10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
"Stayed at this hotel, 9-23 August 2008. Generally a very good hotel. Great setting, great staff, great food, but....oh dear let down by interruptions to the water supply! Frequently, when using the shower, the water would dissapear, and maybe return in a few minutes, sometimes longer. Our room was 1626, but the problem seemed to be wide spread, as we spoke to other guests.However, full credit to the staff, my wife managed to swallow a fish bone, and the staff couldn't have done more to be helpful! A quick (a little less than 1 hour in the local a&e, NHS take note) and all was well. Thankyou . Quick note about the flights, for the second time in 2 years, delayed by Monarch again. This time only 22hours, unlike the 24 hours last year! Personally i shall never fly with Monarch again. Travel agents take note."
- Travel date: 2nd September 2008
Fantastic hotel - great food & location
"We loved this hotel (we were staying in the Olympio), so much so we are trying to book next yearâs holiday with the same hotel group in the Italian lakes. There were lots of review comments round issues with the high number of lifts and the vehicular, but we had no problems with this as the rewards were fantastic views no matter where you were, a very private hotel, spectacular location and you were well enough above the main motorway for it not be an issue (unlike some of the hotels down in Letojani I would imagine). The food in the hotel was FANTASTIC â best pizza I have ever had in the restaurant by the Oympio pool. There is a great cross section of nationalities stay at the hotel, which for me adds to the holiday experience â Brits, French, Italian, German, Russian, Polish, Czech and more. On the way there we were told they had not seen rain for a month, which was tempting fate a little, but we did not see rain for two weeks. The result was one day / night they were lighting controlled fires in the hills to create fire breaks and we had very light smoke blow over us every now and again for a day. We were told by another couple who were on their second visit they had witness fires and the entertainment of watching helicopters lifting sea water and dropping on the fires. But, this is part and parcel of Sicily and it is all under control and did not pose any problems at all. Down side, the AngelDevil entertainment crew will be on to you like timeshare sale men to take part in their activities for the first few days until they get to know your face and participation willingness levels. They will appear sometimes at night to drum up dancing etc., which is great on some occasions, but some nights you just want a quiet after dinner drink and to enjoy the terrace views. The team need to work on their people language / reading skills and understand Brits value their personal space! The only other gripe would be the Italians on are very very rude on holiday (the Italians serving, no matter where we went were great!). On the middle weekend, a lot of Italians descended on the hotel (we think half were for a family wedding) for a short stay and the restaurant was pandemonium (it is a buffet self service), with my wife being physically pushed away from the pasta area at one point. We and others got wise and went for dinner 15 minutes earlier to avoid for the next couple of nights. However, does show the quality of the hotel again due to lots of Italians staying and being keen to sample (lots of) the very good food. We have two young primary school age kids, so did not venture far and spent more time than we should of at the hotel, which we regret a little now and should have put up with the moans. We took a taxi to Toarmina at 20â¬ each way and should have got a bus at 1â¬ that was very easy. From Toarmina, we should have also taken a further bus to Caselmola (donât take the rip of excursion). We should also have gone to Etna and didnât due to duff advise from people who had been before â make sure you go and witness the lava flows. When in Toarmina, you will do the usual tourist bit, but if you need to take a break, head for at the cafÃ© at the far end of the main shopping area by the post office where the pedestrian zone stops. You will find a two way road with no paths, half of it take up by outside seating for the cafÃ© and scoter parking. That leaves the brilliant controlled madness of Italians and tourist going about their business under the heady smell two stroke â brilliant to just sit and watch with a drink / ice cream. In the hotel, we only put them into the kids club in the afternoon of the second week, where they were involved in putting on a Disney show and loved it - my youngest was counting down the minutes each day till she could go (we struggled to get the eldest out of the pool). If you would like to escape the hotel in the afternoon when it gets really hot for an excellent coffee / cake / ice cream, take a five minute walk from the bottom of the main lift into Letohanni and as you reach the sea front, CafÃ© Noir is on the right had corner. A great coffee, all be it small like all of Italy, good selection of ice cream and cakes, spotless, cheep, friendly people serving and have a quick burst of watching the locals go about their business as you sit outside. Overall, Sicily, the hotel, people and climate is tops, no matter what you want to do round activities, or lack of them on holiday and we will be back."
