40 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Wedding from hell
"I absolutely loved my stay up until my wedding day. The photographer was meant to meet me in my room at 4pm, 4.30 I headed down to reception as she was not there. My wedding planner, Malvina shouted at me because I should of been in my room and then shouted at my mum and grooms Mum because they were not at the beach. Malvina then angrily phoned the photographer. I then had to wait around for the photographer to arrive. Once the photographer arrived she took some photos of me and my brothers outside of the hotel. I now have no photos of me getting ready or my bridal party.
Once we arrived at the beach the ceremony was lovely, even though none of us really knew what we were doing as the communication was not great.
Whilst taking family photos, the photographer was sending people back to the hotel before we had even finished the photos, leading to some people not having any photos with us.
Once we had finished the photos on the beach, we were taken to a packed pool in the village the photographer stopped us and said she has taken lots of photos and we would need to upgrade our wedding package bu €85, I felt that this wasn’t the time or the place to discuss this considering she was late and I’ve already missed out on precious photos of my big day. We had some couple photos, I felt so out of place standing next to a packed pool with everyone staring at you.
Once we had got back into our horse and carriage instead of enjoying the ride we were told to phone all the guests that had popped back to their hotels as we couldn’t make an entrance without them. So we spend our time in the horse and carriage doing that.
Once we arrived at our reception, guests were being shouted at as they couldn’t get a drink not even water. considering most of our guests are paying to stay at one of your hotels and we paid for a beverage package. So heavily pregnant ladies and children were deprived of water until they were seated.
Once we had sat down at our reception, the speeches went well although we were not expecting to do them immediately.
Once the food was ready, the guests kept asking what each dish was as there was no food labels, this was made even difficult as we had people with shell fish allergies, gluten intolerance and vegetarians. I asked the manager personally but he just showed me what each thing was, that’s not really going to help the rest of my guests.
We chose a bbq buffet reception meal however there was nothing bbq about it. We did have a bbq in the corner untouched and not switched on. All of the food was oven cooked and was exactly the same food as bbq theamed nights a few days before. This was not a bbq I was expecting after paying a couple of thousand of Euro’s for it.
After the complications with food, the photographer, Malvina shouting at myself and the guests. I had enough, not in a million years I thought my wedding day would be like this.
The manager could see I was distressed and my husband, dad and father in law were all talking to him to say how unsatisfactory everything is.
Even though we had paid for a beverage package, people were still being declined certain drinks at the bar. However the manager let us have the bar until 11 with any drinks. This nearly saved our wedding night.
When it came to the first dance, The DJ didn’t introduce our first dance so he randomly started to play it and no one was ready, it felt rushed and I was all flustered.
Halfway through the reception, malvina came up to me whilst I was with my father in law and said she had billed the €85 to my room. Not once did she say to me throughout the day that I looked lovely or any such compliment. All she done was shout and disrespect me and my guests.
The following day after the wedding I just wanted to go home, I didn’t want to do anything. I dragged myself to the candlelit dinner, the staff were very friendly and the manager came up again and said he was going to make th evening very special, he did and it was a lovely meal.
For the rest of my holiday I hoped I would never see malvina again. My husband tried to argue why we had to pay the €85 for the photos considering she was late and missed out on precious photos I will never get. This turned into an argument and he had to pay it.
Apart from Malvina the hospitality and the kindness of each staff member was amazing throughout our two week stay. The only reason I will never go back is because of how horribly I was treated by my wedding coordinator. This is such a shame considering we had over 53 guests come out and neither of those 53 guests will come back nor recommend the wedding services. This has been the most wasted £20,000 I’ve ever spent."
- Travel date: Wed 1st of August 2018
"Superb hotel, so clean you could eat off the floors, which shine and sparkle. Staff very friendly and efficient, bedrooms immaculate, good food with lots of choice, well presented and varied. Travelled in USA, Middle East, Europe and Southern Africa, one of the best I have ever stayed in. Coming back to this hotel in September. Recommend without any hesitation."
