126 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog

just arrived back from our second holida...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Mon 7th of July 2008

"just arrived back from our second holiday at the julian forest,and have booked already to return next year.the food and service always excellent,hotel and rooms aleays spotlessly clean.the kids club is a god send(thanx steph).
the poolside is very clean with plenty of sunbeds,poolslides are fun for adults aswel as the kids.
would highly recomend the turkish bath and other services available from penguin,(thanx josh for making our holiday memorable).my partner did not take a razor this time as he looks forward to the turkish shave.
ahmet the hotel manager is never too busy to help or just to chat and the rest lf the staff are always friendly and helpful,we wouldnt hesitate to recomend this hotel to anybody.see you all again next year.x x"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Mon 7th of July 2008

The accommodation is fantastic. Simply p...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 2nd of July 2008

"The accommodation is fantastic. Simply put full turkish baths, jewellers, free aircon in the bedrooms, restaurant bar and rooms cleaned daily (towels and sheets changed every 2 days). Better than this was the warm hearted friendliness of the staff.

Please ignore other reviews that mutter about the distance. We hardly ever had to wait for the bus (Dolmus) to the resort centre and it is a short 5/10 minute ride. The hotel entertainment was good, especially at the pool during the day. As the resort centre was so easy to get to we spent most of the evenings in the resort centre but the people that stayed in the hotel for the evening did seem to enjoy it.

The bars and resurants made a real effort to ensure everyone had a good time. Between the beech and the main drag is a side street with some nice restaurants. The best by far for us was Charlies but we also enjoyed sampling everywhere and never had a bad meal.

People have been saying the resort is more expensive but this is mainly due to the exchange rate being so low. Hopefully it will rise again soon but make sure your prepared before you go. Meal for 2 costs about 50 YTL.

Julian Forest has all the convenience of being within 5/10 minutes of the resort centre yet being surrounded by the beauty of Turkey at it's best.

We'll be back next year and we cannot wait!!! "

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Wed 2nd of July 2008

Myself and my friend visited this hotel...

4
Good
by
Reviewed Tue 1st of July 2008

"Myself and my friend visited this hotel the first week of June for a relaxing girls sunbathing holiday. The hotel itself is really clean, with very spacious rooms. Our room was on the top floor and faced the pine covered mountain which we had requested, and the views were absolutely stunning. We also had 2 balconies with sets of glass doors which made the room very light and airy. The downside was the music at the pool was so loud from around 10am it would have been a nightmare to have a pool facing room, as you could hardly read by the pool with the volume from the distorted speakers ! Even an Ipod on full volume did not drown this out, and the fact they only had 3 cds made it worse ! We did go to the pool at the hotel next door, which was really nice and quite, and you could pay with cash instead of the stupid wrist band top up system of the julian forest. The other annoying thing was the 'entertainment' staff constantly bugging you to play water polo, killer pool, darts, bingo, and water aerobics, and the waiters constantly trying to sell you flexi-dine. We told them on the first day we were not interested, but were still harassed at least 5 times a day. The hotel and pool are set in such a beautiful surrounding it was a shame the music and the harrassing almost spoilt it. We actually enjoyed being away from the town as it was so peaceful (once the music stopped) and ended up walking half way in to town each night to a small amount of restaurants in the old village. The best one by far was across a little wooden bridge called the Sun, the food was really nice and laid back atmosphere. they even take you back to the hotel or pay for your taxi, which is excellent service.

We only ate in Icmeler once, at the FRIENDS restaurant, which was also nice, but everywhere else seemed to have a lack of traditional Turkish food, and seem intent on chips/roast beef/full english breakfast, which is really sad ! Also the restaurant and shop owners stand outside and constantly try and get you to come in, getting very annoying, especially when they make lewd comments !

The highlight of our holiday was the Turkish bath, which we had actually been recommended to go to at the hotel next door, Green Park. It was £30 for 2 hours of pampering including hot mud face mask, full body scrub and aromatherapy massage. This was well worth the money. If I was to return here I would still stay at the Julian Forest as having been the last people dropped off we definetly had the best hotel, but I would use the pool and bar at the green park next door, or just stay there. These are the only hotels on the road up the mountains, and are set in such beautiful surroundings. Hopefully the hotel managers will take note of the comments from us and other guests regarding the music/entertainers and stop it so people want to return."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 1st of July 2008

More negative points than positive, most...

2
Poor
by
Reviewed Tue 1st of July 2008

"More negative points than positive, most to do with the kind of the guest this hotel attracts and its attempt to please them.

