12 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
My wife and I stayed all inclusive for o...
"My wife and I stayed all inclusive for our second holiday at the Comino Hotel during the last 2 weeks in September 2006. We travelled by air from Manchester with Malta Direct and the cost was very reasonable. We have booked again for September 2007.
Built in the 1960's, the Comino Hotel is the only hotel on the little rocky unspoilt island of Comino, located mid-way between Malta and Gozo. As at September 2006, Comino Hotel was a little tired and in need of some refurbishment. We had to change rooms owing to a plumbing leak. Although this fault should have been spotted by the cleaners and repaired before we arrived, our request was dealt with and sorted personally by the hotel manager. We understand that a lot of refurbishment work was planned for the winter period 2006-7.
The hotel atmosphere was wonderful, if a little like being in a time warp. The staff were friendly and attentive, the sea views from the hotel are spectacular, the food was wholesome, the drinks excellent and the cliff walks, ferry service and water sport facilities are very good. Being very rocky, the island is good for diving and snorkelling and there is a huge variety of interesting life to be seen underwater. Malta's famous Blue lagoon is located on Comino and this is an excellent sandy swimming area, although in some years, little jellyfish can be a problem. If you want to crash out and disappear from civilisation: this is the place to go!"
- Travel date: Thu 13th of September 2007
Exclusive upmarket hotel Oh No It Isn't
"THE BAD FIRST Left waiting for an hour & a half at the airport, then half hour at the ferry port, arrived tired and greeted by a Mini bus, The website says no vehicles on the island, we saw at least 10 whilst we were there for the past 2 weeks, The hotel itself is very dated and worn out, the chairs had nails sticking out and it definatly needs a great deal of work both inside and out, the rooms were very average and NOT up to the 4 star that Malta have given it, I would say 3 at a push. There was also no entertainment, contarary to the website, The manager told us it was only in the summer, They were also doing a photoshoot for the website whilst we were there, a man came and wanted to put our brolly up we said no so he took it away. it seems that we were an inconvenience during this time. Also on the website you can only book half board, however, when we got there we could have paid to go all inclusive had we rung up. Do not go with an exclusive hotel and luxury in mind, and you will relax and enjoy it for what it is, a beautiful island with great walks and views.but a mediocre hotel.
That said the majority of the staff were very pleasant and helpfull, especially Mark the barman/Waiter.
It is a beautiful Island but as mentioned earlier nothing to do apart from sunbathe, the island has many visitors who return year after year and they made our holiday, Things to do there is a great Dive centre, it does not belong to the hotel and Antwan the owner got me through my Open water course whilst I was there, it is advisable to book in advance. His website is [--] Give him my regards when you book.
Hope this helps"
- Travel date: Mon 28th of May 2007
An ok holiday. Hotel definitely NOT 4 star!
"The holiday got off to a bad start where my boyfriend and I were picked up from the airport and then dumped at a port 45 minutes away on the wrong side. We were also dropped off late as the taxi driver made a slight detour to pick up his girlfriend (!) so we had missed the last boat and were left waiting on the dock for over 2 hours.
We finally arrived at Hotel Comino around 2am. The staff were hospitable and apologised for the delay even though it was the fault of Thomson...who I found very unhelpful and will not book through them again!
The hotel is nice...but definitely not 4 star. The decour needs updating as the interior (especially reception) is incredibly dingy.
There are two swimming pools at Comino Hotel (one is a childrens) and one on the bungalow side. My boyfriend and I spent a few days on the bungalow side as it was nice and quiet and just generally a nicer setting. The pools are cold...very cold! But kept very well. They are salt water though which isn't to everybody's liking.
We went on an all inclusive basis which I have to say was very good. Although the food was pretty samey (you might want to venture off the island particularly if you are there for more than a week) there was a relatively good selection - pasta, a salad bar, some sort of roasted meat (different every night), potatoes, a couple of vegetarian options and fresh fish every day - there were even chips for the less adventurous!