- Travel date: 30th July 2008
Loved this hotel- great for families
"We went here as wanted an all inclusive hotel- it was an excellent choice. The hotel is set in the rocks - we hired a car and parked it in the car park down below and took the lift up to the reception area of hotel. The Antares is on the bottom level and the Olympio is on the top level- the hotel is offically called Antares Olympio on all the in house material and you have free use of facilities in both- they are linked by a glass elevator taking you up to Olympio. We ate breakfast and dinner in Antares and lunch up on the roof top of Olympio which was lovely. There are two pools and a kids club plus entertainment team which run shows in the small outdoor theatre in the evenings and a disco for kids as well as organised activities throughout the day. The team were fantastic-so friendly and really good with children and teenagers. The food was great- I was glad we took the all inclusive option though as you charge things to your room and could run up a large bill. We were able to get all meals, drinks and ice cream free on the all inclusive. I also got a 20% discount in the wellness centre which does Decleor facials and body treatments - its lovely like a turkish bath with indoor pool and jacuzzi and all the usual beauty treatments and a hairdresser and gym - you get free use of the gym and indoor pool on the AI option as well. The rooms are quite basic for a 4 star hotel although they have great air con, a hairdryer, fridge, kettle with tea/coffee/herbal tea and safe in the room and the beds were firm but comfy. Unlike many European countries we got a proper double bed and not 2 singles pushed together. We hired a car- although the drivers in Sicily very irratic and take big risks- just drive carefully as you need to get out and about and see this gorgeous country. Sicily is stunning from the volcano to the cute villages built on top of cliffs and everyone we met was very friendly. I would definately recommend this hotel for families - it takes approx 10 mins to drive into Taoramina which is the main town in the area and is just stunning. Letojanni is not much of a town- very limited shops and very few restaurants etc. The hotel do have a lido on the beach if you like the sea although we stayed by the pool as it was handier as its a bit of a walk - 10 mins approx to get from the hotel to the lido. If you don't mind being a bit out of the action then this hotel is brilliant as its lots going on in house. If you like walking about in the evening etc better to stay in Taoramina although for me it was close enough to drive into after dinner. When you park in Taoramina use the multin storey car park as you come into the town and take the free bus to the town centre which takes about 2 mins. You can't park in the town so don't even try or you will get stuck in endless one way streets. Its quite expensive to park - 3euro per hour. Overall I LOVED Sicily and Hotel Antares!!!"
- Travel date: 25th July 2008
"Had a lovely holiday in Sicily, we stayed @ the ANTARES HOTEL - Letojanni. We checked in on the 28th June 08 about 1pm, made to feel very welcome by all. The buffet breakfast and evening meals were exellent, very friendly and helpful staff. Rooms very clean and tidy, nice and cool with the air conditioning. Loved sitting out after our evening meal, looking across the views, sipping our wine and cocktails. The glass lift upto the Olimpo Hotel was brillant, amazing views, and a quick way of getting around. The mini bus to the local villages very helpful, nice to see the sites aswell. Everyone was so helpful and made us feel very welcome, would deffinately go to the ANTARES HOTEL again, we had a wonderful time. We didnt want to leave. B & B (North Wales)"
- Travel date: 12th July 2008
"The Antares Hotel is about 5-10 minutes drive from Taomina. Convenient location and easy to get to on the Interbus as bus stop right outside. The hotel is good and I was impressed with how clean it was. Loved the pool area as not too busy and has umbrellas and gets the sun all day. The staff are very curteous and friendly without being in your face. The food was very good especially the pasta and ice cream. Fairly good choice of food, bit samey but on the whole cant fault it, some of the pastas were really good. Not too keen on the deserts (apart from the ice cream) as seemed to be a lot of "cake" type deserts but they always had fresh fruit. The Bar, managed by Antonio, has great cocktails and we often sampled the "special" during happy hour every day before our meal. I was not disappointed with our hotel choice at all and much preferred staying there than in Taomina which is very pretty but awkward if you didnt want to take the cable car up and down to the stony beach. The drawback is the stony beach rather than sand and rather uniformally placed sun chairs in sections along a straight beach - hence staying by the nice pool area! The motorway is a bit of an eyesore but its only really prominent on one side and we often spent our time on the other side which is more picturesque (by the pool). Fab sunrises! We were on limited budget so didnt get to see some of the sights we would have liked to but word of caution - check out the Interbus sightseeing tours as opposed to the agent's - half of the cost. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone wishing to visit this area of Sicily."