- Travel date: Tue 1st of May 2018
Good family hotel
"I had read reviews of this hotel before arriving so had mixed feelings as what to expect. On arriving we were pleasantly surprised. The hotel, although very large was very nice and the rooms were huge and immaculate, ours even had a seaview despite being described as a garden view. We never made it to the pool until gone 11am but always got sunbeds for the 5 of us.
There is a little beach next to the hotel with is attended by and man who keeps it clean, with sunbeds to rent. Don't expect swathes of sand as the website implies. However it is fine for sunbathing and sea swimming and a fantastic view of Bodrum, Turkey. For beautiful beaches you need to travel south of the island.
We stayed half board, the breakfast was fine, but we found the evening meal as mass catering a little bland, there was no a la carte and the dining hall was huge and little like school dinners.
There is a regular bus service to Kos town which is also walkable which we did one night, which is just as well as the night life in the hotel is depressing with a bloke playing the organ, the first night listening to him was enough for us.
Kos Town is lively with plently of shops, ruins and the castle to see. However be warned, gone are the days when as holiday in Greece was cheap. The drinks where very expensive with the Euro virtually at parity with the Pound three soft drinks, an Ouzo and a beer was about Â£20. Our holiday turned out to be far more expensive than we envisaged. "
- Travel date: Fri 20th of August 2010
rude rude con con
"After booking a five star holiday through on the beach was really looking forward to a nice break, unfortunately when we arrived the staff looked down their noses at us and said that we had not paid enough to stay 5 star, and we had been booked in the Hippocrates 4 star hotel down the hill, we were not alone we spoke to at least 20 couples that this had happened to all English, the Germans had no problems, we felt that we had been used to bolster numbers where ever needed, if we had been told it was allocated on arrival it would not been as bad.
Right the food omg!!!! broccoli for breakfast nice, there was no proper meat apart from a few chicken wings and rabbit no steak or a chop at all, the hotel was like walking through a grave yard, full of blue rinse brigade, my 7 year daughter got a great reception with her water gun lol. our hotel had a sister hotel across the road which was a much larger hotel with 2000 people in blackpool or what rude Russians and Germans, the food was much better and the all inclusive lasted till twelve and not eleven like ours was much better but still poor
My opinion it was a very poor all inclusive, do not go if you plan on staying on site as you will starve and be in bed at eleven, after eating a rabbit and its food"
- Travel date: Thu 10th of June 2010
fab holiday crap entertainment
"hi all, this hotel is fab , very nice rooms.
no having to rush for a sunbed as they is plenty to go around, which is brilliant.
food is fantastic.
only fault i had with this hotel is the lack of entertainment.
they is the same man on every single night playing an organ, its awful , honestly it is.
he would better suited to the 60-70 years old age groups.
if your all inclusive at this hotel , and you want to go the the beach for the day, they is a little white van parked up and you get free drinks all day and free sunbed on the beach.
buses to kos town are every 20 minutes and run right up till 2am in the morning.
- Travel date: Mon 5th of January 2009
We were moved here from our first hotel...
"We were moved here from our first hotel and were so happy we did. After the start of the week in the other hotel we were ready to go home and were extremely down about our holiday. After moving here we enjoyed our holiday thouroughly and didnt want to leave so soon. The staff were friendly and helpful. The rooms were spotless and the cleaners did a wonderful job. The food was nice with something for everyone. they put on entertainment each night with something for everyone. We are definately considering going back and staying our whole week there. Even though we were the youngest people at the hotel everyone was friendly and we didnt get treated differently because of our age. "
- Travel date: Fri 3rd of October 2008
In Summary Huge disappointment on so ma...
Huge disappointment on so many levels - Definitely NOT 5*
Miss sold Panorama Hotel and forced to stay at Maris Hotel
(Report being filed with the UK European consumer centre
â through Trading Standards Institute)
Clean and tidy complex
Very poor beach
Sea view was a âsea glimpseâ overlooking bins
OK buffet dining experience
Inconsistent staff training and service delivery standards
Not 5* by any means
We were oversold this holiday with a promise of 5* all-inclusive 'luxury'.