The resort is far enough away from the centre to keep you dashing back and forth on dolmus', but Icmeler is like Blackpool anyway so I wouldn't bother! I'm not a rude person but by the end of two weeks of continual hassle I just couldn't be bothered with trying to be polite to overbearing waiters standing outside their restaurants. If you like sausage, egg and chips you'll love Icmeler. The beach is dirty, water cloudy and diesel filled and no toilets unless you sell your soul to the waiter opposite. Don't expect to feel or see any "real" Turkey, you could be bck at home with the amount of Union Flags flying.

The accommodation at the Julian Forest is well above that found in other holiday destinations, the maids do a quick tidy and empty your loo paper bucket daily and linen and towels are changed every other day. Kitchen utensils are a bit sparce for cooking but OK, however the fridge is tiny and hardly fits all the juice and water you will use. The soundproofing between rooms is not up to standard and you will hear every squeak of chairs, bed etc being moved. If you are unlucky enough to find your neighbours prefer to party all night and sleep all day -tough! reception will shrug their shoulders.

The entertainment team are very likeable, but their choice of ear splitting music played from 10-5 is repetitive and more suitable for a club, don't expect radio edit lyrics your kids will hear full versions of eminem and 50cent songs. As previously pointed out by another guest there is no escape from this barrage of sound. At 5pm happy hour begins when the music stops and is replaced by the top volume of a 42" plasma in the bar...great! This will go on till 1am minimum.

Expect to feel milked! Flexi dine, massages, tatoos, hairdressing, manicures and pedicures are seriously pressured by all staff around the pool, changeover day is like a feeding frenzy with everybody fighting over possible commision. There are rules everywhere, but don't expect anyone including the staff to pay any attention to them. These include glass at the pool, numerous people smashed glasses and instead of getting plastic next time the waiters swept up the glass and gave them a new one! Needless to say none of the people had barefoot kids with them. The no cash system is entirely suspect, waiters are reluctant to give you a receipt, probably as tips can be applied to your account at the till without you knowing.

The food is terrible, mass cooked and mostly buffet style in the evenings if you choose to stay in and watch the bizarre and terrible entertainment, awful I've seen better at school plays. The kids were bored silly, apart from the water slides(open limited hours) there is little for them to do there is no play park or even any grass at all at the hotel. The one saving grace was the kids club organiser, she was a Godsend who made the biggest effort to ensure all these bored kids had a good time.

Prepare to get up early, if you haven't bagged a bed before 8am, don't expect to get one. The Julian Forest is popular with very large families (12+ groups) who take over whole areas of the hotel, pool and bar for their own. Just because they've got a lot of adults with their children, don't expect them to be supervised. Bombing swimmers seems to be the new sport, encouraged by drunken parents. Actually, don't expect to be able to swim anyway, at one point I counted 13 lilo's, 7 large rubber rings, 3 games of water polo and a frisbee in the pool, it looks like a shop.

4/10 purely for the accommodation, maids and kids club, otherwise ruined by badly behaved "Brits abroad" and greedy staff encouraging their behaviour for extra tips. Would not recommend or visit again."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 1st of July 2008

Had a great time here. Yes, the apartmen...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Sun 29th of June 2008

"Had a great time here. Yes, the apartment is far from the main town but u can catch the dolmus bus which runs every few mins and can get there in 5-10mins. We walked on 1 occasion, it took us 30mins. If u want to walk, the best time to go is in the early evening, not so hot then. dolmus runs until 1am

The hotel staff are always friendly and cheerful, no matter what time of the day. rooms kept clean daily by the maids. apartment was excellent, a modern quality feel to the room, no cheap tat. free air con! food was ok and reasonably priced. what more do u want?

pool area was great, always beds availble. nice view of mountains. nothing bad to say about the hotel. a relaxing fun trip.

we did various trips during our 7days there. quad/buggy ride, all inclusive criuse, turkish bath, jeep safari (this is a must!)

theres a top notch restaurant called Gunay's Restaurant (near Amazon Tours, they do trips at very cheap prices by the way), try their Turkish pitta bread, its free with ur meal, quality stuff."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 29th of June 2008

First time in turkey thought it was amaz...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Sun 29th of June 2008

"First time in turkey thought it was amazing we stayed at the Julian Forest apartments It was Lovely And Clean Staff were Very Very Friendly would we defently back next year for 2 Weeks! because one week was not enough for all the things to do!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 29th of June 2008

the hotel is lovely the staff are so fri...