There was also a snack menu available which was mainly burgers, chicken nuggets, etc. But it was possible to get sandwiches and pasta too.
The all inclusive alcohol was amazing! They had a cheaper version of every type of alcohol so you could ask for anything you wanted and the bar staff would find some way to make it part of your all inclusive deal - including making up (very strong!) cocktails.
As for the island itself...after a couple of days it is pretty boring as it's so small you can walk it in a day. It is definitely worth visiting the Blue Lagoon which is absolutely gorgeous, but I would reccommend going early morning or sunset, as you get less day trippers at those times.
If you do decide to venture to Malta I would recommend swimming with the dolphins and also a lovely terrace restaurant we went to in Mdina at the Xara Palace Hotel - it was on a hill overlooking the whole of the island.
All in all it was a good holiday, and the hotel was lovely but just needed a little updating. The reception staff were a little less than friendly but the bar staff and the manager made up for what they lacked."
- Travel date: Tue 12th of September 2006
a place to chill
"my wife and i go on holiday at least three times a year.We go to the carribean the maldives and all over europe ,but after discovering comino we find it so difficult to book anywhere else . We were recommend this holiday by a freind ,and our last three holidays have been spent at this quiet,friendly resort."
- Travel date: Sat 9th of September 2006
This Hotel is the Pits
"Hotel Comino billed as a four star but is one of the most-run-down in the Mediterranean. Cockroaches are hardly indigenous to the Maltese Islands. They are indigenous to dirt, and they were roaming the terrace at night. There is no public space in this ghastly edifice apart from an uncomfortable lobby that would remind you of a bus terminus. The facilities were pitiful. The equipment in the fitness room was dangerous. The entertainment was so bad it worked as camp. The bikes for hire were broken. The speedboat was dead, needing a gearbox. The food was barely adequate. The only redeeming feature was the (overworked) staff who could not have been more helpful. We stayed only three nights and it was so awful it was hilarious. An all-inclusive package may make it good value for families but my heart went out to the honeymooners marooned there. A dreadful start to married life."
- Travel date: Sun 30th of July 2006
This year was our fourth holiday at Comi...
"This year was our fourth holiday at Comino Hotel - which says it all, surely? No? You want details - oh, OK then, here goes.
Firstly the travel and transfer. We flew from Birmingham with Air Malta, as we get to park for free at our daughter's house (not a facility you're likely to benefit from, admittedly), plus we like Birmingham International - it's got a dinky little monorail system to take you from train station to airport! The flight was the usual cramped boring affair, but the check in guys use a little bit of common sense, and me being over 6' and slightly bigger than normal (alright - fat!) they usually give me a seat with a bit more room without me having to ask.
On landing at Malta Airport, we collected our bags and walked out into the main hall. There we quickly spotted our travel operators desk, made ourselves known, and within minutes were in an air-conditioned minibus for the 45 minute drive across Malta. This is the only bit of the journey unsuitable for those of a nervous disposition, as Maltese driving is not exactly text book standard! We arrived at the ferry harbour of Kirkewaa on the northern tip of the island, and our ferry was waiting for us. A 20 minute trip across the water and we were stepping off onto what we consider our own little piece of heaven.
After checking in, we were driven the half mile or so to our bungalow (or suite as they now call them), as we prefer not to be in the main hotel building. As we like to travel late, and arrived after dinner, a sandwich was waiting for us, and chilled bottled water, and after a quick nibble, we went to bed. And so - the holiday itself.
Now, the nice thing about staying in the bungalow suites is that there's less noise than we imagine there is in the hotel, so you tend to wake up when your appetite does. Sling the bare minimum of "decency" clothing on, a 100 yard stroll, and you're on the breakfast patio ready for tea or coffee, fried or scrambled eggs, bacon sausages, tomatoes, cereal and toast - whatever gets you through the morning! The head waiter at the bungalows, John, is unfailingly cheerful whatever the temperature, and no matter how busy he is. Like all the staff on Comino, he remembers the regulars from year to year, and seems genuinely pleased to see you back again.