We bought (text from our receipt)
Iberostar Kipriotis Panorama
Room with Sea Viewâ¦.all incl basisâ¦.hotel
We were placed in the Maris hotel advertised also as 5*.
Having worked in the travel industry for many years staying at 5* hotels around the world for the last 20 years - I can definitely assure you that this hotel was a good 3* to an OK 4*.
When we arrived we were put on the bus and told by the rep âyou are the 2 additionsâ, handed a piece of paper with âMarisâ written on it along with our return transfer details. When we pulled up outside the Panorama hotel we thought that it looked very impressive â although we were then told that we were staying at the bottom of the hill, closer to the beach at the Maris hotel. From a distance the Maris looked good. Initially this didnât appear to be a problem as we thought it was a 5* hotel. The reception was very nice the staff welcoming and helpful. We were quickly on our way to our room. It literally was 100 meters from the reception.
This was a good-sized room with plenty of hanging space, storage drawers and a fridge. The advertised Satellite TV had one channel running very old American drama but no English-speaking channels for news etc, all the other channels catered for the mainly Dutch and Italian clientele. Two uncomfortable beds pushed together, good air conditioning and good room and bedside lighting. The room had a marble floor which I had never experience before in a 5* although I suppose that it did help keep the room cool.
Our room was right at the front of this sprawling complex: coach, buses, taxis all stopped outside our balcony with people coming and going all day and night. The local scooter hoire shop is at the end of the complex and the road outside is used as a testing area for people renting the scooters and two-seater motor buggies â they ride them up and down fast, some demonstrating their skill at skidding on gravel by way of testing the bikes before renting them.
Having seen the pictures on the website of the sweeping panoramic views of the Aegean Sea looking onward to Turkey â we were somewhat disappointed with the âsea glimpseâ. The beach was tree lined and so you had to look through a break in the trees to see the sea. However, and this was once of my greatest criticisms we had a direct view of three large Sulo bins which we had to look over for our âsea glimpseâ.
I went to talk to the front office manager who told me that was the sea view! I said that I thought that a view of the bins was unacceptable and she actually shrugged her shoulders and said, âThis is sea viewâ. She was not really very interested in handling our complaint â I asked if we could move 3 rooms closer to the main building which would have presented us a slightly better sea glimpse, she did indeed check the system and tell us that that room would be available in 3 days time. Having reflected on this and not wanting it to spoil the holiday I went back a day later to ask for that room change and was told that the room was now allocated to someone else. Having complained again I was offered a sideways move to the other side of the complex with an even worse view. I declined the move telling the receptionist that I was extremely upset. We never heard from the front office manager again until I asked for the email address at the end of the holiday.
From the Iberostar website
Iberostar's guiding principles
On the best beaches in the world
The greatest of care for our surroundings
Having crossed a busy road, pass the bins to get to the dirt track. You are greeted with what looks like an ice cream / fish and chip van, advertising itself as a canteen for all-inclusive guests, offering a glass of juice or ice tea, a beer or bottle of water.
Wooden pallets are aligned in single file to form a walkway over the dirt track on to the grit beach. This is a pebble beach at the waters edge that turns to grit, on which are placed the uncomfortable mainly torn sun loungers and umbrellas. The grit is not kept even in a 3* standard, it is littered with plastic bottles and cigarette butts. We witnessed one couple arrive at the beach and the lady burst into tears saying to her husband, âThis is horribleâ.
You had to walk to the next lot of sun loungers along the beach to use the toilets facilities. These were two wooden sheds housing a WC and sink. Although smelling fresh and covered in post cards of the local area, I have never encountered this before at a 5* resort.
In complete contrast the beach that you had to walk onto to use the toilet had really comfortable padded sun loungers and was incredibly well maintained. The gentleman that owed the beach had gone to great effort to create a golden sandy beach from the pebble at the waters edge on which his sun loungers sat. For this experience you paid an additional 6 euros per lounger per day.
Very well kept garden areas. The pools were immaculate and the seating area clean and tidy always.
