HOUDA YASMINE HAMMAMET | TUNISIA

REVIEWED ON 18 JUNE 2007

“Hit And Miss”

***

Benevolence is one of my virtues, so when considering a hotel holiday you have to stand back and try to be impartial.

The old saying about packaging and contents couldn't be more true at the Medi Golf. Its four star boast is a world apart from the glitz and comfort of the four star hotels in, say Egypt. Being generous, it is an average three star of the type you may find in Benidorm. Some of the reviews have been coloured by the efforts of the staff, who, for sure, are the greatest asset of the hotel. Top class to a man (there were few women) and they could not do enough for us. On arrival, it all looks very nice, but once we left the lift to enter the dark corridor of the first floor the mood was different. Tatty carpet, ripped in many places, covered the floor and the room itself was basic, basic. The fridge door was buckled, there were, oddly, no drawers to store belongings, the toilet roll holder was dangling from the wall, cellotape was used to keep several of the bath tiles in place and the doors and bottom of the walls had been chipped away. You needed to be 12 inches tall to get under the shower, which wasn't on the wall but attached to the side of the bath.

We had made a late booking to join some friends, and, good or bad, we were for a while the only four English people at the hotel. Russians. Czechs, German, Polish and French dominated. However, the welcome was very warm and kindly and everyone got on. The swimming pool area was lovely, and the hotel responded to the increasing numbers by bringing in 50 new sunbeds in mid week. The entertainment was poor, the usual mix of kiddies' club stuff, the music man, agadoo in russian and YMCA. The cabaret was dubious. But then it wasn't a priority for us. For the first few days the animation team were fawning over the galaxy of girls from the soviet bloc and nothing seemed to happen til they went home. The lads have some sympathy, I think it is hard willing multi-cultural audiences to take part.

So to the restaurant. The room was very spacious but canteenish.At first we were able to find something we liked. None of the food was labelled, and its appeal was low. After a few days, I was down to a chip butty for lunch and it all was all downhill from there. Some of the stuff they served would not have clawed its way out of the butcher's shop in England. Being honest, it was poor quality. However, there are a number of restaurants just hundreds of yards away, by the marina, which offered much better fare.

The bar was bizarre., Only one to get your all inclusive, or any other, drinks, and you had to tower over it, looking down on the barmen. To be fair, there were few queues, however, beer was served in a plastic pot less than half-pint sized. You could have as many as you wanted, which helped, if you could carry them all. We took the day trip to Tunis, Carthage, and Sidi Bou Said, booked locally. Beware, the trips cover a large pick up area.We dropped off for 90 mins on the way back at 14 hotels and returned almost two hours later than we were scheduled. It was poorly organised and the time banding for each bit was strange. Hammamet was okay, but the sellers are pushy, as ever, in the souks, and similarly in the new medina in Yasmine Hammamet. Many things are ridiculously cheap. What you can get for one dinar (40p) will surprise you. Near the Hotel is the Blue Ice supermarket. So cheap it's not worth stealing!!!

Yasmine Hammamet is a lovely resort and we thoroughly enjoyed our break with our friends, the Tunisian experience was wholesome and worthwhile. We always felt safe and weclome and were able to chill. However, there are many, many better hotels where you could spend your break. Would I send my mates to the Medi Golf? No. At least not until they spruce it up. £1m or so would help. Tips; You can only get your dinars in Tunisa. There is a government rate of 2.50 to the pound. The Hotel reception did not charge us for changing currency and gave us the same rate. And, of course, haggle for everything.

See the review on Tripadvisor.


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