1
Awful
by
Reviewed Sat 28th of June 2008

"the hotel is lovely the staff are so friendly
the location off the hotel is nt gd
i went with my mum anf im 17 and there is nothing to do at nite or day time
you were stuck in the mountains the town was 30 mins away i didnt like it
wouldnt go bk to it again
and its really deer!
there were snakes and flys
the bad thing was u have to eat outside nt gd "

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sat 28th of June 2008

I have just returned from weeks stay in...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Thu 19th of June 2008

"I have just returned from weeks stay in Julian Forest and it is the best holiday ever! Me and my boyfriend were not sure about going to Turkey as we had never been and it didn't appeal to us but we booked it as a late deal, got a good price and now we want to go back!! The hotel is lovely and all the staff are very nice and helpful. The food was nice and we ate there most days, it is just out of Icmelar but get the local bus (Dolmus) and it takes 10 mins. Good size pool compared to some others we saw but we would recommend this hotel and we hope to go back in September."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Thu 19th of June 2008

My family of four went to Julian Forest...

4
Good
by
Reviewed Tue 10th of June 2008

"My family of four went to Julian Forest during the last week of May 08. We were very pleased with the standard of accomodation with two large bedrooms, one of which was en-suite. The apartment looked out over the pool and it had TV and a balcony. The hotel was kept very clean and so were our rooms. The on site shop was expensive and nothing was priced up, so we often walked to the nearest shop (about 10 minutes) or caught the regular dolmus into town (still only 1 lira).
We took the 4 day flexi dine option and were not disappointed, i am a vegan and they catered for me easily. I was worried about the food but needn't have been. There were vegetarian options all over Icmelar and everyone was so friendly and helpful and catered for me easily. Particular thanks to the Romance (www.romancerestaurant.com) in Icmeler who made the best food and entertained us and collected and took us home for no charge! They even emailed me pictures of our time with them and had free internet access!
The pool was fine but too loud, really our only complaint about our stay, and we did complain daily, the music around the pool would start at about 10am and go on until 5pm, they would turn the music down a bit for a few minutes but then it would be ear shattering again! In the end we took to going to the pool at the hotel next door (Green Park) as they were pleased to welcome us and took cash for ice creams and drinks etc (rather than the token system at Julian).
Wasps weren't a problem early season, though the weather was fantastic! Sun, sun, sun and hot with it! We will return, but hope they read our thoughts on the music, which really was so loud nobody could sleep after lunch!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 10th of June 2008

We enjoyed a week at the club julian for...

4
Good
by
Reviewed Mon 9th of June 2008

"We enjoyed a week at the club julian forest hotel. Overall the hotel was very clean, with very friendly staff. The pool area was excellent with plenty of sun loungers if you want to laze abouth the pool all day. There is plenty for kids to do, they have two water slides and kids club. The entertainment staf are excelent and keep everybody on the go all day. The bar area was excellent to, however quite expensive.

We upgraded to flexidine for four days and found that very reasonable. Icmeler is only a short ride on the dolmush which is the local form of transport. In icmeler you can find some fantastic bargains but again more exspensive than we imagined."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Mon 9th of June 2008

excellent hotel, wonderful staff, extrem...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 4th of June 2008

"excellent hotel, wonderful staff, extremely clean. brochures do not do this hotel justice. its in an excellent location, very peaceful setting far enough away from the hustle & bustle to unwind however its only 5 mins on the bus to civilisation! flexidine offered by the hotel is great value for money, food is of a high quality and service is excellent. highly recomended"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Wed 4th of June 2008

Just returned from spending a week at th...

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed Wed 4th of June 2008

"Just returned from spending a week at this hotel. It was my first visit to Turkey and I was pleasantly surprised. The hotel is set in beautiful scenery, a little way out of Icmeler but not a problem because local buses pick up outside hotel every 10 minutes and only cost 1 lira (40p). It takes about 25 minutes to walk. This hotel is very clean and the staff are very friendly. Good entertainment throughout the day for the kids which is run by locals who do an excellent job especially when trying to referee the water polo..! Even water aerobics is fun.
Food at the hotel is very nice and the waiters are very helpful and pleasant.
Bbq night is well worth trying, entertainment on this night is great fun for all.
The hotel doesnt deal with cash, instead you get a wrist band which you put cash on at reception, we found this good especially with the children as they could go to shop and buy ice creams and things without having to try and work money out. The hotel shop is slightly more expensive than local shops but not to bad, there is a bigger shop about 15 mins walk away where they have a great variety of products alot cheaper.
Coach journey took us about 2hrs from airport but you get to stop at a motorway service half way for refreshments which is great. Well worth the journey to end up at this excellent hotel. "

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Wed 4th of June 2008

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