After breakfast, back to the bungalow to change in to swimming gear, collect fins and snorkel, towels (big, fluffy beach towels provided by the hotel) and then a ten minute stroll over to the main hotel complex to grab a sun-lounger by the pool. (There is a pool and loungers over at the bungalow restaurant complex, but we like to watch what's going on - nosy, that's what we are!)
Being all inclusive, local drinks are free, and so as soon as we get there, (about 11am if we rush, about 1105am if we don't) we get the first round in, so as to set the relaxed tone for the rest of the day.
The meals at Comino are great. Lunchtime starters are usually fresh salad, cold meat, perhaps some fish or sea food, and the mains vary from good old roast beef, to locally caught fish, octopus, rabbit, and for the less adventurous, there's is usually something and chips - but let's not go there - the local stuff is so tasty it seems a real shame not to try it. Desserts centre round tarts of some sort, mousses, or plain old-fashioned ice cream.
Dinners are much the same as lunchtimes, but the main courses are a little grander, and there is somehow, don't ask me how, a more "civilized", formal attitude, even though absolutely no-one dresses for dinner beyond perhaps putting on a casual shirt rather than a T-shirt.
What can you do on Comino? Well, to put it bluntly - not a lot! It is the ultimate chill out antidote to modern living. For a start, no one rushes. Anything more than a slow stroll looks horribly out of place, and given that this year the temperature was close to 40C a lot of the time, could be positively uncomfortable. There is a water sports beach, where as an all inclusive guest you can take out a canoe, pedalo, or windsurfing board, and the guys in charge give you some basic instruction. You can, if you have a clue how to do it, take out a small Hobbie sailing dinghy or catamaran, but that seems like terribly hard work in that heat. By far the most popular pastime among the guests is swimming (or at least being in the water), and a lot of people go snorkeling, but that's about as energetic as it gets (and I have to admit the effort of pulling my fins on sometimes tires me so much I have to have a snooze before I actually get in the water!)
If you have energy to burn (God forbid I should meet you), there is a fully equipped PADI dive school to help you tire yourself out.
The staff on Comino seem to have only one item on their job descriptions - force you to be happy!
They all speak excellent English, have great senses of humour, and go out of their way to accommodate you if you have a need for assistance (last year the lady who runs the shop made a special trip from her home to the capital of Gozo just to get me the particular cigars I smoked - and only charged me what she was charging for ordinary cigarettes - I could have kissed her, but her husband's a big bloke).
So how would I sum up Comino? If you need to relax, chill out, catch up on your reading, meet nice people (we haven't yet met anyone we really disliked) and go back to the real world wondering why everyone's always in such a hurry, it's the place for you. If you need to be entertained, kept busy, and having new adventures - well, you need treatment rather than a holiday.
The staff are brilliant at their jobs, the travel/transfer system is totally painless, the food and drink is terrific, the weather is unbelievably warm and dry, and within hours of getting home we had pre-booked our visit for next year - beat that!"
- Travel date: Thu 27th of July 2006
"Perfect place to kick back and get away from it all. For those of you who want to unwind in peaceful setting and considering Gozo, pick Comino!!! Couples, families, singles, honeymooners, senior citizens and anyone who doesn't want to go clubbing will be satisfied. Rooms clean, average 2-3 star - feels like a serene summer camp for adults. Any lack of plushness quickly forgotten by remoteness and tranquility of Comino. Breakfast excellent, lunch sandwiches average, dinner average to very good, depending on meal. (Oh, and hotel manager Eagles fanatic - the only music ever played in the dining room - gets old fast!! ...hint, hint, Mr. Manager.) Definitely book full board. Once you're there, you won't want to go anywhere else. If you should want to take a day trip to Gozo or Malta, only a short boat ride (book very reasonable rental car or tour driver with reception in advance).