From the Iberostar website
Iberostar's guiding principles
Pretty average buffet dining.
A very good salad, OK dessert bar and average hot food, trays and trays of re-heated food brought out and placed under hot food lamps which quickly got a crust forming on as it was drying under the lamps. What is not eaten one night comes out the following night in a different guise.
Very strict times for eating, the evening meal is advertised until 9pm and that does mean 9pm. Lights on the hot lamps go out and the cleaning begins â the food is quickly taken back into the kitchens.
Continental breakfast from 10 till 11am as long as you are happy with a few meats and cheeses, bread, yogurt and one jam, the rest of the selection are removed at 10am. No toast either, the toaster is unplugged a 10am and woe betide anyone that wants it plugged in after 10am, I was treated appallingly by the kitchen staff for asking for toast after 10am.
The offer of al a Carte dining in the Triton restaurant on certain, book able in advance evenings is very alluring until you get there.
We went once to the Asian night: the starter was pumpkin soup; the main was a choice of chicken or pork, we chose the chicken it was the smallest portion of rice with hard chewy pieces of chicken in an inedible sauce. We left the food and walked out in disgust.
The restaurant we ate at was outside and the conflicting and contrasting music from the pool and bar vs the restaurant during the breakfast and lunch service became very wearing after a couple of days.
All in Italian, which we looked at one, evening for about 10 minutes. It was the lads from SprinTours dressing in womenâs clothes dancing badly to Cabaret. It may have been funny if we could have understood it.
Greek night in the main restaurant was OK, although I am not sure watching the Maitre'd do a dance for us while being delivered Ouzo on a tray during his dance added to my 5* experience.
From the Iberostar website
Iberostar's guiding principles
Highly qualified team
Front office manager: ineffective and uncaring.
The cleaning staff: exceptional â friendly, polite, chatty and cleaned the room quickly, efficiently and to a very high standard, daily.
The reception staff: very friendly and helpful and apologetic for their managerâs inability to resolve our accommodation issue.
The bar and waiter staff: on the whole were friendly, polite, chatty with exception of two: a young bespectacled blond haired girl and an aging man named Valises. These two blew hot and cold with different customers, we thought that they were downright rude.
Restaurant staff: again on the whole friendly, polite and chatty with the odd exceptions of appalling service standards during breakfast.
Maitre'd: a little officious when seating you, but very quick to respond to our complaint about the kitchen staff.
- Travel date: Sun 14th of September 2008
Me and my family stayed at the kipriotis...
"Me and my family stayed at the kipriotis panorama for 10 days. It was beautiful. Great hotel, very clean, posh and friendly. Half board was a good idea as the food wasn't as great as expected, however we went out to local restaurants for meals anyway. Beautiful scenery from the hotel, and always great hot weather, no clouds. We hired a car so it took just 5 minutes to get to kos town and to beaches as the one near the hotel wasnt that good. We found a gorgeous beach called magic beach however you'd need a car to get there as it was around 20 minute drive. The rooms were also very nice, clean and spacious with nice views onto the sea. Kos town has great nightlife! and nice little greek restaurants and shops. Suitable for everyone, lots of kids and families and couples too. Best holiday I've ever been on. Definately worth going everyone!!!"
- Travel date: Thu 28th of August 2008
Just arrived back from a lovely 2 week s...
