the day you depart the hotel your wristbands are taken off at check-out time 12pm so if you have a late pick up you are not going to have any food after breakfast or refreshments after 12pm (unless you are with Thomas Cook / Thomsons).
The suggestions I have for the manger are:
-Ensure food is cooked through
-Please re-think the entertainment schedule
-Bring back beach evenings"
- Travel date: Thu 8th of August 2013
An enjoyable holiday
"Returned from the Marhaba Beach on 2 June 2013. The hotel is on the beach which is clean but we were too early for the drinks and restaurant to be set up for refreshments, apparently it was opening in high season the week after.
You sit in the same place in the restaurant for the week. The food was okay but not much choice, we were a little disappointed to be fair. The staff are lovely and the pancake man blows a cow horn at the children in the mornings. The omlette man could smile a bit more but overall we didn't starve and I still managed to put on a half a stone!
We tipped the barman at the quiet pool and didn't have to get off our sunbeds for the whole week. We also tipped the sunbed man who was just so helpful, no tip, no service!
Our room was slightly shabby but a really comfy bed, all needs updating. It's very clean with the towels changed daily. The couple who we went with couldn't hold onto their room on the last day so came into ours and declared it was in more need of an update then theirs.
There was lots to do during the day, I played darts, archery and bowls but the keep fit was too energetic for me!
Overall a nice break, I didn't have to cook, clean or wash up for a whole week, a nice relaxing time. Hotel is definitely not a 4*, it should be a 3*, lovely and sunny for the last week in May but wouldn't go back. "
- Travel date: Tue 6th of August 2013
"i agree with some of the guys above.this is definately not a 4 star hotel. more a 3 star.
i suppose everyone has a different experience, but ours was not good. stayed for 10 nights. cleanliness is poor, there is a weird smell in the hotel room, entertainment team were brilliant, rest of the staff I found were not as helpful, some of the waiters were nice, food not great, not a great variety, you have to pay for wi fi whereas the hotel near by has itfree, when we found out ( tour khalef) we used to go there and use their wi fi, its literally 2 min walk from the hotel. indoor pool had an awful smell to it. they seriously do need to spend more money on the hotel.
i was really looking foward to this holiday, but was deeply disappointed it didnt meet the standards that we expected for a four star.
would definatley not visit marhaba beach hotel again. Tour khalef next door to it is amazing."
- Travel date: Thu 31st of May 2012
"My husband and I went in March 2011 and had a fabulous time
We met some wonderful people and they made it an even better time
the staff were fabulous and the entertainment lads very entertaining and very helpful
The beach is 2 mins walk and the waiters are there to serve you
We were A/I and we loved to have stayed longer
If you treat the staff with courtesy they will bend over backwards to help
Best Holiday we have had for a long time"
- Travel date: Mon 1st of August 2011
"Just got back from weeks holiday had fab time. Food and drink a plenty,animation team great guys but not entertainers but made sure all had a good time. Rooms were spacious and clean pool area is great and staff are all freindly. Would definately go back."
- Travel date: Wed 6th of April 2011
"We stayed from 13th march till 23rd March and had a fabulous time. Best holiday in a long time. everyone could not do enough to enable you to enjoy it.... from the waiters to all staff were great, cant wait to come back.. Food good rooms fab people fabulous.
Jean & Ian"
- Travel date: Sun 3rd of April 2011
excellent half term week
"Just back from excellent week at Marhaba Beach Hotel.
Weather not brilliant but still tanned ok!!
food exceptional all week, entertainment cheesy to say the least, animation team work so hard to keep everyone happy and they deserve a lot of praise.
Room spotless, maids very efficient, waiters friendly, welcoming and always at hand.
Luckily majority of tourists were british, only french and their [xxx] kids running amok every night threatened to mar our enjoyment.
outdoor pool was frankly awful and needed replacing, but just a small point as beach was glorious.
Gym very adequate, and drinks as standard for AI in Tunisia.
For those who critisize everything and put the place down, remember, you are in North Africa. "
- Travel date: Wed 3rd of November 2010
Not a 4 star
"Having stayed in many four star hotels all over the world, this hotel is not on a par with them.
A 3 star rating is more appropriate.
It is in need of a good revamp and improvements in their fire safety standards and has a limited public access to the internet.
The location is fine, the pools and beach are good, excellent gym facilities, but the main hotel and rooms need some money spent on them to bring them up to par.
The evening entertainment was poor and for some shows it had to be paid for?
We would not go back there again."
- Travel date: Fri 23rd of July 2010
So sad to see the slide
"My partner and I had a very good holiday at this hotel in 2005, we are world travellers so have experienced many different levels of service and accommodation.
Sad to say the hotel was very clean but the staff seemed so unhappy and the service was poor, the food less than inspiring and the behaviour of the guests uite disgusting at times, the management did nothing to uphold the rules, luckily we were out a lot of the time, visiting Tunisia's great places with the ruins and history.
One of the guests, a young man sporting facial jewellry was offered drugs just outside the hotel, so they are there if you want to indulge.
I think this is the last time we will visit the Hotel Marhaba Beach."
- Travel date: Wed 19th of May 2010
"I have just returned from a week long stay at the Marhaba Beach Hotel. This was my second visit to this hotel. It always amazes me when I read people's comments about this not being a four star hotel. The rating system for package holiday hotels is different from the system used to rate hotels in Ireland or the UK. As package holidays go this hotel is good. The waiting, bar staff and housekeeping staffs are efficent and friendly. The food is very good ane varied. I was not very impressed by the reception staff, I found one receptionist spent more time trying to sell tawdry necklaces than being a receptionist.
Tipping is a major issue for some people who stay at this hotel. But i follow the same rules I follow at home I tip generously for good service and I found that the staff are genuinely grateful for tips.But remember that 350 denar is the typical wage in Tunisia these people deserve our generosity. Our waiter was a sweetheart who could teach many a snooty waiter in Ireland a lesson in service nad hospitality.
I found the animation team to be pleasant guys but not great entertainers, a lot of their shows are old hat.
I will return to this hotel in the future it is a friendly if not especaially grande
- Travel date: Wed 4th of November 2009
"We have just came back from here and what a holiday we had if you want a great time would go here as they do all they can to make sure you have a great time especially abdul and the rest of the team aswell they are always smiling no matter the time of day or night. The food here is good aswell lunch does not have a great choice but still plenty to eat there the only bad point i woul give it there is no tea and coffee making facilty in the room if there was then it would make it a lot easier in the morning when you get up for a cuppa. As i said would have no plbs going back there once again if you do go make sure you say hi to abdul and he will make your holiday a fun time"
- Travel date: Mon 26th of October 2009