Bungalows: really are a 10-15 minute slow-paced walk; serve breakfast and lunch; great balconies and views; deep pool overlooks cove where boaters anchor to relax and swim. Bungalows much quieter than hotel. Though there is a hotel van service to/from bungalows, those with mobility problems or small children would find the hotel more convenient (all dinners served there, reception, ferry service, tiny shop, shallower pool).
Evening entertainment is passable and when it's not, entertaining in itself.
Blue Lagoon is great, but go early or after 4:30 p.m. when crowds are gone. Same for walking around the island - too hot and no shade anywhere. (Hotel bikes were all broken)
Incredible little oasis to detox from the daily grind. Will definitely return!"
- Travel date: Sun 11th of June 2006
Would not stay agian
"We stayed here for our honeymoon as we wanted somewhere quiet and different from our normal holidays. I must say that im more than confused, Trip Advisor have this hotel down as a 2 star which I still think is more than generous looking at the accommodation we were offered. We booked this hotel as we were told that it was a 4 star and would meet our needs and expectations. On arrival I took my bride to the room and opened the door, im surprised she didnât leave me there and then as she must have thought I was such a cheap skate. I asked to be moved to a suite but you guessed it the hotel was completely booked up. As we couldnât up and leave we had to tolerate the accommodation for 8 days.
I must say though that apart form the reception staff that werenât prepared to do anything to help us, all the other staff were fantastic and very friendly. We also found the food to be excellent with a wide choice. I have to say that the wife is still with me and we wonât be returning for any anniversaries..."
- Travel date: Sun 16th of April 2006
Relaxation at Comino
"We have visited Comino three times, staying at the hotel twice and are going back to stay again in August. I agree with one reviewer that the bungalows have seen better days and the whole of the bungalows pool area could do with a good spruce up. But what makes the stay at Comino Hotel worth every penny are the staff, from the time you hear the diesels of the hotel's liberty boat coming acoss the straights to the last Kinnie before going home, you are put first.
It could not be more relaxing, the atmosphere is superb, however one tip, in high season get to the Blue Lagoon early, use it as your private pool and leave before the charter boats come in at around 10am"
- Travel date: Mon 10th of April 2006
5 star location 3 star accomodation
"5 star location! 4 star food and service but 3 star accomodation (at best). We have just returned from a great holiday on Comino. We know the maltese islands very well, so we knew the island is stunning, but we experienced the blue lagoon, and most of the rest of the island to our self, not a soul. The hotel and bungalows are in a great setting, but really it has seen better days, and the four stars is a bit dubious, we stayed in one of the bungalows, which was a little grotty to be honest, couple with a visiting scorpion in the bathroom. Having said that, we were on an all inclusive basis, and the food was excellent as was the service. Looking forward to visiting Malta again next year."
- Travel date: Tue 11th of October 2005
nothing stays the same!
"This was our second visit to Comino. First time round (2000) it was a totally laid back place. No kids clubs (but happy kids) and no teenage clubs. Food was superb and the entertainment in a secluded area (the rotundel). This allowed for people to have audible conversations on the terraces overlooking the sea, or even just read a book in peace and quiet. Oh dear what a change 3 years later. New ownership/management have decided to cater for the mass market. Both kids and noisy teenage clubs. Karaoke. LOUD music that you could hear over the other side of the island. Entertainment was moved to directly outside of the restaurant\- you cant get away from it anywhere. Food still good but obvious change of chef with less choice and quite a few "re-heats". Also bread stale by evening. We are not killjoys by any means but if you have been to this hotel prior to 2003 beware- it is not the same place at all."
- Travel date: Mon 8th of August 2005
Brilliant hotel, should be a 5 star
"Hotel Comino is amazing! From the age of 13 I've been going to the Hotel Coino. The accomodation is excellent, the staff are very friendly (especially John the bar tender) he put tomatoes on my sisters feet to help with sunburn, an old maltese cure supposedly! The island is beautiful and everyone who we've told about it has gone back the following year. Cant thank the hotel enough, had some of the best family memories ever at that hotel."
- Travel date: Mon 4th of April 2005