"Just arrived back from a lovely 2 week stay with my husband and 2 kids (aged 14 & 10). Hotel very impressive as you arrive, vast floor space (all shiney marble) although it's 'dead' space as its never ever used. We had 2 double rooms booked but were upgraded to 2 junior suites, each had a queen sized bed, a single bed and a double sofa bed. Nicely decorated, very clean etc. We chose this hotel as Iberostar hotels usually have fantastic animation teams for the kids; however when we asked the Thomas Cook rep about it he explained that the Panorama did not have one (as its a 5 star !) but the other hotels on the complex (Maris, Kos Bay View, Hippocrates) did. But as it was peak season we probably couldn't use them, which was very disappointing. THIS IS NOT TRUE - speak to the staff on reception (Zeina was great), she explained that we could use all the facilities at all of the hotels entirely, including the bars, but we couldn't eat there (she emphasized that Panoramas restaurent was far superior and she was right). We did make a point of investigating the facilities but obviously our children missed out on the welcome meeting with the animators and had to suss out what was on and when. Mainly germans at Kos Bay View, animators spoke good english, good 'Playland' mini club for little children - guests at Panorama were not made aware that it existed and many parents/ children missed out. Maris Hotel had another animation team although entirely catering for the Italian guests, we did speak to 'chief' animator Joseph who invited our children along to the events. At week 2 we went to the welcome meeting by the Animation team, all in Italian with an entirely italian audience! Kids did enjoy their stay and made alot of friends at all of the hotels. Please be aware that the main pool at the Panorama has a scarey Lifeguard there - our kids were playing in a crowd of about 8, of 10 - 16 year olds and on day 4 the lifegaurd ordered our son out of the pool as he was too young. We explained that he was a good swimmer but he then proceeded to shout and threatened to get security, not what you want on a 5 star holiday. We spoke to Zeina who sorted everything out and he was allowed to play in the pool. Other times scarey lifeguard couldn't be found!
Food was great, bit repetitve, but generally good, however I would say it was recycled and wouldn't be allowed in UK. Pool very spacious, no fight for sunbeds at all. Pool towels available from scary lifeguard and not from reception as told by Thomas Cook rep. Enjoy working your way through cocktail list, although there is only one bar open at a time - during the day its the pool bar and after 6 until 12 its the lobby bar. The inside pool is a building site and there is generally huge expanses of rooms and floor space not used.
Enjoyed our stay - Kos Town is lovely. Do hire a bike, excellent cycle lane all the way to Kos Town. We found a lovely taverna in a local chaps' backyard - 6 tables and menu handwritten in an exercise book, we think it was called 'Never on Sunday'. Don't expect gardens all the way to the beach, not much greenery at all. You must meet Elton, barman at the Maris, tell him that they're playing your favourite song!!"
- Travel date: Sat 16th of August 2008
Last minute booking and chosen based on...
"Last minute booking and chosen based on these reviews. Had a fantastic week. Distance from Kos Town is a good half hour walk. Local beach not great. Staff friendly, facilities good and food ok. Steep walk up a drive to the hotel, so not for the unfit. Rooms excellent, spacious and clean and sea view gorgeous over to the coast of Turkey (Bodrum). Reception area very impressive and spacious. On site shop that has a good choice of everything.
Pool areas can get a little cramped at times and the usual sun lounger hogging and bar crowding occurs by our friends from across the water. Entertainment is not great and not geared towards the English.
We hired a car and would highly recommend, as there is only one main road (M1) through the island.There are some beautiful places to see. We found a great beach on the North of the island on the last day (Rep told us the North was mainly military bases) I would say the North is the prettiest and where most of the locals go and I did not see any military bases!!
I Would stay at this hotel again. "
- Travel date: Wed 23rd of July 2008
my wife and i are both retired so we dec...