- Travel date: 17th June 2008
"Visited this hotel in August with my wife and two children aged 17 and 14.The hotel is one of three perched on a hillside over looking Letojanni and in my opinion the Antares is the better of the three .Access to the hotel is either by circumnavigating the spiralling hillside road ,or via the 75 metre long tunnel ,then ascending one of two lifts which take you to the rear of the lounge area???. After booking the holiday with a TA I did a google earth search and noticed a motorway plonked right on the doorstep ,but fortunately for us it didnât give us any problems but on reading some reviews other guests did seem to have a problem with traffic noise. We found the hotel extremely relaxing and the staff were very professional and helpful. The drinks in the hotel are reasonably priced and a swipe card system was operated to pay for any drinks if you werenât AI and the bill was paid at the end of your stay or as we did when it started to mount up. We didnât initially like the system but the bill was always correct to the penny .Even though it was at the height of the season there was plenty of room in the bars and pool area and the hotel didnât tolerate the ritual of reserving sun beds . The meals in the restaurant were a bit repetitive but there was plenty to eat and there was something there for everyone, once again the restaurant had a nice relaxing atmosphere .There is a games rooms downstairs by the pool which had about a dozen arcade machines a table tennis and a table football machine .There is also several internet facilities around the three hotels . The rooms we had were quite spacious and we had a little garden and balcony and fantastic views of Taormina. There is a free shuttle bus which operates from the hotel car park which takes you to the cable car terminal in Taormina. Letojanni is a 10 minute walk from the hotel and has dozens of little shops and bars and also the Popular Bank of Sicily which gave excellent exchange rates.There is also a station in the town where you can get to Messina ,Catania or a short visit to Taormina station which is well worth a visit just for the architecture. The buses operate from Letojanni and run quite frequently but at the time of our visit it was a bit hectic sometimes to get on one .The taxis are a complete rip off! Taormina is a beautiful town and the hotel is in such a good location to get to it either by the shuttle bus/cable car or bus. The hotel is in a good location as it is outside Taormina but not too far to travel to it .Letojanni is a quaint little town where tourism hasnât quite reached here yet and what we liked about it is that everyone seemed so friendly and laid back and couldnât do enough for you. We didnât hire a car due to the time of year but the road network from the hotel is excellent and from here you can get all around the island quite easily. On reflection we made a wise choice with this hotel as it was clean well situated and even though it was the peak of the season there was plenty of room to move around. We will probably visit this hotel again but not at this time of year."
- Travel date: 17th February 2008
First Class Hotell
"Stayed for 2 weeks at the end of July 2007 The room was very large with a siting area and a high quality camp type bed for our second child. The view was superb and we had a large balcony with a side mountain/sea view. The hotel is very clean and the buffet restaurant is very good with a wide choice. The beach is a short distance away after going down in the lift and the sea is crystal clear Free loungers etc at the lido was a bonus. I would recommend this hotel without question. The boat trips to Limpari and Vulcano are well worth the effort but there is nothing happening on Stromboli at the moment so it is a long trip without too much to see. Sicily is well worth a visit."
- Travel date: 11th August 2007
Where in the world to stay
"Having stayed in some of the best hotels in the world, you will not be disappointed with this hotel. The quaity of the food is excellent, unbelievable choice and changes daily with fantastic choices including local sicilian dishes, freshly cooked choice of pasta dishes, delicious salad/olive bars, meat and fish choice etc etc. The animation/entertainment team keep children and adults alike, entertained. Great choice of amenities with swimming pool at the summit. The hotel has panaromic views and is kept clean daily.Maid service superb. Please don't book this hotel as I do not wish the hotel prices to increase or there be no availability when I return!"
- Travel date: 9th August 2007
A great 3 nights spent here
"I found the Antares through its sign on its roof. Several years ago, I stayed in the Taormina area at a B&B and had a horrible experience that I vowed I would find some place better upon returning. After checking the "parc hotels italia" website which includes the Antares, the place I had spotted off the highway stting up on a hill via its sign looked like it could work, so I booked 3 nights at the Antares for my 2007 vacation in Sicily. The reception was expedient and efficient and all of the terms of the initial phone call were met. I wished the safe box was code operated but they handed me a key pursuant to a deposit. They were very friendly in that informal Sicilian kind of way (I explained to them that my parents were from the area and I was made to feel very welcome). I noticed that people coming from all countries were treated very well as they made a concerted effort to switch into English, French and German as needed. The room was nice. The air conditioning worked well, as it was very hot in Sicily that week, and cooled the room quickly. I had a lateral sea view. The price was appropriate for the value received. I had 2 minor complaints: (1) I hate it when, in single bedded rooms, the bed is pushed up agains the wall, making it feel like a college dormitory and (2) I hate when the shower enclosure has the transparent plexiglas that you keep bumping into. Other than that, every aspect of the accommodations was pleasing. The breakfast buffet was outstanding, featuring standards as well as some more local items such as the red Sicilian orange juice grown only in that area. I did not partake in any of their organized activities for the "packaged crowd" as they seemed kitsch, but they seemed to have ample activities and programs available. I love the general area, prices are generally reasonable and, compared to the drama and confusion you can run into in Sicily, the Antares is professionally managed. I will definitely return to this complex which comprises of the Antares, the Olimpo and Le Terrazze."
- Travel date: 26th July 2007
Well run hotel
"Well run hotel with friendly staff. Buffet meals but good variety and plenty of it. Nice pool and bar area ,even better at sister hotel Antares Olimpo"
- Travel date: 27th June 2007
Hotel Antares is also called
- Antares Hotel
- antares hotel letojanni