"my wife and i are both retired so we decided to go in june prior to the school holidays so it would not be too busy.we decided to go all inclusive in view of the poor exchange rate and this proved to be an excelllent decision.the journey from the airport was about an hour as we were the last drop.i think this was deliberate as some of the drop off points looked pretty grim.we were immediately impressed when we arrived at the entrance drive to the hotel which was well illuminated on a hillside.we arrived at the hotel about 10pm and the massive foyer was very impressive.we enquired whether the restaurant was still open but were told no but there would be something to eat in the room.we were shown to our room and a table was laid for us with 2 superb salads with a selection of meat and cheeses together with fresh fruit.the minibar was stocked with bottled water soft drinks and lager.a large appetite was required to eat the meal. we ventured down to the bar where we were able to enjoy a few drinks before midnight as all drinks after midnight had to be paid for.the following morning we paid our 1st visit to the dining room wich is on the 1st floor and has a large veranda so you could eat outside if you preferred. this we did for the entire 2 weeks as due to its elevated situation the view was superb looking across the aegean to bodrum in turkey.the sunset was an artists dream.the choice of food in the restaurant was superb with an abundance of fresh fruit.i never realised there were so many different fillings you could have with scrambled egg.the suites were something to die for and i was in danger of becoming a chocaholic. if you asked for a glass of wine with your meal you were given a half litre carafe. the restaurant staff were superb and it is worth calling them by their names as it is appreciated and they will respond by getting to know you and where you are from and will always speak to you at every opportunity especially eleni and manos who soon got to know where we liked to sit and what we wanted to drink.the female bar staff were also very pleasant and the bars were well stocked with a variety of cocktails and spirits as well as the local lager.most of the spirits were branded names and were incuded with the all inclusive package.this was a great bonus as i noticed they were quite expensive to people who were staying there half board as indeed the bottled water was.this proved to be a substantial saving over 2 weeks.the hotel is part of a group and there were 3 other hotels within the group within close proximity and if you were all inclusive you could enjoy the facilities of the other hotels and free bar as this hotel is 5 star and considered to be the best in the group.this gave you the chance of a bit more entertainment as apart from the weekly greeknight with a barbecue around the pool the entertainment in the hotel was the same keyboard player every night. he was ok but not for 6 nights a week.another benefit of all inclusive was you has free beds on thee beach if you wanted.the beach was not particularly attractive so we chose to stay around the pools. there were ample sunbeds around the pool so the early morning dash to secure a bed was not required ad the pools were large enough so that you could enjoy a swim without bumping into other people and pool towels were provided.the towels in the room were changed regularly as were the bedding.the minifridge was replenished daily free of charge and the room was always immaculate every time we returned to it and the chambermaids always said good morning to you. i mentioned the hotel was in an elevated position and the driveway was quite steep for those with walking difficulties but there was a minibus shuttle throughout the day and evening down to the main road whre there was a manned barrier.when you wanted to go back to the hotel the man on the barrier just telephoned and a bus would arrive within minutes. this again was all part of the service.the bus stop into kos town was directly opposite the hotel and buses ran every 15 minutes. the cost was just over a euro and for the more energetic it was only a 35 minute walk.it is worth noting if you wish to hire a car it is worth waling about 200 metres up the main road outside the hotel where you can hire jeep for the day for 40 euros.the same jeep hired at the hotel will cost you 80 euros. the only other excessive cost i came across at the hotel was the roomsafe which was 40 euros non refundable for 14 days.this with the lack of variety of entertainment were the only complaints i had.i believe this is the perfect hotel for those seeking comfort good food and service and a quiet holiday."
- Travel date: Tue 22nd of July 2008
We came back just 3 days ago, and all of...
"We came back just 3 days ago, and all of us are missing the place.
The entertainment was very good, for people of all ages. There was also, shows in the theatre, But our holiday was also made by "The Animaction team" who are on until the end of this year. When we first arrived there was alot of Germans but that soon died down and alot of english families arrived. They had a mini disco for the children which all of my brothers and sisters enjoyed as they got to learn songs, that were french german and also english. The activities in the day were very good also, and me and my family, had a very good time, after two weeks there, we still were not ready to head home. The hotel is very clean, And employee's and people there are very friendly, and helpful, and childfriendly. My mother and stepdad got married there and the hotel staff were very good to us, and also the wedding co-ordinater, who in which was english.
The olny let down was probally our rep. But we did not need her through out the holiday anyway. And also, We were on a hill so if you ever went anywhere in the day, and wanted to go back to the hotel the walk was a bit steap for elder people such has my nan who is 58, but there is a shuttle bus that an take you up to which ever hotel you like, And you can go in all the other hotels, for entertainment at night or the pools in the day time.
The view from Kos Bay View is excellent, and you can see right over to Turkey, on a very clear day the land there was very clear, and you could see right over the clear blue ocean.
so yes, overall, We had a Brilliant Holiday.
Very good, for families, with children of anyage.
i would recommend it to anybody.
9 3/4 out of 10.
- Travel date: Sun 8th of June 2008